Christmas & New Year's in Europe

elle

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Jan 25, 2006
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I'll be in traveling around Europe during this time of the year with a friend, and since we'll both be far away from our families, I'm wondering what would be the best city to spend our Christmas and New Year's in. Are there any places that would be exceptionally beautiful during the holiday season? I'm thinking Paris would be nice. As for the New Years Eve celebrations, I've heard Spain or London is the best place to be. Any advice will be appreciated...thanks everyone!! :flowers:
 

ricky11

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Jul 28, 2006
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i traveled around europe after christmas last year with my boyfriend. we had a great time but found it much more crowded than we expected given that winter is usually much quieter. we were in rome for new year's eve which was great but paris or london (or spain, i hadn't heard that before) may be better places to celebrate. i would recommend booking tickets to museums and such in advance due to the large number of tourists during that week. enjoy your trip, let us know where you decide to go!
 

Schmodi

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Feb 13, 2007
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I spend Xmas and New Years in Kitzbuehel in Austria. Posh little ski town that turns into a fun place after Xmas until Jan 2nd. Scenically beautiful, lots of tradition for NYE and the 1st.
 

PurpleD

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Mar 9, 2008
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Wherever the wind takes me
Most of the cities in Europe will be completely dead over Christmas. Even London is totally quiet; most restaurants are closed, public transport does operate over Christmas, and there are very few cabs drivers around over the holidays – it’s very difficult to get around.

I’d suggest going to the alps over Christmas (Courchevel, Verbier, St Moritz, Zermatt, Kitzbuehel). Christmas in the Alps is always so beautiful and everything in most of the major ski areas will be open.

For NYE, I’d suggest London or Paris. Most of the locals in London leave town over NYE, but the city will be full of travelers looking to celebrate in Europe’s capital. Paris will also be very busy over NYE and the French really know how to throw a party!

I hope this helps!
 

Schmodi

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Feb 13, 2007
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I’d suggest going to the alps over Christmas (Courchevel, Verbier, St Moritz, Zermatt, Kitzbuehel). Christmas in the Alps is always so beautiful and everything in most of the major ski areas will be open.
In Austria we celebrate Xmas on the 24th. Some things are open in the morning like the market, but then everyone does dinner on the 24th. At night we eat, then usually church for most (big over there on Xmas), after that we hit the bar with friends. The 25th is like any other day so it never really slows down. Skiing is open all day everyday, so are the coffee shops, bars, etc. Kitzbuehel gets really crowded on the 26th since others coming into town for NYE.
 

sonya

Member
Feb 23, 2006
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Most of the cities in Europe will be completely dead over Christmas. Even London is totally quiet; most restaurants are closed, public transport does operate over Christmas, and there are very few cabs drivers around over the holidays – it’s very difficult to get around.

My experience last Christmas in London.

Also, most of the restaurants in Paris are closed between Christmas and New Year's.

Many of my friends go to St. Moritz for New Year's. In general, any major city will have parties for New Year's.
 

elle

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Jan 25, 2006
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12
Thanks for the suggestions everyone!

ricky11, we're currently leaning towards being in Paris for Christmas and Amsterdam for New Years. Rome does not sound bad either, but I'll be spending a lot of time in Italy in September, so I'm not sure if I want to go back when there are so many other places I haven't seen :sweatdrop: But who knows, maybe I'll love Rome so much that I'll have to go back for New Years!

Schmodi, it's great to hear that Austria doesn't slow down...our tentative itinerary puts us there the day after Christmas!

PurpleD, thank you! Your post was very informative. We don't expect to be doing a lot on Christmas day, so it's okay if the city is pretty dead. I figure we can just walk around and take in the beautiful sights :yes: I saw a picture of Champs Elysees decorated with Christmas lights and it was breathtaking!

sonya, my friend had the same experience in London too. He walked around alone and had dinner at a Holiday Inn. Is it pretty much the same in Paris or would we have even more trouble getting around and finding a decent place to eat at?
 
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