Marie Nieves is a student and a lifestyle blogger who loves unusual trips, gadgets and creative ideas. She is an avid lover of photography and regular author on several blogs.
Is there anything better than spending Christmas with friends and family, enjoying the season and making plans for the New Year? Actually there is – doing all those things while traveling to new and exciting destinations. When it comes to choosing a Christmas destination, there are two ways to go. First one is to choose the one that looks the most like a winter paradise from old timey postcards and the second is to go against the current and find some place hot and full of wonderful beaches and forget about the winter all together.
Here’re a couple of destinations to pick from:
Reykjavik is often forgotten, partly because of the cold, partly because there’s a feeling it’s remote (it isn’t), but it’s definitely a destination you should put on your list. It’s a place of great beauty and everywhere you turn there are glaciers, waterfalls and lava fields to marvel at. Local Christmas customs are especially colorful. Chasing the northern lights and dressing up as 13 Christmas trolls can be a fun time for the whole family, especially if you finish it with a visit to some of the fine local breweries.
Visit to Taos in northern New Mexico is a treat for all the senses. The city is multicultural and diverse, which makes the visitors forget themselves, creating the impression of celebrating Christmas in some ancient Mayan surrounding. Pinon wood is burning in kiva fireplaces and fills the air with a unique aroma, the food is Mexican, meaning spicy and hot and the people are hospitable and welcoming. The central celebration is called lighting of Ledux and it brings out a crowd willing to dance, sing and enjoy hot cider. It’s especially intriguing to a photograph enthusiast.
Christmas season is definitely the busiest time in Sydney. People from all over the world pour into the city to experience a vibrant and exciting holiday. Going to the beach on Christmas day is somewhat of a tradition in Australia – Bondi and Coogee beaches, for instance, will be crowded but beautiful. You can stay in stylish boutique hotels in Sydney, enjoy cosmopolitan or local food and perhaps see some of the finest Chinese art at a local gallery. After that you must see the fireworks over the Harbor, while Sydney Opera reflects in the brightly lit water. What can be more festive?
San Juan gets kind of surreal during the holidays. It’s an ancient city with a lot of diverse traditions and customs. In the same time, it’s as touristy as it gets, with strong neon lights beaming at from literally every building in the city, giving it a bit of cyberpunk vibe. Christmas Eve is the most important part of the holiday in Puerto Rico, it’s customary at attend Midnight mass and to join festivities on the streets, which include fireworks and carol singing. San Sebastian parade is the biggest party in San Juan and it’s scheduled right after Christmas, so make sure you check it out.
Prague basically looks like a Christmas postcard. It’s filled with baroque and gothic architecture, which looks even more impressive once it’s decorated with holiday lights. Markets on the Old Town Square are filled with tourists from all over the world and there’s an overwhelming holiday spirit. Once you get tired of all the whimsical scenery and want to add some action to your vacation – visit Moninec, a nearby skiing resort with state of the art accommodation (artificial snow included).
No matter the destination you choose remember that in the end – it’s your family and friends that make the Christmas memorable.