Must-see cities in Europe during the holidays
December is here and the festive vibes are quickly spreading all around. While writing this blog we didn’t have full-on snow in Holland yet (but after last weekend that quickly changed ;), but the hats and gloves are out, lights are everywhere and we can almost smell the mulled wine in the air.
Europe is a truly magical place during the holidays. So, if Christmas is your thing, check out these awesome musts that will keep you feeling merry all the way ‘til the big day. (And if you’re not into Christmas… check it out anyway, it’s Europe. There’ll be beer. )
NUREMBERG – Or anywhere in Germany.
Germans love the holidays! It’s no surprise they are known for its wonderfully vibrant Christmas markets, which you will find in pretty much any German city you head to. Nuremberg is the home of Christkindlesmarkt – Germany’s most famous Christmas market. It takes place in the city’s Old Town and has it completely taken over by themed lights and decorations and over 180 stalls selling gifts and oh-so-wonderful Christmas food and drinks!
As if not charming enough at any given day, Amsterdam is shaping up to soon become one of Europe’s Christmas hotspots. In addition to its annual Light Festival, this year the city introduces De Amsterdamse Winterparade, which is basically one big festive festival where you’re able to indulge in all things Christmassy. Featuring activities such as ice skating, Christmas markets, lots of festive food, a beer village, shows and live music, as well as a Christmas cinema showing classics and – we’re not done – a wellness area where you can relax with massages and such – What else could we ask for?!
Under all those lights, London over the holidays is a special sight. With its many landmarks, shopping streets and charming neighbourhoods all taking part in a festival of jolly lights everywhere you look. But the main to-see thing in December has to be Winter Wonderland, which has been around for over 10 year. Having started off as a small open-air Christmas market, it has now established itself as one of London’s main festive attractions. Taking place in the heart of the city, Hyde Park, it boasts of 350 acres of pure Christmas extravaganza: rides, markets, shows, festive (and even revolving) bars and let’s not forget Santa’s Hut. This entire place could turn anyone into a big kid again – and isn’t that what Christmas is all about?
One of the most romantic cities in the world, Prague feels even more special in December. Bringing together tourists and locals in an all round friendly and festive environment, the holiday lights and markets spread throughout the picturesque city all the way to Prague Castle – yes, a Christmas market with a castle background – how fairy-taily does that sound!
Last but in no way least, we bring you Santa’s hometown! Here you’ll, of course, find Santa’s Village and ask the man himself where all your letters ended up after all these years. But if the Santa wonderland isn’t enough, there is so much more to see: Rovaniemi is located at the border of the Pole circle and offers a beautiful and serene environment, all ready to be explored. The Northern Lights can also be seen from here if you’re lucky! It is said that north of the circle, hurry and stress don’t exist, so what better place to find your peace – you can even stay in an igloo hotel if you like the sound of it! Just don’t forget an extra pair of socks.