People say “Nothing like home for Christmas.” While that is true, it is sometimes fun to mix things up as well! There are lots of places all over the United States where you can spend Christmas vacations.
USA Christmas Vacations
For a great Christmas, you can consider various options. Some of them may be small towns that dress up like fairy tales. Also, you can go to popular tourist spots in the US like beaches or national parks, or historic cities. Some of the metropolises also buzz with grand nightlife during the Christmas vacations as well.
Here are our top 5 picks for your vacation destination at Christmas.
- New York
- Puerto Rico
Vermont offers you more than 20 alpine ski resorts. Here ski slopes crisscross with hiking trails, inviting winter tourism guests from all over the country. Some of the best areas to enjoy in Vermont during the Christmas vacation are as follows.
The Woodstock Wassail Weekend is the biggest attraction around Christmas in the area. This elaborate festival consists of many activities like indoor performances, outdoor spectacles, feasts, concerts, etc. Visitors are invited to take part in this as well. Magnificent festive decorations adorn spectacular private houses. Many of these are open for visits as well.
Grafton looks pretty as a Christmas vacation card. Traditional clapboard and brick houses dress up for Christmas harking back to the 1800s. The locals put up at least 250 wreaths and 3000 yards of roping. In addition, there is cross-country skiing, tubing, and ice skating.
This little picturesque town is situated at a busy crossroads. This makes it one of the most accessible Christmas vacation towns in Vermont. Carol singing around the lighted trees and enjoying cocoa cups are the most favored indoor activities here. Whereas, you have the option to choose from four different large skiing zones for outdoor activities.
The state that hosts something as grand as the Rocky Mountains has got to offer something fairytale-like at Christmas! And true to expectation, Colorado delivers. During vacation times, much of the state transforms into something like a snowy winter wonderland. Along comes plenty of options and things to do.
For good reason, Durango has named the best Christmas town in Colorado. The magical and famous Polar Express train ride will whisk you away to dreamy times. Hosted in the acclaimed book and movie “The Polar Express”, this train ride is internationally famous. Consequently, it’s hard to get a seat, you have to book much in advance! Other than that, the town itself is filled with festive music, food, and Christmas-y events from November to January. For the outdoorsy part of you, you can enjoy lots of snowboarding and skiing as well.
Nearly as famous as the swiss towns, Breckenridge is famous for skiing. Other winter sports also take place here. The town itself is a grand Victorian-style eye-fest. Add to that lighting and music and food and festivals at the Christmas vacations, and you will have to visit here multiple times to drink your fill. The Mountainside Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and the Holiday Dog Parade are two of the most sought-after events here, other than winter sports events in 2020.
Surely, you have heard of this little snowy mountain village? The 12 Days of Aspen is a famous Christmas activity in the whole USA. It is also one of the cheapest vacation spots. There are free activities like Santa and reindeer visits, carolers, hot cocoa and cookies, ice skating, live music, gift-making, and much more! Nearby there are the famous Aspen and Snowmass ski resorts.
Beach fun and warm weather! If the weather in other states is hurting you, consider the warmth of Florida on your Christmas Vacation.
Orlando is Florida’s family entertainment capital. As such, it packs a ton of activities for you and your family. Kids will, of course, love Disney World. Here they can enjoy the various Christmas parties and evening activities. Universal Studios also has similar entertainment at the Harry Potter place. Massive Ice sculptures adorn nearby Gaylord Palms if you’re missing the cold a bit.
Christmas Town in Busch Gardens is one of Florida’s most popular holiday traditions. This theme park lights up all over each December with millions of colorful lights. Rudolph’s Winter Wonderland offers lots of activities for kids. Snow on the 7th is a magical parade with artificial snowfall. But the snow is real! Other interesting attractions are Wonderland of Lights in Brandon, the Henry B. Plant Museum’s annual Victorian Christmas Stroll, Santa Fest, and the Rough Riders Holiday Parade.
