Monday, 26 October 2015

The Best Winter Breaks In Europe

With the freezing winds back again, for most of us holiday planning is at the bottom of the priority list. Most Brits are used to enjoying a trip to a European city in the heights of summer, when ice cream can be taste-tested and there are plenty of beaches to enjoy. That said, if any of your loved ones are a stickler for a good Christmas gift, a little trip could be the perfect answer. Nowhere does Christmas better than the Baltics, from gorgeous craft markets to incredible fruit wines. A few luxury winter cruise ideas, courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines, might spark that wanderlust.

Sweden
For plenty of hearty food and excellent hospitality, look no further than Sweden. Not only can you take a winter safari to see the wild elk and moose in the snow, but you can experience the Northern Lights in December. Alternatively, experience indigenous Samí culture, including learning to cook traditional recipes like dried Reindeer soup. Southwards, in Malmo and Stockholm, you can get some souvenirs or gifts from the bustling markets.
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Finland
Winter in Finland is truly a snowy wonderland, with something for any age. Visit Santa and his Deer at Lapland, where you can stay in an Igloo between skiing, dog-sledding, and ice-fishing. For a more cosmopolitan break, Helsinki is awash with great things to do, from enjoying a steam in a traditional Sauna at the grand Kotiharjun, or watch the parades marching through the city for St. Lucia’s Day. There’s plenty for the eyes and the ears, as during December many city church choirs perform recitals for passers by.


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Germany
Britain’s Christmas spirit has absolutely nothing on Germany. Hamburg’s Christmas market is incredibly diverse, from a toy street to a nightclub area; Stuttgart’s 320 year old annual market offers traditional Black Forest treats and crafts over a background of stunning lantern decorations and free choral concerts. Be sure to make the most of the delicious locally-made stollen and brandy on your way through the crowds.


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Lithuania
One of the best ports of call in Lithuania is Vilinius, which in spite of the blankets of snow refuses to slow down for a minute. Christmas markets are a rarity here compared with other cities, but the grand Christmas tree in the centre of town makes a magnificent centrepiece to the eclectic architecture of the city. A walk to Subaciaus Street provides gorgeous panoramic views of the city, while Vingus Park has some great hills for sledding in the snow.


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Where would your ideal winter break be?

25 comments:

  1. I love these destinations but personally i am one for skiing in winter and the italian or austrian alps are always my choice :)
    unbeatable in my opinion!

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  2. I would love to go to the Christmas market :) I've heard great things about it but I would need a van to return with all my purchases! lol

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  3. I want to try Germany so badly, the Christmas Markets look second to none. I'm going to Amsterdam this Christmas, for the turning on of the lights, so we'll see how they go, Amsterdam never really struck me as a festive place! Great post, Kirsty x

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  4. Great ideas! I'd never really thought about what would make a good winter holiday destination apart from the obvious ski holiday.. One day I want to see the Northern Lights - they're gorgeous!

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  5. I love this list! The Northern lights have been on my bucket list forever. I'd love to see the Christmas markets too.

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  6. I went to the Christmas markets in Germany a few years ago, it was amazing! xx

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  7. I love these options. I wish to visit Germany some day. HOpefully I'd be able to share my experience with you all :)

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  8. I would love to go to all of these places and more! Norway is a big one on my list, as is Germany. However this year I don't think I'll be going to either of those places, but a trip to London will do just fine, London is still lovely at Christmas time!

    Hayley-Eszti | www.hayleyeszti.com

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  9. Oh wow! These all look fantastic - they've definitely got me in the festive mood.

    Emma x

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  10. Dubai. I would love to visit this lovely country again.

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  11. I would love to visit some of these breaks in the winter the snow and the colours just wow! x

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  12. My ideal winter break would be Germany. I've heard that they have the best and oldest Christmas markets!

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  13. I went to Finland a few years ago, and it's probably been my best holiday to date. I loved all the winter activities and the mass amounts of snow!

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  14. I love Germany at Christmas time, we visited Berlin 10 years ago which had an incredible Christmas market, so much better than anything in the UK.

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  15. Great choice of destinations. I've actually booked to go to Krakow in Poland this December!xxx

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  16. I have always wanted to see the Northern Lights there is something so magical and celestial about them

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  17. Oh I would love to visit all these places, but to see the Northern Lights must be amazing. Kaz x

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  18. Oh what a great post! Id love to see the northern lights!!

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  19. Up in the mountains of Tennessee, watching the snow fall :-D All your pictures are so inviting, makes me want to visit :-)

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  20. I would love to go to the German Christmas Markets, they look amazing. The Norther Lights of course would be pretty special too.

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  21. I already had my winter vacation in Czech Republic, Poland, Austria. I'd like to visit Germany and Finland. It seems that there is the whole winter soul out there.

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  22. I'll be going this Christmas in Finland :) Can't wait to do all the winter sports

    Laura
    Pink Frenzy

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  23. All of these look fantastic. I'm not into sports, but I do love snow x

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  24. I'd love to be in Paris.. that's on top of my wish list!

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  25. This all looks amazing! I'd love to experience the German Christmas markets, and Scandinavia would be cool too I think <3

    Jess xo

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