The past few Christmases, we couldn’t really travel anywhere during December because of COVID-19. But now the world has moved past the pandemic, we’ve put together the best December travel destinations worldwide from Singapore so you can make the most of the Christmas season. From meeting Santa’s reindeer and sleeping in igloos in snowy Finland to having turkey on the beach in Australia…why not make Christmas 2023 the most magical of all by escaping to one of these 18 Christmas holiday destinations from Singapore.
1. Edinburgh, Scotland
One of the best places to visit this Christmas season is Edinburgh in Scotland. With the best Christmas markets to explore in the west, alongside a range of activities, and the Scottish banter…you’ll feel as if you’ve jumped into a fairytale book. Plus, Harry Potter fans can visit the places J.K Rowling took inspiration from and even go on enchanting Harry Potter tours, to name a few things. It’s only possible to reach Edinburgh via connecting flights of up to 17 hours. Find more activities via our sister website Secret Edinburgh.
2. Manila, The Philippines
Not many people know that the bustling city of Manila in the Philippines celebrates the holiday season from as early as September. Most Filipinos absolutely adore Christmas so it’s one of the best places to escape to in Asia – conveniently a three hour and 45 minute flight from Singapore. Expect a dazzling selection of holiday activities, from fireworks to Christmas bazaars, lantern parades, and cool light displays. For instance, the Festival of Lights in Ayala Triangle Gardens and the famous Tunnel Of Lights at Quezon Memorial Circle park is not to be missed. Definitely, one of the cheapest Christmas destinations near Singapore.
One of the most iconic places to spend Christmas in the world is Finland. Particularly, we’re obsessed with the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Saariselka which offers cosy igloos to sleep under the stars. This once-in-a-lifetime experience is an excellent place to pop the question too. If it’s a trip with children, you can visit Santa Claus and his reindeer in Lapland or take on the sloops with skiing and snowboarding. The Northern Lights just so happens to be one of the most romantic places to visit worldwide. Wonderfully, it’s possible to fly non-stop to Helsinki from Singapore in 13 hours.
4. Colmar, France
Feel like you’ve fallen into the Fairytale village of Villeneuve in Beauty And The Beast at this picturesque undiscovered destination in Europe. The historic Colmar comes alive with spellbinding Christmas decorations and lights, Christmas markets, snow-covered trees, and more – against the backdrop of buildings that resemble gingerbread houses. Truly it’s one of the best places to experience the magic of Christmas from mid November to the end of December. The only thing is this town is hard to reach because you’ll need to fly to Basel in Switzerland, Strasbourg in France, or Frankfurt in Germany and then take a train or bus. Strasbourg is the best option because Colmar is a 30 minute train journey from there.
5. Amsterdam, The Netherlands
KLM and Singapore Airlines offer direct flights to Amsterdam which take between 12 and 14 hours. From beautiful eateries and charming canals to chocolate factory’s like Tony’s Chocolate, famous museums and historic places such as the Anne Frank House…Amsterdam has it all. At Christmas, there’s plenty of attractions like ice skating at the Museumplein and one of Europe’s best Christmas markets. Read about what you can do on our sister site Secret Amsterdam.
6. Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, is less than seven hours direct flight from Singapore, and surprisingly brightens up every Christmas season. Christmas Day is not a public holiday there so this means restaurants and stores are still open. Regardless, the Japanese tend to go all out with Christmas decorations, alongside special Christmas markets, a pop-up ice skating rink, Christmas-themed high teas, and other seasonal events during December. Particularly, you can’t miss light displays like Miyashita Christmas Market and Marunouchi Illumination – which could definitely our Singapore’s Christmas displays a run for its money! Be sure to tick off the second Harry Potter Studio worldwide which recently opened in Tokyo. Discover more about Tokyo via our sister website Secret Tokyo.
7. Paris, France
Escape to the European city of love for a magical Christmas with Singapore Airlines or Airfrance. Visit stunning shopping malls like the Galeries Lafayette decorated in Christmas cheer, indulge on cookies and hot chocolate at the Christmas markets under the glimmer of the Eiffel Tower, take an enchanting horse carriage through the city, or even go as far as Disneyland, to name a few. Flight time is 12 hours direct from Singapore. Discover all the best things to do in Paris on our sister website Paris Secret.
