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Christmas gift

The Best Seasonal Breaks

Read time - 3 minutes

Not all of us love yuletide and season’s greetings, but you don’t have to go into hibernation to avoid the same five songs repeated on the radio, roads blocked with holiday traffic and, of course, the inevitable bad cracker jokes.

Don’t be left out in the cold this Christmas. Bin the Brussels sprouts and trash the tacky tinsel; here are a few of our seasonal escapes that are really worth celebrating. Take a look at the best seasonal breaks.

Festive Breaks with a Twist

Get the Gifts

Moroccan market

Forget Oxford Street, souks are not only cheaper, but you're almost guaranteed nobody else will have got the same gift as you.

Forget the unforgivable talcum powder cop-out and replace with a real beauty treatment, such as Argan oil from a local co-operative, or any number the ornately painted pots, intricately carved wooden boxes and other handicrafts on sale in the shaded alleyways; it’s the perfect place to find a keepsake after a week of exploring this varied kingdom.

Take me there: Morocco Holidays 

Put up the Decorations

Rajasthan market seller

English Christmas comes with a uniform; gold, green and scarlet. For a kaleidoscope of vibrant swirling saris and shimmering rainbow streets, head for Rajasthan in northern India, where vibrancy and beauty are part of everyday life. No seasonal restrictions here; just a riot of celebratory colour every day.

Take me there: Rajasthan Holidays 

Time with the Relatives

Gorilla in its natural habitat

Fitting in time with your folks is pretty standard, but why not widen the visiting to your extended family? Coming face to face with an endangered Mountain gorilla is a Christmas encounter you will never forget, as a huge silverback stumbles out of the bamboo forest – better than any present you could find under the Christmas tree.

Take me there: Gorilla Safaris

Enter a Real Winter Wonderland

Snowshoeing in Finland

For a winter with credibility, Finland’s winter wilderness is the white Christmas you dreamed of as a child. Frolic on snowshoes, build your own igloo and spot grazing reindeer as a bounding team of huskies whisk you across a frozen, snow-draped land. Bliss.

Take me there: Finland Holidays 

Christmas Dinner with a Difference

Sri Lankan food

Roast turkey can go get stuffed this year. Sri Lankan fare exemplifies the old adage that variety is the spice of life, with everyone from highflying chefs to your average family cook embracing the rich variety of flavours to hand. Spicy curries are soothed with sweet coconut cream and juicy dessert platters piled high with luxurious heaps of delicious fresh fruit picked straight off the tree.

Take me there: Sri Lanka Holidays 

The Guilty Boxing Day Walk

Cross-country skiing in the DolomitesCross country skiing in Dobbacio

Cooped up indoors all day eating too much has the same effect year on year; the guilt-ridden Boxing Day outing in an attempt to shift the sluggishness. Why not avoid it completely with a guilt-free active escape?

Cross-country skiing is the perfect antidote to the Christmas extravagance, with active days balancing out hearty Scandinavian winter food with fresh air and plenty of exercise. You'll even get the perfect winter wonderland to enjoy too. Perfect!

Take me there: Cross-Country Skiing trips 

Take a look at more seasonal breaks below and escape this Christmas.

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