The best February vacations for couples

The best February vacations for couples

Travel inspiration

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Need some romantic vacation ideas ahead of Valentine’s Day? These are some of the best — and some unconventional — couples’ vacations to take in February or early spring

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and if you’re thinking about a sweet escape with that special someone this month, we’ve got some great European, American and Asian getaway ideas. Below are some of the best vacations for couples in February or early spring — the classic, the adventurous, and some to suit those lovebirds looking for something a little different.

Valentine’s getaways in Europe

Narrow shopping street and St. Spyridon Church bell tower in Corfu Town — Getty ImagesWhy not try Corfu Town for Valentine’s Day? — Getty Images

Let’s start with some February sun, and seeing as Valentine’s Day is approaching, look at a spot of romance on the Greek island of Corfu. With strong flavors of Venice in its marbled squares and colonnaded walkways, Corfu Town is a maze of kandounia — the narrow, cobbled streets typical of Greek island towns. If you don’t feel like staying in Corfu Town (although why wouldn’t you?!) there are whitewashed cottages in the hills, beach resorts, spas and much more to allow you to simply relax with your loved one.

 

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Naturally, Italy’s always a great option for a romantic weekend away. Milan is a grand and inspiring city, with some of the best restaurants, bars, and venues in the country, with everything from family-owned trattorias to top-end eateries. Walk in the cold, fresh February air across the huge Piazza del Duomo, browse top high-street names on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, or enter the vast and imposing shopping gallery of the same name for the most prestigious names in fashion.

Panoramic sunny view of Funchal — ShutterstockSunshine is pretty much guaranteed in Funchal all year round — Shutterstock

Funchal is a winning combination of history, culture, and a wonderful food and drink scene. The Portuguese city sits on the island of Madeira off the west coast of Morocco and is famous for its eponymous wine. There’s been a city here for over 600 years, meaning it’s a mixture of old lanes and squares, as well as newer hotels and shopping centers. Zona Velha, once the fishermans’ quarter, is now a lively area of cafes, galleries, and tiny local shops, and the subtropical climate means you’re virtually guaranteed sunshine. Simply a gorgeous place for a couple’s vacation.

Romantic breaks in North America

For the active, get-up-and-go couple, we’ve picked Salt Lake City, Utah. Host of the 2002 Winter Olympics, the Olympic Park is still very much in evidence, a mere 20 minutes from the city center. Winter sports fans are clearly catered for, with the park offering ski runs, bobsleigh and skeleton rides, a museum looking back at the event, and more throughout the year. It’s not all just for thrillseekers though, with the nearby Park City offering art galleries, shops, wellness facilities and more.

View across river of Fort-de-France — Getty ImagesFort-de-France has a lot more going for it than you’d think — Getty Images

Next up, the possibly lesser-known city of Fort-de-France, the capital of Martinique, an overseas department of France. Once a swampy outpost of a mighty empire, today it’s a bustling destination for cruise ships, French sunseekers, and people wanting a bit of vigor compared to the sleepy beaches across the rest of the island. The imposing Fort Saint Louis is a symbol of France’s previous naval dominance, and there’s also a controversial statue of Empress Josephine, wife of Napoleon, who was born on the island. There’s more going on in Martinique than you’d imagine, and who better to discover it all with than your other half?

Palm trees and main street of Palm Springs — Getty ImagesPalm Springs is known for its warm weather, leisure activity opportunities, and being the gay capital of the US — Getty Images

Finally, a classic winter sun destination: Palm Springs, California. Its 1950s and 60s architecture reflects the time when it — ahem — sprang to prominence, and is now known for its hotels, golf courses and spas, as well as being a fabulous base for more rugged types wanting to explore the Coachella Valley. Take an architectural tour, ride the spectacular aerial tramway for views across the valley and surrounding desert, or rent a bike for an adventure cycle along part of the San Andreas fault. And if you’re in a queer relationship, a bonus plus point for Palm Springs is that it’s broadly known for being the gayest town in the US. With an estimated 40 to 50% of the residents identifying as LGBTQ+, you’re pretty guaranteed to feel safe here, if anywhere.

Couples’ adventures in South America

If you’re one of those couples that have long been dreaming of a big South American trip, make sure you include these spots in your itinerary.

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Lawrence, Santa Cruz de la Sierra — Getty ImagesThe Cathedral Basilica of St. Lawrence in Santa Cruz de la Sierra — Getty Images

First off, we have Santa Cruz de la Sierra — a warm, tropical city in Bolivia that feels in sharp contrast to the thin air and nippy nights of La Paz, the capital. Start at the Parque Urbano, one of the centers of city life and a venue of fairs, outdoor concerts, or people just simply sitting and watching the world go by. The plazas and streets of the Old Town date from as far back as the 15th century, while the city has a delightful twist with influences from cultures as diverse as Russia and Japan, reflecting the tumultuous history of Bolivia both ancient and modern.

Young couple taking photo with selfie stick on the coast in Santa Marta — Getty ImagesThe forested coastal hills of Santa Marta are just a short walk from the city — Getty Images

Another city named for an aspect of religion now, but this time it’s Santa Marta in Colombia. Declared both a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site as far back as 1979, the immediate region is home to over 30,000 people from a variety of indigenous ethnic groups, while the city itself is built on a beautiful bay backed by thickly-forested mountains. The warm sea and historic city center are only a five-minute walk apart, so you can watch the sun sink over the bay while feasting on local delicacies such as chipi chipi (clam soup), fried fish, patacones (fried green plantains), coconut rice and cocadas (coconut macaroons). Delicious, authentic, romantic.

Backpacking with the beloved in Southeast Asia

The Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi clan temple in George Town — Getty ImagesThe Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi clan temple in George Town — Getty Images

Now, here’s one that you might never have considered, or even heard of. George Town was, as its name suggests, once a British trading post — indeed, it was the first such British trade hub in Southeast Asia. Today, it’s the capital of the Penang region of Malaysia with around 700,000 inhabitants. And while it’s a hub for both the tech and cruise tourism industries, the historical center is a Unesco World Heritage Site, and its eclectic mix of colonial buildings, Chinese markets, mosques, museums, colorful streets and friendly people make it a vibrant and welcoming destination.

It’s one of the region’s hotspots for street food, with cuisines from across Asia and beyond on offer. The old jetties that once served local fishermen are still in use, only now as workshops for local artists and craftspeople. It’s this combination of living, local history and centuries of eclecticism that makes George Town one of Asia’s lesser-known gems. Start at, end at, or pass through it on your couple’s Southeast Asian trip of a lifetime.

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David Szmidt

David is a lead writer for Kiwi.com, as well as a football-watcher, music-listener and beer-appreciater. @UtterBlether