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Holidays

Europe

Fall back in love with holidaying in the UK

It may be winter in the UK at the moment but that doesn’t mean it’s not a great place to visit. With Covid putting our usual plans on hold, many of us have taken a different approach to holidaying in 2020 and into 2021. Here we take a look at places that can be enjoyed through the winter and into the spring, from city breaks to countryside retreats.

The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds boosts beautiful chocolate box villages that draw the attention of visitors all year round, and is the largest area of outstanding natural beauty (AOND) in England and Wales, straddling 6 counties: Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, south Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Wiltshire and Bath & northeast Somerset.  If you are looking for a winter city break why not head to Bath, the historic city famous for its Roman Spa Baths. Take a tour around the ancient Roman baths during the day and then indulge in a spa evening at the modern Thermae Bath Spa, which houses the only natural thermal hot springs in Britain you can bathe in. If you would rather visit the Cotswolds in the Spring, head to the town of Warwick and explore the famous Castle; take the family along as it’s a great day out for all ages.

Yorkshire Moors

The Yorkshire Moors have been the setting for many novels, including those of the Bronte Sisters, Wuthering Heights by sister Emily Bronte, reached great popularity, with the moors as the enchanting back drop. Another popular novel that has recently seen a remake of the first film, is the Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, which tells the tale of a young girl who is brought to Misselthwaite Manor, located on the moor, to live with her uncle after being orphaned. In these novels the Yorkshire Moors are portrayed as wild and romantic and it continues to be a popular place to visit. Famous for its countryside walks and its location to Robin Hoods Bay, the final destination on the coast to coast walk: it’s easy to see why walking holidays in the UK are proving ever popular to really immerse yourself in nature.

London

When you think of the UK, you think of London. It’s hard not to after all, with it being the capital city. Not only is it the capital but it’s a great place to visit all year round: packed with history, fun days out and excellent food and retail therapy. Decorated for Christmas is when the city really shines though, shop windows are decorated to show the magic of Christmas and Christmas trees are found across the city, Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square and Somerset House to name a few.

Edinburgh

If you don’t fancy a trip to London this Christmas, Edinburgh is another beautiful city in the winter. Take a stroll down Princess Street admiring the Christmas decorations before calling into a cosy pub for a glass of mulled wine. If you are feeling adventurous you can take a walk up to Arthurs Seat, an ancient volcano and the site of a 2000 year old fort that sits 251 metres above sea level, lending to breath taking views of the city. The city and its surroundings are a must for any whisky lover, why not take a tour around a working distillery, or pop into the Scottish Whisky Experience at the top of the Royal Mile and see the largest collection of Scottish Whisky in the world.

Enjoy your next UK holiday but don’t forget to check the latest travel advice before exploring these fantastic places.

Advice

Holiday Travel Can Be Stressful – Here’s How I Deal

There’s no doubt that travel around the holiday season can be anxiety inducing. With the large amount of people commuting to and from home, on their way to a winter escape or en route back home – holiday travel is overwhelming. Even as a seasoned traveler, I’ve found myself completely stressed midway through my journey back “home for the holidays.” Today, I’m sharing the simple, yet effective stress reducing tricks I use to deal with holiday travel.

Noise Cancelling Headphones

Music on, world off. Even after I’ve hustled to my terminal, I find that other’s stress levels increase my own! To escape the madness and ignore the arguments and tension, I always pop on my noise cancelling headphones and zone out to a peaceful playlist like this one. Nothing changes my mood quite like music!

Pre-Printed Itineraries

I can’t tell you why exactly, but something about printed tickets and itineraries with all my information on it does wonders to my stress level when maneuvering through holiday travel! Having a physical ticket in my hand assures me that everything will be okay. Does any one else feel this way?

Invest In Travel Insurance

With traffic galore around the holiday season, it’s important to plan for the worst. Should you miss your flight or need to make arrangements to change your plans, investing in travel insurance is a good idea. Peace of mind is worth the few extra dollars, if you ask me.

Get There Early

Just do it. Plan to be there early to avoid major lines and the headache of battling through security. Giving yourself a buffer of time to make your way through to your terminal alleviates the pressure to go-go-go! Getting to the airport early is a step towards breathing easier and lowering your stress level an enormous amount.

