The Top 10 Christmas Destinations in the World

Monday 16 December, 2013

There's nothing better than spending Christmas with the family at a backyard BBQ or at the beach enjoying a picnic. After all, we're blessed with sizzling hot beach weather over the Christmas holidays so it's in our best interest to take full advantage. But if you feel like trying something different, here are the most impressive destinations for Christmas travel from around the globe:

New York City, USA

A New York City Christmas is timeless and spectacular. It's a Christmas we can surely identify with more cheesy romance movies than we'd be willing to admit but this hardly takes away from the city's ability to impress.

Image Photo Credit: foxnews.com

Cologne, Germany

Of the seven Christmas markets in Cologne, the four largest markets attract over 2 million visitors. The biggest market is located at the Cologne Cathedral and showcases the largest Christmas tree in the Rhineland as well as nearly 200 festive wooden pavilions.

Image Photo Credit: shearings.com

Amsterdam, Netherlands

The Dutch Christmas is extended over several weeks of festivities, as they celebrate Sinterklaas on 5 December. Children typically leave their boots by the fireplaces before they go to sleep on 4th December, hoping to find them filled with sweets in the morning. They exchange presents and eat lavish meals to celebrate this day.

Image Photo Credit: luxurytravelspots.com

Santa Claus Village And Santa Park, Napapiiri In Lapland, Finland

A magical place for the young and old alike. Santa is available for meeting in person at his office, while the famous post office offers visitors the chance to send mail using the unique Arctic Circle postmark. The backdrop for the location is  stunning in itself, as daylight hours disappear in winter, leaving a snow-covered landscape lit by the stars and moon.

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Bondi Beach,  Australia

A complete contrast to the clichéd Christmas of the northern hemisphere is that of our own Bondi Beach. Be sure to bring your hat and sunscreen and prepare for a scorcher. Thousands of people flock to the popular destination every year as the Pavilion provides a party atmosphere for the locals and backpackers as they pour in.

Image Photo Credit: sheridannilsson.typepad.com

Bethlehem, West Bank

The ancient birth place of Jesus is a magnet for the Christian community around this time of year, as thousands of pilgrims fill  Manger Square, outside the Church of Nativity each year in a procession led by the Archbishop of Jerusalem. Traditionally, the event is attended by top officials from the Palestinian Authority, being one of the most significant Christian events in the Middle East.

Image Photo Credit: nydailynews.com

The Vatican, Italy

The spiritual centre of Catholicism is a highly symbolic place for anyone belonging to the religion. The Vatican attracts the most pilgrims of any place in the world. The buzz in the atmosphere around this time of year is striking and Midnight Mass in St Peter's Basilica on Christmas Eve, or at noon on Christmas Day, is an affair to remember.

Image Photo Credit: cnsblog.wordpress.com

Paris, France

The Parisian romance is evident in the Christmas celebrations of the city. The City of Light becomes illuminated by the glimmering lamps and candles that lace the trees and street lights of the boulevards. Locals and visitors alike rug up to get to the temporary ice-skating rink on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower to gaze at the beautiful city below. 

Image Photo Credit: elementsofstyle.com

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Christmas is warm and sunny in Puerto Rico. Between early December and Three Kings Day on 6 January, the holiday festivities in the town are in full swing as churches conduct dawn masses from mid-December onwards, while the travelling groups of carolers float from house to house. Chris

Image Photo Credit: gopuertorico.about.com

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo's extravagant style of celebration makes for an incredible visual Christmas experience free of religion. Over the top, bold and bright lights encapsulate a dazzling city's appreciation of a foreign religious event. Christmas Day itself is not actually a holiday in Japan but Christmas Eve is an important time for couples and companions, much like Valentine's Day here.

Image Photo Credit: 02varvara.wordpress.com

 

Where do you dream of spending Christmas? Let OneShift know!

 

 

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