Best Cities For Christmas In Europe: Get Prepared for a Warm and Perfect Trip this Christmas

Winters in Europe are bitterly cold, with temperatures plummeting to dangerously low levels in certain places. As a result, if you're travelling to Europe in the winter, you'll need to be well-prepared in terms of clothing and accessories for your European Christmas vacation.

Quick Packing List for Christmas Vacation in Europe

When preparing for a Christmas vacation to Europe, you should research the weather and cultural practices of the area so that you can prepare appropriately. Here are some of the most important items to bring with you when travelling

  • Medicine: You should bring cold medicine, stomachache medicine, headache medicine, mild runny nose medicine, cough medicine, and low fever medicine. You may not have enough time to adapt to the cold temperature in the winter here and may contract some minor illnesses for which you can self-medicate.
  • Stickers thermostats: You can stick the stickers on your clothes or under your socks so you will feel warmer.
  • Clothes: When travelling in Europe during the winter, many people believe that if they wear a lot of clothing, they would not be chilly. However, in order to keep the body warm in the best possible way, you must understand how to pick scientific and sensible clothing.

The greatest way to keep your body warm during the freezing European winters is to wear thermal gear. Thermal gear tailored to your body dimensions will keep you flexible and comfortable while you move, trapping heat within and preventing it from escaping. In addition, carry a scarf, hat, and gloves, as well as snowshoes, to be warm and fashionable. 

  • Power socket: Power plugs in Europe are almost circular, so you can buy a plug-in transfer to make it more convenient for you to use.
  • A large travel backpack: Most winter clothing is thick and heavy, and you don't just carry a couple of items. So pack a large, sturdy suitcase and make sure you have everything you need to remain warm. At CabinZero, you can find the best large travel bag for you.
  • Other supplies: In the winter, surprise light showers are common, so bring an umbrella or a raincoat regardless of the weather prediction. Remember to carry moisturiser, lip balm, and other items that will help you deal with the dryness caused by the freezing weather.

>> Check out: The Essential Europe Travel Packing List

European Christmas Vacation - The Most Exciting and Wonderful Occasion of The Year

Christmas Day, which falls on December 24th and 25th, is a celebration of Christ's birth and a time for a family reunion in most European countries. On the afternoon of December 24th, after church, the family will have a meal and exchange presents at midnight. 

Sometimes parents or relatives will pretend to be Santa Claus and put presents under the tree on the nightstand for the children while they are asleep. When the kids wake up the next day, they'll be happy about the present they'll get, and the whole family will head to church for Christmas.

Photo by Daniil Silantev on Unsplash

However, a month before Christmas formally began, the Christmas spirit had infiltrated every country in Europe. Aside from the primary aspects of this festival, each area and nation in Europe has its customs, foods, and intriguing things that differ from one another owing to regional practices. 

So, while planning your Christmas trip to Europe, pick the best European Christmas destinations that attract you the most and enjoy your European Christmas vacation!

15 Best Places to Visit in Europe during Christmas

London - The UK

England has a distinct culture, art, and several notable holidays throughout the year. Because London is one of the major cities, the way people celebrate the yearly Christmas celebration is unique and involves a great deal of preparation. Christmas will be celebrated in the United Kingdom over three days: Christmas Eve (December 24th), Christmas Day (December 25th), and Boxing Day (December 26th). 

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Locals in London, England, still send New Year's cards by post to family and friends around Christmas as a manner of showing respect and caring for close ties.

The busiest retail streets in London, Oxford Street, Regent Street, and Bond Street, are nearly constantly glistening with multicoloured lights and busy with people. The Tower of London, the Royal Botanic Gardens, the Palace of Westminster, and other well-known tourist attractions are all attractively decorated.

Paris - France

Parisians begin to decorate for Christmas in mid-November, and the city was transformed into a lovely fairyland. Colourful wreaths line the streets, and businesses and trees are beautifully lighted. Coming to Paris these days, you can see the capital's stunning splendour, which is exactly why it’s called ‘the capital of light’.

