There are many wonderful places to spend the Christmas holidays in the United States. Here are five that are sure to please.
San Antonio, Texas
In fifth place is San Antonio, Texas. The River Walk comes alive with more than 122,000 colored lights and over 6,000 luminaries each weekend in December. The best way to enjoy the luminaries is on a river cruise. Special festivities happen on December 24, when the nation’s oldest cathedral, San Fernando, hosts an annual posada which starts near the cathedral and winds its way through Market Square before ending at San Fernando. During the posada pilgrims hold lighted candles and sing traditional carols as they follow Mary and Joseph on their quest for suitable housing. When attending, be ready to feast on tamales, instead of the traditional ham.
North Pole, Alaska
In fourth place is North Pole, Alaska, where visitors will enjoy a balmy averagehigh of 16 degrees Fahrenheit. While there, visitors will want to visit the Santa Claus House, which has the world’s largest fiberglass statue of Santa Claus. All streets in the town of just over 600 families feature Christmas names like Santa Claus Lane, Snowman Land and Kris Kringle Drive. The town’s police cars are even green and white sticking to the Christmas theme.The town is famous for its 29 hour ice carving sculpture contest which draws contestants from around the world. The town has the official tree lighting ceremony in early December complete with fireworks. Visitors will enjoy a meal at the Elf’s Den.
McAdenville, North Carolina
In third place is McAdemville, North Carolina. Up to 600,000 visitors each year flock to this small town of 600 people to see its transformation into Christmas Town USA. What began as the dream of the owner of the town’s main employer, Pharr Yarns, with the decorating of nine trees? Today, visitors to the community will see over 375 trees decorated on the town’s 1.3 mile route. Most homes are also decorated with lights usually red, white and green keeping with the English tradition of the town. The town hosts an annual Yule Log Parade when school children haul a log on ropes from one end of town to the other.
In second place is Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Christmas here pays respect to the Moravian heritage of the community. Visitors should see one of the town’s three puts, miniature nativity scenes created from natural materials and featuring hand carved figures. To make the most of a visit to Bethlehem visitors should make sure to take one of the town’s historic walking tours and visit the Burnside Plantation. Visitors will cry with glee when they take one of the horses and carriage rides through the downtown area.
In first place is Vail, Colorado. Vail is celebrating its 50th year as the nation’s premier ski resort. During Christmas, the downtown area features many colorful Christmas lighting displays. The slopes are home to Dickens’s carolers and the candy cane patrol who hand out candy canes to skiers that they catch being good. Make sure and leave time to visit the six polar bear ice sculptures that are specially created each year. Kids and the young at heart will enjoy Adventure Ridge where they can try snow tubing, snow bicycling and many other unique winter activities. Visitors will also enjoy the many free activities during the annual Holidayed.
When Mary White is not writing about traveling, she’s researching the best Vail accommodations for her next Colorado ski trip on www.gcpvail.com.
Enjoy your best Christmas vacation with family during this holiday season.
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