Where to go on holiday in December
These are the very best trips to enjoy in December, whether you're seeking out some winter sun, cruising to Antarctica or taking the family to meet Santa in his Lapland home.
Festive breaks, worldwide
December is a time for festivities, whether it’s celebrating New Year’s Eve in Sydney and Rio, or taking in the Christmas markets of Germany, Copenhagen and Gothenburg. Further north, Swedish and Finnish Lapland are given over to sled rides and visits to Santa’s Grotto, while the likes of Norway’s Tromso wow with Northern Lights spectaculars. The world-famous winter ICEHOTEL also opens its doors for the season. New Year’s in Iceland is also particularly popular, combining Reykjavik’s buzzy nightlife with the country’s spectacular natural world.
Inaccessible for most of the year, Antarctica opens up in summer, with luxury expedition cruises crossing the Drake Passage to take in the mesmerising landscapes and wildlife of the White Continent. Routes change with the weather, but in favourable conditions you can expect to land on shorelines packed with vast seal and penguin colonies, all framed by vast icebergs, creaking glaciers and snow-packed mountain peaks.
Soak up some winter sun
If the British winter leaves you cold, head instead to the Caribbean and the islands of Barbados or Antigua. And, it's worth bearing in mind that you can find excellent deals on beach destinations for the first 10 days of December, beating the Christmas rush for the Caribbean, Indian Ocean, Thailand and Malaysia.
The Americas, north to south
Across in the Americas, Costa Rica offers a delightful combination of superb weather and off-peak crowds, while Mexico impresses with similarly delightful temperatures, the whites sands of the Yucatán Peninsula, and the Lady of the Guadalupe Feast Day, celebrated on the 12th of the month.Or, head down to South America, where Brazil is sultry and swinging in the run up to New Year and trekking around the Torres del Paine in Chile affords you clear, crisp skies. But, if you’re looking towards the USA, Florida offers America’s finest weather – December is among the state's driest months.