Best Places to Visit in December: Add Some Magic to Your Winter

Are you ready to add some magic to your winter season? Look no further than these incredible travel spots that are perfect for a December getaway. Whether you’re seeking a winter wonderland, festive cheer, tropical paradise, or enchanting Christmas markets, these destinations have it all. Discover the top places to visit in December and make your winter truly unforgettable.

1. Winter Wonderland in Lapland, Finland

Experience the ultimate winter wonderland in Lapland, Finland, with its picturesque landscapes, reindeer sleigh rides, and the chance to witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights.

Lapland, located in the northernmost part of Finland, is a dream destination for winter enthusiasts. Its breathtaking landscapes are blanketed in pristine white snow, creating a magical atmosphere that will leave you in awe. From snow-covered forests to frozen lakes, every corner of Lapland is a picture-perfect winter wonderland.

One of the highlights of visiting Lapland in December is the opportunity to go on a thrilling reindeer sleigh ride. Imagine gliding through the snowy wilderness, surrounded by the peaceful silence of nature. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a fairytale.

But the real showstopper in Lapland during December is the chance to witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights. These dancing ribbons of colorful lights in the sky are a natural phenomenon that is truly awe-inspiring. Imagine standing under a starry night sky, with the vibrant hues of green, pink, and purple illuminating the darkness above you. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will leave you speechless.

So, if you’re looking to add some magic to your winter, make sure to put Lapland, Finland, on your travel bucket list. With its picturesque landscapes, reindeer sleigh rides, and the chance to witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights, it’s a destination that will truly enchant you.

2. Festive Cheer in New York City, USA

Immerse yourself in the festive spirit by visiting New York City in December. This vibrant city comes alive during the holiday season, offering a plethora of magical experiences that will leave you enchanted. One of the must-see attractions is the iconic Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. Standing tall and adorned with thousands of twinkling lights, it is a sight to behold. Take a stroll around the plaza, feel the joy in the air, and snap some memorable photos.

Another delightful activity is ice skating in Central Park. Glide across the ice surrounded by the picturesque winter scenery of one of the most famous parks in the world. Whether you’re a seasoned skater or a beginner, this experience is bound to fill you with joy and create lasting memories.

No visit to New York City is complete without catching a Broadway show. From classic musicals to cutting-edge plays, the city’s theater scene offers something for everyone. Feel the excitement as the curtain rises, and let the talented performers transport you to another world with their captivating performances.

If you’re in the mood for some holiday shopping, head to Fifth Avenue. This iconic street is home to luxury brands, department stores, and enchanting holiday markets. Explore the Union Square Holiday Market and the Winter Village at Bryant Park, where you’ll find unique gifts, delicious treats, and festive entertainment.

Soak up the festive cheer in New York City this December and create unforgettable memories that will warm your heart for years to come.

2.1 Holiday Shopping Extravaganza on Fifth Avenue

Get ready to indulge in a shopping spree like no other on Fifth Avenue, one of the most iconic shopping destinations in the world. This bustling street in New York City offers a holiday shopping extravaganza that will leave you in awe.

As you explore Fifth Avenue, you’ll be greeted by a dazzling array of luxury brands, department stores, and unique holiday markets. From high-end fashion labels to renowned flagship stores, this shopping district has it all. Treat yourself to the latest designer trends or find the perfect gift for your loved ones.

But the shopping experience doesn’t stop there. Fifth Avenue is home to a variety of holiday markets that add an extra touch of magic to your shopping adventure. These markets offer a wide array of gifts and decorations, ranging from handcrafted artisanal crafts to delicious treats. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere as you browse through the stalls, discovering unique treasures and enjoying live entertainment.

Whether you’re searching for the perfect holiday gift or simply want to soak up the vibrant atmosphere, Fifth Avenue is the place to be. So, grab your shopping bags and get ready to embark on a holiday shopping extravaganza that will leave you with memories to cherish.

2.1.1 Exploring the Holiday Markets

Discover the charm of New York City’s holiday markets, such as the Union Square Holiday Market and the Winter Village at Bryant Park, where you can find artisanal crafts, delicious treats, and festive entertainment.

