Winter does not have to be a dark and dismal time of year; instead, it can be a spectacular, atmospheric season if we know how to make the most of it. A winter retreat can be a great opportunity to feel cosy, festive and in great spirits. Whatever your needs and budget, there is a winter retreat to suit you. Let’s take a look at eight of the best:
Best For Couples – Riga, Latvia
With its labyrinthine cobbled streets, a medieval Old Town and spires that stretch up into crystal clear skies, the romance of Riga is unrivalled. With numerous cosy and luxurious hotels from which to choose and breathtaking museums and architecture, it is a winter wonderland to remember.
Best For Families – The Lake District, England
A wintery walk with a hot flask of tea can be a great way to get exercise as a family, with many family-friendly pubs and eateries un which to warm up afterwards. Expansive views across lakes and mountains are especially beautiful during the winter and the area has a range of lodges, cottages and cabins in which to get cosy.
Best For New Year – Edinburgh, Scotland
Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations at New Year are world famous, and with good reason. With some of Europe’s most impressive architecture – including Edinburgh castle – and a fireworks display that can be seen for miles, this is the perfect place to ring in the New Year with loved ones. Be sure to factor in time for a whisky-tasting tour for a very merry experience.
Best For The Retired – The Cotswolds, England
The Cotswolds is well known for its peace, quiet and quintessential English charm. It offers a wide variety of hotels and B&Bs, many of which are Victorian in style with cosy, elegant touches such as reclaimed wood, vintage china crockery and large luxurious bath tubs. It is the perfect setting in which to enjoy good food, fine wine and great company in the winter.
Best for a city break – London, England
London has an array of exciting activities and exhibitions across the winter period. Some are specific to Christmas, making it the perfect destination for a winter city break retreat. Afternoon tea is the perfect, elegant way to warm up after a day browsing the displays of Harrods, Selfridges and the Queen’s favourite, Fortnum & Mason. Be sure to visit one of the many galleries or the impressive British Museum to retreat from the cold temperatures and enrich your experience.
Best For Photographers – Reykjavik, Iceland
The capital of Iceland boasts some of Europe’s most breathtaking views. The light, architecture and character of the city make it the perfect location for stunning photography. Get inspired by the museums and Viking history, and later unwind in the unique geothermal outdoor Blue Lagoon spa. The silver sea, crystal skies and icy temperatures give Reykjavik a picture-book Christmas card charm and impact, perfect for photographs that you will treasure for years.
Best For Nature Lovers – Northumberland, England
The rolling hills and lush greenery of Northumberland make it a paradise for British wildlife. Even in the frost or the crisp white snow, you can still see a dazzling array of birds and even the elusive red squirrel. For winter picnics, country walks, craft beers and hearty food, Northumberland is a wonderful destination that is a perfect choice for those seeking to make the most of the season.
Best for Christmas – Lapland, Finland
Finnish Lapland is the northernmost region of the nation and is said to be the origin of Santa Claus himself. This is a favourite spot for those who love the festive season and will enjoy sleigh rides, Santa’s grotto, warm log cabins and stunning Arctic views. This is also a hotspot to see the northern lights and will make magical memories to last a lifetime.