Winter Wonderlands: Best Places For Snowy Retreats

By Kate

Winter’s just around the corner, isn’t it? And if you’re anything like us, a picture-perfect snowy hideaway is what you’ve likely got your heart set on. Countless hours spent scouring website after website in search of that idyllic spot adorned with fresh powdery snow and fairy-tale-esque landscapes – we know the drill all too well.

To lighten your load a bit, we’ve taken one for the team – visiting some of these captivating spots ourselves and painstakingly researching others. This article aims to navigate you through our meticulously chosen list of winter wonderlands peppered across the globe; places where frosted window panes go hand-in-hand with snug hearths, where infinite snow-capped mountains transform into your personal playground.

Ready to embark on an unforgettable adventure?.

Best Snowy Winter Vacation Destinations in Europe

When it comes to snowy winter vacations in Europe, there are plenty of amazing destinations to choose from. From the charming alpine village of Zermatt in Switzerland to Lapland in Finland, where you can experience the magic of Santa Claus, there is something for everyone.

Chamonix-Mont Blanc in France offers breathtaking views and world-class skiing, while Zakopane in Poland is known for its picturesque landscapes and vibrant winter culture. In Copenhagen, Denmark, you can enjoy the cozy atmosphere of Christmas markets and ice skating rinks.

Innsbruck, Austria boasts stunning mountain scenery and thrilling winter sports activities. For a unique experience, head to Limone Piemonte in Italy or Lofoten Islands in Norway. Brasov in Romania offers fairytale castles and snow-covered landscapes that will transport you into a real-life winter wonderland.

Reykjavik in Iceland is perfect for witnessing the mesmerizing Northern Lights dancing across the sky. Bansko, Bulgaria is known for its affordable.

Zermatt, Switzerland

Zermatt in Switzerland is a must-see. In winter, this place twinkles with snow. We can ski and enjoy the view of the Matterhorn, a famous mountain. It’s tall and has an odd shape that makes it stand out.

The town itself is charming too with no cars allowed, only horse-drawn sleighs or electric taxis. Zermatt also has many good places to eat after a long day playing in the snow!

Lapland, Finland

Lapland, Finland is a snowy dream. This part of Finland fills up with thick white snow every year. The place feels like magic in winter.

We can see the Northern Lights here. These lights dance across the sky at night. We get to ride on sleds pulled by dogs or reindeer during the day too!

If you love Christmas, Lapland is perfect for you! It is said that Santa Claus lives here. We can meet him at Santa Claus Village any time of year.

After fun in the snow, we sit near warm fires inside cozy cabins. There’s hot berry juice to sip on as well! Imagine being wrapped up in a comfy blanket while snow falls outside your window.

You don’t want to miss out on this winter wonderland getaway. It will be a trip full of joy and wonders that you won’t forget!

Chamonix-Mont Blanc, France

Chamonix-Mont Blanc in France is a dream spot for snowy retreats. It’s a place full of fun and sports during winter. Skiing on the white, snow-covered slopes here is an adventure you don’t want to miss.

The views are stunning with tall mountains covered in soft, sparkling snow. After skiing, we can sip hot cocoa by a warm fire at one of the charming lodges. This fairytale-like place will make our winter getaway unforgettable.

Zakopane, Poland

Zakopane in Poland is a must-see. Nestled at the foot of the Tatra Mountains, it looks like a Christmas card scene. The tall pine trees are coated with white snow. Zakopane has slopes for skiing just right for everyone – from beginners to pros.

A fun market square is filled with food and local crafts stalls too! At night, warm up by trying out hot Polish soup in one of the wooden taverns lining the streets. Yes, Zakopane gives you that perfect snowy retreat we all crave for sometimes!

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen is a dream in winter. Snow falls on the city streets. It covers old castles and big parks. This makes for a charming retreat space for snow lovers. We walk around the city, each step filled with joy.

The cold bites our noses but it feels good! Denmark’s capital turns into one of Europe’s most snowy places when winter comes round. You can sled at Fælledparken or ice skate by Frederiksberg Have, both wonderful outdoor activities to enjoy in this winter wonderland getaway.

So wrap up warm and explore Copenhagen!

Innsbruck, Austria

We’ll find a true winter wonderland in Innsbruck, Austria. Big hills cover the city. Skiers and snowboarders love these hills. They come from all over to glide down them.

But there’s more than just sports here. The Old Town area is full of charm with its old buildings and lanes filled with snow. People love to shop and eat here too after a day of fun on the hills.

Plus, we can’t miss seeing the Golden Roof, a famous spot in town!

