5 Exquisite Places To Celebrate Christmas Around The Globe

By Leah Freeman-Haskin


If you are looking to change things up this holiday season, here are few destinations that know a thing or two about Christmas celebrations. Many of these locations keep their displays illuminated through the new year, giving you a few more weeks to plan if needed.

Vancouver, Canada

From the Festival of Lights at VanDusen Botanical Garden to visiting Santa at the Festive Rogers Santa Claus Parade, Vancouver is full of holiday-inspired activities this time of year. Vancouver Christmas Lights are the city’s main holiday attraction with viewings throughout the city including the Capilano Suspension Bridge, Stanley Park, and the Christmas tree lighting at Robson Square.

Capilano Suspension Bridge, Vancouver, Canada | Aolin Chen | Getty Images

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New York City, New York

When you think of a magical Christmas, your thoughts may land in New York City. From ice skating at Rockefeller Center and carriage rides through Central Park, to hanging around 34th street and watching the Rockettes perform during the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, there are few places as festive as New York City around Christmas time.

Rockefeller Center, New York City, NY | James Patrick Waddell | Getty Images

Malaga, Spain

Like many traditions in Spain, Christmas is celebrated with passion and great enthusiasm in Malaga. Christmas markets line the streets, huge nativity scenes and free concerts take over Plaza de la Constitución, and the city holds its annual Verdiales Music Festival on December 28. A stroll down the Calle Larios, with its sparkling lights and decorations, will quickly put you in the holiday spirit.

Calle Larios, Malaga, Spain | Juana Mari Moya | Getty Images

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Tokyo, Japan

Neighborhoods throughout Tokyo compete for the most impressive lighting displays creating wonderlands of twinkling lights and decorations that are truly magical. Midtown is known to display more than 100,000 lights with a massive chandelier at Yebisu Garden Place. A trip to the Blue Cavern (“Ao no Dokutsu”) illumination in Shibuya is a must-see, with light displays creating a vision from another world.  

Shibuya Blue Cave, Tokyo, Japan | CHENG FENG CHIANG | Getty Images

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

If you are looking to escape the winter chill and head someplace more tropical for the holiday, Rio de Janeiro hosts the world’s largest display of full-sized nativity scenes during its annual Festival de Presépios (“Crib Festival”). You can also enjoy a bike ride around the Rodrigo Freitas Lagoon to view the world’s largest floating Christmas tree.

Lagoa Christmas Tree, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil | Leonardo Martins | Getty Images
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