I’ve been dreaming of a White Christmas: 10 cities to go to for a White Christmas

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Have you been dreaming of a white Christmas? I know I have. While images of Father Christmas knee-deep in snow, snowmen rugged up in fleecy neckwear and imagery of a certain reindeer with a bright coloured nose continue to don our holiday season giftcards, a very small percentage of us have actually experienced a true White Christmas. Here’s where you can almost guarantee your dream Christmas can take place in the top 10 cities to go to for a White Christmas…

This post was written in celebration of the Contiki Legends concept – happy holidays!

winter oslo


Oslo, Norway

 With ski resorts just a few hours away by train, Oslo is the perfect Norwegian city to fly into for a White Christmas getaway. Just be sure to play it cool and stay under the radar, as the snow doesn’t both the Norwegians one bit – it’s all part of winter in the Scandis!

Salzburg, Austria

The Austrian Alps aren’t as famous as the French or Swiss, but they’re certainly not falling far behind with some very reputable slopes and at a discounted price in comparison to its’ neighbours. Salzburg is the picturesque, magical, fairytale-like town to base yourself for a perfect Christmas Eve by the fire sipping hot cocoa. So quaint and charming, in fact, that you’ll have to be dragged by your heels when leaving.

Read more: How Salzburg Stole my Heart

Montreal, Canada

When it comes to guaranteeing a White Christmas – Montreal is about as close as you can get. The city is well-prepared for the snow season and they are certainly no stranger to thick layers of frosty white flakes in the festive season.

Helsinki, Finland

Just across the way and also in Scandinavia, one will find Finland’s capital, Helsinki. Helsinki is an eclectic cosmopolitan mix of architecture and design, and the perfect choice for a winter getaway. If snow is not anticipated over Christmas, hop on a regional flight elsewhere in Finland for some guaranteed Christmas magic – like in Lapland!

Read more: Exploring Finland

St Petersburg, Russia

Should you dare brave the Russian winter, St Petersburg is the obvious choice for Christmas spirit, charm, and a history unlike any other. Be sure to visit the Winter Palace, indulge in Russian vodka to warm up, and be aware that the Russian Orthodox Christmas is in fact on the 7th of January – don’t be afraid to stay a while and double up on Christmas’ for one year!

Tallinn, Estonia

Estonia’s capital is a charming little place that has somehow managed to fly under the radar for many years. Whether you stay a while or visit for a short day trip from Helsinki, be sure to wander without intent or purpose through the cobblestone alleyways and don’t forget to try the chocolate shops!

Read more: A Day Trip to Tallinn

Chicago, Illinois

 Chicago currently has a 50% chance of snow for Christmas – not a bad success rate! This is one of the most magical towns to find yourself at Christmas – just be sure to keep your fingers and toes crossed for a magical white Christmas!!

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is like stepping into a time-warp with multiple functions. You have a very distinct mix of architecture and influence in Prague, the city that Hitler himself spared because it was just too beautiful to destroy. Well it is obvious he was wrong about more than one thing – because Prague has become one of Europe’s most popular attractions! The chance of snow on Christmas day is slight, but there’s still a chance nonetheless! 

Aspen, Colorado

 Aspen is the crowning jewel of the Rockies. Here you can rest assured you will find snow, and plenty of it. But it’s the Christmas spirit and old world charm that repeat guests return to Aspen to year after year in search of that true fairytale Christmas experience. 

Read more: The Ski Week in Aspen, Colorado

St. Moritz, Switzerland

Renowned for being the ‘playground of the rich and famous’ over the festive season, St Moritz is a picture perfect postcard if ever there were one. The prices close to double over the winter period, so don’t expect to leave town without empty pockets! This lavish town hiding away in the south-east of Switzerland will take your breath away – a truly magic spot to spend Christmas!

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    Candy Nguyen
    December 31, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    Beautiful pictures

    Bente Lilja Bye
    December 21, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    You got the Scandis all right! 🙂 The white stuff is no big deal up in the Nordic or Scandinavian countries. This year looks grim for Oslo though, with respect to a white Christmas. But the mountains around us have the right stuff! All white! 🙂

    Vanessa Miller
    November 11, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    Are you american?

    Travel to Indochina
    November 1, 2015 at 12:58 am

    Look great and beautiful pictures

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:45 pm

      YES ! For a person that photo shops all of the site picture, has horrible syntax and has the writing style of Mary Sunshine.
      When will you Americans realize that travel is not about the exclusive resort or fake cheering at the Munich beer halls?
      Some Europeans would like to have a deep conversation about history, European – American relations ect…
      THEY ALSO love the baudy joke once and a while!
      But the PC police that has Americans by the balls has stifled this free will . As an American, ALL of my European friends here in Europe are shocked how freedom of speech amongst the people from the USA is
      a thing of the past.
      Good luck with you stupid 10 day trip to Europe. You will never “break through ” to understanding a people unless you understand the sweat, blood and tears their history ,both public and private.

    October 12, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    I just wish there’s snow at our place. It is so beautiful to see how kids did enjoy snow on Christmas.

