View Full Version : Winter vacation ideas

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10-11-2010, 04:35 AM
I'm looking to go with my parents on a short 1 week vacation somewhere over Christmas/New Years. Any suggestions for a winter vacation that does not include (for a variety of reasons) skiing, South Pacific islands, Hawaii, Caribbean, Mexico, and Costa Rica? My parents and I don't enjoy going to beaches very much, and my parents don't like skiing. We've loved taking vacations to many European countries (I wish I could have spent a month in Rome alone!), and I think it's probably better to visit Europe in the spring or early summer rather than the cold winter. But we're looking to go somewhere this winter with a lot of interesting natural sites, art, and/or culture. And because we only have a week, we're limited to places that are not excessively far from the southern USA.

Any suggestions?

10-11-2010, 04:50 AM
Las Vegas? You can O.D. on tacky, go to some shows, visit the dam, Lake Meade and Valley of Fire; and Zion national park is a few hours to the east, Grand Canyon is a few hours to the south...

10-11-2010, 02:19 PM
Christmas/New Years in London can be spectacular. NYC as well. And Disney in Orlando, if you're into that type of thing.

If you want someplace fairly warm and architecturally intriguing, I'd go for Argentina - Buenos Aires.

Garden Kitty
10-11-2010, 03:07 PM
Santa Fe, NM?

Buenos Aires (it's more of a longer trip, but you'd get warmer weather and great architecture/culture)

St Augustine, FL?

10-11-2010, 03:13 PM
Are you looking for warmth? I know you ruled out skiing, but if you are still up for winter, but fabulous, conside Quebec City.

Gorgeous Gorgeous Old Quebec, particularly when it snows.

10-11-2010, 03:49 PM
I was going to suggest Australia, but I see you ruled out South Pacific. If you're indeed looking for some warmth, you should consider Southern Portugal or Sicily.

10-11-2010, 04:42 PM
What about NYC? We went last Christmas and it was wonderful. The shopping is amazing and all the Broadway shows! We ate the best meals of our lives while there, as well. You can find a million things to do if the cliches I've given you aren't appealing.

10-11-2010, 05:31 PM
I've always wanted to go to Venice in the dead of winter to avoid as much of the tourist crowd as possible. But you're picking the Christmas/New Year time frame, so it's probably be crowded wherever you go though.

How about the Middle East? I'm heading to Jordan/Egypt in mid November.

10-11-2010, 05:41 PM
St Augustine, FL?
That's a good suggestion. I also had friends who spent Xmas in the Florida Keys last year and had a great time.

Charleston, SC or Savannah, GA are other options.

I went to Italy once between Xmas and New Years and it was fun and not too cold. Lots of places in Europe have great Christmas markets.

10-11-2010, 05:48 PM
Stay home...

Just add hot chocolate, gingerbread, cozy pajamas and plenty of good dvd's and books. Turn off the cell phone, hides the car keys and enjoy! :)

10-11-2010, 06:31 PM
That's no fun. The world's a big place. Go out. Explore.

10-11-2010, 06:41 PM
How about California? You can make it into a roadtrip! Spend a few days in San Francisco then drive town to Los Angeles or San Diego. It's a gorgeous drive, tons of things to see in all the cities, great food, lovely mild weather.

10-11-2010, 08:15 PM
Since you liked the cultural aspects of Italy, why not mainland Greece? I also second Egypt, which can be seen in a week. Also, Germany has the Christmas markets in the winter, which look like a lot of fun.

If you are the daring sort and don't mind cold, it would be exciting to go to Iceland, Norway or Finland. They have all kinds of fun things to do like riding in sleighs pulled by reindeer, snowmobiling, dog sledding and maybe you can catch the Northern Lights.

10-11-2010, 08:36 PM
I'll plug my home city of New Orleans. Even if you're not a big drinker (though if you are, the Big Easy can't be beat), if you stay a week you'll get to wear shorts AND a coat so best of both worlds, the architecture is amazing, and the decorating is gorgeous. Celebration in the Oaks in City Park is gorgeous. If you want a dose of religion and architecture all at once, Christmas midnight mass at St. Louis Cathedral would be amazing to see, with a horse-drawn carriage ride afterwards. Or you could take a cruise along the Mississippi River. And the food--:swoon: We have a few good museums, and lots of great shopping.

10-11-2010, 08:48 PM
Another vote for New Orleans. It was my plan B this year, but we settled on Jekyll Island off the coast of Georgia. The only reason being that I wanted peace and quiet and we got a terrific deal on renting a house for the week.