If you aren’t wanting to spend the winter months cuddled up at home, why not take a trip to one of the many gorgeous cities in Europe? This quick guide will suggest a few places to visit and what to bring with you if you’re planning a winter break.

European Winter Break Top Locations


Home to the best Christmas Market in Europe, Budapest is the place to visit if you are wanting to see in the festive period in style! From November to January, the Advent Feast at the Basilica has more than 100 artisan and gastronomic vendors as well as fair food, beautiful light shows and activities like a free ice rink. The Christmas light tram, covered with over 39,000 lights, also runs from December until early January and is a perfect way to get in the festive spirit!

Winter is probably the best time to visit one of Budapest’s many thermal spas. Taking a dip in the famous Széchenyi Baths during the colder months is an experience like no other as you can swap between the indoor pools to the outside bathing area, which is a beautifully warm contrast to the cold outside air.

Budapest also has a lot of historical landmarks for those wanting to make their trip an educational one including the House of Terror Museum and the Shoes On The Danube Bank.


During winter, Reykjavik is one of the best places to see the Northern Lights, particularly if you head out into some of the more remote areas of the island away from all traces of light pollution. Reykjavik is known for being quite rainy during the winter so be prepared for this but if you head further out you will see plenty of snow which is great for skiing and snowboarding. If winter sports are your thing, why not take a snowmobile tour of Iceland’s second largest ice cap – the Langjökull glacier? With 950 square kilometres to cover, this is an incredible experience for those who love the outdoors.

You could also hop on a bus and visit the Blue Lagoon, one of the 25 wonders of the world, where you can bask in the geothermal seawater and try out the in-water mask bar leaving your skin feeling beautifully hydrated and cleansed.


For a slightly warmer option, Paris is a great place to visit during winter. Tourism reduces greatly during the winter season so if you want to visit the abundance of museums and monuments the city has to offer, you won’t be queuing for hours.

A visit to the Festival of Lights is a must if you are heading to the city during December or January. The exhibition takes place at night in Jardin des Plantes and Ménagerie du Jardin des Plantes and is full of monumental light structures. The theme changes each year so if you’ve been before you are sure to have a whole new experience!

For foodies, winter is the season for the hunt so you will find many restaurants serving up game birds and venison so you can eat like a local, or take part in a wine tour around the city. While you are in Paris you should make time to visit one of the local boulangeries and try the incredible pastries that the French are renowned for.

What To Bring


While travel insurance isn’t a legal requirement it is always a good idea for any trip, especially when you are travelling abroad. From accidents and injuries to food poisoning, you should be sure to arrange cover to suit the needs of your trip. If something does happen while you are away, you may be able to make a claim so make sure you keep your documents with you. Travelling with a binder is a great way to keep all your documents and attraction tickets in order.


Budapest and Reykjavik are particularly cold during the winter months, hitting highs of only 4 °C, so you may want to bring some thermal clothing with you, particularly if you are planning on taking part in walking tours or other outdoor trips. Bringing waterproofs is also a good idea as Europe can be quite wet during the winter, although you will find plenty of indoor activities no matter where you choose to visit!


If you want to take pictures and stay in the loop while on your travels, you need to remember to bring an adapter with you. All of Europe has a 2 round-pronged outlet, bar the UK. Many coaches and trains are now equipped with USB slots too, so you should be able to find many places to keep your devices charged.

No matter where you choose to visit this winter, wrap up warm and have fun!


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