Festive socks and Christmas tree, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

42 Best Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples 2020

Are you looking for fantastic, low-stress getaway ideas for Christmas this year? Here are 37 of the BEST Christmas vacation ideas for couples in 2020. You’ll find a ton of variety on this list, but all as low-stress as you can get. And with 2020 details, so booking is low-stress, too!

So, what does your perfect Christmas 2020 look like? Cuddling in a cozy cabin in front of a wood-burning fireplace, with ski runs nearby? Strolling hand-in-hand along snow-kissed European streets? Or maybe it’s the adventure of a lifetime or a luxury beach vacation?

To make these trip ideas for Christmas as low-stress as possible, each one centers on either a quality accommodation or a pre-planned tour. And all have flexible payment and cancellation, too (but be sure to check details before booking). For more tips on defining your PERFECT Christmas vacation, visit my first step for planning your perfect trip.

*As of writing this article, all of these trip ideas for Christmas have availability. Many are in high demand and have deals if booked by the end of August 2020. So book soon!

If you’re not so sure about a Christmas vacation, check out Best Gifts for Travel Lovers to Enjoy at Home, too!

Best Christmas vacation ideas for couples, getaway trips for Christmas

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10 Best HOLIDAY VIBE Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in USA and CANADA

There’s something special about a traditional Christmas vibe when considering Christmas vacation ideas for couples. Twinkling lights on a Christmas tree. Mistletoe. Wood-burning fireplace. Maybe even a little snow outside.

If this is important to you, here are five best low-stress trip ideas for Christmas where you can still enjoy that traditional holiday vibe. All of these Christmas getaway ideas are in North America.

KEYSTONE, COLORADO | Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in USA

Keystone Resort, Colorado Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Cozy Keystone Resort, Colorado. Photo credit: Booking.com

If you love the mountains or just some guarantee of snow over the holidays, Keystone, Colorado might be your perfect Christmas vacation idea in USA. Surrounded by three mountain peaks, each with a ski lift, the 4-star Keystone Lodge and Spa makes the perfect travel destination at Christmas (about $1,316US/night). Keystone Resort embraces the magic of the season, with special Christmas meals featured at its restaurants and winter-wonderland activities, like skating and snow-tubing down a hilltop course.

Enjoy the upscale rustic vibes throughout the lodge and spa, with decent restaurants and bar, spa pools, hot tubs and saunas to warm you up after a day on the mountains. Take advantage of free shuttles to the lifts and early bypass lift passes. Wifi and parking are included.

WHITEFISH, MONTANA | Christmas Vacation Ideas in USA

Hidden Moose Lodge, Whitefish Montana, cozy Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

Warmth of Hidden Moose Lodge in Montana. Photo credit: Booking.com

You can’t get much more picturesque than Whitefish, Montana at Christmas. If you love skiing or snowshoeing in the mountains, warming up with craft beer and spirits, and strolling along snowy, festive streets, you’ll love Christmas in Whitefish!

A terrific place to stay in Whitefish, Montana is Hidden Moose Lodge (around $184US/night). Couples love the cozy rooms and decor, as well as the breakfast and grounds. Opt for the deluxe king suite for a super-cozy fireplace. Enjoy the shared lounge, hot tub and nearby ski hills. Price includes wifi, parking and an American or vegetarian breakfast.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA | Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples in USA

Beverly Hills Hotel, Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

Glamorous Beverly Hills Hotel. Photo credit: Booking.com

Now, if you’d like a little glitz and glamor for your Christmas vacation ideas in USA, head to the famous west-coast city of Los Angeles. Los Angeles will give you a glamorous the celebrity holiday vibe

While Los Angeles has SO many famous prestigious hotels, the best of the best take you right to the epicenter of glamor: Beverly Hills. If you’re looking for luxury, definitely check out The Beverly Hills Hotel on Sunset Boulevard, which will almost guarantee you at least one celebrity sighting (about $595US/night). Another fantastic luxury hotel is the Beverly Wilshire, at the foot of Rodeo Drive and featured in Pretty Women (about $548US/night). Both options put you in a fantastic spot for excellent dining and shopping.

Now, we stayed right on Rodeo Drive, at the lovely 4-star Luxe Rodeo Drive Hotel (about $184US/night). It’s much less expensive than the two luxury options, but you still get celebrity treatment and the incredible experience of having Rodeo Drive at your doorstep. 

If you’d prefer a luxury beach Christmas getaway in Los Angeles, jump ahead!

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NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK | Trip Ideas for Christmas in USA

NYC Rockefeller Christmas tree, Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

NYC Rockefeller Center’s famous Christmas tree. Photo credit: Alex Haney from Unsplash.