8. New York, United States
At least once in your lifetime you must experience Christmas in New York City. Look forward to holiday shopping at world-class retail stores, Rolf’s German Restaurant Christmas pop-up, ice skating at the iconic Central Park, or the more familiar Rockefeller Center under a gigantic Christmas tree…the list is endless. Plus, you may even experience SNOW. Singapore Airlines offer an 18-hour direct flight, or you could get a much cheaper stopover flight for around $900. Definitely, New York is one of the greatest Christmas destinations to visit worldwide. Read all about the magical things you can do on our sister website Secret NYC.
If you fancy a quick getaway to Spain, multiple airlines offer connecting flights to Barcelona or Madrid from Singapore. Normally between mid-November and early January, Spain celebrates Navidad. Specifically, the most important day is the Three Kings Day on January 6. Depending on where you go, expect an array of lighting displays, unique Christmas events, historic buildings, and much more. Madrid is usually cold in December compared with places on the coast such as Barcelona so be sure to pack warn clothes. Get tips for Spain on our sister website Madrid Secreto or Barcelona Secreta.
10. Seoul, South Korea
Another one of the best places to visit this Christmas is South Korea. December is one of the coldest months in Korea, so it boasts total winter vibes to get you in the Christmas mood. From epic skyscrapers and futurist buildings, Buddhist temples and palaces, to cute Christmas Street markets, stunning lights and more…Seoul is a wonderful destination to kick start the Christmas festivities. Find out the best things to do in Seoul via our sister website Secret Seoul.
Escape the rain and head on an Italian adventure this Christmas season. A round trip to Rome or Milan will set you back around $950 return. Expect the most delicious Italian feasts, plenty of festive celebrations, and lots of cool attractions to keep you entertained.
Swap the Singapore rain for the hot summer sunshine down under this Christmas. Multiple airlines offer direct flights to both Melbourne and Sydney this December. Fly to Melbourne in seven hours or Sydney in eight hours on cheap flights with Scoot, Jetstar, or Air Asia. Lucky for you, we’ve already made a list of the best places to visit in Australia.
13. London, United Kingdom
The ultimate city break awaits you in London. British people take Christmas very seriously, so you’ll be treated to hundreds of festive events and celebrations such as the iconic Winter Wonderland, dozens of ice skating rinks, shopping experiences, and more. Find out about all the delightful things you can do on our sister website Secret London. Certainly, one of the top 10 Christmas destinations on our list.
14. Vancouver, Canada
Experience the magic of Christmas in Vancouver boasting an iconic German Christmas Market, spellbinding lighting displays like the famous VanDusen Botanic Gardens Light Show, snowy Grouse Mountain skiing and snowboarding just 30 minutes from the city, and so much more to make a dreamy Christmas adventure. Wonderfully, Singapore Airlines offer 14-hour direct flights to Vancouver. Get tips via our sister website Secret Vancouver.
Germany has wonderful traditions that make Christmas truly fascinating. Opt to visit Berlin, Frankfurt or Munich directly from Singapore in around 12 hours. Between the extraordinary Christmas markets and ice rinks, under the glimmer of Christmas lights, indulging on festive sweet treats and German beers, and more…you’ll feel as if you’re in the North Pole. And hey, you might even get some real life snow. Certainly, Germany is one of the best Christmas destinations globally. Get the best insider tips via our sister websites Secret Berlin or Secret Frankfurt.
16. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Christmas is only celebrated on Christmas Eve in Malaysia. Nevertheless, if you don’t celebrate Christmas yourself or you’re looking for a cheap break from Singapore, you’ll get a flight return around $200. Equally, Malaysia offers plenty of attractions to keep you entertained. Check out the most instagrammable places in Malaysia.
17. Zurich, Switzerland
Zurich turns into a fairytale-like winter wonderland during the month of December. From vibrant Christmas markets to festive museums and city tours, and of course, opportunities to hit the snow-engulfed sloops of the Swiss Alps…you’ve got everything at your disposal. Otherwise, you can make a pitstop in Basel which is one hour from Zurich and boasts the best Christmas Markets in Europe, deep-rooted in Christmas tradition. Both Singapore Airlines and Swiss Air offer 13-hour direct flights. Get the best holiday tips from our sister website Secret Zurich.
18. Copenhagen, Denmark
Jet off to Copenhagen in just 13 hours with Singapore Airlines. It’s a truly fascinating city that won’t be overrun by tourists during the festive season. Hide away in cosy winter cafes, go sightseeing at landmarks, and immerse yourself in Christmas cheer at events like carnivals and the Christmas markets. Definitely, one of the lesser known Christmas destinations worldwide. See all the things you can do in Copenhagen on sister website.