11 Magical Winter Cities

by Jillian Finley

From snow-sprinkled hamlets to thriving metropolises, winter travel conjurs up every shade of wanderlust-worthy paradises. These scenic destinations are world-renowned for their incredible sites and enchanting, oft snow-covered landscapes. If in search of the perfect getaway this season, consider garnering a stamp in your passport from this list of swoon-worthy cities.  

London, England — There’s no denying the magic of London in white. The always-bustling metropolis delivers incredible theater, fantastic shopping, and rich history. A plethora of countryside day trip options are readily available, from a jaunt to Shakespeare’s own Stratford Upon Avon to tours of Windsor Castle.

Megève, France_  The ultimate in chic, this ski village near the Mont-Blanc in the French Alps is where Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant holiday in the opening of Charade. Boasting some of the world's most premiere ski resorts, it was the favored destination of the French aristocracy. Expect fabulous people-watching in a lavish, stylish setting.

Milan, Italy — Milan’s proximity to beautiful mountains and abundance of gorgeous cathedrals makes it an enchanting place for colder months. Stylish and refined, Italy’s second largest city is a perennial favorite for fashion aficionados.

New York City — The city that never sleeps has cornered the market on year-round cool. Winter in New York doles out fantastical sites, from ice-skating in Central Park to the whimsically, tricked-out windows of Bergdorf Goodman.  An endless spring of new restaurants, hip bar scenes, and hidden gems reveals new adventures to be had every season.

Paris, France – Arguably the best city in the world to step out in ultra-chic winter accessories, the City of Light is the perfect spot to break out your most fabulous hats, scarves and muffs and paint the town red. Dazzling and romantic, its rarified air is buzzing with enchantment all winter long.

Praque, Czech Republic – With its storybook architecture and offering of strolls along the exquisite Charles Bridge, Prague is picture-perfect. Decadent and utterly cozy pub food in the way of potato pancakes, beer, and kraut make it a foodie paradise during winter months.

Québec City – Old Québec city is a veritable winter wonderland, home to the UNSECO world-heritage site, Hotel de Glace Ice Hotel, and the breathtaking Montmorency Falls. Around 100 inches of snow per year fall upon the city’s charming cobblestone streets. The atmosphere is chock full of French culture, haute cuisine, and ultra-pedestrian friendly ambience.

Reykjavik, Iceland — Thermal springs and northern lights make this idyllic destination a must for winter travelers. Every New Year's Eve the town sets off a massively, unrivaled fireworks spectacular, setting the whole countryside aglow in one of the largest firework displays in the world.

Salzburg, Austria — Baroque architecture smothered in blankets of crisp, white snow and breathtaking Alpine surroundings grant Salzburg a place among the world’s most beautiful winter landscapes. Get lost in the home of Mozart enjoying the city’s rapturous anthology of art museums and cultural sites.  

Tulum, Mexico — Situated on the Mayan Rivera, this relaxing beach city offers cocktails and Caribbean breezes alongside world-class spas and unreal views. A favorite among the New York fashion set, the warm climate and quaint yet chic vibe, untouched by the likes of franchises, is a seasonal draw for celebrities and tastemakers.

Verbier, Switzerland – The idyllic ski resort village nestled in the French Alps is one of the most picturesque winter destinations in the world. Some of its areas are snow-covered year-round, making it a powdery haven filled with premiere mogul and backcountry skiing runs.

What is your favorite wintertime destination? Tell us in the comments below. 

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