Spend Christmas in these Winter Destinations

The end of the year always serves as a wonderful time to visit with loved ones in a calming environment to look around, take stock, and cherish the experiences from the past year while setting your sights on the new dawn right around the corner. So when it comes to the ideal Christmas vacation setting, who says you have to open gifts at home? Thanks to this article from Travel + Leisure that suggests the fifteen most cheerful destinations to spend Christmas this year, it’s never been more tempting to spend the happiest time of  year in these winter destinations.

As always, recent COVID-19 surges may have caused new government restrictions, rules, and safety measures to have been set. Because of this, it’s always suggested that those who wish to travel check local guidelines, consult CDC recommendations, and take personal health conditions into account before traveling. This way you’re more prepared to enjoy your trip while remaining as safe and responsible as possible in these unprecedented times.

Highlands, North Carolina

Consider spending your Christmas morning in Appalachian amazement in the charming town of Highlands, North Carolina. This idyllic winter destination, modern-day setting is so humble and quaint that residents and visitors alike compare its environment to a Nancy Meyers film or Lifetime Christmas special. For over a century, Highlands has been suggested to visitors as being the perfect setting for a “break from it all,” as it’s colloquially known as a mountain respite. Located in one of the few temperate rain forests of North America, the mountain resort town is located only ten miles from Cashiers, North Carolina, and is surrounded by the main attraction that is Nantahala National Forest.  Spend your Christmas in a mountain cabin on the outskirts of this forest or nestled deep within, either way you’re sure to enjoy your time spent among nature.

Inside the town proper, you’ll find many shops, experiences, and community-laden amenities to keep you entertained in between the holiday’s festivities. Downtown Highlands is often called a “postcard” for just how perfectly situated and pictured its various buildings and features are laid out, such as the historic building that houses a full European-style spa. Other spots nearby that are worth a dedicated visit are the Bridal Veil Falls, located on the Waterfall Byway, the historic High Hampton Resort, and the unforgettable American Museum of Cut and Engraved Glass. No matter where you go in this comfortably charming little hamlet, you’re sure to be delighted by it’s size and attention to detail this holiday season.

Stowe, Vermont

For those who were raised on Christmas movies and other similar media, it’s hard to make it through the holiday season with an abundant absence of snow in the background. So, if you’re looking to celebrate a snowy white Christmas, then look no further than the East Coast ski paradise of Stowe, Vermont for your winter destination. Located at the foot of Vermont’s highest peak, Mount Mansfield, Stowe is quite literally a winter wonderland that is known not only for its world-renowned trails and ski slopes, but it’s also famous for its accompanying town as well.  Once you make your way to Stowe, it’s hard to believe that you’re not literally stepping foot into a snowglobe, as the buildings, trees, and grounds are often blanketed with thick layers of smooth snowfall.

Be sure to spend Christmas in the style of a storybook by reserving a horse-drawn carriage ride for you and your loved ones to see the sprinkled pine trees. Alternatively, take a trip down Main Street for nightly winter activities that are sure to make ever-lasting memories. If you’re in the mood for adventure, you can host your holiday celebrations and then cap it off by planning an unforgettable day on the slopes, or you can simply spend the time quietly around the fire of the Stowe Mountain Ski Resort. No matter the reason, there’s no question that Winter is the perfect season to see all of the wonders that Stowe, Virginia has to offer.

For more travel-related news and information, click here

Visit Enid, Oklahoma to see the Largest Fresh-cut Christmas Tree

For decades, New York City has been known as the one of the world’s Christmas Capital Cities due to it having the country’s largest Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center, but according to this article from Southern Living, the honor of being the town in the United States with the largest Christmas tree now goes to Enid, Oklahoma. So, if you’re looking to really get into the Christmas spirit with a town that goes all out in terms of sizeable holiday spirit, then consider traveling to Enid, Oklahoma this year and marvel at the country’s (and world’s) tallest fresh-cut Christmas Tree.

At 140 majestic feet of length, Enid’s Christmas Tree stands about 75% taller than the world-famous Rockefeller Christmas Tree, which due to its location typically trends about 68 to 100 feet in length from year to year with a recent average of about 76 feet in height. The tree is located in Downtown Enid, which is a city that is only 90 minutes outside of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

The Downtown area of Enid is already an area bound with the celebration of the arts with its many community events such as First Fridays, History Makers, and more. During the holiday season there’s also a particularly active ice skating rink, Christmas tree lighting ceremony, and Holiday Window Display contest available to the public.

Enid, Oklahoma’s Christmas tree is a gigantic fir that stands profoundly about 2,000 miles away from its home just outside the Shasta-Trinity National Forest in Big Bar, California. This year, Enid’s tree has been decorated with approximately 20,000 multi-colored LED lights, 10,000 ornaments, and it’s ringed by a forest of 12 smaller trees. Colloquially known as the “Christ Tree,” this Christmas tree is being heralded not only as the country’s tallest Christmas tree but also the world’s as well.

In Enid, it’s also serving as the centerpiece of The one, the city’s 42-day celebratory event featuring a bevy of concerts, plays, and seasoning activities celebrating Christmas. Per The One’s website, it’s stated that “The One is a multi-event experience spanning through the holidays. The keystone of our event is the world’s tallest fresh-cut Christmas tree, measuring at an astonishing one hundred and forty feet tall. With the intention of building community, strengthening bonds and reinvigorating the meaning of Christmas, we hope you’ll join us for an unforgettable holiday season.”

The One is being attributed as the “brainchild” of Enid, Oklahoma entrepreneur Kyle Williams who was instrumental in hauling the tree from California this past October.  In detailing the tree’s harrowing journey to The Oklahoman, Williams stated, “Getting the tree here was probably one of the more difficult tasks, so I confess I was nervous. The thing could sag, it could break, it went through a snowstorm, it went through a thunderstorm, but it finally arrived here on time. I just believe the Lord had a hand in that, in bringing that tree here safely.”

Williams, along with his wife Carol and their four grown children came up with the idea for The One, which intends to highlight the true meaning of Christmas. He stated, “We are excited to offer families an incredible experience, one that will create memories to last a lifetime. Our main goal is to highlight the true meaning of Christmas: our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This tree is a reminder of his greatness and that it’s time we bring faith, hope and joy back into the holiday season! We are also looking forward to embracing visitors to Enid and are confident that they will have an inviting experience.”

For more travel-related news and information, click here.