Top places to visit in Europe in December
Are you planning a trip to Europe for the holidays this year and looking for recommendations for the top destinations to go to in December?
This article provides information on some of the best destinations to visit in Europe during the month of December, ranging from places that are chilly and snowy to places that offer sun (and the sea)!
As I am not a fan of the cold.. Brrrrr, I have enlisted the assistance of some of my fellow travel bloggers in order to complete this post and ensure that it is comprehensive enough to accommodate any tourist in the month of December.
Have we forgotten one of your top recommendations for vacationing in Europe during the month of December?
Outside of the frenzied atmosphere of the Christmas market, most large cities offer a welcome reprieve from the throngs of people throughout the chillier months, along with lower prices and a wealth of opportunities for outdoor activities and indoor pursuits that are well worth the trip.
Let’s dive in…
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What are the Best places to visit in Europe in December[ Winter & Chrsitmas]
There is never a bad time to visit Vienna because it consistently ranks as one of the most gorgeous cities in all of Europe. I have Visited Vienna in the summertime though However, the winter season in the Austrian capital is our favorite time to visit the city.
Do you have the intestinal fortitude to travel to Vienna in the wintertime?
You are quite correct, I adore this time of year in this area. In this article, I will share with you some of my top wintertime recommendations for the capital city of Austria.
These recommendations, which you can see on the map at the bottom of the article, will assist you in navigating the city. On the agenda today: Christmas bazaars, spiced wine, and a variety of activities
Vienna in winter
Are you planning a trip to Vienna in the months of November, December, or January?
You are probably debating whether it is best to visit Vienna in November or December in order to maximize your chances of participating in a variety of winter and holiday-themed activities during your trip.
It really depends, because there are so many places to go and activities to do over the entire winter season! However, it is not possible to complete all of them at the same time. The following is a brief summary:
Vienna from the end of November to the end of December: Without a shadow of a question, the month of December is the ideal time to pay a visit to Vienna in order to take in the joyous spirit of the city as well as the stunning Christmas markets.
Things to do In Vienna in Chilly winter
There are numerous free guided walking tours available in Vienna, and they are an excellent way to get started with your vacation there. The daytime and evening tours are completely gratis, however, tips are appreciated.
Did you like it? Give the guide a tip! The cost will vary according to the level of expertise of the guide as well as the number of people in the tour group.
In general, we leave between 5 and 10 euros for each individual. The tour guides are typically quite enthusiastic, and overall, we’ve had a positive experience on all of these outings. Discover the city of Vienna in all its enchanting glory during the winter months!
If you are looking for a city in Germany that offers a tonne of things to do during this time of year, there is no better option than Frankfurt in the winter.
This attractive and diverse city features a vibrant retail center, some historic holiday festivities, and a vast selection of museums that are perfect for exploring when the weather outside is frightful. As a result, you won’t find yourself at a loss for things to do in Frankfurt throughout the winter.
Even if it’s chilly in Frankfurt during the winter, you can still have a wonderful time there.
The following is a rundown of what to anticipate throughout the months of November, December, January, and February.
The average daytime temperature in December is in the low single digits, while the average nighttime temperature is much below freezing.
The month of December sees highs of 4°C (39°F) and lows of -1°C (30°F) on average. Despite the fact that the temperature is falling, there is a joyful and celebratory air in the air.
If you come during this month, you’ll get to see the city all lit up for Christmas and you’ll be able to participate in all of the exciting holiday activities.
The crowds, as well as the high cost of flights and accommodations, are undoubtedly the most significant drawbacks.
Things to do In Frankfurt, Germany in Chilly winter
In contrast to other European cities that have a number of smaller Christmas markets, Frankfurt is home to a single enormous one. Since the Christmas market in Frankfurt is both the oldest and the largest in all of Germany, it is only natural that people flock to the city from all over the country to experience it.
The Romerberg and Paulsplatz areas in the old district of Frankfurt are home to the city’s famous Christmas market, which dates all the way back to the year 1393. It begins performances around the final week of November and continues through the evening of Christmas Eve.
France’s Val Thorens region
The most renowned and tallest ski resort in Europe is Val Thorens, which can be found at an elevation of nearly 2,000 meters and features a total of 140 kilometers of ski runs. The resort is encircled by towering peaks and a sea of snow that extends as far as the eye can view, which is fantastic for people who enjoy outdoor activities but is also absolutely breathtaking to look at.
Off the slopes, there is a lot to do in Val Thorens for those who prefer to enjoy the scenery without the thrill of skiing or snowboarding.
From snowshoeing and winter hiking to more odd activities like mountain biking on snow or sliding down the mountain on France’s largest toboggan run, the Alps offer a wide range of opportunities for outdoor recreation during the winter months.
You have the option of participating in an ice driving experience or zipping down the mountain on the longest and fastest zipline in Europe at speeds that exceed 100 kilometers per hour. You may also put your bravery to the test by participating in an ice-diving adventure.
