Winter is a good time to travel because the crowds characteristic of summer are avoided. These are the five best winter holidays according to the experts at The Guardian.
1. The Exodus Snowshoe Route traverses deep gorges, snowy forests, meadows and glacial lakes on four hikes across the borders of Italy and Austria, before ascending to the Bogatin Plateau for a breathtaking night expedition. 8-day Exodus (exodus.co.uk) trip from £ 795 (€ 840.74), including flights between Gatwick and Ljubljana, accommodation and all equipment. Departures on January 25, and February 1 and 15.
2. Travel through Sami culture, Sweden: In Kiruna, the snow festival begins in January, so Christmas is the best time to find deep and fluffy snow, ideal for skoterhopp (motorcycle ramp jumps of snow). A good accommodation is the Arctic Eden Hotel, a cozy place in the middle of nowhere. Its owners offer a highly recommended journey through the Sami culture. The Arctic Eden Hotel (hotelarcticeden.se) has double rooms from 160 pounds (€ 169.20) a night. You can fly to Kiruna from Heathrow with SAS (flysas.co.uk). The Kiruna Snow Festival runs from January 30 to February 1 (snofestivalen.se)
3. Cave Hotels, Turkey: Beyond the Aegean and the Mediterranean to the east, the ancient lunar landscape of rock formations of beautiful Cappadocia is dotted with snow, making it a must-see magical route. Look for the Red River, the salt lake and the chimneys (eroded volcanic rocks on the high peaks). As accommodation, the Kelebek Pension (kelebekhotel.com), one of the many cave hotels carved out of the rock, which has double rooms from € 45 per night, including breakfast. There are flights from Heathrow to Kayseri, with Turkish Airlines (thy.com)
4. Ice Fishing, Lithuania: A flask of vodka is a necessary accompaniment to spend a day ice fishing, partly because it is so cold that the fish freezes within 10 seconds of leaving the water and partly , because it is necessary to go a little cheerful to ice fishing for the first time. It's best to watch and learn from a fisherman on the frozen Trakai lakes outside the Lithuanian capital Vilnius. Litinterp (litinterp.com) offers cozy B & Bs in different parts of Vilnius from € 47 per night in a double room. Active Holidays (activeholidays.lt) organizes the ice fishing trips.
5. Glaciers, Greenland: ideal for a true winter wilderness experience. The Discover the World Musk Oxen Glacier Tour includes three nights in the village of Kangerlussuaq, with accommodation in tents on the outskirts of the tiny community, where temperatures hover around -30ºC. You can opt for an extra day in Ilulissat, and enjoy a helicopter ride over the huge ice sheet. Discover the World (discover-the-world.co.uk) charges from £ 1,056 (€ 1,116.76) for six nights, including flights and accommodation. Weekly departures between January and April.
Source: The Guardian Travel