Alternate Christmas and New Year Holiday ideas

Posted 24-09-2018

Images of trees laden with snow, pretty houses covered in a glistening white blanket sparkling with Christmas lights, rosy cheeked carol singers walking down icy streets in their hats and scarves, children building snowmen.... the images we conjure up for Christmas are often a long way from the reality of a typical dull, grey British winter.

Yet just a short flight or drive away, your Christmas holiday can be transformed into a dream come true. Many people's ideas for Christmas holidays in the snow means skiing. That is no longer true and there are now a whole host of fabulous snowy activities that you can do to create your perfect Christmas holiday in the snow.

We have put together a few of our top winter activities to share with you to give you some inspiration for alternative Christmas holiday ideas in Europe.

Whether you are looking for a break over Christmas or New Year, these Christmas holiday travel ideas will hopefully inspire you to do something different! 

Husky Sledding:

Husky sledding is one of the most popular winter activities to do on a Christmas holiday. You can travel to Scandinavia and embark on a full week husky sledding expedition traversing the snowy tundra for a real trapper like experience. The only slight downside of this for the Christmas and New Year holiday is that the further north you go the shorter the days are so you may be disappointed with not much daylight.

Further south in the French Alps, husky sledding has also taken off. The Alps are a lot more up and down than the plains of northern Scandinavian husky sledding territory so the husky sledding here is generally, a little more sporty. You need to help the dogs get up the hill and also stop them from running away with themselves on the way down! An hour of mushing where you drive your own team of dogs, is probably enough for most people but it is possible to book 1/2 and full day sledding experiences.

To drive your own sled you need to be aged 12 or over on our husky sledding activities but younger children can be passengers with a qualified musher!

Ice Climbing:

If you are an adventurous type, then you will love ice climbing. There is something very magical about the ephemeral nature of a frozen waterfall. As it gradually thaws and re-freezes adding layers of ice and forming icicles, the same ice fall can be two very different experiences within a few days! 

Armed with ice axes and crampons you can climb up these marvellous formations and experience the different types of ice for yourself. Once you have mastered the technique, you will be surprised how quickly you can progress.

As the ice is constantly changing it is always highly recommended to climb with a local guide who knows the conditions and evolution of the ice falls you will be climbing.

Igloo Building:

Igloos are one of those emblematic mysteries that we all wonder about. How on earth can a house made of snow and ice be cosy and warm?

A true igloo is not the work of an afternoon activity but you will be surprised how much you will learn and what you will be able to create in a few hours.

There are different techniques to building igloos depending on the snow. You can cut blocks and build up your igloo or you can create a large dome of compressed snow and then dig it out. The skill is creating different levels inside to optimise the warm air.

You can do any of these activities as a part of any of our fully customisable winter activity holidays in the Alps. This holiday includes activity points which you can exchange for a range of activities including any of the above and many more to create your perfect winter adventure in the snow.

If you want to ski but are looking for some inspiration for Christmas holiday ideas to add a bit of adventure to your ski holiday we also organise a ski adventure holiday where you have your ski pass and equipment and still have activity points to spend on a wide range of activities like the ones described.




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