Gothic architecture dotting the skyline, fresh air, early sunsets, and glittering lights all contribute to the atmosphere of this city. When you get off the bus, it’s almost as if you’ve traveled through time to a different era right away. Tallinn, Estonia, is without a doubt the best location in all of Europe to spend the winter. A trip to Tallinn in the winter ought to be at the top of your list of things to do in Europe.
Tallinn is a relatively tiny city, with a population of fewer than 500,000 people. In spite of its relatively small size, the city packs quite a punch. In addition to being a UNESCO World Heritage site, Tallinn is often considered to be one of Europe’s most well-preserved medieval cities. The walled Old Town of Tallinn, which is packed with cobblestone streets, cafes, shops, and the Kiek in de Kik, which is a defense tower built in the 15th century, has been preserved.
It becomes really cold in Tallinn during the winter, and if you’re lucky, it snows a lot. Even though there are only about six hours of daylight in December in Tallinn, you should not allow this to deter you from visiting the city during the winter! December through March are typically the months in Tallinn that get the lowest temperatures.
During the winter, the temperature rarely rises beyond -5 degrees Celsius, although it can drop to as low as -18 degrees Celsius, especially at night. Therefore, make sure that you pack layers upon layers of clothing, and possibly even some extra clothes.
Rotterdam is the second largest city in the Netherlands and offers travelers an appealing alternate destination to the country’s more well-known capital, Amsterdam.
The city has a large port, the world-famous yellow cube residences, a large number of vintage shops and restaurants serving vegan cuisine, and the best museums in the entirety of the Netherlands. The city is attractive.
Things to do In Rotterdam, Netherlands during winter time
Rotterdam plays host to a number of unique celebrations in the month of December. One of these is the annual winter fair, which takes place in Rotterdam Ahoy and features a variety of activities, including Christmas-themed workshops, concerts, shopping, and the opportunity to sample traditional Dutch winter foods.
Ijsvrij Festival is another amazing event taking place in Rotterdam in December. This festival has a large ice skating rink at Plein 1940, which is located in the middle of the city, next to the Maritime Museum.
Everyone is sure to have a good time at the winter fair. from the young to the aged, and from the male to the female. There are many different types of people who can have different experiences. There are also enjoyable activities for the youngest children. Santa Claus makes an appearance, and there is a merry-go-round there too.
Things to do in Rotterdam, Netherlands
Many people believe that Abisko is the most cost-effective location from which to view the aurora borealis. This is due to the fact that the community enjoys an unusual microclimate, which makes it significantly more likely to witness the Northern Lights in the hamlet than it would be in any other location in Scandinavia.
Abisko National Park is an excellent location for viewing the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights. This is particularly relevant during the colder months of the year.
The park is situated in a remote area, a significant distance from any city lights that can obstruct your view. Because of the region’s cloudless nights, the Northern Lights can be seen in stunning detail.
You have a good chance of seeing them anywhere you are in the park; however, if you go to the Aurora Sky Station, you will have a much better chance.
Not only is their observation tower situated in an excellent vantage point from which to observe the lights, but they also have knowledgeable staff members on ready to respond to any questions you might have.
Things to do in Abisko, Sweden in Winter
In point of fact, many people believe that this is one of the best sites on the entire planet to view the aurora borealis. If you truly want the highest chance of witnessing the Aurora Borealis in all of its splendor, then you should go to this location.
Cross-country skiing, sledding, snowmobiling, and winter hiking are all fantastic activities that can be enjoyed in Abisko despite the perpetual darkness of the polar night. Abisko is the ideal location for winter sports enthusiasts.
In the vicinity is also the world’s first ice hotel, which offers guests the opportunity to either spend the night in temperatures as low as -5 degrees Celsius or simply take a guided tour to discover more about the hotel’s history, including how it was built.
If you visit Bergen in the months of December – January, you will experience a number of enchantments all rolled into one. There are vibrant wooden houses that are coated in snow, beautiful vistas of fjords that are wrapped in chilly mist, and the possibility of seeing the northern lights dance over the city.
During the off-season, when snow blankets the seemingly magical landscapes surrounding the harbor of Bergen, it is a real treat to go exploring there.
Pro Tip: Hot chocolate and kanelboller, Norway's take on a warm cinnamon bun, can be enjoyed at one of the many cafes located in close proximity to the lake. After that, ride the funicular to the summit of Mount Fyen to get a breathtaking panorama of the entire city.
Cruises of the fjords are offered throughout the entirety of winter, and there is absolutely no other way to appreciate the peaceful majesty of the fjords other than from the water itself. In addition, the surrounding Bergen mountains provide a wealth of options for winter sports enthusiasts to try out activities such as cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding.
An enjoyable winter walk just outside of town is the Mount Ulriken to Mount Flyen trek, which takes about five hours to complete.
In the months of November and December, the city of Bergen plays host to the construction of the largest “gingerbread town” in the world. In the event that the weather does not cooperate during the winter months, you can get a glimpse of the country’s deep relationship with the water by visiting the Bergen Maritime Museum.