Did you think Miami has just beaches to offer? Well, think again! More than a hundred carnival rides will surely take all your vacation time. Moreover, you can witness a twinkling wonderland of lights at Santa’s Enchanted Forest. Lively music, food, and dance shows dot the city everywhere. The Holiday Boat Parade is quite unique in the lighted boats watching from the Bayfront Part. The New World Symphony hosts the elegant and timely Sounds of Season Concert as well. Christmas vacations on beaches here are also fun!
The beautiful, engaging, and vast state of New York hosts countless activities for the holiday bees. From scenic natural wonders to crazy city nightlife, NY has it all.
New York City
The Big Apple is famous for its Christmas Celebrations. So much so, that Christmas activity in New York is featured in countless numbers of movies and TV shows. Central Park is the most famous area in the city at this time of year, with beautiful lighting, multiple events, and ice skating. The massive Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree inspires awe while you sip a cider underneath. Head to Fifth Avenue or Union Square for all your Christmas gifting needs. Or just to enjoy the spectacular window displays, no judgment here. Also, the elegant among you will not want to miss the traditional performance of “The Nutcracker” at the New York City Ballet.
For a bit of a different Christmas experience, head to Kingston. Embracing its rich Dutch heritage, Kingston offers you the annual Sinterklaas festivities. This includes a mask and branch-making workshop and wearing them during the Children’s Maritime Parade. The Polar Express is also featured here again. Hop on board this train while it snakes through forests in search of Santa. Spoiler: they do find him and he boards the return trip. Many other festivities and attractions dot this area at Christmas as well.
Famous for being the venue of the 1980 winter Olympics, Lake Placid hosts a plethora of winter activities. The beautiful Adirondack mountains village lights up like a fairytale during the holidays, offering lots of family-friendly activities. These include Whiteface Mountain Ski Area and Lake Placid Toboggan Chute. Moreover, there are lots of things to do here at Christmas, like Lake Placid Holiday Village Stroll, an ice-skating party at the Olympic Center’s outdoor rink, or the Jingle Bell Run/Walk. Don’t miss the Lake Placid Sleigh Ride too! And don’t worry, there are no monster crocs down there.
Christmas vacationing in the Caribbean can be such dreamy fun. Adding home-grown traditions, customs, and flavors to the standard Christmas works like a charm, which Puerto Rico will prove to you many times over. Puerto Ricans are crazy for Christmas! Let’s look at some of the reasons why you should spend your Christmas vacation here.
Dressing up a 500-year-old historical city in millions of colorful lights is no simple feat. Also, local traditions dictate that they decorate the houses with greenery such as palm fronds as well. When finished, the city looks like something out of the world! The weather is also great here at this time of here. So, taking a stroll just to see the city on Christmas is a reward in itself.
Real culinary capital is what Puerto Rico is. It boasts a unique blend of cuisines, recipes, and flavors. During the Holiday season, this is brought out in full colors. The primary Christmas meal is generally ‘lechón asado’, which is roast pork often cooked on a spit. This is served beside ‘Arroz con candles – that is, rice, pigeon peas, and pork which is cooked in sofrito sauce. Mmm, yum! You can and should also try out ‘plátano’ (plantains) and ‘pasteles’ (a dough made from mashed green bananas filled with meat and wrapped/cooked in banana leaves).
Puerto Rico contains great malls, street markets, and other shopping venues for all kinds of shoppers. The holiday season brings out the really crazy deals and massive choices available for shopaholics. Local hand-carved Santos rank amongst the top-selling goods here. Also, you can get that special bottle of island rum for that special someone! Beautiful local jewelry, tons of souvenirs, local clothes and accessories, and exotic items – all your shopping dreams can be fulfilled here.
Three Kings Day
The Three Kings’ Day is celebrated throughout Latin America. It is also known as El Día de Los Reyes Magos. This adds a new dimension to the Christmas holiday spirit. It typically starts with Christmas and ends on January 6, the Three Kings Day. Puerto Rico is famous for incorporating this festival into Christmas. This is one of the reasons to visit Puerto Rico is part of our list of go-to Christmas vacations