If you’re looking for the best holiday vibe Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA but want more activity, you can’t get much more epic than NYC. From gazing up at the famous Rockefeller Christmas tree to oooing at 5th Avenue window displays and The Nutcracker on Broadway, you’ll have an absolutely fabulous Christmas in New York City. As soon as you know your travel dates, book your tickets to see New York City Ballet’s The Nutcracker.

The Whitby is a 5-star luxury NYC hotel with fantastic reviews, lovely decor with individually-designed rooms, and floor-to-ceiling windows in every room (about $795US/night). Situated between Times Square, Central Park and Fifth Avenue, the best of Christmas in New York City is at your doorstep.

Park Terrace Hotel on Bryant Park is a less pricey but still gorgeous 4-star hotel, near Times Square, Empire State Building and Grand Central Station (about $201US/night). Over Christmas, Bryant Park also decks the halls with a giant Christmas tree and ice skating.

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LAKE PLACID, NEW YORK | Christmas Vacation Ideas in USA

Mirror Lake Inn Resort Spa, Lake Placid, cozy Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

Cozy Mirror Lake Inn Resort & Spa at Christmas. Photo credit: Booking.com

We’ll wrap up our best Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA with another incredible spot with plenty of holiday charm: Lake Placid, New York. And since it’s only 300 miles north of New York City, you could actually do both. (My husband would hate town-hopping at Christmas, but I’d LOVE it!)

Lake Placid is famous for hosting the Winter Olympics twice (1932 and 1980), one of only 10 cities that can make this claim. And even though Lake Placid is actually only a village, a big reason why it could host the Olympics twice is that they love their cold weather sports. So you KNOW they’ll also do Christmas right!

From mid-December to early January, Lake Placid gives you the perfect excuse to go walking in a winter wonderland with the Holiday Village Stroll. Take in special village events, skating, cute shops and live entertainment late into the evening. And there’s plenty to do right on Mirror Lake. Tobogganing, dog sledding, sleigh rides, more skating and even pickup hockey games, too, of course! That sounds SO perfect.

You have a few fantastic hotel options in Lake Placid. One you should definitely check out is Mirror Lake Inn Resort & Spa (around $399US/night). Couples love this 4-star resort, including private balconies overlooking the lake and mountains, full-service spa, indoor pool, sauna and proximity to local ski hills. There are multiple onsite restaurants, including one featuring live music on weekends. Price includes wifi and parking.

QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC | Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples in Canada

Quebec City, Canada Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Christmas in Quebec City. Photo credit: Hamit Pena from Unsplash.

Now we’ll head north of the USA border to my homeland of Canada. Fewer travel destinations in North America will give you the charm of traditions past with modern luxuries for couples at Christmas. As one of the oldest European cities in North America, Canada’s Quebec City has the only fortified city walls in the Americas north of Mexico. Quebec City’s cobblestone streets and European architecture will give you a little taste of Europe.

At Christmas, Quebec City takes on a magical ambience. Old Quebec transforms into a real-life Christmas village, with a German Christmas Market that runs from late November to December 23. Stroll Terrasse Dufferin for incredible views of the St. Lawrence River and the beautifully-decorated Rue du Petit-Champlain, with cobblestone streets and pretty little shops. Take a Christmas culinary class at the Grand Marché de Québec and enjoy the Christmas choir at Basilique-Cathédrale Notre-Dame-De-Québec that dates back to 1771. CNN ranked Quebec City as one of the world’s top 15 destinations for Christmas.

For your perfect Christmas vacation in Quebec City, book yourself in for the warm and elegant hospitality of Hotel Le Germain (around $200US/night). Set inside two historical buildings, this 4-star boutique-style hotel embraces the charm of the past with the comforts of today. Enjoy in-room massages, an espresso bar in the lounge and free wifi. It’s a 5-minute walk to historic Old Quebec. 

If you time it right, you can also spend a night or two at the famous Hotel de Glace ($359CA/night). It’s the only ice hotel in North America and opens January 2.

For a Quebec City Virtual Tour, visit 17 Best City Virtual Tours

NIAGARA FALLS, ONTARIO | Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in Canada

Niagara Falls, Canada Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Gorgeous sunrise over Niagara Falls, Canada. Photo credit: Sergey Pesterev from Unsplash.

The lovely Niagara Falls along the USA-Canada border is definitely on my travel bucket list. And at Christmas, it just gets better!

From November 14, 2020 to January 10, 2021, Niagara Falls will really up their holiday vibes with the Winter Festival of Lights. This might actually be the perfect year to finally take it in, since they likely won’t be getting their typical one million visitors from around the world. Fireworks, holiday activities, and more than 3 million lights along the Niagara Parkway, Dufferin Islands and the majestic Niagara Falls. SO FUN!

