Find the Best Places to Stay During the Holiday Season
Edited by estrella sacragon, Olivia, Lynn, Eng and 3 others
Planning to travel this holiday season? Don't rush, there's something you should know first!
Even if the holiday season is also the season for splurging, it would not hurt to ensure that you get your money's worth. One of the most critical aspects of having a holiday vacation is the accommodation. A well-chosen hotel can make or break your entire vacation. Though budget should not be overlooked, choosing a hotel to spend your holiday vacation in is about more than just the rates. There are other criteria that should also be taken into consideration. Here is a rundown of do's and don'ts that you should bear in mind. These guidelines and snippets of advice could guide you in picking up the perfect accommodation to complete your perfect holiday trip experience.
- 1 How to Find the Best Places to Stay during the Holiday Season
- 2 Best Tourist Spots in the World
- 3 Why You Should Not Stay at Home During the Holidays
- 4 Best Places to Visit this Holiday Season
- 5 Best Places to Find Solitude
- 6 Best Places to Visit for a Group of Friends
- 7 Best Places to Visit for Families
- 8 Best Places to Visit for Honeymooners
- 9 Comments
How to Find the Best Places to Stay during the Holiday Season
- 1Book as early as possible. It's not about getting too excited, but you have to admit that the holiday season is a peak time for many travel destinations. If you wait until the last minute, other guests might be able to snatch the best deals at the best hotels. At the same time, early bookings will also often qualify you for discounts and special promos. These special privileges have a limited validity period, so do not be complacent and do not procrastinate.Advertisement
- 3Look for independent hotels. Chain hotels may be popular because of their names, but the reputation does not guarantee excellent service. Usually, independent hotels who cannot bank on their name or brand take extra effort to provide their guests with a memorable and meaningful stay. They even go out of their way to offer extra perks, such as complimentary welcome drinks, cocktails, and appetizers.
- 4Read reviews. This is particularly important if it is your first time to set foot in that destination or to stay in a particular hotel. Getting to know the feedback of other guests who have already stayed in the hotel will help you make the right decision. However, do not base your decision on a single review only. Fortunately, the web has made it easier for people all over the world to share their thoughts and opinions. Travel websites also encourage travelers to post their reviews and rate the hotels they have stayed in.
- 5Check for hidden charges. Some hotels can be quite tricky in the rates they publish. You would be surprised at the low rate, but you will even be more surprised that the rate is still exclusive of a lot of things such as certain toiletries, breakfast and WiFi connection. Make sure you add up all the charges before you compare your options.
- 6Check the hotel's amenities. Some hotels may have higher rates but already come with several amenities such as WiFi connection, usage of fitness center and airport transfer. To better appreciate what a particular hotel could offer, it would be best to place a monetary value on all the services and amenities already included in your rate. These will help you assess if you are truly getting more than what you paid for.
Best Tourist Spots in the World
Have you ever heard of the Lotte World or Everland? Seldom do Americans plan trips to these top South Korean theme parks. Yet, these parks rank some of the world's fifty most-visited tourist spots beating out the Taj Mahal in India, the Great Pyramids of Egypt, or the Stonehenge in England. Where you wish to spend your vacation time will greatly tell about what you value.
Whether you like it or not, tourist attractions these days are no longer the traditional historical and cultural sites, natural landmarks, or officially designated places. However, tourist attractions now include short walkways, waterfront promenades, and even malls. New attractions like the 'Wizarding World of Harry Potter' have gained much popularity at the Universal Studios' Islands of Adventure Park in Orlando.
So here is a list of the some of the world's 'best' tourist destinations.
- 1Times Square, New York City. Tourists from all over the world visit New York's heart of flashing lights, megastores, Broadway shows, and sheer spectacle. In 2009, the city introduced the pedestrian-lane only area, complete with café tables, thus making the please and even more appealing for tourists. Times Square is a convenient (but sometimes chaotic) base because of its line of hotels at every possible price point and very easy access to public transportation like rails, subways, buses, and more yellow taxis than you can even count.Advertisement
- 2Central Park, New York City. Despite its being a massive metropolis, you can still find large green spaces in New York, but none is more famous than the Central Park that stretches across almost 900 acres of prime real estate in Manhattan. Central Park has been a haven for both locals and tourists. Visitors can ride in their infamous horse-drawn carriages, or check out and enjoy the modestly-sized zoo, or even climb to the very top of the 19th central Belvedere Castle. Or better yet, you can pound the pavement to so you can sprawl on the Great Lawn, as you loving gaze at the skyscrapers above.