Limone Piemonte, Italy

Limone Piemonte in Italy is a dreamy spot for winter fun. It’s an old village with lovely views. You can ski on snowy hills or just have hot cocoa by the fire. They also hold fun events in the village square.

If you like peace and quiet, this place is perfect. You can roam around without bumping into lots of people. Limone Piemonte is a magical snow globe waiting for you to shake it up!

Lofoten Islands, Norway

The Lofoten Islands in Norway are a breathtaking winter wonderland that should be on every explorer’s bucket list. With their snow-covered landscapes and charming fishing villages, these islands offer an idyllic snowy retreat.

You can hike along scenic trails, go skiing or snowboarding, or simply enjoy the tranquility of this remote location. The Lofoten Islands also provide the perfect opportunity to witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights dance across the night sky.

Don’t forget to capture unforgettable photos of frozen waterfalls and cozy cabins nestled amidst the snowy scenery. These islands truly offer a unique and magical winter getaway for those seeking adventure and natural beauty.

Brasov, Romania

Brasov, Romania is a charming winter retreat located in Eastern Europe. This picturesque city offers snowy landscapes and fairytale-like castles that will leave you in awe. If you’re seeking a cozy getaway, look no further than Brasov.

You can explore the snow-covered streets or go skiing on the nearby slopes. Don’t forget to visit the stunning Bran Castle, famously known as Dracula’s Castle. In Brasov, you’ll experience the magic of winter amidst breathtaking scenery and historic charm.

So pack your warmest clothes and get ready for a memorable winter adventure in Brasov!

Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik, Iceland is a magical winter wonderland that should be on every explorer’s bucket list. This charming city offers breathtaking snowy landscapes and a unique blend of nature and culture.

You can explore the frozen waterfalls, cozy up in charming cabins, or visit fairytale castles. In Reykjavik, you can also experience exciting winter activities like skiing and snowboarding.

And don’t forget about the mesmerizing Northern Lights! These vibrant natural phenomena light up the night sky and create an unforgettable experience. So pack your warmest clothes and get ready for an idyllic snowy retreat in Reykjavik, Iceland!

Bansko, Bulgaria

If you’re looking for a snowy winter vacation destination in Europe, Bansko, Bulgaria is definitely worth considering. This charming town nestled in the Pirin Mountains offers a picturesque setting with plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy.

Whether you’re into skiing or snowboarding, Bansko has some excellent slopes suitable for all skill levels. You can also explore the beautiful snow-covered landscapes by going on a snowshoeing or cross-country skiing adventure.

And after an active day on the slopes, you can unwind and relax in one of the cozy cabins or indulge in traditional Bulgarian cuisine at local restaurants. Bansko truly offers an idyllic snowy retreat experience that will leave you with unforgettable memories of your winter getaway.

Sierra Nevada National Park, Spain

Sierra Nevada National Park in Spain is a fantastic destination for winter vacations. This snowy retreat offers breathtaking views and plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. You can go skiing or snowboarding on the slopes, explore the park’s beautiful trails on snowshoes or cross-country skis, and even go snowmobiling for an adrenaline rush.

The park is also known for its diverse wildlife and stunning landscapes, making it a perfect place to immerse yourself in nature. So if you’re looking for a charming winter getaway with snowy mountains and exciting adventures, Sierra Nevada National Park is definitely worth considering.

Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm, Sweden is a stunning winter destination that offers a unique blend of history and natural beauty. This city is made up of 14 islands, connected by over 50 bridges, creating a picturesque setting for exploration.

In the winter months, Stockholm transforms into a winter wonderland with its charming cobblestone streets covered in snow. You can explore the narrow alleys of Gamla Stan, the old town, and marvel at the beautiful architecture and quaint shops.

Don’t miss out on visiting the world-famous Icebar where everything is made entirely out of ice! For outdoor enthusiasts, there are plenty of opportunities for ice skating on frozen lakes or skiing in nearby areas.

Dolomites, Italy

If you’re looking for a snowy retreat in Europe, the Dolomites in Italy should be on your list. These breathtaking mountains offer a winter wonderland experience with their snow-covered peaks and charming villages.

In the Dolomites, you can enjoy activities like skiing and snowboarding on well-groomed slopes while taking in the stunning views. The region is also known for its cozy mountain lodges where you can relax after a day of outdoor adventure.

Whether you’re an avid skier or simply want to soak up the idyllic charm of a snowy landscape, the Dolomites in Italy are sure to provide an unforgettable winter getaway.