As you’d expect, there are plenty of big-name hotels near the falls. But for a more cozy holiday feel, check out the 4-star Sterling Inn & Spa (only around $100US/night!). Couples love this unassuming hotel, that oozes class as you enter. It features a full-service spa, onsite restaurant and bar, and either a 2-person spa bath or steam shower in every room. Many rooms also have a fireplace. It’s two blocks away from the pretty Queen Victoria Park with views of Niagara Falls, and about a 25-minute walk to Horseshoe Falls. This fantastic price includes wifi and breakfast.

Take a virtual tour of Niagara Falls from both the USA and Canada sides! Check out Best Virtual Tours of Waterfalls

CANADIAN ROCKY MOUNTAINS | Trip Ideas for Christmas 

Winter in Banff Canada Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Wintery views near Banff. Photo credit: Nora Photo from Unsplash.

The majestic Canadian Rocky Mountains is the perfect Christmas getaway for couples. It’s easy to get cozy and romantic while huddling in front of a wood-burning fireplace, sipping your favorite wine after a day of exploring a quaint mountain village or hitting the slopes. And guaranteed, these mountain villages and resorts will be decked out in holiday spirit.

We loved our romantic getaway to The Hidden Ridge Resort in Banff, Alberta Canada (about $226US/night). Enjoy the gorgeous view of the Canadian Rocky Mountains from the shared outdoor hot tubs. Spacious private apartment with balcony and wood-burning fireplace. Takes a little more planning, as there’s no restaurant onsite. But you have a full kitchen, free shuttle into town, and as much wood for your fireplace as you want!

For more luxury, book now for next Christmas vacation at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel or Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise! Unfortunately for us, they’re already sold out for Christmas 2020.

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WHISTLER, BRITISH COLUMBIA | Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in Canada

Whistler, Canada Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Whistler, Canada at Christmas. Photo credit: Roberto Nickson from Unsplash.

Another beautiful mountain getaway for couples at Christmas is Whistler, British Columbia. Whistler is a beautiful 2-hour drive north of Vancouver, but be prepared for wintery driving conditions at Christmas.

Once you arrive, cozy up next to a fireplace and settle in for a festive Christmas vacation! Known for its skiing and warming hospitality, Whistler only ups its game over the holidays. Think: serious twinkle lights, tubing, and of course the famous Fire & Ice Show at Skier’s Plaza. Every Sunday night in winter, Whistler’s Fire & Ice Show features the best local skiers and riders flipping through a blazing ring of fire, complete with fire spinners, a DJ and fireworks. Awesome!

You have plenty of big-name and independent hotel and apartment options, including the gorgeous 5-star Fairmont Chateau Whistler (around $780US/night). Every room features a sitting area with mountain or village views, with access to hot tubs, saunas, and Eucalyptus steam rooms. Plus, multiple restaurants, live entertainment in the lounge, indoor pool, full-service spa, and ski-in/ski-out access at Blackcomb Mountain. Price includes wifi.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA | Trip Ideas for Couples at Christmas in Canada

Vancouver, Canada Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Vancouver buildings overlook the port and mountains. Photo credit: Aditya Chinchure from Unsplash.

While I love Vancouver, British Columbia at any season, it’s especially magical over Christmas. Stanley Park lights up with more than one million lights, along with a miniature train ride to enjoy the views. And every night in December, you can head down to False Creek, Deep Cove or Port Moody for Vancouver’s Carol Ships Parade of Lights. They’ve been spreading holiday cheer since the 1960s!

There are so many beautiful, high-class hotels to choose from in Downtown Vancouver and along the waterfront. Sadly for us, my favorite hotel in Downtown Vancouver, the Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver, is fully booked over Christmas. So, I suggest heading to the waterfront.

And you can’t find a more epic place to stay in Vancouver over Christmas than the Fairmont Waterfront (an incredible $176US/night!). Couples love it, particularly for comfort, service, location and views. Features an onsite restaurant, hot tub, steam rooms, and heated outdoor pool with harbour and mountain views. If possible, request a corner room overlooking Stanley Park and the port for the best views of Vancouver at Christmas!  

5 Best EUROPEAN TOURS Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

Interested in seeing Europe this Christmas but don’t want the hassle of planning the trip? Lucky you! Here are five of my favorite group tours from Trafalgar for incredible Christmas getaway ideas for couples. 

Creating incredible group travel experiences since 1947, Trafalgar is the world’s most awarded travel brand. Trafalgar tours include dedicated travel directors, passional local specialists and hosts, and comfortable accommodations. My favorite thing about Trafalgar is its impressive customer reviews, both in terms of quantity of reviewers and quality of experiences. You can be confident your European Christmas getaway will be just as magical as you imagine.

EUROPEAN TOUR Christmas Vacation Idea for Couples

Paris Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Paris at Christmas. Photo credit: Bing Hao from Unsplash.

