Keen to experience a white Christmas? If you’re a big Christmas fan, it’s definitely one you want to tick off your bucket list. So where to go?
Here’s five very different white Christmas experiences that are sure to make your Xmas 2024 one to remember!
Visit Santa in Lapland
Mr Claus has been dropping in on you for decades, so why not make 2024 the year you return the favour by travelling up to the Arctic to Rovaniemi, Finland, AKA Santa’s hometown?
Book a tour with the likes of Nordic Travel or 50 Degrees North and you can enjoy a postcard-perfect Christmas as you immerse yourself not only in knee-deep snow, but activities which range from reindeer farm visits and sled rides to an overnight stay in a glass igloo and an audience with the man himself.
Enjoy a Christmas market river cruise
Why enjoy Christmas in one European city when you can cruise the continent’s rivers in a luxury vessel and explore one glittering city after another?
Dating back to Medieval times, such markets are particularly popular around Germany, Austria, Hungary, as well as France, river cruises allowing you to pop in at each destination to enjoy baked treats, buy homemade crafts and sip gluhwein in the snow.
Check out Christmas river cruises such as those offered by Uniworld, Avalon Waterways and Emerald Cruises.
Keep an eye out for itineraries which include Nuremberg and/or Cologne.
Attend Christmas mass at Vatican City, Rome
True, every second person was in Italy this past northern summer, but the Christmas-obsessed among us know there’s no better time to visit Rome than in December.
In Vatican City, the celebrations begin on December 8 (the immaculate conception) and continue until January 6, the highlight of which is the Christmas Eve Mass (also known as Midnight Mass) with the Pope. Tickets for the event, of course, need to be reserved well in advance.
Experience a European Christmas for less in Tallinn
There’s little question airfares to Europe continue to be eye-wateringly expensive, so if you’re looking for a destination that’s kinder on the back pocket but still throws a bells and whistles Christmas celebration, look no further than the Estonian capital of Tallinn.
Here, you’ll find lush Christmas trees towering over fairy tale cobblestone streets, a wealth of fairy-lit traditional markets and plenty of tinsel-dotted cafes and restaurants.
Be sure to visit Tallinn Christmas Market and enjoy a traditional Estonian Christmas dinner. Check out Lore Bistroo, a MICHELIN Bib Gourmand restaurant noted for its festive menu.
Enjoy the quintessential Hallmark Christmas in New York City
We’ve spent a lifetime watching movies depicting romantic ice skating scenes in front of The Rockefeller Center, now’s your chance to live it. You may not be able to decorate your home like the Griswolds but there’s nothing that says you can’t catch a production of The Nutcracker, watch an Elf screening at the Empire State Building or take a coach tour of the holiday lights.
The good news is, although you can make bookings for the likes of Lightscape and Rolf’s Restaurant, you can get that holiday feeling everywhere for free – even just by taking in the store displays as you walk around in the slush and snow.