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:20 pm

      Get a life , loser.

  • How To Find Free Accommodation – World-wide | Mature Traveller Discount
    July 18, 2015 at 11:20 pm

    […] despair, there are always the shoulder seasons or local exchanges. Or how would you feel about a white Christmas, or a skiing holiday in the […]

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:21 pm

      Absolutely no concept of travel.

  • weekend digestions 10.19.14 | rising #girlboss
    June 1, 2015 at 10:49 am

    […] in Munich, Germany. AKA the MECAA OF BEER. I CAN’T. ALL THE BEER, ALL THE GLORY. These 10 cities to go to for a White Christmas – from Aspen, CO to Prague, Czech Republic. Cue Bing Crosby’s hauntingly beautiful […]

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:26 pm

      MECCA !

    Kim anderson
    December 30, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    Hi there, we r planning a family holiday to the USA and was wondering what Colorado was like at Xmas. Did you get a white Xmas and is it pretty with lights etc at Xmas? Cheers.

    Amy Parker
    December 12, 2014 at 5:43 am

    Wonderful choices. I’ve been to most on the list and I have to agree with you.

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:27 pm

      Brag a little? We are not that interested.

    November 29, 2014 at 3:35 am

    I would also add Edmonton, Alberta to the list! Such a gorgeous city and it is such a great winter city. Wonderful post!

    November 21, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    I have always wanted to experience a white Christmas and to go to Canada but unfortunately I cannot travel. So, I am now an arm chair traveler and watch travel shows of countries and white Christmases. The photos of the white Christmases all look inviting so all I can do is dream.

      Papria Magnus
      November 6, 2015 at 8:29 pm

      BOO HOO . Excuse me while I shed some tears.

    November 7, 2014 at 10:50 am

    Will be hitting up some of these destinations on my backpacking trip this December! After seeing your photos from Prague I cannot wait until I touch down!

    October 19, 2014 at 6:33 am

    I’m from Norway and I’ve heard that people love it here (and that’s good!) I would love to visit other places and experience winter there and see if there are any differences. Glad you liked it here! 🙂

    Betty J. Ogburn
    October 16, 2014 at 9:00 am

    …I don’t know what it is about snow, but it definitely lends a certain sense of magic to a place!!…

    October 15, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    White Christmas for me will always be Germany. The Christmas Markets in Nürnberg, with hot Glühwein (mulled wine) nutella crepes and döners or currywurst. They’re so beautiful. Also Rothenburg ob der Tauber… AMAZING! It is a Christmas city! Brooke it would be amazing if world of wanderlust did a tour of the ‘romantic road’ through southern Germany. Pleeeeeeaaaase Google it guys, it’s amazing!

    Kelly @ Endlessly Exploring
    October 15, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Ahhh I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to have a White Christmas one year! I don’t think the hail storm we had one year in the middle of summer in Australia really counts 😛 These pictures are beautiful – maybe I’ll be able to get to one of these places for next Christmas 😉 x

    Ashleigh greaves
    October 14, 2014 at 10:19 pm

    Didn’t think you would drop it (thought they’d be all European listings) but SO HAPPY to see you put Colorado on the list. While I’m always going to be a Vail girl at heart, Aspen is certainly a larger version of the identical “European beauty” in the Rockies and is honestly the closest thing the US has to a fairytale winter wonderland the way they light up the villages. I have literally the most epic photographs from last season 🙂

    October 14, 2014 at 4:23 am

    I would love to go to Prague in the winter for the cute Christmas markets covered in snow!

    Characters & Carry-ons

    October 14, 2014 at 1:18 am

    And Vilnius, Lithuania! Most of the years we have really snowy, white and beautiful Christmases. And since there’s a lot of nature around, it’s very very beautiful at that time of the year 🙂

    Amber Primdahl
    October 14, 2014 at 12:58 am

    Toronto is also a beautiful place for christmas! There is a European Christmas market in the Distillery District in December which is also very beautiful 🙂 But I would love to spend Christmas in Finland, it looks very cozy from the above image!

    October 13, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    I’m from New Zealand but have managed to experience a few white Christmases! These are great recommendations and my favourites would be Bruges in Belgium, its a fairytale city! Edinburgh in Scotland, and you have to stay for Hogmany (New Years) too! And as an alternative to Aspen in Colorado, I recommend trying Breckenridge, it’s a bit easier on your pocket and it looks like you’ve stepped into a Christmas card!

    October 13, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    I was in Prague around Christmas a few years ago, and I’ve never been so cold! Would definitely rather go when I don’t freeze walking around the city.

    – Ava
    beck daily

    October 13, 2014 at 6:40 am

    It was super cool finding my country – Estonia – from this list. Can’t wait for christmas anymore!

    Pam | a Blonde around the World
    October 13, 2014 at 6:18 am

    They say this is going to be a cold cold winter.
    And I definitely feel like snow this year!
    Thanks for such a good inspiration and tips!! I’ll let you know which ones I choose 🙂

    October 13, 2014 at 4:51 am

    Helsinki might be nice for Christmas – but the actual Christmas city in Finland is Turku, the old capital of Finland. It has got this tradition of declaring peace for Christmas dating back for centuries and nice Christmas markets during weekends before Christmas. Check !

