Each year, we try to go into the colder season with the best intentions. Not yet beaten down by the new daylight savings hours, lack of sunshine, or hurling winter winds, we instead focus on what to look forward to for the season: twinkling holiday decorations, cozy fireplaces, and fresh tracks of powdery snow. But almost inevitably, reality sets in: There are still several months of winter left, and all the season's positives have seemingly come and gone.
Our solution: Book a much-needed winter escape before the prices hike up. If you're not the type to laze around in an all-inclusive resort, there's another option—and it can even involve all of your closest friends. Renting an Airbnb on a smaller tropical island may not be your first idea of a winter holiday, but you'd be surprised at all the beautiful homes available for reasonable prices. From Jamaican castles to eco beach houses, consider this your go-to travel guide when it comes to the 10 best Airbnbs to check out this winter.
Escape to Jamaica
Have you always dreamed of living in a castle? Thanks to Airbnb, for $1,200 a night you can treat yourself and 15 guests to a stay in a Jamaican palace that overlooks the ocean in Westmoreland Parish. Pattoo Castle has direct sea access, and it's a great location for scuba diving and snorkeling. Rooms have panoramic views of the world-famous Seven Mile Beach located just minutes away. If you're still not totally sold, know that it has 77 five-star reviews from former renters. We're packing our bags!
Enjoy Saint Lucia
Gather seven of your closest friends because, for just over $600 a night, you can rent Mango Point Villa, a stunning home in Saint Lucia nestled on a lush tropical hillside facing the Caribbean Sea and the famous Pitons mountains. Nap in a hammock overlooking the sea or hike down to the nearby beach. The home comes complete with a chef and maid, so you won't even have to worry about cooking and cleaning. It sounds like a dream if you ask us.
Spend a week with your toes on the sand at this eco beach house in Kralendijk, Bonaire. The small infinity pool is directly on the beach, so you'll never run out of places to swim. Snorkel with the fish, rays, dolphins, eels, and turtles, or watch the local flamingos and pelicans fly by. For $425 a night, this dreamy vacation home could be yours. How could anyone pass up a sunset on the beach?
Book It to the Bahamas
If the Bahamas are more your speed, consider renting Windways, a beautiful and stately, mid-century Bahamian house in Nassau. Swim in the private pool or prepare a large lunch spread and dine on any of the numerous porches. The $675-a-night home sleeps 10 people and includes staff, so it's ideal for a large family getaway or a vacation with friends.
Does a 180-degree sea view sound enticing? For about $200 a night, you and five friends can enjoy it all day long by renting Ç View Villa in Willemstad, Curaçao. Nestled high on a hill and cooled by the prevailing trade winds, this stunning home is the perfect tropical retreat. Located close to the city and within walking distance from the sea, it's a great base camp for your tropical adventures.
Take in Grenada
For only $225 a night, you and three guests could wake up in this charming oceanfront villa in Crochu, Grenada. The main selling point? The villa's spectacular ocean and rainforest views. Explore the villages of Grenada or visit the nearby beaches and crater lakes. Here, one thing's for sure: You won't run out of things to do or views to enjoy.
Unwind in Bali
This eco-home in the mountains of the Gunung Agung volcano in Bali is begging to be Instagrammed. The charming structure houses four guests for less than $200 per night and sits alongside a picturesque river and rice fields.
Journey to Bora Bora
How about a bungalow with a lagoon view in Bora Bora? Two guests can stay in this petite home for $325 a night and it will leave you feeling inspired and refreshed. It's mostly natural materials and windows, which makes it feel like a spa directly on the beach.
Unless you live in New Zealand, getting to Bora Bora can take up to 37 hours, so make sure you budget for travel days in your itinerary. We suggest adding on two extra days to both ends of the trip so that you can maximize your time on the charming island.
Fly to Fiji
This hilltop home on the Malolo Island of Fiji has stunning views of the crystal-clear ocean views and an infinity pool for $500 a night. House eight guests in this completely private home with tropical gardens. Take a trip to paradise with a nighttime dip in the pool or sip a cocktail under the stars.
Relax in Aruba
This indoor/outdoor home in Aruba is a true stunner. It even offers two pools and a natural cave for around $1,000 a night. Enjoy this space and its unique features (outdoor bathrooms, a white-sand dining area, an outdoor gym, a yoga pavilion, and a private cinema with stadium seating) with up to 10 guests.
Ready to Pack Your Bags?
Don't forget about the essentials for an unforgettable tropical getaway.