When visiting New York City in December, make sure to explore the enchanting holiday markets that dot the city. One of the must-visit markets is the Union Square Holiday Market, located in the heart of Manhattan. Here, you’ll find a bustling atmosphere filled with vendors selling unique and handcrafted gifts. From jewelry and clothing to artwork and home decor, there’s something for everyone on your shopping list.

Another market not to be missed is the Winter Village at Bryant Park. This iconic holiday market offers a magical experience with its charming wooden stalls and twinkling lights. Browse through the stalls to discover one-of-a-kind artisanal crafts and delicious treats. Sample mouthwatering hot chocolate, gourmet food, and traditional holiday sweets. Don’t forget to warm up with a cup of mulled wine as you soak in the festive atmosphere.

Aside from the shopping, these holiday markets also offer a range of festive entertainment. Enjoy live music performances, carolers spreading holiday cheer, and even ice skating rinks where you can glide on the ice surrounded by the city’s skyline. The Union Square Holiday Market and the Winter Village at Bryant Park truly capture the spirit of the season and provide a memorable experience for visitors of all ages.

2.1.2 Iconic Department Stores and Window Displays

Marvel at the enchanting window displays of iconic department stores like Macy’s and Saks Fifth Avenue, showcasing elaborate holiday-themed scenes and decorations. These renowned department stores go all out during the holiday season, transforming their windows into magical displays that captivate both locals and tourists alike.

At Macy’s, you can expect to see whimsical scenes featuring animated characters, sparkling lights, and intricate details. Each window tells a unique story, transporting you to a world of wonder and imagination. From Santa’s workshop to snowy landscapes, these displays truly embody the spirit of the season.

Saks Fifth Avenue takes window decorations to a whole new level with their extravagant displays. Prepare to be dazzled by the glamorous and opulent designs, complete with stunning lighting effects and larger-than-life decorations. These displays often feature high fashion and luxury brands, creating a visual feast for fashion enthusiasts.

Visiting these iconic department stores during the holiday season is like stepping into a fairytale. The attention to detail and creativity put into the window displays is truly awe-inspiring. Whether you’re strolling along Fifth Avenue or exploring the bustling streets of Manhattan, make sure to take a moment to marvel at these enchanting works of art.

2.2 Spectacular Holiday Lights and Shows

When it comes to holiday lights and shows, New York City truly knows how to dazzle and delight. In December, the city comes alive with a magical display of festive lights and spectacular performances that are sure to leave you in awe.

One of the must-see shows during this time of year is the famous Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall. This iconic show features the world-renowned Rockettes, who perform their precision dance routines in stunning holiday-themed costumes. From high kicks to intricate formations, the Rockettes never fail to impress and bring the holiday spirit to life.

Another enchanting display of lights can be found in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn. This neighborhood is known for its extravagant Christmas decorations, with houses adorned with thousands of twinkling lights, life-sized Santa Claus figures, and elaborate holiday scenes. Take a stroll through the streets of Dyker Heights and be transported to a winter wonderland filled with festive cheer.

To make the most of your holiday lights and shows experience, consider taking a guided tour that will take you to the best spots in the city. These tours often include transportation, allowing you to sit back and enjoy the dazzling displays without the hassle of navigating through the crowds.

So, don’t miss out on the opportunity to admire the dazzling holiday lights and spectacular shows in New York City this December. Whether you’re watching the Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall or exploring the luminous displays in Dyker Heights, you’re sure to be captivated by the magic of the season.

3. Tropical Paradise in Bali, Indonesia

Escape the winter chill and immerse yourself in the tropical paradise of Bali, Indonesia. This breathtaking island offers a perfect getaway with its stunning beaches, ancient temples, and rejuvenating spa treatments.

Bali is renowned for its picturesque beaches, such as Seminyak and Nusa Dua, where you can unwind and soak up the sun. Whether you’re looking to relax on the soft white sand or dive into the crystal-clear waters, Bali’s beaches offer the ultimate tropical escape. You can also indulge in thrilling water sports like surfing and snorkeling, or simply take in the breathtaking ocean views.

Aside from its stunning beaches, Bali is also a cultural hotspot with its ancient temples. Explore iconic temples like Uluwatu and Tanah Lot, where you can witness traditional ceremonies, intricate architecture, and stunning sunset views. These temples offer a glimpse into Bali’s rich cultural heritage and provide a serene and spiritual experience.

