Christmas is a necessity. There has to be at least one day of the year to remind us that we’re here for something else besides ourselves.Eric Severeid
Christmas can be a magical time of year. Every is in the spirit of giving and finding those perfect gifts for someone. Most people are thinking about something other than themselves and that’s an incredible thing to witness. Let’s just forget about the holiday shopping rush and think about the memorable aspects of the holiday season.
I’ve always wanted to spend Christmas in another country. Experiencing the holidays in another country, exploring, and spreading good cheer somewhere other than where I spend most of my time has a huge appeal to me. Spending the holidays traveling with my boyfriend and dog would be one of the best in my books for sure.
Take a look below at some of the best places in the world to spend Christmas. They are all extremely different and should probably all be on your list if I’m honest. Use these as inspiration to treat yourself next year!
If Christmas shopping makes you break out in hives just thinking about the traffic and hordes of people fighting over toys, this is the perfect destination for you. Each year, over 180 artisans come together to the Christmas Market in the city. With so many stalls you’ll need to make a lap or two before you choose, but handmade gifts are always crowd pleasers. Plus you get to travel and support the local community!
Dreaming of a white Christmas? Book your trip to Iceland. Not only will it be snow-covered, but it will be filled with fun events, Christmas-themed food and beverages, and markets. Be sure to taste the local cuisine, tour the nearby Christmas village, and go ice skating at the local outdoor rink. Be sure to book your trip (and dinner reservations) early. It fills up each year!
New York City, USA
New York is already the city of lights. Around Christmas and New Years it becomes even more so. The world’s tallest Christmas tree sets the cheery mood and it seems like the entire city is covered in lights and decorations. Check out performances of the Nutcracker or see the Radio City Rockettes. Don’t forget to go ice skating and be sure to window shop to see the department store holiday displays.
Besides being the ultimate winter wonderland, Lapland has quickly become the hidden gem for Christmas destinations. From Santa’s village to streets lined with lights to markets with goods from local vendors, Lapland is truly a magical place. In the winter, the region does not get much sunlight so the lights (not to mention the northern lights) are going almost all day. So cozy!
Quebec City, Canada
Don’t want to travel to Europe for the quintessential Christmas experience? Canada has you covered. The combination of lights, history, and snow are pretty good reasons why this city is consistently ranked in top lists for the season. Outdoor enthusiasts will be overjoyed in Quebec and the endless places to see lights, explore markets, and get hot chocolate make the experience even sweeter.
North Pole, Alaska, USA
This is one of the few places on this list that I’ve been. It’s worth seeing and then seeing again. Tour Santa’s village, view the entries in the ice sculpture carving contest with entrants from around the world, and enjoy a snowy, outdoor experience for the whole family!
The Philippines boasts the longest yuletide season on earth. From September through December, this country is in full-swing Christmas celebration mode. It will be hot so leave your ugly sweaters at home. With celebrations almost everyday, you won’t have a problem finding something to do such as concerts, parades, parties, and you can tour the mind-blowing nativity and lights displayed or strewn on every possible surface.
Bondi Beach, Australia
Want more warm Christmas ideas? Start off in the Philippines earlier in the year and then make your way over to Bondi Beach for nearer to Christmas day. Escape the cold and soak up some sun to spice up your holiday season. December 25th is notorious for bringing together travelers as a kind of Christmas for orphans. Get ready to party with DJs at this beach if that’s your kind of holiday!
Bethlehem, West Bank
Maybe you’re looking for a more traditional experience. If you prefer a more religious experience this Christmas, Bethlehem might be your best choice since it is the birthplace of the reason for the season. The spirituality coupled with the rich history of the area makes it one of the top places to visit on almost every single list!