If the thought of escaping the UK for the darkest, coldest (and often most stressful) of the winter months sounds like heaven, a Christmas getaway might just be ideal. Pack your bags and get ready to experience a Christmas you’ll never forget.
Not sure where to start with planning or what you might like to do? Or perhaps you’re concerned about where would be spending your Christmas day? Here is a rundown of some of the most exciting places you could be celebrating Christmas this year.
Great Wall of China
How does Christmas on one of the world’s most iconic landmarks sound? Spend Christmas Day on the Great Wall of China before switching traditional turkey for Peking duck on our ‘In Pursuit of Pandas’ tour.
Although Christmas isn’t recognised as a religious holiday in China, you’ll see plenty of illumination in many major cities like Beijing and Shanghai. You may even pay witness to the new trend in China of gifting friends elaborately boxed apples on Christmas Eve. The weather is cool this time of year, particularly in the north (where the Great Wall is), which means you may get to experience it surrounded by snow-covered peaks and valleys.
Kinkakuji Temple, Bullet Train AND Christmas Dinner Cruise
Forget falling asleep in front of the TV waiting for the King’s speech – Christmas Day on our ‘Christmas in Japan’ tour will be anything but slow. Begin the day with the incredible sight of the iconic Golden Temple, Kinkakuji, before speeding off aboard the iconic bullet train to Hiroshima, where you’ll enjoy a scenic Christmas dinner cruise on Hiroshima Bay.
Christmas isn’t a national holiday in Japan; however, that doesn’t mean that it’s any less festive. Incredible illuminations can be found throughout the country at this time of year, and with a blanket of snow covering most of the countryside – this is a white Christmas like no other.
Halong Bay Cruise
Celebrate Christmas Day in style with our ‘Christmas in Vietnam‘ tour aboard a Halong Bay cruise. Wake up to the sight of the incredible karst landscape before spending a very special day cruising the lesser-visited (but equally spectacular) Lan Ha Bay. In the evening, you’ll enjoy an exclusive drinks reception and barbeque Christmas dinner.
Although Vietnam is predominantly a Buddhist country, the Vietnamese are extremely fond of Christmas. This is a time of great celebration with locals gathering for festivities and beautiful lights, decorations and trees abundant in the cities. This is also an ideal place to go to escape the cold of the UK, with southern Vietnam in particular very warm and dry this time of year.
Hot air balloon over Luxor
If you ever experience a Christmas morning more spectacular than soaring over the ancient sites of Luxor in a hot air balloon, you’ll have to let us know! With our ‘Christmas in Egypt‘ tour, once you’ve descended from your morning in the skies, you’ll have the chance to explore the vast temples of Karnak and Luxor before boarding your luxurious cruise ship for a private drinks reception and sumptuous dinner.
With the scorching heat of summer having passed, December in Egypt offers travellers very comfortable touring conditions. As the majority of Christians in Egypt belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church, Christmas Day here is actually celebrated on the 7th of January, and you’ll see plenty of festive lights and decorations all over the country in the run-up to this day.
The Taj Mahal
On our ‘Christmas in India’ tour, you’ll spend Christmas Day exploring one of the world’s most spectacular and regal buildings, the stunning Taj Mahal. Later you’ll enjoy a delicious feast, sipping champagne as you watch the sunset over the famous palace – what an incredible experience!
December is one of the finest months to visit India, with warm temperatures, minimal rainfall and low humidity – the perfect conditions for exploring. Uncover the iconic sights of India’s Golden Triangle on this classic tour. You’ll also stop in at the delightful Udaipur and Ranthambore National Park, where you’ll go in search of Bengal tigers.
Sri Lankan Tea Plantation and High Tea at the Grand Hotel
Spend Christmas day in Sri Lanka, and you can take part in an exclusive tea plantation experience before enjoying a delicious Christmas brunch. Spend Christmas evening in style with a high tea at the iconic colonial-era Grand Hotel.
Christmas is widely celebrated in Sri Lanka, with festivities beginning at dawn on the 1st of December, where locals will let off fireworks to mark the start of the season. There is plenty going on leading up to Christmas Day, with families gathering, preparation of Christmas cake and mince pies, and decorations hung – much like the UK except the weather is far more pleasant with warm, sunny days and balmy nights.
Inspired to say goodbye to the dreary weather, stress and social obligations this Christmas? Take a look at our expertly curated 2023 Christmas Collection, where you’ll find a selection of hand-picked, award-winning tours that promise a Christmas experience that you’ll treasure forever.