For those seeking ultimate relaxation, Bali is famous for its rejuvenating spa treatments. Pamper yourself with traditional Balinese massages, body scrubs, and facials, all designed to revitalize your body and mind. Bali’s spa resorts are renowned for their tranquil settings and skilled therapists, ensuring a truly indulgent experience.

Escape the winter blues and embark on a tropical adventure in Bali, where stunning beaches, ancient temples, and rejuvenating spa treatments await. It’s time to embrace the warmth and beauty of this enchanting paradise.

3.1 Idyllic Beaches and Water Activities

Unwind on Bali’s idyllic beaches, such as Seminyak and Nusa Dua, where you can soak up the sun, enjoy water sports like surfing and snorkeling, or simply take in the breathtaking ocean views.

Bali is renowned for its stunning beaches that offer a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. Seminyak Beach is a popular choice for beach lovers, with its pristine white sands, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant beach clubs. Whether you want to lounge on a sunbed, take a refreshing dip in the ocean, or sip on a tropical cocktail while watching the sunset, Seminyak Beach has it all.

For those seeking more adventurous water activities, Nusa Dua Beach is the place to be. This beach is famous for its calm and clear waters, making it ideal for snorkeling and diving. Dive into the vibrant underwater world and discover colorful coral reefs teeming with marine life. If you’re new to these activities, don’t worry – there are plenty of experienced instructors and rental shops available to guide you.

If you prefer a more laid-back experience, simply stroll along the shoreline and let the gentle waves tickle your toes. The mesmerizing ocean views and cool sea breeze will transport you to a state of pure tranquility. Don’t forget to capture the beauty of Bali’s beaches with your camera or simply immerse yourself in the moment and create lasting memories.

Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie or a sun-seeking beach bum, Bali’s idyllic beaches offer something for everyone. So pack your swimsuit, grab your sunscreen, and get ready to experience the ultimate beach paradise in Bali.

3.2 Cultural Exploration and Temples

Immerse yourself in Bali’s rich culture by visiting ancient temples like Uluwatu and Tanah Lot. These temples offer a glimpse into the island’s vibrant traditions and spiritual practices. As you explore these sacred sites, you’ll have the opportunity to witness traditional ceremonies that showcase Bali’s deep-rooted customs and beliefs.

The temples themselves are architectural marvels, with intricate carvings and stunning designs that reflect Bali’s artistic heritage. Uluwatu Temple, perched on a cliff overlooking the Indian Ocean, is known for its dramatic setting and breathtaking sunset views. Tanah Lot Temple, on the other hand, stands on a rocky outcrop and is surrounded by crashing waves, creating a truly awe-inspiring sight.

Aside from their cultural significance, these temples also offer a serene and peaceful atmosphere. Take a moment to soak in the tranquility and connect with the spirituality of the place. As the sun sets, the temples take on a mystical aura, making it the perfect time to witness the beauty of Bali’s landscapes and capture stunning photographs.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography lover, or simply seeking a deeper understanding of Bali’s culture, a visit to Uluwatu and Tanah Lot temples is a must. Experience the magic of these ancient sites and create lasting memories of your cultural exploration in Bali.

4. Christmas Markets in Vienna, Austria

Experience the magical atmosphere of Vienna’s Christmas markets, where you can immerse yourself in the festive spirit and create lasting memories. These enchanting markets offer a plethora of delights that will make your visit truly unforgettable.

As you stroll through the markets, the aroma of mulled wine fills the air, tempting you to take a sip and warm yourself from the winter chill. Savor the rich flavors and spices as you explore the stalls, each offering unique handcrafted gifts that make perfect souvenirs or presents for loved ones.

The Christmas markets in Vienna are not just about shopping; they are a celebration of art, culture, and music. Live performances and music fill the streets, creating a vibrant and joyful atmosphere. Immerse yourself in the sounds of carol singers, traditional Austrian music, and festive tunes that will have you tapping your feet and singing along.

While exploring the markets, take a moment to appreciate the stunning architecture that surrounds you. The historic buildings and palaces provide a majestic backdrop, adding to the magical ambiance of the Christmas markets. Marvel at the intricate details and grandeur as you sip on your mulled wine and soak in the festive atmosphere.