- 3Disney World's Magic Kingdom, Orlando. Considered as the Most Magical Place on Earth, Disney World is famous on virtually every vacationer's to-do-list. This theme park has remained the most-visited park on earth. A notable feature of this magical kingdom is Cinderella's castle, built at different angles to make it appear grander than its real height of 189 feet.
- 4Grand Bazaar, Istanbul. Here, you can find lanterns, hand-painted ceramics, copperware, intricately-patterned carpets, or the gold Byzantine-style jewelry. Their 15th-century bazaar's walkway has become increasingly famous, drawing in both tourists and locals. If everything gets so overwhelming, take a break and enjoy a strong cup of Turkish coffee or some succulent doner kebabs.
There really are hundreds and even thousands of beautiful tourist destinations perfect not only for the holidays but all throughout the year.
Why You Should Not Stay at Home During the Holidays
The holiday day season is traditionally spent with your family in the comfort of your home. And while it's good to come home during the holidays and celebrate the Yuletide season with the rest of the family, there will really come a point when you feel like getting out of tradition and just enjoy your time traveling. After all, nobody really said that you have to stay home for the holidays, right? So here some top reasons why you start spending your holidays traveling, away from home.
- 1The Best Travel Deals. You might think that the holiday season is a very expensive season, right? While this season is considered one of the most pricey times to travel (because of those additional fees), the holidays are also a perfect time for you to get great deals in various tourist destinations. Especially when you try to do some comparison on the cost of flying home to visit your family and the price for flying out to international destinations, the latter is incredibly downright cheap. To get the best travel deals, try checking out last minute flights both on and around the Christmas season. You might get surprised at what you may find. And try not to be afraid to fly on Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve since this is also a time where you can find great airfare deals since only a few people travel at these exact times.
The holiday season, of course, is a time spent with your family. But somehow, getting out of tradition and exploring other options is a good practice.
Best Places to Visit this Holiday Season
There are some cities all over the world that shine brightly like no others during the holiday season. Some glitter with millions of bright and blinking lights, while some celebrate the holidays in interesting ways all their own. If you have plans to travel on your Christmas break, below are some of the best places you can visit this holiday season.
- 1Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. (Popularly known as Christmas City, USA), Bethlehem was founded on the Christmas eve of 1741. In this holiday destination, you can find an electric Moravian star that brightly shines over the place's downtown area, as well as the Lehigh University campus. These two areas brilliantly radiate with the holiday spirit, especially when blanketed in thick snow. One famous draw to Bethlehem during the holidays is the German-style Christkindlmarkt. Here you can see more than a hundred artisans that peddle their handicrafts, as well as Christmas decorations and food. Usually, the market is set up every Thursday until Sunday and starts a day after Thanksgiving and runs until Christmas on the Spring and Main Streets.
- 2Santa Cruz, California. Snow may not be present in the west coast but that does not necessarily mean that California is devoid of holiday cheers. The long stretch of palm trees along its main avenue and its amazing boardwalk on the funky seaside town of Santa Cruz are adorned with glittering holiday displays. During weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas, Santa Claus arrives via train to the Santa Cruz boardwalk. Christmas tourists may hop on an old locomotive that is run by Roaring Camp Railroads that roll along the beach.
- 3Washington, DC. The walkway that leads up to the National Christmas Tree at the White House and the Pathway of Peace is vividly illuminated every day starting from dusk until 11 in the evening. This has been a tradition practiced since 1923, you can find a huge tall blue spruce and 56 smaller trees that significantly represent the holiday spirit of all the fifty states, five territories and District of Columbia. The trees are planted in the Ellipse, a vast grassy area at the southern part of the White House.
- 4San Antonio, Texas. The Lone Star brilliantly shines especially during the holiday season, most specifically along the San Antonio River Walk. Tourists can enjoy the more than 122,000 Christmas lights that form a twinkling canopy right over the riverside path. More than a hundred thousand people come together here yearly for a one-hour parade along the walk. All throughout the season, schools, church, and civic choral groups joyfully ring in the season with Christmas carols as they cruise down the river walk.
- 5Wheeling, West Virginia. One interesting town that seriously takes the holiday season is Wheeling. The place is set in the hills right above the Woodsdale area and is considered as the main attraction of Wheeling. Tourists can also find here Oglebay's Winter Festival of Lights, a six-mile drive beautifully decked out in one of the biggest Christmas lights display in the country.
Why confine yourself at the comfort of your homes during the holidays? Go out and explore all these top holiday season destinations.
