Winter Special


Winter break, a great time of year to travel, to see family and perhaps to experience different Christmas traditions. Even for those who do not celebrate Christmas, this break can be a great time to travel to warmer destinations to escape the cold. Although there are thousands of travel websites and online blogs that can help you decide where to fly to during the 3-week break, not all of them agree with one another. Here, I have compiled a list of the best vacation destinations into more manageable categories, of course with a section for destinations that are not related to Christmas at all as well. Enjoy!

In terms of Christmas destinations, European countries are a popular choice for many families. Nordic countries such as Finland, Denmark or Iceland were deemed very popular by a multitude of lists that appear online. From what I could tell, the snowy landscape and rustic feel of many Christmas related attractions create a very authentic feeling, for adults and children alike. Otherwise, the UK also seemed quite popular, London and Edinburgh being mentioned a few times. 

There were also many mainland European countries that are considered popular destinations for those celebrating Christmas. In France for example, cities such as Paris and Strasbourg and smaller mountain towns are popular for Christmas. Belgium and Austria were mentioned too. There are many options to visit in Germany as well, Berlin and Dresden were recommended by the articles I read. However, just like France and Austria, Germany has the Alps and lovely mountain towns with access to ski pistes. 

I also noticed that Eastern European Countries are slept on! The Prague Christmas market is beautiful, along with its old city and all its bridges. Similarly, there are wonderful markets in Budapest, Bratislava and Ljubljana. 

There are also different North American countries that were suggested by a multitude of travel sites. A couple of the northern US states were suggested for Christmas, such as Vermont. Of course New York City was named as a top contender, I doubt I need to mention the famous Rockefeller Christmas tree (with the ice skating rink), the musicals and ballets or the different light shows that make New York City an amazing destination. Canada also seems quite popular, as the snowy landscape are very loved. 

The majority of the suggested destinations were within the two categories I’ve mentioned above. The next category would be the outliers that would not immediately jump to mind for Christmas, although they are still good destinations. These were countries such as Australia, Beirut, Dubai or Japan. While not everyone in these countries would be celebrating Christmas, there are plenty of themed attractions for those that do. 

For those that do not celebrate Christmas, of course all the mentioned options would still remain open to them. However, I separated my recommendations according to this because it is nice to escape the overwhelming Christmas festivities. For these, different websites list countries that are mainly in Asia or in the southern hemisphere. This CNN article gives different tips on how to avoid Christmas, such as finding either a communist or non-Christian country to travel to. A great example they offer is Morocco, where it remains warm and there is little to remind one of Christmas. 

These were the best winter break destinations, according to the internet. I hope this proves a helpful guide for the upcoming Christmas season. Happy Holidays!