Helsinki, Finland

In Helsinki, Finland, you’ll find a winter wonderland that’s perfect for your snowy retreat. This city is known for its beautiful architecture and picturesque surroundings. You can explore the snowy landscape by taking a stroll through the charming streets or visit one of the many parks covered in white snow.

Don’t forget to try traditional Finnish dishes like reindeer stew or warm up with a cup of hot berry juice. Helsinki also offers activities such as ice skating and skiing, so you can fully embrace the winter sports experience.

Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures or cozy indoor retreats, Helsinki has it all for your perfect winter getaway.

Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany is a fantastic winter destination for snow lovers. The city transforms into a magical wonderland with snow-covered landscapes and charming winter markets. You can visit iconic landmarks like the Brandenburg Gate and Reichstag building in their snowy glory.

Take a walk along Unter den Linden boulevard or explore the picturesque Tiergarten park with its frozen lakes. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to warm up with traditional German food, like bratwurst and glühwein (mulled wine), at one of the many cozy cafes and restaurants scattered throughout the city.

Berlin offers a unique blend of history, culture, and winter beauty that will make your snowy retreat truly unforgettable. So grab your coat and get ready for an adventure in this captivating winter wonderland!

Besançon, France

Besançon in France is another fantastic snowy retreat for your winter getaway. This charming city offers a picturesque setting with its snow-covered landscapes and beautiful architecture.

You can explore the fairytale-like castles, visit museums and art galleries, or simply stroll through the cobblestone streets lined with cozy cafes and shops. Besançon also has excellent outdoor activities like skiing, snowboarding, and ice skating for those who love winter sports.

With its idyllic charm and snowy wonderland atmosphere, Besançon is definitely worth considering for your winter holiday destination.

Riga, Latvia

Riga, Latvia is a beautiful snowy destination that offers a mix of charm and adventure. This city has stunning architecture, with its old town being a UNESCO World Heritage site. You can explore the cobblestone streets, visit historic landmarks like Riga Castle and St.

Peter’s Church, and admire the intricate Art Nouveau buildings. In winter, Riga transforms into a wonderland with snow-covered landscapes and festive decorations. You can enjoy ice skating in one of the many outdoor rinks or take part in winter sports like skiing or snowboarding.

Don’t forget to warm up with delicious Latvian cuisine at cozy cafes or try traditional foods at the Christmas markets. Whether you’re looking for culture, history, or simply enjoying the beauty of winter, Riga is an idyllic snowy retreat worth exploring.

Thingvellir National Park, Iceland

If you’re looking for a snowy retreat in Europe, Thingvellir National Park in Iceland is worth considering. This stunning park offers breathtaking winter landscapes that will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a fairytale.

With frozen waterfalls and snow-covered landscapes, it’s the perfect place to escape and immerse yourself in nature. You can explore the park on foot or even go snorkeling between two tectonic plates in the Silfra fissure for a unique experience.

Don’t forget to keep an eye out for the famous Northern Lights at night – they often grace the skies above Thingvellir National Park with their mesmerizing dance of colors.

Best Snowy Winter Vacation Destinations in North America

Looking for a snowy winter getaway in North America? Check out these amazing destinations that are perfect for a winter wonderland retreat. Find out more here!

Rosenheim Hakuba in Nagano, Japan

The Lodge at Flying Horse in Colorado, USA

The Lodge at Flying Horse in Colorado, USA is a perfect snowy getaway for those seeking outdoor adventures and cozy retreats. Nestled amidst the beautiful Rocky Mountains, this lodge offers breathtaking views and a wide range of winter activities.

From skiing and snowboarding on the nearby slopes to snowshoeing through the picturesque landscapes, there’s something for everyone. The lodge also provides luxurious accommodations with all the amenities you need for a comfortable stay.

Whether you want to relax by the fireplace or explore the surrounding nature trails, The Lodge at Flying Horse is an idyllic destination for your winter escape.

Litli Geysir Hotel in Haukadalur, Iceland

If you’re looking for a cozy winter retreat in Iceland, the Litli Geysir Hotel in Haukadalur is the perfect place. Situated near the famous Geysir hot springs, this charming hotel offers stunning views of snowy landscapes and frozen waterfalls.

The rooms are comfortable and inviting, providing a warm and peaceful atmosphere after a day of exploring. You can also indulge in delicious Icelandic cuisine at their on-site restaurant.

Don’t forget to take a dip in one of the nearby natural hot springs for an unforgettable experience. At Litli Geysir Hotel, you’ll truly feel like you’re in a winter wonderland.