Photo on Unsplash

The department shops in Paris become an attraction for residents and tourists during the winter vacations. Legendary stores such as Galeries Lafayette dress up in seasonal attire with a festive ambience, and you may come solely to soak up the Christmas vibe.

Every Christmas, all the churches, retail malls, and beautiful structures dressed out in lights, flowers, and colours make the winter feel a little more bearable. Green pine trees are hidden behind a blanket of white snow, with multicoloured flashing lights above. Walking along the banks of the Seine River under the white sky and sparkling lights will give you a lovely time.

Rovaniemi - Finland

Rovaniemi is an arctic town that transforms into a winter paradise every Christmas. Rovaniemi attracts millions of people from all over the world due to its fairy-tale landscape, ski resorts, and, most importantly, since it is Santa Claus' official residence.

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Santa's Village is the most well-known tourist destination in Finland, as well as a resort in its own right. Hotels, restaurants, cafés, souvenir stores, etc. can all be found here. You can also ride in a sleigh drawn by huskies and reindeer.

Santa Claus Village is open all year and can be reached by bus, either local or Santa Express. You can also travel by automobile or on the walk over an 8-kilometre radius, experiencing the magnificent environment as if you're in a fairy tale.

Amsterdam - Netherlands 

Sinterklaas is the one that brings presents to the villagers during the Christmas season, which normally begins three weeks before Christmas (Saint Nicholas). Sinterklaas will appear on December 5th and visit all households to present gifts to the kids. This is one of the most important Christmas holidays. At the same time, it is a day that every youngster in Amsterdam and the Netherlands looks forward to.

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The streets of the country's biggest cities are decked out in lights and decorations from Saint Nicholas Day through Christmas Eve. Because many Dutch cities are bordered by canals, the light reflected in their waterways is pretty fabulous.

The Festival of Lights is an annual event in Amsterdam that takes place from mid-November to mid-January each year, and it is a must-see for anybody visiting the Netherlands.

Budapest - Hungary

Budapest is undoubtedly one of the best Europe Christmas destinations. Budapest has one of Europe's largest and most cheap outdoor Christmas markets from the beginning of November. When it comes to winter in Budapest, the first and possibly most essential item to see is the Christmas market in Pest's old town central square, Vörösmarty. The market elicits a wide range of emotions, from vibrant colours to exuberant music to delectable traditional fare.

Photo on Unsplash

Handmade Christmas decorations are either purchased for a fraction of the cost of those found in other European markets. Before reaching the customer, the items were also rigorously checked for quality.

Try skating on the largest ice rink in Europe, next to Vajdahunyad castle. Budapest's Christmas markets will take at least a full day, and you'll need a few more days to experience the rest of the city during the European Christmas vacation.

Rome - Italy

Winter is an ideal time to visit Italy since there are numerous unique events and customs that are exclusively observed during this season. If you can't stand the cold, Rome is the place to be this Christmas. Unlike the Nordic nations, winter in Italy, and particularly in Rome, is chilly but not excessively so.

You will have the opportunity to hear the Pope's blessing in the morning if you visit Rome over the Christmas season. You will be able to see the Piazza Barberini and the monuments up close in a place filled with snowflakes and the hustle and bustle of the European Christmas vacation.

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It's worth noting that the metro in Rome closes early on Christmas Day and that the day after Christmas is also an official day off in Rome. However, certain restaurants will remain open and it is best to make a reservation in advance.

Barcelona - Spain

Locals in Spain begin preparing for Christmas in mid-December and continue until January 6. If you're planning a winter trip to Spain, expect to see magnificent nativity displays, delicious food, and one of the world's largest New Year's festivities.

