TRAVEL

The Sunniest Spots In The World

02/06/2014 07:03 am ET | Updated Dec 04, 2014

Sure, rain can be cozy and comforting, especially when you expect it (here's looking at you, Seattle). But what if you want to get away from all the cold and snow and yuckiness and celebrate life in the sunshine?

There are handfuls of places around the globe where the sun outshines the rain more days than not, and these are places you might want to go for a variety of reasons.

So pack the sunblock and some Ray Bans and hit the road.

  • Redding, California
    Visitors will like coming here for Lassen Volcanic National Park and Mt. Shasta. They'll also like coming here because the sun shines 88% of the time.
  • Swakopmund, Namibia
    The teutonic colonial port city of Namibia sits on the Skeleton Coast and under a sky that drops less than an inch of rain a year. Though the city is not exactly convenient for most travelers, it has become something of a destinations among thrill seekers who take to the updrafts on microlights, ride the dunes on snowboards and swim in the surprisingly chilly south Atlantic.
  • Alice Springs, Australia
    Outback culture is on display here as the key pillars of this community, which sits in the shadow of Uluru, are beer and barbecue, both of which are well-suited to a climate offering just short of 10 hours of sunshine a day. The casinos here are popular with rough-edged locals but the town also boasts access to a number of great eco resorts like Longitude 131, where visitors can bask in the desert warmth.
  • Kiribati
    AP
    One of the sunniest islands in the world is located near the patch of the ocean that absorbs more rays than any other piece of water on Earth. Visitors here can simply lie on the white sand beaches, sure, but there is also excellent fishing and numerous WWII ruins worth exploring.
  • Las Vegas
    WikiMedia:
    Sin City has, on average, 3,825 hours of sunshine a year. That's not bad at all. What is bad: being there with everyone else.
  • Agadez, Niger
    Alamy
    According to climate scientists, the desert outside of Agadez is one of the most solar-soaked places on Earth. Unfortunately this corner of Niger, while beautiful, is also incredibly dangerous. An ongoing Tuareg revolution has made this something of a war zone. That said, the warriors are very tan.
  • Yuma, Arizona
    The Guinness Book of World Records reports that , with 11 hours a day of sunlight, Yuma is the sunniest city on Earth. Whether this honor goes to this community or the barren hellscape of Devil's Valley, there is plenty on offer in this arid corner of The Grand Canyon State. Also extremely sunny: nearby Phoenix and Tucson.
  • Zanzibar, Tanzania
    This Islamic island off Dar Es Salaam has long been popular with Italian tourists, who come to get extremely tan in extraordinarily small bathing suits. The small city of Stone Town is a marvel of ancient architecture and boasts a peerless seafood market. The sun out 63 percent of the time, a remarkable amount for the tropics, which is why the locals are so darn happy all the time. Europeans fly here directly, but safari-goers in the know make the hop from Mount Kilimanjaro and Masai Mara.
  • Fresno, California
    AP
    Ok, so it's not exactly a tourism hotbed, but it is a hotbed for sunshine: 3,564 average annual hours worth. (AP Photo/Gosia Wozniacka)
  • Madagascar
    WikiMedia:
    Madagascar is a pristinely beautiful island off the coast of Africa. Tourism is the big draw here but so is the sunshine, of which there are 3,597 hours on average a year.
  • Andalusia, Spain
    This autonomous region in Spain (and home to Seville) has some 300 days of sunshine a year (Seville sees 7-8 days of rain a year).

The World's Most Secluded Beaches
Suggest a correction
Comments

CONVERSATIONS