Winter can be a great time to travel. Many people travel to escape the cold and head for those warm winter sun spots. If, however, you’re in the mood to welcome winter weather when you travel then here are 12 wonderful winter destinations just for you
12. Vik, Iceland
Vik is a village in southern Iceland. Just three hours east of the country’s capital, Reykjavik. This friendly community can be found on the main ring road that runs around the island. It is also a great place to take in the natural beauty of Iceland and experience something new. It includes some incredible volcanic beaches and if you visit between September and April you will be able to see the incredible Northern Lights too.
11. Zell am See, Austria
Located in the state of Salzburg, this popular tourist destination includes the Grand Hotel Zell am See which is situated on a peninsula at the shore of famous Lake Zell. This sizable chalet offers guests a panoramic view of the mountains and surrounding waters. Visit the lake or ride up the slopes and go skiing. Then cuddle by the fire with a drink in front of a roaring fire in the toasty lodge at this cozy Austrian location.
10. Faroe Islands
The Faroe Islands are an archipelago found 200 miles north of the UK and roughly halfway between Norway and Iceland. It’s reportedly an autonomous country that is also part of Denmark’s kingdom. One of Europe’s most idyllic nations, visitors feel as if they’re a million miles from anywhere else due in part to its stunning natural scenery and small populace. Foodies note the diet here is a simple one of meat (or seafood) and potatoes with notably few vegetables.
9. Alesund, Norway
Alesund is both a municipality and a town. It’s located in Mre og Romsdal County. No winter holiday list is complete without this west coast winter wonderland. It was often called “Little London” back when the Norwegian resistance fought the Nazis during the occupation. Blend in with all the friendly locals. Take in the world-famous Art Nouveau architecture, various antique stores, unique little shops, and the beautiful natural coastline that surrounds this pretty place.
8. Copenhagen, Denmark
Once a Viking fishing village, Copenhagen is now the capital of Denmark. Visit reconstructed villages, view what’s left of a castle over century old, and walk through museums dedicated to the infamous raiders. You can also see the Round Tower observatory–a popular example of Denmark’s 17th-century architecture. Stop in at the Baroque churches, art galleries, canals, craft markets, and parks. Sample seasonal foods in such places as the Meatpacking District and experience the beauty of the Tivoli Gardens too.
7. Pulpit Rock, Norway
Preikestolen, a.k.a. Pulpit Rock is a popular, natural tourist attraction for the more athletic crowd. It is located near Stavanger in the municipality of Forsand in Norway’s Rogaland county. The hike to the very top of this steep cliff takes between two and three hours. (If you take numerous rest breaks, plan on four hours.) Veteran visitors confirm it is well worth the hike to see the stunning view across the famous fjords.
6. Dublin, Ireland
Established by Celtic-speaking people in the 7th century, Dublin is the capital of the Republic of Ireland as well as its largest city. Situated on the east coast, it’s bordered on the south by low mountains. Dublin is the best place to get a wee bit of Irish history and charm. Visit Dublin Castle, the Poolbeg Towers and the Spire of Dublin. Have a bit to eat at Klaw then head to the popular Long Room too.
5. Bratislava, Slovakia
Snowy Bratislava is a true winter wonderland. It’s also the capital of Slovakia. While it is officially one of Europe’s smallest capitals, it remains Slovakia’s largest city. It borders both Hungary and Austria. Thus, it is also the only national capital city to border a pair of sovereign states. Travelers can dine on some delicious Slovak food, and visit such attractions as Bratislava Castle, Devin Castle and the popular zoological park, Bratislava Zoological Garden, in Mlynsk dolina.
4. Gdansk, Poland
Some tourist might snub this small city on the Baltic coast in favor of some of the larger cities. Nevertheless, Gdansk is the capital of both the Pomeranian Voivodeship and of the country’s principal seaport Kashubia. It’s picturesque, olden cobblestone streets and the popular promenade of Sopot make for a perfect winter walk. Make sure to check out such other sites as the Gdansk Zoo, Abbot’s Palace and the lighthouse in Nowy Port and then enjoy some hot gluhwein.
3. Flam, Norway
This small village in Flmsdalen is located in Sogn og Fjordane county. It has been a popular but not overly famous tourist destination since the late 1800s. The less than 400 inhabitants play host to nearly 450,000 visitors yearly. If you enjoy train travel, then hop aboard Europe’s historic Flm Line that actually climbs the mountains to carry you into Flm. The journey is reported to be a great way to put people in a festive mood.
2. Blue Lagoon, Iceland
One of the country’s most visited attractions, this geothermal bathing spot in southwestern Iceland could be the world’s most famous. This incredible spa is situated in a lava field close to Grindavik and roughly 12 miles from the Keflavik International Airport. This area is supplied by water utilized by the Svartsengi geothermal power station. So don your bathing suit, step out into the Icelandic cold and take a dip into the hot water of the Blue Lagoon.
1. Cotswolds, England
Cotswolds is found in south-central England. It includes the rolling Cotswold Hills which rise from the upper Thames to the escarpment named Cotswold Edge. Less than two hours west of London, this charming place is
marked by its understructure of Jurassic limestone which is both quarried for its Cotswold stone and provides a rare grassland habitat as well. The area is said to look even more beautiful after a snowfall.