Best Places to Find Solitude
We live in a world where magazines, movies, shows and television programs tell us that being alone is bad. We are told that we need to have a partner to be somewhat contented with life-that we constantly need the right people to go with us anywhere. Because if you are alone; traveling somewhere, eating at a diner, apparently you are a loser.
But you should learn that being alone is not something to be feared. Being alone means you have the chance to discover and love yourself even more, you continue to grow as a person and just be happy without relying on others. When we are alone, we tend to evaluate ourselves what it is that we really want in life. We somehow try to look for inner peace. And while this can be quite a challenge, the world will somehow guide you and eventually lead you to your happy circumstances. Finding the best places for solitude is the key.
Below are some of the most amazing places to go if you wish to find your inner you.
- 1Pai, Thailand. From Chiang Mai, take a five-hour bus ride to get to Pia, a small but hippie town in the mountains of Northern Island. Here, you will find hippie pants, dreads, artists, musicians, Thai Jack Sparrows, or people with peace signs in their heart. There is something interesting in this small town that will encourage you into becoming a free spirit. Find freedom by riding a scooter or a motorbike that will take you to the most beautiful and serene places you will ever see.
- 2Palawan, Philippines. Get lost in the islands of this amazing paradise of peace and solitude. Whether you are in Coron or El Nido, Palawan will always be a perfect spot if you are trying to find peace. The islands are beautiful and so relaxing. Swim inside caves or swim through lagoons and live that childhood dream of yours of becoming a beautiful mermaid. Jump into the ocean or kayak across the sea for a truly gratifying experience. Eat as much slimy seaweed as you can, climb the trees, lay out in the sand, or enjoy one of the world's clearest lakes, the Kayangan Lake. Find your soul connection in the magic that vibrates all around you when you are on this island.
- 3La Fortuna, Costa Rica. Costa Rica is one of the most amazing places in the world for solo travels. From San Jose, take a bus that will take you to the town of La Fortuna where you can find the Arenal Volcano. Experience zip lining across its vast rainforest, or hover over trees and waterfalls with sloths and monkeys. Conquer your fear and yell as loud as you can. Take jungle hikes around the forest, and experience being in the wild with jaguars and snakes that freely roam around. Float the hot springs or jump in the waterfalls, or walk around town and just do nothing but relax and laugh.
Best Places to Visit for a Group of Friends
Traveling is always fun. But everything is even more fulfilling especially when you travel with your friends. Group traveling is one perfect way to spend the holidays. While some people prefer to travel alone because they get the chance to do everything by themselves, there are those who love to go out in groups especially because the budget is very important. For those who are looking for the perfect destination and have the fun of their lives with their group of friends, here are some of the best places to consider for group travels.
- 2India. If you are trying to find a place where you can have the best time with your friends, then India is a perfect choice. The great thing about group travels in India is that you don't get to shell out huge chunks of your savings since everything in this country is very affordable; from food to travel and to accommodations. India has a lot of different cultural customs. Be amazed by each city's different culture, traditions and way of living.
- 3Brazil. Now, who doesn't love to visit Brazil? Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's most attractive places can easily draw out a huge crowd, thus making this a perfect weekend getaway with your group of friends. Rio de Janeiro is blessed with amazing and natural beauties. Go nature-tripping with your group at the Serra National Park. For the more adventurous ones, the Amazon jungle is the perfect spot. Here, you can experience the thrill of being in the forest while you enjoy the beautiful looks of nature.
- 4Greece. When you are planning to have your next summer vacation with your friends, Greece must be on top of your list. Greece is considered as one of the perfect destinations for travel. With its sumptuous delicacies, ancient ruins, royalty, and charm, tourist can easily get lured by this wonderful country.
- 5Portugal. If you and your friends want to have the experience of Mediterranean flavor but you have a very limited budget to go to Italy or Spain, then Portugal is just the right place for you. Every travel experience in Portugal is cheap, especially in Lisbon. Try also visiting Algarve for the most pristine beaches and spectacular scenes.
Whether it is a summer destination or a tour for the holiday season, nothing is as fun as going out for some great travel with good friends. Make your plans now for a wonderful time with your group.
Best Places to Visit for Families
Are you looking for the quickest way to create priceless and once-in-a-lifetime vacation memories? Go out somewhere where you can do lots of things. Enjoy the coolest museums, take advantage of the massive parks, or learn new things at historical treasures. Vacationing is fun. But what makes it more fun and memorable is when you tag along with your whole family for that one perfect weekend getaway. If you are overwhelmed with the hundreds of interesting places to visit, here are some of the best places to visit for families.
