Are you already tired of the cold and stress of work that inevitably came after the summer holidays? Are you already thinking about the best places to visit in December? Early bookings help you save money on airline tickets, and allow you to better plan your trip’s stages.
December in the heat or December low cost? Here are some top destinations to go to in December depending on the weather or Christmas celebrations, from Athens to Cuba, from Laos to Finland.
The Fest of San Lazzaro – Havana, Cuba
On December 17 in the sanctuary of San Lazzaro, on the outskirts of Havana, in El Rincón, 50,000 faithful parade to honor the saint who dedicated himself to lepers and the poor. Once forbidden by Castro, this festival has been in vogue since 1961. The faithful arrive at the Shrine on their knees or barefoot, exhausted by the kilometers they traveled. You do not have to do it yourself, of course, but it is certainly a touching occasion. To reach the place, you will have to take a train from Havana: do not miss the opportunity to visit El Cacahual, where there is the open-air mausoleum of General Antonio Maceo, hero of Cuban independence. And if you are looking for one of the best tourist destinations, the beaches of Varadero are a must.
The best places to visit in December – Miami, United States
Always for those looking for the best places to visit in December. With a summer that lasts all year round, Miami is the ideal destination to celebrate a Christmas different from the usual. A destination to enjoy on sunny beaches, with a respectable gastronomic panorama – the choice of international cuisines is practically endless, from Peruvian to Portuguese, to Italian in case of nostalgia – and prestigious art galleries, Miami will offer you a complete break from your routine. Passionate about graffiti and photography? You’re in the right place: take a tour of Wynwood Walls, an open-air museum with the world’s greatest street artists.
Europe by the Sea – Fuerteventura, Canary Islands
Where to go to the beach in Europe in December? In Fuerteventura, a Spanish island in the Canary Islands. We are in the Atlantic Ocean, but just off the coast of North Africa. Here the temperatures are always mild: rarely drop below 17 degrees and exceed 24. You will find one of the most beautiful Spanish beaches of clear sand as El Cotillo, Cofete, Sotavento and Morro Jable, other black volcanic origin and dunes as those of Corralejo. There’s always a bit of wind blowing around here – a joy for surfers and kite lovers. Don’t miss the interior of the island too, mainly the villages of Betancuria, Antigua and La Oliva: the barren land alternating with green oases, the palm trees, the low churches made of dark stones and whitewashed walls and the windmills will enchant you.
Modern and Ancient – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Best places to visit in December? If you are considering Southeast Asia, Kuala Lumpur, or KL, is a great choice, a mix of modernity and tradition. You’ll have low costs for accommodation, meals and various visits and a lot to do and see. It is located in Peninsular Malaysia, which is the part of the country – of which it is the capital – that borders Thailand in the north and Singapore in the south.
You will be struck by the skyline of the city, where the Petronas Towers, connected by a bridge and among the tallest skyscrapers in the world, stand out. For an initial approach to Kuala Lumpur, see it from the top of the Petronas or the nearby Menara Tower. Then you’ll be spoilt for choice among the activities that await you: the metropolis has trendy neighborhoods such as Bukit Bintang, unique attractions such as the Jamek Mosque (Masjid Jamek), lush parks, lively markets and a wide range of culinary and cultural offerings. Don’t forget to get lost in the narrow streets of Chinatown!
Typical summer climate – Rio de Janeiro
When you think of the best tourist destinations of Brazil it is impossible not to imagine Rio de Janeiro, Copacabana, Ipanema, the mythical Sugar Loaf or Christ the Redeemer. But the most beautiful thing is that there in December we are in the middle of summer. It is no coincidence that the home of Carnival is also one of the most beautiful places to spend the New Year and the month of December in general.
Here expect a typical summer climate and Santa Claus on the beach, but also keep in mind that you will be in high season and that prices will be higher than the rest of the year. A winter holiday in Rio de Janeiro is perfect for both young people looking for fun, here there is no shortage of beach parties, but also for families, thanks to the many resorts and quality services.
Spectacular monuments and nature – Laos
Forget about the efficient transport you’ve gotten used to, the comforts you’ve never missed, and patiently enjoy every moment of your adventure in incredible landscapes. Visiting Laos in December is a great idea for the favorable temperatures. Backpacking and ready to leave from the capital Vientiane and then discover the imposing Pha That Luang, to enjoy a boat trip on the Mekong, the Nam Song, the waterfall of Tat Kuang Si and the town of Luang Prabang. A trip you won’t forget.
Visit the best Christmas Markets – Nuremberg, Germany
Winter wouldn’t be winter without visiting at least one of the best Christmas markets. If you like the cold and want to go off and shop, the Christkindlesmarkt in Bavaria, from the Friday before to the Sunday of Advent until December 24, is for you: this Nuremberg market held in the main square of the city, the Hauptmarkt, has 200 stalls and two million visitors every year. It is a very old market dating back to 1620. Here they take Christmas very seriously: the decorations of the stalls cannot be made of plastic and the goods on sale must have a close relationship with Christmas and the tradition of the best Christmas Market in Nuremberg. You will therefore find quality local crafts and art.
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The best places to visit in December – Santa Fest, Finland
Where to go in the cold in December? Maybe you want a super Christmas experience, a special adventure in the snow and Christmas lights. No one better than Santa Claus will be able to host you in this magical period. Go to his house! Rovaniemi in Finland is certainly not the easiest destination to get to, but if you love snow, it’s worth it. So arm yourself with strong, padded boots and fly to Finland, the coldest destination in this roundup of places to go in December.
