Ever considered travelling Europe in December? Europe becomes a truly magical destination during the festive season. It’s the month to enjoy Christmas markets, spectacular light shows and delicious food, all with the added benefit of fewer crowds than the summer months. And while Trafalgar take care of all the details, you can sit back, sip a mulled wine and take in all the wonders of a joyous Europe. With lots of great last minute deals available, now is the best time to book your winter trip to Europe. To get you inspired, here’ s our list of the best destinations to visit in Europe this December.
If you want to get into the Christmas spirit in December 2021, then the destination to visit is Germany. Here you’ll find some of the best Christmas markets in Europe, including Dresden’s Striezelmarkt – the oldest and most traditional Christmas market. Amidst magical fairy lights and rousing oompah music, enjoy perusing the cute market stores for the most sublime presents before sipping on a warming Glühwein. Germany’s neighbouring countries, Austria and Switzerland, also host some magnificent Christmas markets to check out during a tour, too.
EXPERIENCE ON: German Christmas Markets or Christmas Markets of Austria, Germany and Switzerland tours
With so many iconic sights, it’s no wonder Italy is a popular destination for travellers. Yet in the summer months, the major Italian cities can get quite crowded. This is not the case in December. Visit in December and take in the true beauty of Italy without worrying about the crowds. Touring with Trafalgar is the best way to meet the Italian locals and learn how to cook like a Nonna, before feasting on Italian delights with the locals. After all, December is all about food and family.
We can’t speak about delicious food and friendly locals without mentioning Spain. By the end of December, we all suffer with a bit of roast dinner fatigue. Help yourself beat that this year by getting a last minute deal to Spain to enjoy delicious paella, fresh seafood, tantalising tapas and fruity sangria. Enjoy a spot of sherry in December? Learn about the centuries-old tradition of Spanish sherry production on Trafalgar’s Dive Into Culture experience. Make sure you have room in your suitcase to take a bottle home with you.
It might be known for its resorts and beaches, yet there’s so much more to Turkey to discover when touring. Being on the intersection of Europe and Asia, it’s rich in fascinating history and culture, and home to some geological phenomena. A particular standout is the Cotton Castle Springs, also known as the travertines, in Pamukkale. The cascading white mineral rock and bright turquoise pools make the area look like a winter wonderland. No need to worry about frost bite if going for a dip. These pools are in fact hot springs.
EXPERIENCE ON: Best of Turkey tour
During December, there’s nothing better than wandering around and seeing all the Christmas lights in the neighbourhood. Why not take this a step further and head to Paris to see their twinkling festive lights? Nicknamed the ‘City of Lights’, Paris is especially illuminated during the festive season. With over 2.4km of lights stretching from the Place de la Concorde right down to the Arc de Triomphe, you’ll see 450 decorated trees along the avenue. If you’ve ever wondered how enchanting the Eiffel Tower looks at night, with Trafalgar you can take an orientation tour to show you these dazzling sights at night. Then, on the Paris Explorer, give yourself a chance to create your own unique fragrance at one of France’s most famous perfumeries. The perfect gift for a loved one.
The colourful streets, castles and trams of Lisbon are nothing short of a colourful toybox. Join a Trafalgar Local Specialist to learn about this bright city on a sightseeing tour, full of UNESCO-listed architecture. Enjoy custard with your Christmas pudding? Then we are sure you’ll love the Portuguese tasty custard tart, Pastéis de Nata.
7. United Kingdom
The UK does December especially well and, in stunning cities like York and Bath, it’s not hard to experience the festive feeling at its best. Why not explore and discover the rich history of these cities on Trafalgar’s Real Britain tour? A particular standout you’ll experience during December is Edinburgh. This mesmerising medieval city is made for Christmas with cute streets and a lively Christmas market. Visit Edinburgh Castle, perched atop Castle Rock, to take in the sights and sounds of the festive city.
TOUR ON: Real Britain
Whilst it may not necessarily be Europe, just across the Mediterranean Sea the iconic Egypt is a great destination to head to this December to catch some winter sun. With temperatures around 20°C, December is the perfect time of year to explore the pyramids, temples and treasures left by the ancient Egyptians. Featuring a 7-night Nile Cruise, why not grab a last minute deal and tour Egypt both by land and river on Trafalgar’s Wonders of Egypt tour?
EXPERIENCE ON: Wonders of Ancient Egypt tour
Check out Trafalgar’s latest last minute deals for these top European destinations this December.