Le Faucigny Hotel de Charme in Rhône-Alps, France

Le Faucigny Hotel de Charme in Rhône-Alps, France is a charming retreat nestled in the snowy wonderland of the Alps. With its cozy cabins and breathtaking winter landscapes, it’s the perfect destination for those seeking an idyllic snowy getaway.

The hotel offers a warm and inviting atmosphere, making you feel right at home as soon as you step through the door. Whether you’re looking to ski down snow-covered slopes or simply relax by a crackling fire, Le Faucigny has something for everyone.

So pack your bags and get ready to experience the magic of this winter wonderland.

Valen Cabins in Reine, Norway

If you’re looking for a cozy and charming winter retreatValen Cabins in Reine, Norway is the place to be. Situated in the Lofoten Islands, this snowy destination offers breathtaking views of snow-covered landscapes and frozen waterfalls.

The cabins are perfect for a peaceful getaway, with their warm interiors and stunning surroundings. You can enjoy outdoor activities like skiing and snowboarding during the day, and then relax by the fireplace in your cabin at night.

It’s truly an idyllic snowy retreat that will leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Winter Wonderland Destinations in Other Continents

4. Winter Wonderland Destinations in Other Continents: Explore the breathtaking winter wonderland of Patagonia in Argentina and Chile, marvel at the ice sculptures in Harbin, China, ski to your heart’s content in Queenstown, New Zealand, or embark on an unforgettable adventure to Antarctica.

Read more for these enchanting snowy escapes that will leave you mesmerized by their beauty and charm.

Patagonia, Argentina & Chile

When it comes to snowy retreatsPatagonia in Argentina and Chile is a must-visit destination for global explorers. This breathtaking winter wonderland offers stunning landscapes with snow-covered mountainsfrozen lakes, and pristine forests.

From charming winter retreats to exhilarating outdoor activities, Patagonia has something for everyone. You can explore the region’s national parks like Torres del Paine and Los Glaciares, go skiing or snowboarding in world-class resorts such as Bariloche or Valle Nevado, or simply relax in cozy cabins surrounded by the beauty of nature.

The combination of natural wonders and unique cultural experiences makes Patagonia an ideal place for a memorable winter getaway. So pack your warm clothes and get ready to embark on an adventure in this idyllic snowy retreat!

Harbin, China

Harbin in China is a magical winter destination that will leave you in awe. This city transforms into a snowy wonderland during the winter months, making it perfect for an unforgettable getaway.

You can explore the famous Harbin Ice and Snow World, where enormous ice sculptures and buildings are illuminated with colorful lights. Don’t miss the chance to visit Sun Island, where you can enjoy breathtaking snow sculptures and beautiful gardens.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, try ice skating or even take part in an exciting ice hockey game. Harbin truly offers a unique winter experience that you won’t want to miss out on!

Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown, New Zealand is a breathtaking winter wonderland destination that offers stunning snowy landscapes and a wide range of outdoor activities. With its picturesque mountains and crystal-clear lakes, Queenstown is perfect for those seeking adventure and relaxation.

You can enjoy skiing or snowboarding on the slopes, go ice skating on frozen lakes, or take part in thrilling snowmobiling adventures. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the mesmerizing Northern Lights.

Queenstown also hosts charming winter festivals and Christmas markets that add to the magical atmosphere of this idyllic snowy retreat. Whether you’re looking for a cozy cabin getaway or want to explore fairytale castles surrounded by snow-covered landscapes, Queenstown has it all for your perfect winter vacation.


Antarctica is an amazing winter wonderland destination that offers a unique and unforgettable experience. This icy continent, located at the bottom of the world, is like no other place on Earth.

You can explore vast icy landscapes, marvel at towering glaciers, and encounter incredible wildlife such as penguins and seals. The extreme conditions in Antarctica make it a challenging but rewarding destination for adventurous explorers.

From cruising through the stunning Antarctic Peninsula to camping on the ice or even kayaking alongside icebergs, there are plenty of thrilling activities to choose from. So if you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind snowy retreat unlike any other, Antarctica should definitely be on your bucket list!

Best Winter Activities and Attractions

Experience the thrill of skiing and snowboarding down pristine slopes, glide across frozen lakes with ice skating, explore picturesque trails with snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, embark on exhilarating snowmobiling adventures, marvel at the magical spectacle of the Northern lights dancing across the night sky, and immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere of winter festivals and Christmas markets.

Skiing and snowboarding

We love hitting the slopes and feeling the adrenaline rush as we glide through the snowy mountains. Europe and North America have some amazing ski resorts for skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts.

Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, there are plenty of options for everyone. From Zermatt in Switzerland to Chamonix-Mont Blanc in France, you’ll find breathtaking views and well-groomed slopes to suit your skill level.