Take a 9-night group tour from London to Rome, stopping at other major European travel destinations on your way. Experience highlights of Paris, Lucerne, Venice and Florence, including plenty of free time for exploring on your own or taking advantage of optional excursions. For example, while staying in Florence you can take a dinner, wine and music tour through the Tuscan hills. Your tour cost includes all breakfasts and three dinners, as well as all accommodation and on-trip transportation.

Monday, December 21 to Wednesday, December 30, 2020
$2,233US per person

TOUR OF BRITAIN Christmas Getaway for Couples in Europe

London England Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

London Christmas lights. Photo credit: Jamie Davies from Unsplash.

For a low-stress highlights tour of Britain, take an 8-night group tour from London. As you make your way up to Edinburg, Scotland, you’ll see top travel destinations like Stonehenge, Bath, Liverpool and Lake District. Then on your way back to London, you’ll stop in York and Stratford-upon-Avon. Optional add-ons include tours of castles, ancient Scottish villages and Royal Yacht Britannia. Your tour cost includes all breakfasts and two dinners, as well as all accommodation and on-trip transportation.

Saturday, December 19 to Sunday, December 27
$1,758US per person

WONDERS OF ITALY TOUR Christmas Vacation for Couples in Europe

Venice Italy Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Spend Christmas in Venice! Photo credit: Federico Beccari from Unsplash.

Make your Christmas getaway perfect, with this 10-night Wonders of Italy tour from Rome. See the gorgeous Cinque Terre’s rugged and colorful coastline. Explore the old streets of Lucca, Florence and San Gimignano, and the canals of Venice. Tour includes the wonders of the Vatican, Ancient Rome and vineyard lunch in the rolling Chianti Hills. Add-ons include a gondola ride through Venice and dinner in Tuscany. Your tour cost includes all breakfasts, one lunch and four dinners, as well as all accommodation and on-trip transportation.

Sunday, December 20 to Wednesday, December 30, 2020
$2,399US per person

BEST OF BOHEMIA TOUR Christmas Vacation for Couples in Europe

Berlin Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Christmas in Berlin. Photo credit: Roman Kraft from Unsplash.

Spend your Christmas strolling the streets of the most beautiful and intriguing streets in Europe. This 13-night group tour takes you from Berlin to Frankfurt, wrapping east to see Warsaw, Krakow, Budapest, Vienna and Prague. Learn about this area’s WWII and Cold War past. Explore pretty castles, old churches and old streets. Add-ons include a farmhouse polka party and Danube dinner cruise. Your tour cost includes all breakfasts and seven dinners, as well as all accommodation and on-trip transportation.

Sunday, December 20 to Saturday, January 2
$3,350US per person

HIGHLIGHTS OF RUSSIA TOUR Christmas Getaway for Couples in Europe

Moscow Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Snowy Moscow at Christmas. Photo credit: Michael Parulava from Unsplash.

Walk in a winter wonderland on this 6-night group tour from St. Petersburg to Moscow. Visit famous fortresses, museums and Christmas markets, with optional add-ons including more in-depth historical tours, palace tours and a Russian ballet. Your tour cost includes all breakfasts and two dinners, as well as all accommodation and on-trip transportation.

Sunday, December 20 to Saturday, December 26, 2020
$1,591US per person

5 Best ADVENTURE Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

If your perfect Christmas vacation getaway is a little more rustic and adventurous than those listed above, this section is for you! 

Intrepid Group focuses on small group tours (anywhere from one traveler to 12) and authentic local experiences. Choose from their standard tour packages through Intrepid Travel, with basic transportation and accommodations typically including a homestay. Or, go for their luxury small group experiences through Peregrine, with minimum 4-star accommodations and private transportation. 

I traveled with Intrepid Travel through SE Asia and absolutely loved my experience. Everyone is welcome on Intrepid tours, including couples, singles, older and younger (minimum 15 years). If you’re interested in why I love Intrepid, and particularly the Intrepid Foundation, read more in my post, 5 Charities in SE Asia Tourists Should Visit.

All of the tours below are with Intrepid Travel and have excellent reviews.

THAILAND FOOD TOUR Christmas Vacation for Couples

If you love Thai food, then check out the Thailand Real Food Adventure cooking tour for your Christmas vacation getaway. It’s a 7-night small group tour from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, taking you to bustling and colorful markets on land and water, indulging in exotic fruits and aromatic dishes. Includes a village homestay and home-cooking with a family in Chiang Mai. Accommodation is simple but comfortable.

Price includes 6 breakfasts, 5 lunches and 4 dinners, plus transportation, accommodation, and tons of activities.

