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European cities are great for holidays because they don’t take up much work holiday time if you choose long weekends and you can fit a lot in over a few days. Beautiful architecture, delicious food and so much culture to discover.
They’re ideal for a winter holiday too, as you don’t have to worry too much about the weather being perfect – no one wants to plan a beach holiday and end up freezing cold or in the rain!
Here are some of the European cities I’ve experienced over the winter season!
I visited Barcelona right at the beginning of December. The weather was still very mild, and I actually experienced sunny days mostly. The city was fully in Christmas mode with some Christmas markets on, Christmas choirs singing outside and lights decorating the streets.
Of course, being the city it is, Barcelona wasn’t quiet, but it wasn’t overwhelmingly busy either. All the attractions/museums were still open. I highly recommend visiting the Sagrada Familia, and also booking tickets into Park Guell for opening so you can see it in the quiet early morning glow.
Book tickets: Sagrada Familia & Gaudi Buildings Tour
Amsterdam is a beautiful city. Each building has it’s own quirky style and when they’re set against the canal they just look lovely. I managed to get inside one and I was surprised at how spacious it felt in there actually!
If you enjoy museums, Amsterdam has some great ones, including Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, the Cheese Museum and the Anne Frank House. I would definitely recommend booking far in advance if you want to go to the Anne Frank House – it gets very busy.
I visited Venice through a college trip, and we went in late January.
Venice is a very enclosed city. Once you’re in those little streets, it can be like walking around a maze. The streets are all very similar, but with little details on the buildings or signposts to help you get your bearings.
With the streets being very narrow and maze-like, the low winter sun didn’t quite hit them, so it was cold in those areas. Once out in the open, like near the Grand Canal, the sun was surprisingly warm.
Venice is one of those that gets the ‘overrated’ tag, but I think it just depends on what you want out of your holiday. Pretty architecture, good Italian food and a bit of art/history – Venice should be on your list. There’s also the added bonus of a nice little Gondola boat ride!
Winter European City Destinations
What’s your favourite European cities winter holiday destination? There are so many places I’d love to visit but haven’t quite made it to yet, so this list might continue to grow!
Something I’d love to do is to go on a skiing holiday – that would be the dream. I’d probably hate being cold and I can’t imagine I’d be great at either skiing or snowboarding, but still, I’d love to try.
Jet2 Christmas Event
At the beginning of December, I attended Jet2’s Christmas event, and we had a lovely day filled with Christmassy activities. It included a hand-lettering class with the opportunity to decorate our own baubles, a cocktail making class with lunch and finally, a candlemaking class. Great ideas for creating homemade Christmas gifts for those around you!