    October 13, 2014 at 1:42 am

    If you want to go to Finland during Christmas, I definitely recommend going to Roveniemi-Lapland and visit village of Santa Claus 😀

    October 13, 2014 at 1:09 am

    I think Christmas in New York is also pretty magical, so many Christmas movies set in New York <3 <3
    I'd loooove to go to Austria for Christmas time, they have such yummy pastries 🙂 🙂 This year I'm off to the States and Central America for Christmas but I'm definitely making a stop in Switzerland and Nuremberg in Germany before I go. Christmas markets there are the best.
    (Finland is a Nordic country, but not a Scandinavian one, btw)

    October 13, 2014 at 12:01 am

    A planning a Christmas trip right now! Great post. I’m actually thinking of Budapest.

    Lili Nova
    October 12, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    Great photos! Montreal is my favorite.
    Model / travelblogger

    Marcello Marchioli
    October 12, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    Great list Brooke, I’ve seen white christmas in so many American movies but I think i’d love to experience it in Prague the most, followed by St Petersburg.

    October 12, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    All beautiful cities! But I have to say my hometown of Chamonix Mont-Blanc in the French Alps is also incredible, surrounded by huuuuge mountains! Check out the post i wrote on it!

    October 12, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    I had my first white Christmas in 2011 and it is truly magical! And after celebrating the past 3 Christmas’ in Canada, it’s going to be weird being back in Australia now and celebrating while the sun is shining.

    Luc @ Skeeter and Scout
    October 12, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Salzburg and Prague 100%. I am hoping to drag my family over to Europe for Xmas next year, so fingers crossed we get to one of them! I love love Europe in Winter 🙂

    L x

    October 12, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    headed to Colorado for the first time this season and I can’t wait! glad to see it here on your list 🙂


    Lee @ Modern Granola
    October 12, 2014 at 7:13 am

    We’re talking about Christmas already?! Crazy how time flies. These are gorgeous pics. They make me super excited about the holidays coming up!

    October 12, 2014 at 7:08 am

    Happy to see Norway is on the list! It’s no Christmas like Norwegian Christmas (okay, maybe I can’t say I have ever been anywhere else at that time of year, but anyways). Sadly I live in the south by the coast, only a couple of hours from Oslo, and we are lucky if the snow comes to Christmas. Usely it’s first snowing properly in January. I would much rather go to more inland areas like Lillehammer, Trysil, Hemsedal or Valdres if I were to experience a true white Christmas for the first – and maybe for the only – time here in Norway 🙂

    Charlotte Sophia Roberts
    October 12, 2014 at 3:30 am

    I have been to Salzburg and loved it! I went in the middle of summer so I would love to back in the winter! 🙂

    October 12, 2014 at 1:00 am

    Ahh, so many places, so little time. We’re off to Vienna this Christmas, and I could not be more excited! I’m (unrealistically) hoping for fresh snow on the ground every day.

    October 11, 2014 at 11:52 pm

    I am from Prague and strictly disagree with Hitler!:D It is really beautiful historical city, but last winter there were no snow at all:( but I can highly recommend the advent markets.They are one of the most beuatiful markets in the region.I like it here more thn in Vienna or Dresden.

    October 11, 2014 at 11:27 pm

    glad to see salzburg in this list as well, as i’m austrian myself and really like the city 🙂

    Upside Down Kingdom

    October 11, 2014 at 11:18 pm

    Wohoo! My city is here as well. That’s awesome.

    October 11, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    I really hope we’re gonna have a White Christmas over here in London. It’s been ages since I’ve actually seen snow during the holidays!

    October 11, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    I really hope we’ll finally have a white Christmas over here in London again. It’s been ages since I’ve actually seen snow during the holidays…

    October 11, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    Yayy, my city is on here! I’ve just moved to Oslo, and I can’t WAIT for Christmas! 😀

    October 11, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    Now that it’s getting cold I’m thinking about Winter as well and Christmas Markets. What’s your favourite?

    Christie of The Butterfly Editions
    October 11, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    Being from New Zealand, a white Christmas is all but a dream! I’m lucky to have had a couple, one in Japan and another in Spain (well, it kind of snowed!), but each of the places you have mentioned would be truly magical. Christmas this year is going to be in Thailand, so my next white Christmas certainly won’t be this year!

    October 11, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    I think I’d go back to Salzburg, Austria – I loved it there! And as you say, it’s much cheaper than other places.

    Traveling Cats
    October 11, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    Very inspiring. Salzburg is my favorite.

    October 11, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Oh…! The thought of Christmas coming up in my mind makes me so happy. I love this time of the year! All these cities look gorgeous to spend Xmas. I specially love Chicago, it’s beautiful, and any northern city like Helsinki or Oslo will always be so magical. Although if you are not there, you can always be happy with your beloved ones.
    With love,