Saturday, December 19 to Saturday, December 26, 2020
$1,405US per person

Real Food Adventures

CYCLE VIETNAM TOUR Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples

If your perfect adventure Christmas vacation is more active, how about cycling through the beautiful countryside of Vietnam?! Intrepid Travel’s Cycle Vietnam tour is a 14-night coastal trip from Hanoi in North Vietnam to Ho Chi Minh City in South Vietnam. Accommodation is basic but comfortable, including one homestay and an overnight sleeper train. You have the option of renting an electric bike, to help with the 70-kilometers per day and mountain pass.

Price includes 13 breakfasts, 11 lunches and 2 dinners, plus transportation, accommodation and lots of activities.

Saturday, December 19, 2020 to Saturday, January 2, 2021
$2,285US per person

CENTRAL AMERICA ADVENTURE TOUR Getaway Ideas for Christmas

For your Christmas getaway, take an incredible 17-day journey through Central America. This small group tour from Intrepid Travel takes you through Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Experience the cloud forests, active volcanoes and shaggy palms on dark-sand beaches. There are lots of ways to take your experience up a few notches, like surfing in El Cuco and ziplining through the cloud forests of Monteverde.

Price includes 1 lunch, transportation, accommodation, and lots of activities.

Monday, December 21, 2020 to Wednesday, January 6, 2021
$1,895US per person

BEST AFRICA ADVENTURE TOURS Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

It’s pretty tough to pick only one of Intrepid Travel’s small group tours through Africa, but here are my two favorites happening over Christmas. 

First, Explore Southern Africa is a 17-night excursion through South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe. It starts and ends in Johannesburg, and takes you to incredible places like Kruger and Matobo National Parks, Khama Rhino Sanctuary, Victoria Falls, Makgadikgadi Salt Pans and Blyde River Canyon. Includes camping on a remote island and a 2-night village homestay in South Africa.

Price includes all breakfasts, 11 lunches and 14 dinners, plus transportation, simple (and memorable!) accommodation, and tons of activities.

Friday, December 18, 2020 to Monday, January 4, 2021
$3,030US per person

And second, Gorillas & Game Parks is 15 nights through “staggeringly beautiful” East African landscapes in search of unforgettable wildlife sightings. Start and end in Nairobi, and venture through national parks and reserves of Kenya and Uganda like Queen Elizabeth National Park and Masai Mara Reserve. Watch for lions, rhinos, chimps, antelopes, hippos and leopards. Help set up camp, and be ready for early starts to get those unforgettable wildlife interactions.

Price includes all breakfasts, 12 lunches and 13 dinners, plus transportation, accommodation (13 camping, with facilities), and lots of activities.

Saturday, December 19, 2020 to Sunday, January 3, 2021
$3,685US per person

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CYCLE TANZANIA TOURS Trip Ideas for Christmas

Okay, so I’m not quite done with Intrepid Travel tours in Africa! Cycle Tanzania is another fantastic, highly-rated option for couples over Christmas. It’s a 12-night round-trip bike ride from Arusha, Tanzania. Ride through the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater, down Great Rift Valley and through farm villages. Distances are mostly short but can be rough with hilly terrains. Stop to roast your own coffee and sleep among the stars. A support vehicle travels with you.

Price includes all breakfasts, 11 lunches and 10 dinners, plus transportation, accommodation (including 8 nights of camping), and lots of activities.

Sunday, December 13 to Friday, December 25, 2020
$3,630US per person

PERU ADVENTURE TOUR Getaway Ideas for Christmas

What could be MORE epic than an 8-night adventure to Machu Picchu over Christmas? Intrepid Travel’s Classic Peru takes you through mountains, jungles, seasides and great plains to experience Peru’s ancient Inca sites. You’ll start and end in Lima, enjoy both a guided tour and free time at the incredible Machu Picchu site, and enjoy the gorgeous Cusco and floating reed islands of Uros.

Price includes all breakfasts, 1 lunch and 1 dinner, plus transportation, accommodation (including a homestay on Lake Titicaca) and lots of activities.

Friday, December 18 to Saturday, December 26, 2020
$2,275US per person

OR

Friday, December 25, 2020 to Saturday, January 2, 2021
$2,365US per person

ANTARCTIC ADVENTURE TOUR Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples

For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, take the 10-night Antarctic Explorer to the end of the world! Starting and ending in Ushuaia, Argentina, you’ll travel through Drake Passage to the South Shetland Islands, and set foot on plains, mountains and beaches on this frozen winter wonderland. Spot whales, seals, rare birds, and diverse species of penguins. Take the true polar plunge in Antarctic waters, and enjoy optional activities like sea kayaking and polar ice climbing.

Price includes all breakfasts, 8 lunches and 9 dinners, plus a warm parka, waterproof boots and unlimited hot drinks while onboard. A doctor is on-board, should you need one.