You can also stay in Helsinki: the experience of best places to visit in December for Christmas is guaranteed. However, in slightly more bearable weather conditions. Of course, you’ll have to give up a December between reindeer and goblins, staying a little more on the ground, but in a beautiful capital of Northern Europe.
Where to go in December in the heat – Athens
You are looking for a place with mild temperatures, opt for Southern Europe? Fly at midday, where the sun lives: visit Greece out of season and make your December trip in the heat an opportunity to discover a tourist destination in the middle of its non-tourism and take advantage of the local cuisine famous throughout the world. Leave room in your suitcase for some souvenirs (perhaps edible): olives, Feta cheese and other typical products you won’t want to say no to in the new year. Greece is the warm place to go in December 2023!
The best places to visit in December at low cost – Brussels
Although the period around Christmas is not exactly cheap to travel to, there are still destinations reachable by low cost flights in December. Fly to Brussels to discover Belgian cuisine, picturesque streets, one of the most beautiful squares in Europe and one of the best places to visit in December. Do you have many days? Don’t miss two stops that can be reached by train from the Belgian capital: Ghent and Bruges. Characteristic and welcoming landscapes, cold and Christmas, all to be enjoyed while sipping a cup of hot chocolate in one of the vintage bars in the center.
New Year’s Eve in Time Square – New York
And to close the roundup of destinations where to go on holiday in December 2023, can not miss the Big Apple. Of course, flying and staying in New York at this time of year is not exactly an affordable expense, but celebrating Christmas and New Year here is priceless. Turn around on your skates in the ice rink of the Rockefeller Center, in the shade of the traditional Christmas tree, let yourself be dazzled by the festive windows of Fifth Avenue and the lights of Broadway and don’t miss one of the many musicals on the bill. Sunday is definitely worth a visit to Harlem for a live Gospel choir. In general, New York is a blaze of light, color and emotion in December. To finish the year in style, join the Time Square crowd on New Year’s Eve: ready for the welcome countdown to 2024?
Read also: What to see in New York
Naturally by the sea – Honolulu
We continue the list of the best places to visit in December with the bubbly Honolulu, capital of the most desired archipelago in the world: the Hawaii! Honolulu is located on the island of Oahu, naturally by the sea, and is the perfect place to stay to enjoy a holiday of fun and relaxation. Don’t be fooled by its “isolation”: in Honolulu you will find museums, theaters, shops, restaurants and many other fascinating attractions, but within walking distance from the center you will reach incredible beaches, with crystal clear water that will make you forget everything else. Do you want something more wild? No problem: set out to explore the small island and discover all its hidden corners before returning to a beautiful room with an ocean view.
The white beaches of Zanzibar
The Zanzibar archipelago, off the coast of Tanzania, consists of two main islands and numerous smaller islands: all have a very green hilly territory and magnificent coastlines, with white beaches that plunge into the crystal blue of the Indian Ocean. But an off-season holiday in Zanzibar doesn’t just mean nature and swimming: the historic centre of the capital Stone Town has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to its splendid buildings and traditional monuments of Swahili culture, which has deeply marked the history and identity of the islands. The perfect place to enjoy a December at 30 degrees!
The most fairy tale city – Copenhagen
Copenhagen by Hans Christian Andersen, is undoubtedly the most fairytale city in Europe, especially in winter. It is the first recommended destination in December thanks to its absolutely “intimate” atmosphere (the Danes say “hygge”). Here are some of the best things to do in Denmark: spend the afternoons drinking hot chocolate in one of the typical bars, and relax visiting the beautiful surroundings of the city. Tivoli Gardens, Christiansborg Palace and Rosenborg Castle are all worth a visit, as they are even more fascinating when covered in snow.
The beautiful tropical flowers of Madeira
We’re going back to an island, but this time in the heart of the Atlantic Ocean. Welcome to the beautiful Madeira, Portuguese territory off the Moroccan coast, surrounded by a deep blue and immersed in a perennial summer. In addition to the main island, which gives its name to the archipelago, where the main urban centers are concentrated, you can also explore the smaller Porto Santo and the uninhabited and wild deserts: all of them have a mountainous territory, which makes them very green and allows the growth of beautiful tropical flowers and fine vineyards. Alternatively you can enjoy relaxing in one of the beautiful characteristic villages, sipping a glass of red wine in front of a sunset over the sea.
Read also: The best things to do in Sintra, Portugal.
The best places to visit in December – a small paradise, Barbados
What better place to to visit in December and forget the cold of winter than on a beautiful Caribbean island, among turtles, coconuts and coral reefs?! Barbados is a small paradise in the eastern Caribbean area where the typical tropical climate prevails: the dry season runs from December to May, months in which you will not run the risk of running into hurricanes and torrential rains and you can enjoy the sun on one of the beautiful beaches of the island, or unleash until late at night in one of the bars of the capital. If you’re lucky, you might even meet Rihanna on a family visit!
Highest quality of life – Melbourne
The great Melbourne is located on Australia’s southern coast, overlooking a bay almost closed to the open sea, and is considered one of the cities with the highest quality of life in the world. Known as the “cultural capital” of Kangaroo Island, Melbourne boasts a huge amount of attractions: concerts, cutting-edge exhibitions, street art, sports and events of all kinds will fill your agenda from morning to night, and you’ll be spoilt for choice in terms of fun. You can also admire its many historic buildings, such as the UNESCO World Heritage Royal Exhibition Building, or stand on one of the beautiful beaches and enjoy the winter – spreading sunscreen!