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Top 10 Winter Holiday Destinations You Hadn’t Considered

11th July 2018

Celebrated winter holiday destinations aren’t hard to come by. From Switzerland’s alpine villages to Canada’s famous ski resorts, winter wonderlands can be found all over the world. But what if you’re in search of a lesser-known locale for your next cold weather vacation?

Get ready to dust off your scarves and gloves as we explore some of the best winter holiday destinations you might not have thought of adding to your itinerary.

1. Finland

What better place to celebrate winter than the traditional home of Santa Claus? Finland’s icy forests and snow-covered villages offer an ideal backdrop for winter holidays. Despite enduring freezing temperatures for much of winter, the capital Helsinki is anything but dreary. Vibrant and welcoming, this frozen city is packed with quirky bars and cosy cafés - don't forget some euro's to pay for the hot chocolates and mulled wine!

2. Napa Valley, California

Napa Valley endures hot, dry summers, but winter brings milder temperatures to this world-renowned wine region. Teeming with château-style vineyards, pretty towns and luxurious day spas, Napa Valley offers a cool and relaxing escape from California’s more touristy destinations. Why visit Disneyland when you can kick back with a glass of wine and get a facial? 

3. Tromsø, Norway

Tromsø is one of the coldest, darkest and most magical cities in Scandinavia. Located above the Arctic Circle in northern Norway, it boasts wintery temperatures all year round. Tromsø is a popular destination during summer (when the climate warm up ever so slightly) but it can also get busy over the Christmas period. 
Avoid peak season by visiting at the start of the European winter (around September to November). With a bit of luck, you might even see the northern lights. Travel Money Oz stocks the Norwegian krone - just be sure to order in advance to ensure there is enough for your trip!

4. Atlas Mountains, Morocco 

When you picture African scenery, dusty desert plains or grassy savannahs probably come to mind – but not all of Africa looks like a safari. The Atlas Mountains stretch from the Atlantic to the Sahara Desert, cutting across the middle of Morocco. They’re usually covered in snow from December to February, providing avid trekkers with the perfect setting for a wintertime adventure. 

5. Rajasthan, India 

Located in the north of India, Rajasthan state is literally one of the hottest places on earth during summer (we’re talking maximum temps of 50 degrees Celsius). It’s home to cities like Delhi and Jodhpur, and is strewn with ancient ruins and fortresses. 
Make the most of winter’s cooler temperatures by visiting the Hill Forts of Rajasthan, Hawa Mahal in Jaipur (also known as the Palace of the Winds), and the iconic Taj Mahal. 

6. THe Scottish Highlands, UK

Leave the bright lights of London behind and head north for the Scottish Highlands. Renowned for its majestic scenery and unique culture, travelling to this region is like going back in time. With its wild coastline, snow-capped mountains and winding valleys, there’s plenty to see and do outdoors (just be sure to bring a warm jacket and waterproof shoes). If you’d rather curl up by a fire, the Scottish Highlands have some of the cosiest pubs in the world.

7. Chicago, USA

You could go to New York for your next winter holiday, but why not skip the hordes of tourists in Time Square and head to Chicago instead? The Windy City all but freezes over in winter, making it an ideal destination for travellers looking to experience an authentic American winter.

8. The Black Forest, Germany 

Munich’s twinkling Christmas markets may be Germany’s most famous winter attraction, but the Black Forest is far more mysterious. Covering a vast expanse of towering evergreens in southwest Germany, the Black Forest (or Schwarzwald in German) looks like something out of a fairy tale. 

9. Cradle Mountain, Australia 

For a winter destination that’s closer to home, Cradle Mountain has amazing scenery, comfortable accommodation and even the occasional snowstorm. Located in the central highlands region of Tasmania, it’s coldest during the months June, July and August.

10. Tokyo, Japan

Japan’s bitterly cold winter does nothing to dampen Tokyo’s infectious energy. The city comes alive with brilliant light displays as soon as the temperature drops, transforming the dense urban landscape into a light-filled winter wonderland.

Now that you’ve had a healthy dose of cold weather wanderlust, you can start planning your next winter holiday. Visit Travel Money Oz to get your currency organised, so you can spend more time avoiding frostbite and less time worrying about foreign exchange rates.

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