Friday, December 18 to Monday, December 28, 2020
$13,995US+ per person (price depends on suite)

MOUNT EVEREST BASE CAMP TOUR for Christmas

We’ll wrap up the best adventure Christmas vacation ideas for couples with another cold but incredible experience: Mount Everest. Well, not that you’ll actually be climbing Mount Everest … that would be crazy! But you will be trekking through the mighty Himalayan Mountains. 

Intrepid Travel’s 14-night Everest Base Camp Trek starts and ends in Kathmandu, Nepal. Ditch wifi (well, high-speed wifi) for tiny teahouses, alpine lakes and watching the sunrise over Everest. Price includes transportation and accommodation (including 12 nights in a tea house); no meals are included.

Friday, December 18, 2020 to Friday, January 1, 2021
$1,810US per person

5 Best CRUISE Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

Colorful lights on cruise ship deck, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Spend Christmas cruising rivers, seas or oceans! Photo credit: Miguel Angel Sanz from Unsplash.

It’s pretty tough to beat a cruise when considering low-stress Christmas vacation ideas for couples. Cruises offer the benefits of an all-inclusive resort with incredible views, luxurious spas and unbeatable entertainment. Dine in an elegant dining room, one of their many gourmet restaurants or on your private terrace overlooking the ocean. 

The sky’s nearly the limit when choosing your perfect cruise getaway for Christmas! Cruise for 3 nights, or more than 15. Enjoy a river cruise, a Caribbean or Mediterranean cruise, or cross the ocean blue. 

Booking a cruise through CruiseDirect gets you the guaranteed best price, no booking fees, flexible payment plans AND access to a cruise expert to answer all your questions. This is especially helpful if you’ve never cruised before, and makes for a low-stress way to book that cruise Christmas vacation idea for couples. I can personally recommend the 5-star service and experience we had with Royal Caribbean, so I’ll highlight their options below.

Below are five fantastic cruise Christmas vacation ideas for couples, including more familiar travel destinations like the Caribbean to less familiar along European rivers. 

*Book by the end of August to get 60% off for the second guest, plus other deals like prepaid gratuities, wifi and drink packages. 

CruiseDirect

BAHAMA Christmas Cruise Getaway

Let’s start with a Bahama cruise Christmas vacation for couples. Doesn’t that just sound wonderful?! Both Royal Caribbean and Disney Lines offer short 3- and 4-night cruises immediately before, during and after Christmas, including New Year’s. Plus, Royal Caribbean also has a 7- and 8-night cruise either over Christmas or New Year’s.

Book by the end of August with Royal Caribbean to get 60% off for the second guest, plus savings up to 81%. Starting at $259US per person. 

CARIBBEAN Christmas Cruise for Couples

How does Christmas in the Caribbean sound? Royal Caribbean offers a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise and 11-night South Caribbean cruise over Christmas. Both Royal Caribbean and Disney offer a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise leaving on Boxing Day.

Book by the end of August with Royal Caribbean to get 60% off for the second guest, plus savings up to 65%. Starting at $1,244US per person.

Click here for Honeymoon Cruises!

EUROPEAN River Cruise for Couples at Christmas 

How about a river cruise through Europe? AmaWaterways and Viking River Cruises offer 7 to 11 night river cruises in Europe over Christmas or shortly before or after. Choose from a variety of itineraries to visit your favorite European destinations! 

How about a 7-day cruise from Nuremburg, Germany to Budapest, Hungary? Along the way, stop at Regensburg and Passau in Germany, and Melk, Wachau Valley and Vienna in Austria. Or, make a loop from Paris, including sailing on the Seine River. And then there’s a sailing from Basel, Switzerland up to Amsterdam, Netherlands. SO many choices! Starting at $1,999US per person.

SOUTH PACIFIC Christmas Cruise Idea for Couples

Royal Caribbean and Princess each have two cruises leaving from Australia, either over or right after Christmas. Choose departures from Perth, Sydney and Brisbane. Both Sydney and Brisbane cruise up to the islands of New Caledonia and Vanuatu or Fiji. But the Perth departure stops in Indonesia and way over in Amelia Island, Florida, United States before returning to Perth. 

SOUTH AMERICA Cruise Idea for Christmas Getaway

For Christmas vacation cruises in South America, we move over to Expedia to get a LOT of options! Azamara, Costa, MSC and Norweigan have 7-15 night Christmas cruises. You have lots of departure options, including Buenos Aires, Argentina and Itajai, Maceio, Santos and Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Plus, you can also take 20-30 night cruises with Holland America (departs from Buenos Aires) and Oceania Cruises (departs from Lima).  

Some cruises have sales up to 69% off or deals like prepaid gratuities, onboard credit or drink packages. Starting at $459US per person.