- 1San Diego. San Diego has a very wonderful weather with tons of family attractions. You can find here the Balboa Part, the best place to kick off your weekend trip with your family. Families can also explore the park's gardens and museums. The San Diego Zoo is interesting as well with its koalas and pandas. Must-see attractions also include the animatronic dinosaurs at the The NAT San Diego Natural History Museum, the hands-on science exhibits found at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, the Aviation hangar for kids found at the San Diego Air and Space Museum, and the long stretch of tall palm trees along the Palm Canyon Trail.
- 2Portland, Oregon. If you want a city vacation, sans the daily bustle and hustle, Portland is the best option. The public transportation of this city is low-cost and extensive, thus making it practical for you and your family to get to key attractions easily without having to rent a car. Enjoy your morning at the Oregon Zoo where you can find a flock of pink flamingos, some baby Asian elephants, and newborn river otters. You can also check out the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and enjoy their submarine tours, planetarium and night show, mummy exhibits, and live lab demos.
- 3Washington, DC. Washington DC is renowned for their family-friendly attractions that are generally free for all. Meaning, there is really no pressure to stay at the place all day just to get your money's worth. Must see destinations include the National Air and Space Museums, the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History at the National Mall. You should not also miss the National Museum of American History where kids can see the ruby slippers of Dorothy or try on the robe of Harry Potter. As you take some breaks, you may enjoy flying a kite or riding a carousel at the mall.
- 4Chicago. Here, you can find Sue, the largest and best-preserved T-Rex on the planet and is considered the star of the Field Museum. Your kids can enjoy the interactive features like iPad games in the Creature of Light exhibit, along with their amazing glow-worm caves. They also have the Shedd Aquarium's aquatic show that features dolphins, sea otters, and whales.
- 5San Francisco. As they say, everybody is a kid in San Francisco. One of the coolest places that your family should visit is the Exploratorium. Another place to visit is the Pier 15 that magically transforms into a science center. Everything is practically meant to be tinkered here: from teddy bears for dissection to a fog machine, to high-end microscopes.
These are just some of the most interesting places you can visit with your family for that perfect weekend getaway.
Best Places to Visit for Honeymooners
After your big day, wouldn't it be nice to kick back, relax, unwind, and create a wonderful honeymoon memory with your new spouse?
Imagine how you spent months of planning and going over the preparations for your wedding. You dealt with demanding bridesmaids, in laws and outlaws, the parents, and you practically slaved over your table seating, worrying about strict timelines and so obsessed of every wedding detail, with all the hopes to make your big day a perfect day.
Whether your honeymoon is just three days or three weeks, this time together with your new spouse is very much needed. Honeymooners have practically lots of interesting options for their honeymoon: from adventurous and exotic locations to a more relaxing beach vacation, a romantic ski trip or a non-stop safari, your honeymoon trip must be based on both your joint personality. So here are some of the best places to visit for newlyweds and honeymooners.
- 1Mexico. There is nothing more tantalizing and inviting than having your own private Jacuzzi with a spectacular ocean view, accompanied by flowers and massage oils, then followed by a romantic candlelight dinner. If this is something that interests you, head to Mexico now. In this interesting place, you can find all the most romantic places that give you utmost privacy. Its beautiful natural settings, exquisite cuisine, and top-notch tourist services make it a top choice for honeymooners from all over the world.
- 2Italy. If you want a honeymoon full of old world romance and charm, head on to Italy where you are guaranteed to get lost in old classic churches, cobblestone streets, bistros out of paintings, and fall in love with your new spouse all over again. Whatever part of Italy you wish to explore, you will always find yourself enjoying scrumptious meals, moonlight walks, and experiencing great wine, amazing museums, and interesting art.
- 3Fiji. Imagine you and your new life partner stepping into a lush Eden, surrounded by clear and iridescent waters. Enter a lavish honeymoon bungalow with amazing views, complete with your own private beach. These are things possible in Fiji. As you arrive in Fiji, you will be easily convinced that indeed you have entered in Paradise. For the best experience in windsurfing, diving, and love, the Fiji Islands Resort Spa is the perfect honeymoon destination. You can also enjoy an excursion to Beqa Lagoon with a spectacular view of the crater of this extinct volcano.
- 4Greece. If you prefer lots of hot sun, diverse landscapes, lots of history, and warm seas, Greece could be the best choice for you. This amazing country has a huge amount of culture, fun and great places to offer tourists and vacationers. When in Greece, you can enjoy Mykonos and Santorini islands popular for their impeccable views and unique character. These islands are usually the first choice for most couples and newcomers that travel in Greece.