You might be thinking about tomorrow more than anything else right now, but Christmas is much more fun with a holiday away before the stress of the festive season begins.
So why not start thinking about giving yourself a break next December already? It doesn’t hurt to browse…
Think ice skating followed by hot chocolate, think sparkly fairy lights and festive markets, think about the iconic monuments of the world looking ten times better than in any other month.
Here are four city breaks you absolutely have to start thinking about travelling to next December: here is the best of the best…
4- Zagreb, Croatia
Not a place just for the sun and the heat, did you ever think of travelling to Croatia during the festive season? The capital will deliver exactly what you need when you’re in the Christmassy mood, along with an edge that makes the city stand out from the usual December stop offs…
Once you’ve had enough doses of mulled wine by the Christmas markets, feel free to mix up the tradition and head to Artomat, an art and crafts fair held over a pre-Christmas week where tourists and locals can browse for unique jewellery, alternative designer fashion and one off accessories.
Even the mysterious and recently re-opened Gric tunnel, running underneath the centre of the city, gets a make-over for Christmas! You’ll find concerts, video displays, sculptures and 3D light installations to transform it into a strange, underground Narnia!
Why not double up your December city break in Croatia to a a skiing holiday? You won’t have to travel far to Mountain Medvednica and it looks even more magnificently beautiful covered in snow!
Even if the idea of skiing is a little scary, the walk up to Sjleme ski resort is not to be missed; get cosy and eat at a mountain-top tavern before catching the bus back down to town.
3- Trondheim, Norway
The third largest city in Norway may not be your first stop for your last holiday of the year, but it is known for its cosy spots whilst being a popular one with outdoor enthusiasts so there’s somewhere to match every mood!
Don’t completely forget about the country’s most famous truth when you’re scurrying off to pick up the next batch of gingerbread men for your walk; the Northern Lights should be on your mind!
This is for the day where you fancy getting away from the busyness of the city centre as if you head to an open field there is a better chance for you to catch the phenomenon. Watch them dance across the sky and make sure you’re wrapped up for the occasion!
Christmas spirit in Norway is found through tradition so get into the Norwegian swing of things by listening to traditional folk tales, local food and beverages, sleigh rides, talks, theatre shows and concerts. Plenty to feel festive to!
If you’re feeling active (despite the weather conditions) you can opt for a couple of sporting activities; choose from cross country skiing or indoor swimming! Avoid the cold by heading to Pirbadet where you can swim inside with a perfect view of the Trondhiem Fjord.
Alternatively, head to Bymarka for the beautiful snow-covered landscape. Make sure you have the full Norwegian experience by finishing your ski stint with a hot chocolate and a waffle- nothing better in the cold December weather…
2- Gothenburg, Sweden
The hipster adjacent to Stockholm is an alternative to consider as your December getaway with Christmassy spots sprinkled around trendy cafes, bars and various stop offs.
If you’ve not heard of the Lane of Lights, you’ll want to experience it! Gothenburg has the most extensive illuminations in Sweden with the three kilometre lane of lights along the main boulevard, Avenyn. Visit this along with the singing Christmas tree for the ultimate festive occasion!
As long as the canals aren’t frozen over, the Padden canal boats cruise along the city with blankets, candles and glögg to keep you warm along the way.
Afterwards you could head to the markets that have an astonishing 5 million fairy lights strung between each stall! The magical surroundings are accompanied with an array of things to try like the Stora Saluhallen, the main foodie market in the city.
1- Paris, France
It might be the city of love, but it’s not just about romance in France’s capital in December. There’s so much more to adore in the festive season, from The Eiffel Tower glittering over an ice skating rink to a river cruise down the Seine that will be hard to forget.
You’ll want to find a balance of avoiding the cold and still appreciating the spectacular views, so spend an evening cruising down the Seine with Bataeux Parisiens.
This way you can enjoy a three course meal indoors with the feel of the outdoors; gaze through the panoramic windows of the all-glass boats at the passing sparkly lights with live musical entertainment in the background. France just got so magical!
It’s time to really get into the spirit of Christmas and head to a classical concert, with a special Christmas choir, in the holy chapel. You’ll find the gothic church in the heart of Paris near to Notre Dame Cathedral and it’ll be filled with the festive spirit you just don’t get all year round!
Why not explore a different type of culture when in the French capital and head to the annual Africolour Music Festival where you’ll find various venues celebrating African music! Hit the centre or the suburbs for something a little different…
What do you think of these four cities to visit in December? Have you been to any of them already? Did you do any festive getaways this year? Leave us your comments below!
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