With top-notch facilities and professional instructors, these destinations are perfect for both families and solo adventurers seeking winter fun on the mountains. So grab your skis or snowboard, and get ready for an exhilarating experience in these winter wonderlands!

Ice skating

Ice skating is a fun winter activity that you can enjoy in many snowy destinations. Glide across the ice and feel the cool breeze on your face. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced skater, there are plenty of rinks for everyone to enjoy.

You can find outdoor rinks in cities like New York City and Vienna, where you can skate with a beautiful backdrop of city lights. Or, if you prefer a more natural setting, head to frozen lakes or ponds in places like Canada and Sweden.

Don’t worry if you don’t have skates – many rinks offer rentals so you can give it a try without buying your own pair. So grab some friends or family members and hit the ice for some winter fun!

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are two fantastic winter activities that allow you to explore snowy landscapes at your own pace. Strap on a pair of snowshoes and venture through trails and forests, enjoying the peace and tranquility of nature.

Cross-country skiing, on the other hand, is a great way to get some exercise while gliding across snowy terrain. It’s a fun activity for all skill levels, whether you’re a beginner or an expert skier.

So grab your gear and immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of winter as you embark on these exciting adventures.


Snowmobiling is an exciting winter activity that allows you to explore snowy landscapes in a fun and adventurous way. We highly recommend trying it out during your snowy retreats. With the help of a powerful snowmobile, you can zip through the snow-covered trails, feeling the thrill as you race across the white terrain.

It’s a great way to enjoy the stunning scenery and experience the winter wonderland up close. So don’t forget to add snowmobiling to your list of winter activities and make unforgettable memories in these breathtaking destinations.

Northern lights viewing

Northern lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis, is a captivating natural phenomenon that occurs in certain parts of the world during winter. It is a truly enchanting experience to witness the dancing lights in the night sky.

In Europe, some of the best places to view this spectacular display include Lapland in Finland, where you can combine it with other winter activities like dog sledding and snowshoeing.

Iceland is another fantastic destination for northern lights viewing, with its remote landscapes providing an ideal backdrop for this cosmic spectacle. If you’re in North America, head to Alaska or Canada’s Yukon Territory for your chance at spotting these mesmerizing lights.

Winter festivals and Christmas markets

Another highlight of snowy winter retreats is the chance to experience enchanting winter festivals and Christmas markets. These vibrant events are a feast for the senses, with twinkling lights, festive decorations, joyful music, and tempting treats filling the air.

You can wander through rows of colorful stalls selling handmade crafts, delicious food and drinks, and unique gifts. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere as you sip on warm mulled wine or hot chocolate while browsing for that perfect holiday gift.

Whether it’s Germany’s famous Christkindlmarkt or Austria’s charming Advent markets, these winter festivals and Christmas markets add an extra layer of magic to your snowy getaway.


In conclusion, these winter wonderlands offer the best snowy retreats for those seeking a magical escape. From charming European cities to breathtaking outdoor destinations, there is something for everyone.

Whether you want to ski on snow-covered landscapes or experience the beauty of frozen waterfalls, these idyllic snowy retreats are sure to create unforgettable winter memories. So grab your skis and pack your warmest clothes – it’s time to embark on a snowy adventure!

What are some best places for snowy retreats?

Some of the best places for snowy retreats include destinations like the Swiss Alps, Canadian Rockies, Finnish Lapland, and Colorado in the United States.

When is the best time to visit these snowy retreat locations?

The best time to visit these snowy retreat locations is typically during winter months when there is a higher chance of snowfall and ideal conditions for activities like skiing and snowboarding.

What activities can I enjoy at these snowy retreat destinations?

At these snowy retreat destinations, you can enjoy various activities such as skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, sledding, snowshoeing, and even taking scenic winter hikes.

Do I need any special equipment or clothing for a snowy retreat?

When visiting a snowy retreat destination, it’s important to have warm clothing including jackets, hats, gloves/mittens, thermal layers and waterproof boots/shoes suitable for cold weather conditions. Equipment like skis or snowboards may also be required depending on your chosen activities.

Are there accommodations available near these snowy retreat locations?

Yes! There are usually many accommodations available near popular snowy retreat locations ranging from hotels to cabins or chalets that cater specifically to winter tourists looking to enjoy the beauty of the season.

About the author

Hello there, fellow travellers! I'm Kate, one half of the Chandler's Travel duo, and my love for travel is matched only by my love for sharing it with others. For me, every journey is an opportunity to learn something new, be it a local tradition, a tasty dish, or simply a new way to see the world.

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