Are you a travel junkie? Of course you are! Are you tired of trying to hold on to the memory of summer, even though we’re well into December? Well, we’re here to show you why winter destinations can be just as awesome as summer ones!

Here is our list of the top 5 destinations that can be better during winter than summer

1. Germany: the Christmas markets

Did you just narrowly miss out on going to Oktoberfest? Don’t worry, the next big thing is just round the corner. Not as popular, but definitely just as fun are the very festive Christmas markets all around Germany.

Here you can buy anything and everything from traditional food and drinks to holiday decorations, and toys handcrafted by the local elves. The markets can consist of nearly 200 stalls, offering a variety of items.

 

most beautiful Christmas markets in Europe

Just some of the highlights of the experience are the fried doughnuts, mulled wine, bratwursts, Christmas choirs, acrobats, fire dancers and many, many more. You can find these markets in most of the cities in Germany and some of them last for over a month, opening as early as late November.

This is definitely one destination that’s better in winter than in summer and October, too.

2. Venice: The Carnival

Everyone knows about the beautiful canals of Venice, and the amazing Italian cuisine. But what we’re most fascinated with is the Carnival of Venice, which takes place every winter during the month of February.

The festival has a religious background and it ends with the Christian celebration of Lent. It is said that the festival first started in the 12th century, and was made official during the Renaissance. It is by now a very important part of the cultural heritage of Venice and even the whole of Italy.

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Photo: Carnival mask in Venica/Pixabay.com

The carnival is most famous for the elaborative masks that people wear. Historically local Venetians wore very distinctive types of masks, each of them having their own names. The traditional masks are bauta, colombiana, medico della peste (the plague doctor (scary!)), moretta, volto, pantalone, arlecchino and zani.

You might not remember all the different kinds of masks at first, but make sure to go and simply enjoy the beauty of the spectacle that is the Carnival of Venice.

3. Russia: Lake Baikal

If you prefer a relaxing experience where you can feel one with nature, Lake Baikal is this winter’s destination for you. Located near the city of Irkutsk, this is the world’s oldest and deepest freshwater lake.

Lake Baikal, Russia

Photo: Lake Baikal – Frozen/56thparallel.com

During the winter months the lake’s surface freezes and you can go on one of the organized tours of the lake. The most famous inhabitant of the lake is the only freshwater species of seal in the world, called nerpa. You can also go fishing, ice-skating, ice-diving and anything ice-related apparently

The destination isn’t very commercially popular yet, so you can be a part of the natural, unaltered experience of the Russian winter.

4. Spain: Almond Blossom Season in Mallorca

The heat and humidity of the Spanish summer can be a bit much for some people, but they make for the perfect winter destination for the people who want some fun in the sunshine. One of the most spectacular things about Mallorca in this time of the year is the so called Almond Blossom Season.

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Photo: Mallorca Blossomed Almond Trees/taylorwimpeyspain.com

Towards the end of January and beginning of February millions and millions of almond trees begin to blossom and cover the Mediterranean island with a beautiful, silky sheet of white. The blossoms are so much that from afar it looks like the trees are covered in snow!

Photographers, painters and lovers of natural beauty, make sure to visit Mallorca’s Almond Blossom Season just once. We know you’ll return for more.

5. Sweden: the ice hotel in Jukkasjärvi

Stop chasing the last rays of sunshine. It’s time to embrace the ice! You can find the world’s very first ice hotel in the Swedish village of Jukkasjärvi (good luck trying to pronounce that!). The hotel first opened in 1990 and has been rebuilt every year since!

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Photo: Ice hotel in Jukkasjärvi/Wikimedia Commons

Every winter artists from all over the world are invited to create and carve rooms, furniture and even cutlery made of nothing but snow and ice, taken from the Thorne River. In a beautiful circle of life, all the ice melts during the spring and flows back to the river. Then when winter comes, the hotel is rebuilt all over again. Each year different, unique and better than the last.

Imagine seeing the majestic Aurora Borealis through your bedroom’s ice ceiling!

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