Each year, we try to enter winter with the best intentions. Not yet beaten down by the new daylight savings hours, the lack of sunshine, or the hurling winter winds, we instead focus on what to look forward to for the season: twinkling holiday lights, cozy fireplaces, and fresh tracks of powdery white snow. But almost inevitably, come January, reality sets in: There are still three (maybe four) months of winter left, and all the season's positives have seemingly come and gone.
What we're left with are dark nights at the office, a frigid commute, and a serious lack of vitamin D. The solution: booking 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 even involves all your closest friends (if you want it to). 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 you'd find for reasonable prices. From Jamaican castles to eco beach houses, we rounded up the 10 best Airbnbs for winter escapes.
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 castle overlooking the ocean in Westmoreland Parish near Negril. Pattoo Castle has direct sea access—a great location for scuba diving and snorkeling. Rooms have panoramic views of the world-famous Seven Mile Beach located just minutes away.
Enjoy San Lucia
Gather seven of your closest friends because for $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 includes a chef and maid so you won't even have to worry about cooking and cleaning.
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.
Book it to the Bahamas
If the Bahamas are more your speed, consider renting Windways, a beautiful and stately old Bahamian house in Nassau built in the mid-1900s. Swim in the private pool or prepare a large lunch spread for the whole gang. 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 $199 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 $195 a night, you and three guests could wake up in this charming oceanfront villa in Crochu, Grenada. The villa boasts 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 photographed. It houses four guests for $160 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. This modern space will leave you feeling inspired and refreshed.
Fly to Fiji
This hilltop home on the Malolo Island of Fiji has stunning ocean views and an infinity pool for $500 a night. House eight guests in this completely private home with tropical gardens.
Relax in Aruba
This indoor/outdoor home in Aruba is a true stunner. It even offers two pools and a natural cave for $899 a night. Enjoy this space with up to 10 guests. It has unique features such as outdoor bathrooms, a white-sand dining area, an outdoor gym, a yoga pavilion, and a private cinema with stadium seating.