Winter Wonderland: 14 Most Beautiful Winter Destinations in the World

While winter can be associated with cold, slush, dreary weather, and gloom, it can also be the perfect time to travel the world and take in some incredible wintery scenery! There a plenty of incredible cities across the globe that simply come alive during the coldest time of the year.

So, bundle up, grab a thermos of hot chocolate, and make sure you have some warm mittens on, and a cozy hat. Below are 14 of the most beautiful winter destinations to travel worldwide.

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14. Jigokudani Monkey Park, Japan

While visiting the Jigokudani Monkey Park in Japan any time of the year can be an incredible experience, it is a must for travelers who would like to take part in the mesmerizing experience of watching the Japanese macaque (also known as “snow monkeys”) frolick about in the natural beauty of hot springs – the snow monkeys are particularly photographic between January and February.

There’s also plenty of wintery fun in and around the park, including a snow tour, snowshoeing, skiing, and tobogganing.

Sean Pavone / Shutterstock

13. Banff National Park, Canada

Established in 1885, Banff National Park is the oldest national park in the Great White North. Located near the Rocky Mountains in Calgary, Alberta, winter travelers to this area are treated to awe-inspiring views of snow-covered mountains, glaciers, ice fields, and wonderous wintery landscapes. Visitors can enjoy the outdoors by skiing, hiking, snowshoeing tobogganing, and more.

Every year the region hosts an Ice Magic Festival – visitors can check out amazing carved ice sculptures right in front of the Chateau Lake Louise hotel. The event will be held from January 16th to 27th.

There’s also plenty of culinary options close by the park, and tons of fun shopping to partake in while resting up from all the outdoor fun Banff National Park has to offer.

Matteo Colombo / Getty Images

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The Best Warm-Weather Destinations for a Winter Vacation in the United States

There are plenty of warm-weather destinations in the county – some that are popular with tourists and are routinely full, and others that are wildly underrated and don’t attract the same kind of attention. Whether you’re looking for a beach vacation, an outdoor adventure, or a city that’s known for its nightlife, there are plenty of options to choose from. Here are some of our favorite warm-weather destinations for a winter vacation within the United States.

Mini Guide to Iceland

Iceland is a Nordic island country located in the Arctic Circle. It has a population of nearly 350,000 citizens; however, roughly two-thirds of them live in Reykjavik, the capital, and its surroundings. The country is famous for its geothermal and volcanic activity, which throughout thousands of years created a somewhat otherworldly landscape. Travelers also flock to Iceland to see the incredible Northern Lights and learn about its Viking inhabitants, who settled there in 874 AD.