Winter vacations mean an escape to warmer climates for some people. For many others, they translate to a getaway to snowy spots all over the world. The following cities all have amazing winter-wonderland scenery and offer sights that are particular to the region.
Leavenworth is home to a lovely Bavarian-style village. Visitors who enjoy thrilling outdoor adventures can participate in ice climbing adventures, held by Northwest Mountain School. Blue Sky Outfitters takes travelers on wine and snowshoe adventures along the Icicle River trail. For a more serene experience, the Mountain Springs Lodge holds open-sleigh rides that end with cider by a fire. Children and the young at heart can mingle with reindeer at family-oriented farms.
To see the northern lights without leaving the country, visitors head to Fairbanks when in Alaska. Snow often starts falling there in September. Fairbanks houses a portion of the Iditarod dog sled race. It is also home to the world ice art championship event. While many places slow down during winter, Fairbanks comes alive with festivals, skiing, snowmobiling, snow shoeing, ice skating and other winter activities.
Among northern Europe’s breathtaking winter scenery, Saariselka holds a special place. Its premier attractions are the glass igloos in the Kakslauttanen Arctic resort. These fantastic structures allow for unobstructed views of the northern lights. For a more traditional option, visitors can stay in log cabins and enjoy the winter wonderland that way.
Kiruna is located near the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland. From December until March, visitors can stay in the famous ice hotel, just a few miles away. The hotel is made new each winter from local Arctic snow and ice. It has 80 rooms, and travelers sleep in thermal sleeping bags. Kiruna is also a good place for watching the northern lights.
The fantastic scenery of Reykjavik was used in the popular Game of Thrones series. Even before the Hollywood connection, this city was known for its incredible glaciers and appealing natural hot springs. While the days are dark in the wintertime, the social calendar has many events. Iceland is famous for its northern lights that appear in different colors here.
Patagonia makes the ideal winter vacation spot for people who like to experience winter during the summer. That’s because it’s in the southern hemisphere where seasons are opposite. Winter in Argentina starts in June and runs until August. This season produces some of the most stunning landscapes with glistening ice, gleaming snow and little plant life.
Niseko in Japan offers all the winter sports that people like, and most of the fun takes place outside of the lift terrains. Travelers can go on back-country tours while admiring the local wildlife. Many tours make the frozen Half Moon Lake part of their itinerary. Since Niseko is home to many therapeutic hot springs called onsens, those make an excellent way to end the day.
Trying to decide which worldly locale to see next can be a difficult choice. On the other hand, getting travel insurance is the easy part. This provides trip protection from unforeseeable circumstances, such as lost luggage and unexpected illness.