As Christmas and the cold kicks in for another year, some of us may be dreaming of a fun way to escape and beat the winter blues. For some, their perfect getaway will be finding somewhere hot to forget about the Jack Frost here in the UK, others will be looking for a wonderful Christmas adventure to hunt down the big guy in red and fill their kids with Christmas cheer. To add fuel to your fire and help you fantasise about some incredible places to visit, here is my list of unusual and quirky winter getaways.
We start our journeys with a trip to a Bethlehem…sorry I mean Brighton. You can relive the Christmas nativity and stay in a stable just like Mary and Joseph did over 2,000 years ago, in a very similar way to how they would’ve too. It is complete with a straw bed, tea making facilities, an ornamental fireplace, a manger and even a donkey if you want! At only £12 a night, you can reignite the magic of Christmas without spending a fortune.
Image sourced from wimdu.oc.uk
If you’re a fan of the cold then this is the hotel for you. Although you wouldn’t ever be uncomfortably cold, you are staying in the Ice Hotel, a fine piece of art that is constructed every year in North Sweden. People flock from across the globe to experience this wonderfully tranquil location, completed with world wonders such as the Northern Lights, as well as being able to take part in Arctic activities.
The hotel itself is built of 30,000 tonnes of ice and snow (or snice) from the River Torne and designed by specially invited artists. This means you get to experience winter at is finest in hand-crafted rooms, surrounded by unique art and designs. You can also try some fine ice foods in the ICEHOTEL restaurant, The Verandan or The Lounge, or go for a few drinks to warm you cockles in the ICEBAR. The Ice Hotel is a once in a lifetime experience and if you love winter and art, this is the place to visit!
Ice Hotel, Sweden – Image sourced from Flickr
Santa’s Grotto Lapland
Here’s a fun holiday for the kids (and big kids) as they get to visit the home of Father Christmas, feed the famous reindeer and stay in this Christmas paradise. The most exciting thing for me is the fact you get to hear the story of how Santa Claus declared his home in Rovaniemi in Lapland, you get to travel across the magical Arctic Circle and you can send cards to your friends and family from the Santa Claus Post Office.
If any of you have seen the classic Christmas movie Elf, you know Christmas wouldn’t be complete without seeing one of Santa’s little helpers, so you can even meet them too.
Snow, sledges and Santa can only result in one quality holiday!
Images sourced from Flickr
So, I’ve discussed some incredibly wintery locations so far, but none quite as active or potentially as dangerous as climbing the tallest peak in the world for Christmas. Presents are great, but nowhere near as rewarding as conquering the largest mountain with a group of other fit, determined and lovely individuals.
As well as the sense of achievement you will get for Christmas this year, you will enjoy glorious views of the surrounding area and celebrate Sherpa style at Namche Bazaar. This could be one of your most memorable Christmas’ ever as you go through every emotion of this unique challenge.
If you are seriously considering this, you probably should’ve started training a few months ago.
Image sourced from Flickr
Nowhere sounds quite as Christmassy as Christmas Island (did you know there’s two Christmas Islands!), although it may not be a traditional Christmas should you decide to spend the festive period here. It is located off the West coast of Australia so snow is highly unlikely. The island is most well known for it’s crab migration. The red crabs all mass to the sea at the same time to reproduce.
Should you decide to spend your Christmas on this island it would be the most untraditional ever. Opening presents on the beach, BBQs, scuba diving, watching exotic birds or maybe even fishing; not typical things you do on Christmas day, but things you’ll probably do here. So, if you want to escape the ice and snow, take a trip to Christmas Island. Sounds terrible.
Images sourced from Flickr
Alternatively, you may not want to go anywhere this Christmas. Personally, I love getting to see all of my family, sitting in our warm cosy home and watching some classic Christmas movies and cracking out a board game or two.