7 Best LUXURY BEACH Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

If you love the idea of a warm Christmas getaway but want more beach time, you’ll love this section. These best luxury beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples treat you to the best of the best for exquisite views, gourmet meals and plenty of pampering. 

All of the hotels below have excellent customer ratings on Google, Trip Advisor and Booking.com. As you can imagine, these amazing spots book up quickly, so book soon.

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SANTA MONICA Beach Christmas Getaway for Couples in USA

Casa del Mar, Santa Monica Beach, Los Angeles beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

Casa del Mar on Santa Monica Beach. Photo credit: Booking.com.

How does Christmas in Santa Monica sound? Casa Del Mar is a 5-star luxury resort and spa right on Santa Monica Beach. Every room has a hydrotherapy spa tub and floor-to-ceiling windows, some with an ocean view.

You’ll have plenty to keep you busy and in the festive spirit! Casa Del Mar has a comfortable pool area, two on-site restaurants, and live music on Sunday afternoons. It’s a five minute walk from Santa Monica Pier, with easy access to Venice Beach and more along The Strand cycle path. Plus, you don’t even need to fly overseas for this luxury beach Christmas getaway! Price around $475 per night.

You may also like: Guide to Cycling The Strand

FLORIDA KEYS Luxury Beach Christmas Vacation Idea for Couples in USA

H2O Suites Florida Keys, beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

H2O Suites at Florida Keys. Photo credit: Booking.com.

If you’d prefer a luxury beach vacation off the east coast of USA, Florida Keys is a fabulous Christmas vacation idea for couples. H2O Suites is a chic, adults-only 4-star hotel with a year-round outdoor rooftop pool and terrace. All rooms have a sitting area and some have a private pool.

Rent a bike to explore nearby Duval Street, Southernmost Point and, of course, beaches! Guests love Key West at Christmas. Price around $395US per night.

ST. LUCIA Luxury Beach Getaway for Christmas

Ladera Resort at St. Lucia, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Ladera Resort at St. Lucia. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Swing with your toes in your private pool, overlooking the gorgeous World Heritage Piton Mountains and Caribbean Sea! Ladera Resort is a 5-star resort in St. Lucia featuring open-air suites with natural stonework, cut tile, hardwood floors and furniture crafted at the resort. The on-site restaurant serves authentic Caribbean cuisine from fresh local ingredients, and the bar offers live evening entertainment with its exquisite views. 

Enjoy on-site wine tastings in the wine cellar, in-room massages, cooking demonstrations, Saturday morning market tours, and concierge services for various island activities like sailing and zipline. Price around $1,050US per night and includes shuttle to Sugar Beach, wifi and parking.

TURKS AND CAICOS Luxury Beach Trip Ideas for Couples

Sailrock Resort at Turks and Caicos, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Sailrock Resort at Turks and Caicos. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Another spot guaranteed for luxury beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples is Turks and Caicos. One of the best-rated 5-star hotels in Turks and Caicos is Sailrock Resort, located in South Caicos. Enjoy the incredible view from the hot tub and terrace, restaurant or bar. All rooms are air-conditioned and some have a sitting area. For some activity, use the free bikes to explore the area, which is known for excellent snorkeling, or book a massage, explore the island by jeep or go fishing.

Price is around $450US per night and includes breakfast, wifi, parking, island-hop flight and airport transportation. It looks like you must book four nights.

TAHITI Luxury Beach Getaway Idea for Christmas

InterContinental Tahiti Resort, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

InterContinental Tahiti Resort. Photo credit: Booking.com.

How about a Christmas getaway in beautiful Tahiti? InterContinental Tahiti Resort is an excellent 4-star resort, with overwater bungalows for direct access to the perfectly turquoise lagoon. On-land rooms have a private balcony with lagoon or tropical garden views. You’ll have access to a diving center with free snorkeling gear and canoes, open-air aquarium, tennis courts and spa. The on-site overwater restaurant is near the sand-bottomed pool, with gourmet meals and fine French wines. 

Five minutes from the airport and 10 minutes from Papeete center museums, shops and nightclubs. Price is around $351US per night and includes wifi and parking.

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FIJI Luxury Beach Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples

Likuliku Lagoon Resort in Fiji, Christmas vacation ideas for couples

Likuliku Lagoon Resort in Fiji. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Fiji is another famous luxury beach vacation idea for couples wanting to retreat. For an all-inclusive luxury retreat, book your stay at the 5-star adults-only Likuliku Lagoon Resort. It’s everything you imagine, with overwater bungalows and gorgeous on-land bures with a private pool. Enjoy the private sandy beach, pool and bar, plus activities in the area, like snorkeling and windsurfing. Price is around $1,189US per night and includes all meals and wifi. It sells out quickly, so book soon!

