100 hot and cold winter getaways [Pictures]
By now we're all three layers deep into our down-filled parkas and up to our ankles in slushy, cold white stuff. Perhaps a winter getaway is not in order. Maybe a beach vacation? But whether you like it hot or cold, here are 100 destinations sure to hit the spot.
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St. Lucia( William and Lois Weaver Photo / March 22, 2000 )
Distance from Baltimore: 1,983 miles, about an eight-hour flight (with stop)
Why it's hot: St. Lucia offers adventures in the sun, sea, and soft sand. Return to nature with a winding hike down the Tete Paul Nature Trail and take in the breathtaking views of the southern end of the island. Dive the many reefs and wrecks near the island as you explore the underwater ecosystems and marine life. Take in the wildlife and beautiful scenery in the 19,000 acres of rainforest. Spot St. Lucia's national bird, the Amazona Versicolor, as you walk underneath the palms. St. Lucia is also well-known for its whale-watching sites. Over 20 species can be seen throughout the year.
Don't miss: Gros Piton and Petit Piton, two volcanic plugs located on the southwestern coast of St. Lucia. Both are open to hikers and climbers, although Petit Piton is steeper than Gros Piton. Gros Piton is the second highest peak on St. Lucia at a height of 2,619 feet. Tours are available to lead visitors up the Pitons.
Information: To learn more about visiting Saint Lucia, go to stlucianow.com.