It’s probably no surprise that the city in a desert has made the cut. Forget Sin City, we think they should rename Vegas Sun City. That’s because this place gets around 3,800 hours of sunshine a year. Plus, it sizzles at a toasty 38°C for a whopping 74 days. Don't worry, though – you can always cool down inside the glitzy, air-conditioned casinos or shopping malls. Vegas comes in at a respectable number four on the world’s sunniest list, just behind Asswan, in Egypt, and Phoenix, in the United States. But, another American pipped the whole planet to the post. Yuma, Arizona, is officially the sunniest city – and place – in the whole world. Here, the locals bask in sun for more than 4,000 hours each year. And the temperatures can soar in the summer months, with a record high of 51°C recorded in July 1995.
Visit Vegas on one of our city breaks
We leave the northern hemisphere behind for our next sunny spot. This one’s found much further south, in Africa. Zanzibar is an archipelago of around 40 islands, floating off the eastern coast of Tanzania. Just like its Indian Ocean cousin – the Maldives – this place is textbook-tropical. You can look forward to 2,755 hours of sun on holidays here, making it one of the sunniest areas of Africa. And its beaches are spot-on for sunbathing – picture lily-white sands and waters as blue as the sky. Plus, Zanzibar’s only a short hop from the mainland, where you can spot lions, elephants and giraffes in the Serengeti and visit traditional Maasai villages.
Tempted by an African adventure? Check out our Tanzania holidays
If you want to stay closer to home, Cyprus is a top pick. Thanks to its easterly position, the so-called Island of Love gets 12-13 sunny hours a day in summer – that’s the most in the whole of the Mediterranean. It’s got some top-rated Blue Flag beaches to soak up the sun on, too. Alternatively, there’s a handful of waterparks for escaping the heat. The sun isn’t just limited to summer, though – Cyprus racks up 186 hours of it in December, as well, making it the perfect European winter escape.
Book a holiday to Cyprus
Europe’s second appearance on the list is Rhodes. This is the sunniest of the Greek isles, with around 300 days and an average of 3,000 hours of sun a year. The weather’s so great, in fact, that you can even go for a swim in the sea in October and November. If swimming’s not your thing, you can stroll the narrow, UNESCO-stamped streets of Rhodes Town, which are sprinkled with Medieval architecture and museums. After your sightseeing, you can grab a bite to eat at Mandraki Harbour – there are plenty of al fresco dining spots.
Want to see Greece’s sunniest isle for yourself? Browse our Rhodes holidays
With a location just off the coast of Africa, it’s no wonder the Canaries make the sunniest list. Europeans have been flocking here for sun-splashed winter escapes for decades. The islands serve up around 180 hours of sun in December, which almost doubles in the summer months. Each year, you can expect an average of 2,800 hours of sun in total. To put that into context, London only gets 1,574 sunny hours – easy decision. The only hard bit will be deciding on which island to pick – will it be lunar-like Lanzarote, beachy Gran Canaria or Tenerife with its volcanoes and waterparks? Can’t make up your mind?
Take a closer look at our Canary Island breaks
There’s a reason so many sun-starved Brits head to southern Spain on their holidays. It’s not the sangria or the siestas, it’s the sun. And the Andalucia region gets more of it than anywhere else. The coastal area’s not known as the Costa del Sol – AKA the Sun Coast – for nothing. The sun shines here 320 days a year – the cities of Malaga, Alicante and Jerez are some of the sunniest with almost 3,000 hours of the stuff.
Find out where we go in Andalucia
Jordan’s capital, Amman, logs an impressive 3,289 sunny hours a year. Even in the middle of winter, when the mercury can drop to around 5°C, the sun is usually still shining. You can visit this Middle Eastern gem on our Jewels of Jordan tour. You’ll kick things off in Amman, which is home to a list of ruins as long as your arm – think hilltop forts, 8th-century palaces and Roman amphitheatres. After some time in the capital, you’ll move on to Jordan’s other top sights, including the ancient city of Petra, Wadi Rum desert and the Dead Sea.
With highly polished interiors and a Blue Flag beachfront location, the TUI SENSATORI Atlantica Dreams Resort and Spa adds a splash of luxury to an under-the-radar corner of Rhodes.
The Playa Feliz is in a peaceful seafront spot, five minutes' walk from a sand-and-shingle beach.
Candle-lit dinners by the sea and massages for two are on the cards when you stay at this adults-only hotel, operated by Constantinou Bros.
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