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You can visit the Christmas markets and taste great Catalan food in addition to admiring Antoni Gaudi's architecture. The main retail streets of Eixample, like Passeig de Gràcia and Rambla de Catalunya, and Barri Gotic's Portal de l'Angel, will be exceptionally crowded and beautifully decorated during this time of year. Even though Barcelona is pretty far south and quite icy, it is certain to be a fantastic place for your Christmas travel to Europe!

Zurich - Switzerland

Zurich comes alive during Christmastime with dazzling lights, stunning, crowded Christmas markets, and romantic dates. The Christmas markets in Zurich are the most well-known this time of year. It has created a festive season that everyone wants to visit, making this location unique, and anybody who visits during this time will have a wonderful experience.

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You will be surrounded by a very magical atmosphere during the Christmas season. Everything becomes more rush and bustle for the forthcoming holiday, not just in the marketplaces but everywhere appears to be ringing with Christmas music.

If you visit here on this occasion, take a taxi tour of the city. Taxi drivers will dress up as Santa Claus and drive past Zurich's most magnificent Christmas decorations in the weeks running up to Christmas.

Berlin - Germany

Turning on the Christmas lights to light up the city is a sign that the Christmas season is coming in Germany. Berlin, thanks to its lively Christmas markets, is a popular tourist destination during the year-end holiday season.

If you visit Germany during the Christmas holiday season, you must see one of the country's most unique and traditional celebrations, the Christmas market. Although Christmas markets can be found in other European towns, the Christmas markets in Germany are undoubtedly the most well-known. These Christmas markets have a long and rich history and a variety of activities that are hard to find in other countries.

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Vienna -  Austria

With opera, dancing, and cocktails at tiny rooftop pubs, Vienna is a lovely city that you should consider for your ideal location for the best places to visit in Europe during Christmas. The Mayor of Vienna will press the switch to turn on the Christmas tree lights in front of the city hall every Christmas. This event marks the start of the Christmas markets in the capital of Austria. 

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The first Christmas market in Vienna was staged in 1298, and the city now hosts more than 20 different events, both major and small, to welcome tourists. There are 20 official Christmas markets to attend, with the Vienna Market outside City Hall being one of the most famous. The Schönbrunn Palace market is a must-see for art aficionados. At the Spittelberg Market, you'll discover everything from pottery to jewellery, glass, and silver - a shopping paradise! 

Stockholm - Sweden

Swedish Christmas customs are complemented by enjoyable activities, making Sweden one of Europe's top Christmas destinations. Sweden has one of the most elaborate and long-running Christmas festivities. After 20 days of festivities and festivals, Sweden's Christmas holiday will come to an end on January 13th.

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Christmas markets begin to appear in Stockholm's streets and squares in early December. Traditional wooden toys, seasonal sweets, and handcrafted decorations attract customers from all across the district.

The Northern Lights may be seen from the streets of Stockholm if you're lucky. The sky shines with greens, pinks, and reds, making this one of nature's most stunning spectacles.

Moscow - Russia

Christmas in Russia is as cheerful and bright as it is in many other nations. This country, on the other hand, has various rituals for celebrating Christmas in its own colours, resulting in a very distinct culture. Every year, Christmas in Moscow, Russia begins on January 7, 13 days later than in Catholic nations, making it one of the most exciting places to celebrate the holiday. 

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In Moscow, Christmas is also a time to celebrate Jesus' birth. Unlike many other countries, people don't only celebrate Christmas on one day, they traditionally enjoy it across three days, beginning on January 7th and ending on January 9th.

The Russians have devised an Evergreen tree, which is used to replace the Christmas tree indefinitely and is also used as a New Year tree.

Russians have a tradition of changing their clothes and using masks, particularly animal masks so that no one can recognise them at Christmas events. Then traditional games and dances will be held in the home or on the street.

The Vatican - Italy

Despite its location within Rome's main city, the Vatican is a distinct country led by the Pope. The Vatican's main Christmas celebrations began on the night of December 24, although the Holy See has been preparing since the beginning of the month. Christmas is the festival that brings the most bustling atmosphere to the Vatican at the end of the year. If you want to spend Christmas in a certain nation, the Vatican is the best option.

