I love to travel any time of year, but there is something magical about travelling around the holidays. Cities dress up in their finest lights and decorations, store have the most beautiful displays, people throw lavish parties and celebrate exotic festivals. Even the most laid back city seems to sparkle at the end of the year. Of all the many places I have traveled during the holiday season, these five are are some of my top picks!
The skiing in Aspen is always a huge draw in the winter months, making it a lively and gorgeously charming choice for your holiday travel destination. Hit the slopes, take in a film screening, get in some great shopping or enjoy a concert at the Wheeler Opera House. Aspen is full of fun activities during their 12 Days of Aspen celebration. As a bonus, you won’t even have to cook Christmas dinner! Enjoy a delicious Christmas Day dinner buffet at The St. Regis Aspen Resort.
Looking to escape the cold rather than run to it? You can never go wrong with a trip to Cabo San Lucas/San Jose del Cabo. I love The One & Only Palmilla Resort, but there are so many incredible offerings now with all the new luxury hotels opening up this year. Read more about my experiences at the Palmilla here. Christmas is not the only holiday you can celebrate in Mexico. Locals refer to the period between December 12 until January 6 as the Maratón Guadalupe – a marathon of parties!
The City of Lights is gorgeous year-round, but it is especially romantic during the holidays. Imagine yourself strolling through a Parisian Christmas market, ice skating with your loved one, or nibbling on a buche de noel in a small cafe. My favorite places to stay are the amazing Peninsula Hotel or the iconic and stunning Hotel De Crillon!
Avoid the summer crowds and head to the Amalfi Coast during the off-season! Atrani, Italy’s smallest municipality, is home to Stella Divine. This gorgeous festival of lights will enchant you in the days leading up to Christmas and ends with a fireworks show on Christmas Eve. Treat yourself to a meal at Zass, a local restaurant boasting a Michelin star.
New York City
No list of luxury holiday destinations would be complete without mentioning NYC! The Big Apple shines the brightest at the end of the year when stores assemble their most stunning window displays, and skaters circle the rink in Rockefeller Center. Admire the enormous Christmas tree, hit up some world-class shopping and stay in one of the city’s luxury hotels. You’ll feel like you are spending your holidays in the movies!
Siem Reap, Cambodia
Want a more exotic experience for your holiday travels? Try Siem Reap,,Cambodia. Get all the amazing details of this magical destination from my Cambodia trip here. The incredible candle lit New Year’s eve dinner celebrations in the middle of the mystical ancient temple sites are a once in a lifetime experience – in one word… phenomenal! From the temples, to the food, people, hotels and hospitality – the photos you’ll come away with will blow your mind! Definitely a trip that you will never forget.!
What are your favorite holiday cities? Please share! I’m always looking for a new adventure 🙂