January is the perfect time for a winter getaway. Since returning to live in Ireland, a new travel tradition has developed that I absolutely love. The post-Christmas winter destination trip.
While Ireland is basically freezing for much of the year, heading off to another, even colder destination has become something I love to do. It may sound weird, but it’s wonderful. Here’s why.
The Christmas spirit lives on
We all know January can be a major downer. Christmas is over, payday is a long, long way away, you’ve spent the last month stuffing your face and guzzling alcohol and have that nagging feeling that you really should eat something healthy. Then there’s the new year, which can serve as a heavy reminder that now is the time to sort your shit out and start being good. Ugh!
So what better way to avoid all that, and keep the Christmas feeling going than by catching a plane to a brand new place?
This year, I’m headed to Copenhagen. Denmark promises beauty, ice skating, hot drinks, and the very appealing hygee.
What better way to ward of the January blues?
Last year, we headed to Oslo in January. It was absolutely freezing, so cold at times I felt as though my jacket was made of paper, but it was so cozy! We stayed at the lovely Scandic Vulkan, where the decor was modern and the rooms warm and lovely. The breakfast was an absolute treat, freshly made waffles anyone?!
We would wrap up tight and head out to a world covered in fluffy white snow. Everything was snowy and beautiful.
The year before, broke and uncertain of what we were doing with our lives after returning home from Asia, instead of getting each other Christmas presents, we bought flights to Berlin. Berlin has always been one of my favourite places, and it was wonderful to return in the deep winter. Again, absolutely freezing, but lovely.
Prague is another great city for a post-Christmas winter break, with its Christmas markets, ice-skating and snowy scenery.
Sheets of fluffy white snow decorate cities and mountains to create a magical winter wonderland. Enough said.
Hot Drinks & Heavy Plates
Winter destinations are made for hugging hot mugs of coffee and cups of mulled wine. There’s nothing more satisfying than hurrying in from the cold to tuck into a hot plate of delicious food.
Visiting a new country is always exciting. One thing I love about these winter destinations is that you get to experience something different, something new. As someone who is constantly longing to return to Asia and dreams of the Middle East and South America and Africa, the closer, often European winter destinations are much more accessible for a short winter break.
I love that I can get that brand new country feeling of excitement only a cheap Ryanair flight away.
Winter short trips can be very cheap. Thanks to Ryanair cheap flights, off peak seasons and a little budgeting, a winter break away doesn’t have to cost a lot. Even visiting Norway last year was affordable. Copenhagen is another expensive spot, but there is a satisfaction that comes with taking on an expensive city with limited funds!
When you’re only visiting for a short time, sites like Last Minute, Booking.com and Hostelworld, make it easy to find a good deal on accommodation.
I always thought skiing holidays were expensive. In Oslo, however, I learned that it is so easy to hop on a metro and spend the day on the slopes without having to spend a fortune.
In Oslo, a short metro ride will take you up into the mountains where you can ski and snowboard surrounded by truly beautiful scenery. Even though my first attempt at snowboarding was a bit of a disaster, it was so awesome to have done it!
Sitting on my bum in the powdery snow as the sun began to set, taking in the pink tinted view and sounds of laughter and joy from the skiiers, there wasn’t anywhere else I’d rather be.
The chilly outdoors make being inside all the more cosy. With warm, candlelit bars, crackling fireplaces and fairy lights decorating the streets, a winter weekend away is ideal for love birds.