From the beginning of the month, the Christmas vibe filled the Vatican when many services were held in Saint Peter's Square, attracting the participation of Catholics. Beginning on December 5, the Vatican hosted Christmas art festivities, including performances by several street artists in St. Peter's Square.

Photo on Unsplash

One of the most significant Vatican activities during the Christmas season is the Christmas Mass at the Basilica of St. Peter. The Pope presided over the event, reading the Bible and wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

After Christmas, the Christmas tree will be pulled down and the wood will be used by artists to make one-of-a-kind cultural goods. And the proceeds from the sale of that product will be donated to the impoverished by personnel at the Vatican.

Copenhagen - Denmark

During the Christmas season, Denmark, particularly the city of Copenhagen, is certainly a location that gives travellers delight - and leisure. In Denmark, families frequently gather around the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve to exchange gifts and sing Christmas songs.

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Danish cupcakes are the customary Christmas morning meal. Visit Tivoli, the world-famous theme park, if you're visiting during the Christmas season. This is where the Yuletide event takes place, which draws a great number of visitors. Small wooden homes, gingerbread biscuits, and ornately decorated pine trees are also part of the Nordic festivity.

Bremen - Germany

The Christmas markets in Bremen, Germany's historic city, are usually a must-see for anybody travelling during the holiday season. The Christmas market, which takes place every year from November 28th to December 23th, is Bremen's most popular tourist attraction.

With torches that are lit all night, it stands out in a serene, attractive, and unique atmosphere. There are historic houses in every little nook, some of which are hundreds of years old, and some of which are thousands of years old. Along the journey, there are souvenir stores, cafés, and restaurants that you must stop at at least once a time in your European Christmas vacation. 

Photo on Unsplash 

Bremen is crowded every year at the end of November when the market opens, with thousands of people shopping. There are also musical performances by street performers in addition to the Christmas products for sale. Bremen, with its traditional markets and nativity displays along the riverside promenade, has a wonderful Christmas vibe.

Top 7 Reasons You Should Have a European Christmas Vacation

If you are still wondering which season to travel to Europe, CabinZero will introduce the top 7 reasons you should not miss Europe during Christmas - the most wonderful time of the year!

  • Less touristy time: When travelling to Europe from November onwards, you will not have to queue to buy tickets or be crowded on busy streets. You can freely walk freely or find a quiet corner to feel the cold and ancient Europe without fear of being disturbed.
  • Special promotions: Traveling in the winter helps in saving money on all travel services, including airline tickets, rail tickets, hotel stays, and promotions in European tourist spots.
  • Enjoy the festivities: The end of the year is also the season for traditional Christmas markets, which bring you to a 15th-century European scene. You'll discover more about the various cultures and traditions of Christmas in each European nation.
  • Diverse winter cuisine: The mild weather towards the end of the year has allowed Europeans to prepare a wide range of winter delicacies all over the continent. The dishes that create the atmosphere of this freezing season that you cannot skip will make your journey to this continent unforgettable. Every European country has its own traditional meal to celebrate Christmas. If you try to explore more about these various cuisines, you will have a better understanding of the world's many cuisines.
  • Special indoor activities: Ancient Europe has long been a centre for indoor cultural activities that are both diverse and unique. Museums, art galleries, castles, and churches are always ready to greet you with a welcoming place and sparkling lights. Theatres and symphony halls are often putting up fascinating Christmas performances.
  • Experience winter sports: Some of the reasons you should visit Europe in the winter include snowboarding, kite skiing, ice fishing, snowshoeing, sledging, and ice racing. Travel to Europe in the winter and try new things for the first time in your life!

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That’s a wrap on the list of best cities for Christmas in Europe to visit, and we at CabinZero hope that you will have the best times travelling during this Christmas season. Happy holidays!

Vy Nguyen


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