As difficult as it can be to envision winter while chillaxing at the lake, camping in the mountains, or hitting the local beach as summer peaks, it is just around the corner. Time flies, and in a flash, the prime booking time to grab the best deals will be gone, leaving you to fight with the masses over pricier holiday packages.
While Europe in general is a great deal in the winter time, people are starting to catch on to this, as fuel prices and ongoing inflation have made European travel in the summer a seriously expensive endeavor. So if you plan on going through with your plans to experience the Old World in the colder months, you’ve got to get clear on what you want to see, so you can set your plans in stone soon.
To aid you in this quest, here are three places to see in Europe this winter that we think are especially worthy of a look during the winter season.
While you will not have much daylight to work with in Iceland throughout much of the winter months, that’s exactly the point. Being located on the Arctic Circle, Iceland is in a prime position for those wishing to view the Northern Lights. With not much artificial light outside of the capital of Reykjavik, you will be able to experience Nature’s biggest light show without much in the way of interference.
With colder temps at this time of year (but not too cold, as the Gulf Stream keeps values at around 2 to 3 degrees Celsius above zero during the day in winter), a dip in the Blue Lagoon, a thermal spring near the capital, is much more alluring than in other seasons, and with the long hours of darkness nurturing a thriving nightlife scene, so if you like to party, you will enjoy your time in Reykjavik.
If 18-20 hours of darkness doesn’t sound like your idea of fun, then heading to Italy will be a much better idea for you. Skiers and snowboarders will eat up the many world-class alpine resorts found in the Italian Alps of the north, while those seeking to thaw out from the continental cold of North America will want to stick to the south, as temperatures in places like Sicily hover around 12 to 13 degrees Celsius (bring an umbrella as you explore the sights though, as it rains a lot at this time of year) during the day.
Most attractive of all are the sights in major Italian cities, as those that wait until their summer holidays to peruse the Colosseum, the Vatican and the canals of Venice are all gone. Enjoy the space … just remember to bring a sweater and a decent jacket!
If you are planning a trip to Europe around the holiday season, then Germany is an excellent option. This country is home to Christmas markets that are world-famous, so if you have a desire to drink multiple rounds of mulled wine while shopping for some of the most charming Christmas crafts you have ever seen in your life, then coming to this storied nation at this time will yield big dividends.
Other worthwhile winter time attractions in Deutschland include alpine skiing and riding in the Alps, snapping pics of the fairytale-like Neuschwanstein Castle in the picturesque snow of the Black Forest, and drinking the finest beer Germany has to offer in places like Berlin and Munich.