- Where to Stay in Bergen and Other Accommodation Options
- Read on for more information on the best tourist destinations in Bergen.
Charming Stockholm is one of the nicest cities in all of Europe to visit in the month of December!
When most people think of winter getaways in Europe, Germany, France, and Central Europe come to mind. However, Sweden in the winter is not only less crowded but also just as beautiful and festive as these other countries.
In point of fact, the cool capital city of Sweden is much more enjoyable to visit during the month of December. During this time, the Christmas markets are in full swing, the cafes are in their coziest forms, and the ocean around the archipelago is nice and gorgeous.
The bright side is that you may enjoy Stockholm’s beauty even in the dead of winter! Even if the temperature drops significantly, it is highly doubtful that the weather will provide you with too many challenges in this city because it has been adequately prepared for severe winters.
Things keep moving forwards, and there are actually a lot of sights and activities that are suitable for the winter months to keep you occupied.
The majority of Swedes look forwards to the month of December as the perfect time to relax with family and friends while indulging in a delicious Christmas smorgasbord, which is generally comprised of meals that have been specifically prepared for the event.
You can typically pay a single price at restaurants in order to have access to an all-you-can-eat buffet featuring traditional foods such as cured salmon, Christmas ham, beetroot salad, meatballs, pickled herring, and sometimes even some glogg (mulled wine).
Activities available throughout the winter in Stockholm, Sweden
Watch ice hockey.
As a result of the Swedish football league being closed from November until March, the majority of Stockholmers’ sporting interests shift throughout the winter to ice hockey.
Make it a point to visit the Stortorgets Julmarknad, also known as the main Christmas market, which can be found in Gamla Stan, which is Stockholm’s Old Town district.
Go ice skating
It is not difficult to get out on the ice in Stockholm because the city has a large number of ponds, rinks, and squares.
Enjoy the Winter season with a boat trip.
It may not be the most obvious thing to do during the winter, but Stockholm looks especially attractive when viewed from the river. This is because the city’s rooftops and streets are covered in a layer of snow or ice, making them look white.
Lugano in the winter is a stunning spot in Switzerland, and it’s well worth a trip if you’re looking for somewhere to go in December. This breathtaking city is encircled on all sides by mountains that are covered with snow, making it a picture-perfect setting for your winter activities.
A local Christmas market in Lugano, which begins its annual run at the end of November, is a great option for those looking for activities to enjoy throughout the winter season.
The top wintertime activities in and around Lugano are as follows:
The Museum San Salvatore, which features an exhibition of minerals, fossils, and speleology, in addition to housing a collection of extremely rare works of religious art;
The cable railway, which operates nonstop throughout the year and provides exhilarating rides every half an hour;
A meal at Ristorante Vetta, during which one can either take in the breathtaking views from the restaurant’s panoramic terrace while indulging in Mediterranean cuisine or participate in one of the establishment’s other unique offerings;
Excursions: while you make your way down the mountain on foot, you can observe the mountain slopes and the sections that have not been poisoned.
Give winter sports a shot.
Skiing in a cross-country fashion: spending the day in one of Ticino’s itineraries to gaze in awe at the many topographies of the mountains while gliding down the slopes;
Skiing & snowboarding: Have fun participating in one of the many skiing and snowboarding activities that are available in the vicinity of Lugano, and then unwind at one of the several wellness centers.
Taking in the sights of nature along a snowshoe route, such as the one that passes through Bosco Gurin, Cardada, or the ski resorts in Campo Blenio;
Sled track: spending the time of your life with sleds and discovering breathtaking panoramic views, as the track for sleds of Bosco Gurin or the winter sports area in Nara in Japan.
Visiting Cornèr Arena – Resega Ice Rink
Enjoying ‘Città del Natale’
To begin, spending the Christmas season in Lugano would allow you to take part in an experience that is simply out of this world.
After the tree in Riforma Square is illuminated on November 28 to mark the beginning of the Christmas season, the old town transforms into a gorgeous, colorful hamlet that is abundant with entertainment, musical, and shopping events right up until the Epiphany.
Participating in the Carnival
Joining part on Lugano’s Ul Sbroja Carnival, which begins the week before Shrove Tuesday and spreads the Guggen music all over the old town and streets, is another event in February that you simply cannot afford to miss out on!
However, residents enjoy attending many of the other carnivals that take place in Canton Ticino, so you should learn about the following:
The Nebiopoli Carnival in Chiasso is known for its spectacular masquerade procession, which features a variety of organizations, bands, and floats.
The Carnival of Bellinzona, also known as Rabadan, is the second largest parade in Switzerland, and it attracts more than 150.000 people each year who celebrate in the streets and under marquees.
The “Stranociada” in Locarno is a place where one may take pleasure in a lively Friday night with the ancient town being overrun by masks, Guggen, and music till the early hours of the morning;