Whether you’re searching for unique gifts, indulging in delicious treats, or simply enjoying the festive ambiance, Vienna’s Christmas markets offer an experience like no other. So, grab a mug of mulled wine, wander through the stalls, and let the magic of Vienna’s Christmas markets captivate your senses.

4.1 Advent Market at Rathausplatz

Experience the enchanting Advent Market at Rathausplatz, a must-visit attraction located in front of Vienna’s majestic City Hall. Step into a world of festive wonder as you immerse yourself in the lively ambiance and explore the stalls brimming with delightful crafts, mouthwatering food, and beautiful holiday decorations.

The Advent Market at Rathausplatz is renowned for its magical atmosphere and traditional charm. As you stroll through the market, you’ll be captivated by the twinkling lights, the aroma of freshly baked goods, and the joyful sounds of Christmas music filling the air.

The market offers a wide variety of crafts and gifts, perfect for finding unique souvenirs or special presents for your loved ones. From intricately designed ornaments and handmade jewelry to cozy winter accessories and traditional wooden toys, there’s something for everyone.

Indulge in the delicious culinary delights available at the market. Treat yourself to warm, spiced mulled wine, known as Glühwein, or savor a steaming cup of hot chocolate topped with whipped cream. Sample traditional Austrian delicacies like gingerbread cookies, roasted chestnuts, and savory sausages.

The Advent Market at Rathausplatz also features live performances, including choirs singing Christmas carols and musicians playing festive tunes. Take a break from shopping and enjoy the entertainment, adding to the joyful atmosphere.

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Advent Market at Rathausplatz during your winter trip to Vienna. It’s a magical experience that will leave you with cherished memories and a true sense of the holiday spirit.

4.2 Belvedere Palace Christmas Market

Explore the charming Belvedere Palace Christmas Market, surrounded by the stunning Baroque architecture of the palace, and indulge in traditional Austrian delicacies and artisanal products. The Belvedere Palace Christmas Market is a must-visit destination during December, offering a magical atmosphere and a wide array of festive delights.

As you stroll through the market, you will be captivated by the enchanting ambiance created by the beautifully decorated stalls and the twinkling lights. The market is set against the backdrop of the magnificent Belvedere Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which adds to the allure of the experience.

At the Belvedere Palace Christmas Market, you can satisfy your taste buds with a variety of traditional Austrian delicacies. Indulge in mouthwatering treats such as gingerbread cookies, roasted chestnuts, and warm apple strudel. Don’t forget to pair these delectable treats with a cup of mulled wine, a popular beverage during the holiday season.

In addition to the delicious food, the market also offers a wide range of artisanal products. Browse through the stalls to find unique handcrafted gifts, including intricate ornaments, traditional wooden toys, and beautifully crafted candles. These items make perfect souvenirs to take home or thoughtful gifts for loved ones.

Immerse yourself in the festive spirit at the Belvedere Palace Christmas Market. Take in the sights, sounds, and flavors of the season as you explore this charming market and create unforgettable memories.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: What are the best places to visit in December?

    A: Some of the best places to visit in December include Lapland, Finland for a winter wonderland experience, New York City for festive cheer, Bali, Indonesia for a tropical paradise, and Vienna, Austria for its magical Christmas markets.

  • Q: What can I do in Lapland, Finland during December?

    A: In Lapland, Finland, you can enjoy picturesque landscapes, go on reindeer sleigh rides, and have the chance to witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights.

  • Q: What attractions can I visit in New York City during December?

    A: In New York City, you can visit the iconic Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, go ice skating in Central Park, enjoy Broadway shows, indulge in holiday shopping on Fifth Avenue, explore holiday markets, and marvel at the enchanting window displays of iconic department stores.

  • Q: What can I expect in Bali, Indonesia during December?

    A: In Bali, Indonesia, you can relax on stunning beaches, explore ancient temples, indulge in water activities like surfing and snorkeling, and immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the island.

  • Q: What makes Vienna, Austria a great destination in December?

    A: Vienna, Austria is known for its magical Christmas markets where you can sip on mulled wine, shop for handcrafted gifts, and enjoy live music and performances in the heart of the city.

  • Q: What are some must-visit Christmas markets in Vienna?

    A: Some must-visit Christmas markets in Vienna include the Advent Market at Rathausplatz, located in front of Vienna’s City Hall, and the Belvedere Palace Christmas Market surrounded by stunning Baroque architecture.

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