January may bring cold, dreary weather across much of the United States. But there are plenty of warm, sunny destinations that beckon in this chilliest month of winter. From the tropical beaches of Hawaii to the desert oases of Arizona, you can beat the winter blues with a fabulous warm-weather getaway.
This list highlights 10 best warm places to visit in January in the USA for sun, fun, and outdoor adventure. You’ll find ideal climates for pool lounging, whale watching, theme park exploring, hiking adventures, cultural attractions, and more. Read on for the top warm U.S. destinations to rejuvenate mind and body this January.
List of 10 Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA
January brings sunny, dry weather before the humid summer. There are fewer crowds and cheaper hotels after the holiday season. Art Deco Weekend and the Miami Boat Show occur in January. This is our 1st warm place to visit in January.
With its tropical climate, Miami stays pleasantly warm even in January, when highs average 75°F. The winter sun entices visitors to Miami’s world-famous beaches, outdoor attractions like Jungle Island, and diverse neighborhoods like Little Havana and South Beach. January’s Miami Boat Show and Art Deco Weekend also draw crowds.
Key West, Florida
January is in the sunny dry season. Temperatures are pleasantly warm without being hot and humid. It is a festive time in Key West with events like the Key West Literary Seminar.
Lying in the Florida Keys Island chain, Key West enjoys balmy weather in January with average highs of 75°F. Visitors can soak up the sunshine boating, snorkeling in the blue waters, discovering Duval Street’s restaurants and bars, touring Hemingway’s former home, catching the nightly sunset celebration, and more.
San Diego, California
January offers San Diego’s classic sunny, mild winter weather perfect for exploring outdoors. Whale watching season also peaks in January as grays migrate through.
San Diego sees warm, sunny days in January with highs around 65°F, perfect for exploring this vibrant coastal city’s beaches, parks, trails, and top attractions like the San Diego Zoo and SeaWorld. The off-season offers smaller crowds and cheaper hotels to enjoy San Diego’s laid-back vibe.
Palm Springs, California
This desert oasis has warm, sunny days for pool lounging and al fresco dining. January offers clear skies before the hotter summer months arrive. The Palm Springs Film Festival also takes place in January. It is one of the best places to visit in January in the USA.
Nestled in the Coachella Valley, Palm Springs stays quite warm in January, with highs around 70°F. Visitors enjoy hiking among the mountain vistas, exploring Palm Canyon Drive’s shops and restaurants, touring mid-century modern homes, playing golf, and relaxing at resort pools and spas.
January is part of Phoenix’s peak tourist season due to warm, sunny weather ideal for golf, hiking, and other outdoor activities before the scorching summer hits. There are fewer crowds than in the spring.
Phoenix boasts warm, sunny weather in January with average highs of 67°F, perfect for golfing, hiking Camelback Mountain, exploring Desert Botanical Garden’s cacti, and experiencing Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West. January also brings festivals like the Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auction.
Las Vegas, Nevada
January offers pleasant temperatures for exploring outdoors and cheaper hotels after the New Year’s rush. The crowds are thinner than in summer allowing easier navigation of the Strip. Las Vegas is another one of the great warm places to visit in January in the USA.
Las Vegas sees mild temperatures in the low 60s in January, prime weather for enjoying the Strip’s casinos, shows, shopping, and nightlife. Catch stunning views from the High Roller observation wheel or see the Bellagio’s fountains dance. Red Rock Canyon offers beautiful desert scenery just outside the city.
San Antonio, Texas
January brings mild weather perfect for strolling the River Walk. It is before the hot, humid summers arrive. The San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo also happens each January.
San Antonio remains relatively warm in January with average highs in the 60s. Visitors can stroll the scenic River Walk, remember the Alamo, sample Tex-Mex cuisine on Market Square, and explore the Blue Star Arts Complex, Botanical Garden, Spanish missions, and SeaWorld. January brings the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo.
New Orleans, Louisiana
January has comfortable cool weather to walk between jazz clubs, cafes, and museums. Mardi Gras season is kicking off with exciting parades and balls leading up to Fat Tuesday. It is another great warm place to visit in January in the USA.
New Orleans sees pleasant weather in January with highs around 62°F. This makes it ideal for savoring Cajun cuisine, touring historic French Quarter architecture, browsing artsy shops, catching live jazz on Frenchmen Street, wandering sculpture gardens, and celebrating Mardi Gras early with parades and fancy balls leading up to Fat Tuesday.
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January means smaller crowds and discount rates at the theme parks compared to peak times like spring break. The weather is warm and sunny for enjoying the parks and outdoor activities. It is one of the cheap places to visit in January in the USA.
Home to Disney World and other theme parks, Orlando enjoys subtropical warmth in January with average highs of 71°F. Families can enjoy shorter lines and pleasant weather at the parks along with nature activities like viewing wildlife at Blue Spring State Park or boating through scenic Winter Park canals.
Honolulu has idyllic warm weather around the year. January falls in the drier season before the tropical rains arrive. It’s a festive time in Hawaii between the holidays and before spring break crowds.
Hawaii is the last in our list of best warm places to visit in January in the USA. January brings sun-filled days with highs around 80°F. It is the perfect time for relaxing on Waikiki Beach, hula dancing at the Royal Hawaiian Center, snorkeling at Hanauma Bay, and seeing sea turtles at the Honolulu Zoo’s Hawaiian reptile exhibit.