Wear Your Cozy Clothes

There’s absolutely no point in wearing constricting, uncomfortable clothes to the airport during the holidays. No matter if you’re the ultimate fashionista or on your way to meet up with friends you haven’t seen in a long time… trust me on this. There’s a way to look chic and put together while also being cozy. A comfortable, non-restricting outfit can soothe a stressful mind.

Acknowledge Your Lack Of Control

Truth be told, travel can be the ultimate form of “letting go.” With the lack of control we all have as travelers during the holiday season… the biggest take away I’ve found is to embrace the unknown. It may be seamless, it may be a complete mess… but you’ve got this.

You can’t control the delayed flights or the missing crew members. You can’t control the weather or the enormous security line. But you can control your response to the madness! Deep breathes, positive self-talk and using the tips mentioned above mindfully will pull you through.


How do you cope with holiday travel stress? Comment below with your biggest tips!

Travel Planning

11 Of The Most Magical Places To Experience Christmas Around The World

It’s getting to be that time of year. You know, that time in the season when we’re fully embracing the holiday spirit. The smell of pine and the warmth of a cozy fireplace sound like heaven. We’re starting to get out our decorations and choosing wrappings and bows for our presents to our loved ones. Yep – it’s Christmas time alright! Today, we’re getting in the holiday spirit and sharing a round up of some of the most magical places to experience Christmas around the world.

Nuremberg, Germany

Germany is well-loved for its famous Christmas Market – and Nuremberg is the king of them all! Visit the stalls right in the middle of the city to collect one of a kind gifts for your dearest loved ones. Gingerbread houses, quaint, snow laden cottages and aged churches ringing holiday tunes. Nuremberg has been titled “Germany’s Christmas City” for a reason… time to see why for yourself!

 

Lapland, Finland

Is there a snowier, more magical location in the world to experience Christmas morning? We think not! Imagine seeing the sky enveloped in the northern lights as Santa’s sleigh dashes across the sky. It’s what dreams are made of… and what adult vacations are made for.

 

Zurich, Switzerland

Around Christmas time, Zurich adopts a warm glow, the smell of cinnamon and the ringing tones of carols around the corners of every avenue. Zurich’s Lichterschwimmen candle-floating event is not to be missed… but neither is its adorably picturesque town squares covered in snow!

Vatican City, Rome

Attending Christmas Mass in the Vatican City is quite a bucket list item, if we do say so ourselves! Candlelit vigils, magical songs and families from around the world celebrating the reason for the season. Need we say more?

 

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo might not be the first city on every Christmas holiday vacation list… but we truly believe it should be! The city is covered with incredible light displays, stores are stocked with quirky, cool gifts and well-lit trees tower over the modern city scape.

Reykjavík, Iceland

Another dream destination for anyone wishing to see the Northern Lights over the holidays! But we are even bigger fans of Reykjavík’s tradition of reading books the night of Christmas Eve. Talk about cozy! Iceland may be the land of fire and ice, but we’d love to rest our heads here for a seriously charming and frigid Christmas.

 

Vienna, Austria

Austria is incredibly sweet, almost like a Christmas village come to life. See it around the holidays and you’ll see Vienna in its prime. Visit its Christmas Markets, drink mulled wine, visit a chestnut stand, and just try to stop yourself from snapping all the photos your phone can handle!

New York City

Bright lights, big city! Experiencing Christmas in NYC is unlike any other holiday. The grand scale of the store front decorations, enormous tree lighting, holiday music playing on the subway stations, snow falling over the fluorescent lights of Times Square or the quiet corners of Central Park. We believe New York City is in its prime around Christmas time.

 

Bethlehem, Jerusalem

To experience the real meaning of Christmas, a visit to Bethlehem would be the ultimate experience! A pilgrimage to Jesus’ birth place around the holidays is filled with so much energy. Visit Manger Square, attend a Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and light a forest of Christmas trees in the Old City.

Copenhagen, Denmark

The capital of coziness (hygge!) is a great place to rest your head over the holidays. Christmas around the world can wait. Nestle into a buzzing coffeeshop wearing your warmest knits and read a book!

 

Orlando, Florida

Disney knows how to bring the magic. Add Christmas traditions and any one would get in touch with their own sense of childlike wonder. Seeing the Magic Castle illuminated by crystallized lights and fireworks is quite a sight!


Hope you are getting into the holiday spirit, Dame Travelers! Wouldn’t it be magical to experience Christmas around the world every single year? A girl can dream, right?

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