Being away for Christmas might not be to everybody’s taste, but escaping the chaos of the event is becoming increasingly popular. With larger families and smaller budgets, many people are now looking to escape Christmas at home in favour of a more peaceful and intimate environment. The following destinations offer excellent choices and a variety of ways in which Christmas can be spent away from home. Here are our top 10 Christmas breaks.
Scotland is the ideal destination for those looking to escape home for Christmas without breaking the bank or travelling too far. Many hotels throughout Scotland offer wonderful Christmas packages, including dinner, entertainment and a beautifully decorated environment.
Log cabins are readily available with wood burners and forest locations, these make exceptional settings for a cosy family Christmas – hot tubs are often included!
Vienna is a wonderful city to visit for Christmas as it epitomises all that is stereotypically festive. Dusted with various museums that hold specific Christmas exhibitions and with the offering of Christmas services and advent concerts, Vienna remains a busy city full of possibilities during the Christmas season.
As with many European cities Vienna also plays host to a wonderful Christmas market, enabling guests to try local and international dishes, purchase handmade crafts and immerse themselves in a wide variety of street entertainment.
3. Channel Islands
The Channel Islands are one of Britain’s greatest treasures and offer guests a wonderful atmosphere and the potential to unwind and relax during the Christmas period.
With stunning greenery, wonderful castles and coastal walks, the Channel Islands offer a great list of things to do at a much more relaxed pace than the mainland. The Channel Islands offer their visitors an exceptional treat in that it is a VAT free state and so this is a perfect Christmas shopping destination!
The Dutch adopt the Christmas season wonderfully and even the smallest of villages see stunning transformation as the streets are covered in lights and decorations. The cold air and warm welcome make for an entirely festive reception and the shops welcome a variety of crafts, sweets, decorations and festive gadgets.
Many stores and attractions remain open later than in other parts of the continent, allowing the Netherlands to welcome guests at all hours.
The possibilities for entertainment at Christmas in Tuscany are endless. Christmas is seriously observed throughout Italy and Tuscany is one of the most observant cities of all. The streets are covered in lights, decorations and nativity scenes.
No small walk is free of a stunning and heartwarming sight. Of course, there are several Christmas markets but there’s a whole Santa Land for children to enjoy too! Couple all of this with Italian food and you have truly discovered a sublime Christmas destination!
Although one of Belgium’s most well-known cities, Ostend is quieter in comparison to Brussels and Bruges and lends itself beautifully to a Christmas break. Easily accessed by plane, car or coach, Ostend is becoming the choice destination of many Christmas escapees.
The city is a hive of gorgeous historical buildings and small independent stores. With accommodation ranging from luxury hotels to small hostels, Ostend is guaranteed to be within the budget of anyone looking for a Christmas break.
Turkey and tinsel anyone? Although the favourite destination for many elderly folk looking to venture away for Christmas, the English coast has an exceptional offering for all ages.
With a variety of lodgings, including quirky yurts, high end hotels and discreet cabins, coastal destinations are truly inviting. With weather that is bearably cold and traditional pubs and restaurants offering seasonal dinners, all travellers can feel at home on any English coastal break.
Düsseldorf is home to one of the world’s largest and most impressive Christmas markets. The city is a vibrant and diverse area that has a range of shops to suit all budgets.
Taking an evening stroll along the banks of the Rhine is advisable and there are many river cruises and boat restaurants to take advantage of.
Set on our own humble shores, Norfolk is a fabulous getaway, adored by the royal family no less. Wander around the many stately homes and perfectly manicured gardens, all of which are dressed festively.
Peruse the stalls of Norwich market or unwind with a chilly boat trip on the Broads. Norfolk is a wonderful destination for those who enjoy the great outdoors and historical market towns that are intimate and welcoming to all.
Bruges is one of Belgium’s most stunning cities, with glorious architecture, wonderful shopping options and fabulous food outlets. The medieval history of this city is clearly on view and wandering through the streets is as safe as it is fascinating.
The hotels in this part of Belgium are thoroughly welcoming and incredibly Christmassy. With Brussels nearby, a visit to the country’s capital is a must and who can resist Belgium chocolate at any time of year?