Top 10 Destinations for a Family Christmas Getaway – Part 1
Whether you’re dreaming of a white fairy-tale Christmas, or fantasising about an escape to a warm, sunny destination- Christmas can be an opportunity for a family bonding experience.
We have carefully selected 10 destinations that will make your upcoming Christmas vacation an unforgettable one. Here are the top five on the list (part two will feature the other five). Enjoy!
With an average of 24 degrees Celsius, eight hours of sunshine a day, white sandy beaches and beautiful turquoise oceans, Christmas in Mexico allows you to have a summer-y getaway, and still celebrate a proper Christmas. The Mexican Navidad is celebrated between December 12th and January 6th, so you have a month of festivities, such as “El nacimiento”- the Nativity Scene, portrayed in most Mexican homes and brought to life by a Life-Size scene in most town squares in Mexico; “Las Posadas”- taking place nine days before Christmas Day, “Las Posadas” is a tradition in which boys and girls dress up as Joseph and Mary, representing their pilgrimage to Bethlehem and their search for a place to stay; another kids’ tradition and most likely a favourite, is that of the “Luces de Bengala” (Sparklers), in which kids are allowed to play with sparklers and break a star shaped piñata.
If you’re in it for the weather or the local traditions, a Mexican Family Christmas will surely be a Feliz Navidad!
2. The Bahamas
This archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean is the definition of a Getaway. December in the Bahamas is weather-perfect with a 22 Celsius average temperature, and water temperature of 25 Celsius, which make perfect conditions for a family ocean-side or scuba diving vacation. During Christmas time the Islands are colourfully decorated, turning every walk through the year-long beautiful markets into a sensual experience of sounds, colours and smells. If you’re into shopping, the local markets (among those is the most famous Port Lucaya Marketplace in Grand Bahama) offer Christmas sales on a variety of items during the month of December.
The highlight of the local holiday celebrations is the annual Junkanoo Festival, a parade of costumes and music, bringing locals and tourists out to the streets to enjoy the Carnival atmosphere of the Caribbean’s sounds and colours. Taking place on December 26th and on New Year’s Day, the Junkanoo has grown into such an elaborate festival, rivalling Rio’s Carnivalor and New Orleans’ Mardi Gras. You really don’t want to miss it.
3. Orlando Florida
With its well-known family attractions, its warmish weather and lavish, kid-friendly seaside resorts, Orlando is a classic pick for a family Christmas Getaway. Among the obvious world known “things to do” in Orlando, you can find the kids’ (and adults) favourite – Disney World. The Magic Kingdom is always the right choice for a family vacation, offering an over-the-top Christmas Party, where magical snowfall, fireworks and a Christmas parade featuring Santa are all part of the sure-to-happen Disney magic.
Epcot centre offers an International Cuisine Festival (November 18th to December 30th), which features numerous holiday kitchens serving seasonal sweets. You can also enjoy the Candlelight Processional and the IllumiNations: A festivity of lights and fireworks with live music performances taking place every night.
Another less known yet super cool attraction is Legoland Florida. One special family will be chosen every evening to light the 30 feet tall Christmas tree, made solely out of the most famous plastic bricks in the world!
A Christmas spent on the beach doesn’t necessarily mean a holiday with no Christmas spirit. Spending Christmas on this Spanish island will have you enjoying both- and to the full! Christmas in Tenerife is all about the (s)parks: from the famous Loro Parque, a must-see adventure park in the Canaries; to the Siam Park which was rated world’s No. 1 for the fifth year in a row; a beautiful natural monkey park, to the famous Parque García Sanabria, a public urban park in the heart of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and numerous beautiful Playas.
Most towns in Tenerife put up holiday lights during Christmas and New Year. We recommend a visit to the bigger towns and cities for a more mind blowing light display.
5. Finnish Lapland
Beautiful unique scenery, a perfect spot for sports enthusiasts, kid-friendly and as close to Santa as you can get, this gem of a destination has white-Christmas written all-over. A Christmas in Lapland is saved for the cold weather fans among you. Wardrobe preparations aren’t something to be taken lightly while preparing for a family holiday in sub-zero temperatures. Whilst some may call it classic tourist traps, no trip to Lapland is complete without a visit to Santa Village and Santa’s Park. Visiting Santa’s official home town includes a visit to the official Santa Post Office and to Santa’s official office where you get to meet Santa!
If you’re lucky you might get a glimpse at the famous “Northern Lights” that can usually be seen between January and April when the night is clear and dark. Keep your heads up and your eyes open to experience this phenomena that cannot be predicted.
The Lainio Snow Village, is set in beautiful scenery, 200 km above the Arctic Circle and is everything a tourist to Lapland can imagine, offering a complete Lappish experience with an ice hotel, ice bar and restaurant, and stunningly lit snow and ice sculptures.
Whilst this is not a cheap vacation, everything about it is really breath-taking.
If we’ve lit your vacation bug, that’s a great thing! Stay tuned for part two of this list, with the final- five recommendations for unforgettable family Christmas vacations!
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