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Where to go when

Where to go in January

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Where to go in January

Don’t let the January blues get you down. Reenergise yourself with our top five destinations to escape British winter drudgery. These are the cities recommended by thousands of visitors and where you can take advantage of low-season prices.

Budapest, Hungary

Temperature 2ºC

What better way to spend a crisp, cold January day, than submerged in a steaming spa amid the opulent splendour of Hungary’s capital.

More than 100 hot springs bubble beneath Budapest before bursting through at centuries old public baths like palatial Szechenyi, or Art Nouveau wonder Gellert, which, with its multidomed labyrinth of pools, is like bathing in a cathedral.

Hotel rates plummet in January, so you’re likely to bag a bargain.

Read more: Best city breaks in Europe

Budapest, Hungary
Average airfare Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Value for money City score
£136 £62 89%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

Funchal, Madeira

Temperature 18ºC

Less a city than a resort, Madeira’s capital has the added bonus of freshly caught cuisine and chic European shopping

Madeiran winters are warm, with Funchal seeing five times as many sunshine hours as London in January and mild enough daytime temperatures to hike the panoramic levada trails and even swim in the sea.

And if you’re there before 8 January, you can experience the city’s world famous 3D festive illuminations with its giant walk-through baubles, without the pre-Christmas crowds.

Our researchers know all the tips and tricks for finding the best deals on holidays, flights and car hire, saving readers money every single issue. Find out more about Which? Travel

Funchal, Madeira
Average airfare Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Value for money City score
£191 £72 85%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

Oxford, UK

Temperature 7ºC

The dreaming spires of Oxford have long doubled as highbrow cultural beacons – for visitors as much as for residents, as our readers’ five-star cultural rating suggests.

Town and gown are interwoven within the compact city centre. Historic pubs such as the White Horse and the King’s Arms sit steps from the 17th-century Bodleian Library; the peaceful Botanic Garden lies opposite Magdalen College, with its medieval quadrangles and bucolic deer park. And there are museums galore.

Oxford is expensive, but hotel prices are at their lowest in January.

Read more: Best city breaks in the UK

Oxford, UK
Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Shopping Value for money City score
£105 84%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

Cape Town, South Africa

Temperature 25ºC

Mention Cape Town to anyone who has visited and you’ll get a near-identical response: wow, what a beautiful city. And, the city’s at its best in January with summer temperatures, a sparkling sapphire ocean, golden beaches and the majestic Table Mountain ever-visible.

But Cape Town is more than the proverbial pretty face. It’s a city with a turbulent history to be explored; a place to shop or hike.

From simple markets to old wine estates, it’s also a city for tasting. That’s why readers rated its food and drink a perfect 5 stars.

Read more: Best long-haul city breaks

Cape Town, South Africa
Average airfare Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Value for money City score
£695 £103 87%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.
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