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7 Valentine’s Day Getaways for Every Type of Traveler

Single or partnered, just-wed or just getting started—here’s the perfect Valentine’s Day trip for you.

Tango dancers enjoy the scene in Buenos Aires
Hi, I'm Claire!

Claire Bullen is an award-winning food, drinks, and travel writer and editor who has lived and worked in Chicago, Philadelphia, New York, Paris, and London. She is the author of The Beer Lover's Table: Seasonal Recipes and Modern Beer Pairings, and the editor at Her writing has also appeared in Time Out New York, The Daily Meal, Pellicle Magazine, and beyond.

If you ask detractors, Valentine’s Day isn’t exactly cool—blame all the corny hearts, overpriced flutes of prosecco, and forced affection. But the holiday doesn’t have to be an exercise in cringe, especially if you use it as an excuse to plan a special trip. No matter your status—whether you’re in a new relationship or a newlywed, traveling with gal pals or in the mood to treat yourself—these Valentine’s Day getaways will transform the holiday into a celebration of adventure, new experiences, and genuine romance (no Cupid’s arrow required).

1. For new relationships: Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City and its canals.
Xochimilco is a great place to explore on Valentine's Day.Photo Credit: Alex Washburn / Viator

Spend a long weekend in the latest capital of cool.

If you find yourself in the honeymoon phase of a new relationship—you know, butterflies in the stomach, a desire to learn everything about your new significant other—then make a beeline for Mexico City. Home to some 9 million people, and boasting phenomenal restaurants, atmospheric neighborhoods, and a wealth of cultural stops, it’s the perfect destination for a spirited adventure for two.

If you’re in town for just a few days, make the most of your trip: Head to the hip Roma neighborhood to stroll its scenic streets; venture into the beating heart that is Zócalo (the city’s main square); tuck into some of the top Mexican dishes; and finish with a romantic boat ride along the Xochimilco canals.

2. For newlyweds: Cape Town, South Africa

The  Cape Town coastline.
The coastline around Cape Town is stunning.Photo Credit: Nico Calandra / Shutterstock

Plan a romantic getaway at the tail end of a balmy South African summer.

There are so many reasons why Cape Town is one of the best places to plan a honeymoon—or a Valentine’s Day mini-moon. For one, February means summer down here, so you’re sure to be rewarded with sun and warm temperatures. From hiking Table Mountain to soaking in the beauty of the Cape of Good Hope, from safari day trips to attending a traditional braai, there’s no shortage of active exploring to do.

And when you want to sit back and unwind, it’s only a hop, skip, and a jump to the top-rated Stellenbosch wine region, where you can savor all the pinotage and chenin blanc that’s fit to drink.

3. For longtime couples: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires tango dancers.
The tango scene in Buenos Aires is romantic indeed.Photo Credit: Antonio Franco / Viator

Keep the spark alive with a spot of tango and red wine in Argentina's most alluring city.

No matter how long you’ve been together, there’s nothing like a change of scenery to get sparks flying—and Buenos Aires is just the change of scenery to really set things aflame. From its tango traditions to its hearty steaks (served with generous pours of Mendoza malbec on the side, natch), this is a city that takes passion seriously.

Extend the experience with a hands-on cooking class of Argentine delicacies and a personalized tour of the city’s loveliest sights. And for a memorable side trip, take the plunge when you book a brief getaway to the thundering wonder that is Iguazu Falls.

Related: Visiting Buenos Aires for the First Time? Here’s What to See and Do

4. For gal pals: Chicago, Illinois, US

A statue in central Chicago.
Exploring Chicago is always a good idea.Photo Credit: MaxyM / Shutterstock

Celebrate Galentine’s Day in culture-heavy Chicago, the perfect place for a weekend escape.

No, you don’t need your significant other to make Valentine’s Day feel special. Instead, grab your best pal and book a whirlwind weekend in Chicago, whose cultural attractions, world-class dining scene, and abundance of shopping and entertainment offerings make it a must-visit destination, even in the chilly winter months.

Discover Chicago’s architectural gems, visit highlights like the Art Institute, and cap it all off with a speakeasy pub crawl. Or, if you’ve got a macabre sense of humor, you can even see the location of the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre on a Chicago gangsters–themed tour.

5. For singletons: Edinburgh, Scotland

Outside Edinburgh Castle in Scotland.
Edinburgh Castle explorations require no significant other.Photo Credit: ExFlow / Shutterstock

Embark on a solo adventure in Scotland, a perfectly walkable city you can easily explore alone.

Who needs a significant other to go traveling? Take yourself out on a vacation to remember—one that mixes culture and historic sightseeing with cozy pubs and other delights—during a solo trip to Edinburgh. The Scottish capital is atmospheric all year round, and winter is a particularly good time to soak up the moody ambiance at Edinburgh Castle, taste the best of the city’s restaurant scene, and get snug with a dram of whisky or two.

6. For food lovers: Sicily, Italy

Mt Etna Winery in Sicily.
Lush Sicily is where to enjoy the sea (and vineyards).Photo Credit: Mazur Travel / Shutterstock

Enjoy a gourmet getaway off the coast of Italy, and tuck into all things pasta and pizza.

If you’re after exceptional pasta, seafood, wine, and gelato—all served up with a side of turquoise seas and dramatic scenery—then you’ll want to spend Valentine’s Day in Sicily. Formerly overlooked in favor of mainland Italian locales like Rome, Florence, and the Amalfi Coast, Sicily’s profile has risen in recent years, thanks in part to its recent starring role in The White Lotus.

Avoid any murder-mystery intrigue and taste the best of the island when you visit Mt. Etna’s wineries, go on a countryside tour for food lovers, try street food in Palermo, and enroll in a cooking class in Taormina.

Related: White Lotus Season 2 Filming Locations You Can Visit in Real Life

7. For milestone celebrations: Burgundy, France

Burgundy's vineyards.
The vineyards of the French countryside were made for enjoying.Photo Credit: Massimo Santi / Shutterstock

Raise a toast to love and partnership in French wine country, because milestones deserve to be marked.

Burgundy, France is one of Europe’s most celebrated wine regions—and if you’re looking to raise a memorable toast or mark a major anniversary or relationship milestone, there are few better places to venture.

On a full-day excursion of its grand cru wineries, you can taste some of the world’s finest vintages; add a truffle-hunting day to really take the luxe factor to the next level. (Don’t want to stop the indulgence there? Don’t forget that the Champagne region is just next door.)

Related: Tour Guide Sophie Kerjean's Guide to Champagne

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