Many of us crave for the ultimate winter wonderland year-end holiday as we approach December, especially whether you’re excited to experience snow for the first time, or simply deprived of snowfall due to living in a tropical area! Imagine falling snowflakes while admiring stunning sights of large white snow carpets and snow-capped mountains.
1. Washington, United States
It’s no surprise that Washington is known for its alpine skiing resorts. Crystal Mountain is one such resort, with up to 50(!) ski routes and stunning vistas of Mt Rainier and the cascade mountain range, all dressed up for the season! (obviously in the snow?)
Different than skiing, the resort provides other opportunities to enjoy the snow. Trip the Mt Rainier Gondola for a picturesque ride, or go on a guided snowshoe trek through the alpine forest and around Henskin Lake. You may even listen to a live band while overlooking the mountains!
2. Salzburg, Austria
Salzburg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offers it everything when it comes to experiencing winter! This lovely Austrian village offers a diverse choice of activities for both the relaxed and the adventurous.
If you prefer winter tourism to everything else, you must see the magnificent Hohensalzburg Castle set against a snowy backdrop. This castle, which is about a thousand years old, is Central Europe’s largest totally preserved castle!
3. Zermatt, Switzerland
Though the winter season in Switzerland technically begins in late December, this charming Swiss village has snow all year!
Zermatt is also conveniently located at the base of the famed Matterhorn (Toblerone! ), providing spectacular views of the beautiful mountain.
Aside from excellent skiing, Zermatt also has a snowpark for snowboarders and an ice rink for ice skaters. In Zermatt, you may even walk and paraglide among the Swiss Alps!
4. Amsterdam, Netherlands
If you’re looking for a unique winter wonderland experience, you must visit Amsterdam! With festivities beginning on November 2nd, you can rest guaranteed that you will not be bored throughout your winter vacation in Amsterdam.
The park, which is about a 2-hour drive from Amsterdam, transforms for the winter and continues to operate all of its rides (except two water rides), as well as extra winter thrill rides and an ice rink.
5. Uludağ, Turkey
The Uluda mountains, located in Bursa, Turkey, about 2 hours from Istanbul, offer beautiful rocky winterscapes and a variety of winter activities in December. Uluda, which means “sublime mountain” in Turkish, is frequently regarded as Turkey’s top winter sports destination.
Take a cable car ride for stunning panoramic views, or grab a pair of skis and glide through the snow at this famous ski resort in the area!
Kyrgyzstan, a Muslim-friendly country in Central Asia, has been gaining popularity as a winter destination in recent years, particularly when the different lakes and mountains throughout the country turn spectacular as the snow begins to fall.
While Kyrgyzstan has a variety of ski resorts, the country’s primary attraction is undoubtedly horseback riding across snowy landscape! A nomadic practise that has evolved into a way of life, this is a must-do if you want to learn more about Kyrgyz culture or experience winter in a unique way.
7. Niseko, Japan
Niseko, located on the island of Hokkaido in northern Japan, is said to be one of the few spots on Earth that receives the most snowfall each year!
Nisekp is a must-see for everyone searching for an outstanding ski experience! Take enjoy the spectacular vistas of Mt Yotei as you speed down pristine white slopes. If you’re new to winter sports, there’s also a resort where you can practise skiing on beginner-level slopes.
8. Kyoto, Japan
While Kyoto has never been as snowy as other Japanese cities in the north, snowfall has increased this winter. This results in stunning vistas, such as snow-covered major tourist attractions!
Snowfall is common in Kyoto from early December to late March, however it usually melts by noon. So go up early to see snow at places like Kinkakuji and Kiyomizu-dera! You might also head north to Hakodateyama Ski Area for some family skiing and snowboarding.
9. Yellow Mountains, China
Because of its iconic sea of clouds beauty, this spectacular World Heritage UNESCO site is worth visiting all year.
The stark sweeping landscape of jagged peaks that penetrate through the sea of clouds is further accentuated by the winter snowfall in December, producing a far more dramatic scenery!
If you’re feeling brave but don’t want to go skiing, rent some crampons at the mountain base and go hiking in the Yellow Mountains!
10. Gapyeong, South Korea
Gapyeong, a small county just north of Seoul that offers wonderful stunning snowfall sceneries and wintry landscapes, is the last stop on this itinerary.
Nami Island, a popular tourist destination, receives an icy makeover that Elsa would be proud of in late December.
Check visit Gapyeong Sledding Hills if you’re looking for something a little more exciting! During the winter, guests can sled down varied amounts of snow hills. If you’re looking for family activities in Gapyeong, this is something you should try.