Embrace the chill in a real winter wonderland this season. The scenery of a snowy setting is wonderfully beautiful, totally breathtaking, and completely serene. These spots will let you experience beauty and also have the change to participate in winter sports, like skiing or sledding. Break away from the typical winter vacation to a warm, tropical locale and instead experience winter in its true chilly form. Even if you have no interest in those traditional snowy activities, the views in these spots will be more than enough to satisfy your spirit. Whether you want to travel far across the world to a different continent or stay in North America, there is a hidden winter gem for you to experience and explore.
Quebec Winter Carnival in Canada
Image: Quebec Region
Travel to Quebec City to the world’s largest winter carnival. It happens every year from January 29 to February 14, and thousands of visitors from all around the world come to experience it. The activities range from night parades, a collective snow bath, snow slides, giant foosball, sleigh rides, ice skating, sculptures, and different kinds of shows. Be one of the brave souls who strips down to nothing but a bathing suit for the annual snow bath! Truly a rare, exciting event to experience.
ICEHOTEL in Sweden
Travel to Jukkasjärvi, Sweden for this unique vacation. Both an art exhibition and an actual hotel, the ICEHOTEL is made completely of ice and snow. Every year, the experience is different as a team of artists from all different creative backgrounds build the hotel out of the ice and snow that has newly accumulated. When spring comes, the hotel melts all over again until the next year. It’s open from mid December to mid April. They even have an ice chapel and perform roughly 100 weddings in it every season!
Blue Lagoon in Iceland
Image: Blue Lagoon
Travel to Reykjavík, Iceland and drive to the Blue Lagoon. These special waters are considered one of the wonders of the world. They’ve only existed since 1976 when they were formed in the operation of a nearby geothermal power plant. People started bathing in the lagoon and noticing its unique effects on the skin. Plus, it’s an incredibly beautiful sight that people say you should definitely see before you die. Stay in the Blue Lagoon Clinic Hotel and have the most unique spa experience of your life.
Snow Monkeys Park in Japan
Image: Drama Fever
Travel to Shibu Onsen, Japan to go to this park. The park is essentially a forest where hundreds of snow monkeys live together. In this particular area, there is a hot spring and you can watch the snow monkeys bathe in it and interact. It’s a truly unique experience, and hundreds of tourists gather here every year to see it.
Swiss Alps in Switzerland
Travel to Switzerland to experience the beautiful scenery of the Swiss Alps. Whether you go there to ski or just to see the sights, it’s a destination highly recommended by all who have been. Find a lodge and drink some famously delicious Swiss hot chocolate while looking out onto the clear blue waters and snowy mountains of the Alps.
Aspen Snowmass in Colorado
Image: Transworld Snowboarding
Snowmass is a giant park in Aspen, Colorado. They offer tons of different trails and boast that you’ll never cover the same terrain twice during your stay. Plus, they go above and beyond a typical ski resort and host a wealth of activities. A popular one is their Friday event Ullr Nights. Take a gondola ride up to Elk Camp for a winter wonderland celebration to honor the Norse God of Snow—Ullr. Enjoy live music, guided snowshoe tours, and a bonfire with s’mores.This post was originally published on ASTRAL & OPAL