If you’d rather not have an all-inclusive, another exceptionally-rated luxury adults-only resort in Fiji is Tokoriki Island Resort. Tokoriki Island Resort has a private sandy beach, two restaurants, open-air bar, pool, tennis court and spa. Villas have a private outdoor shower, hammocks and private pool with an incredible view. Price is around $671US.

HAWAII Luxury Beach Christmas Vacation Ideas for Christmas in USA

Kukui'ula Resort Kauai, Hawaii beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples in USA

Kukui’ula Resort in Kauai. Photo credit: Booking.com.

We’ll wrap up this section of luxury beach Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Hawaii, a personal favorite! Which island you choose depends on the experience you’re looking for.

  • Kauai, the “Garden Isle,” is rugged and dramatic.
  • Oahu, the “Heart of Hawaii,” has the famous Waikiki beach of Honolulu, legendary surf towns and Pearl Harbor.
  • Maui has a small-town vibe, with the famous Road to Hana and Haleakala volcano.
  • And Hawaii, nearly twice as big as all other Hawaiian islands together, is home to massive volcanoes and the incredible Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

If you dream of living on a golf course, you’ll love The Lodge at Kukui’ula on Kauai. It’s a beautiful 5-star golf resort with private cottages overlooking the course, with outdoor showers and comfortable sitting areas. While not out on the course, enjoy two pools, a restaurant, bar, spa and a very sophisticated shared space with a fireplace and sauna. Price is around $1,439US per night and includes wifi and parking. It books quickly! 

Now, here’s a personal recommendation for Maui: the luxurious Hotel Wailea. It’s a gorgeous 5-star adults-only resort nestled among a lush tropical garden on the hills above Wailea. All suites have comfortable sitting areas, deck views of the garden or ocean, and deep soaking tubs. Enjoy the quiet pool area, beautiful spa and bar. Two high-end restaurants are on-site, that also provide a picnic basket to enjoy with beach services at Wailea Beach. Price is about $1,067US per night and includes wifi and parking.

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7 Best LUXURY EUROPEAN Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples 

For the perfect blend of a traditional holiday experience with the elegance and charm of Europe, here are seven luxury European Christmas vacation ideas for couples. Each of these trip ideas for Christmas focus on exceptional accommodations. They’re either European travel destinations on their own merit or put you close to top tourist sights. All surround you in luxury, and all have excellent guest ratings.

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ST. PETERSBURG Luxury Trip Idea for Christmas in Europe

Corinthia St. Petersburg, Russia luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Corinthia St. Petersburg. Photocredit: Corinthia.

Whisk yourselves away to the magical winter wonderland of St. Petersburg, Russia at Christmas. Indulge in a food tour of culinary delights, a tasting tour of local craft beer, and incredible palaces, cathedrals and museums. And warm, elegant accommodations.

Step into the grand luxury of the Corinthia St. Petersburg. Enjoy a welcome drink and relax in the plush surroundings of your room. Vast windows of the Imperial Restaurant overlook Nevsky Prospect as you’re charmed with its fresh, modern take on celebrated dishes and ingredients. Or, relax at the elegant Cafe Vienna or Lobby Bar. Executive rooms and suites include access to the Executive Club Lounge, with breakfast, snacks and drinks throughout the day.

Now more than 30% OFF when you book 3 consecutive nights! Valid through to the end of 2020.

PRAGUE Luxury Christmas Getaway for Couples in Europe

Corinthia Prague, luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

The luxurious Corinthia Prague. Photo credit: Corinthia.com.

If you’re looking for the ultimate in romantic Christmas vacation ideas for couples, Prague is it. The City of a Hundred Spires winds along the shores of Vltava River, rich in history, elegance and beauty.

During the Christmas season, you’ll find arguably the prettiest Christmas market in Europe at Old Town Square, with a giant Christmas tree, nativity, live music and carol concerts setting the festive vibe. For New Year’s fireworks, head down to Old Town Square, Wenceslas Square or the banks of the Vltava River for the best views.

For breathtaking views above the spires and a modern luxury experience, head over to the Corinthia Prague. Chandeliers, marble and art deco greet you, and all rooms grace you with incredible panoramic views over this beautiful city. Executive rooms and suites enjoy exclusive access to the Executive Lounge, with breakfast, meals, complimentary drinks and snacks. What makes the Corinthia Prague extra luxurious is its grand spa on the 26th floor, with incredible views over the Vltava River, Prague Castle and Old Town Square. 

Now more than 30% OFF when you book 3 consecutive nights! Plus extra 5% savings, free wifi and other benefits if you book online. Valid through to the end of 2020.

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SWISS Luxury Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples in Europe

Burgenstock Resort Lucerne, Switzerland luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Incredible views from Burgenstock Resort near Lucerne. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Lucerne, Switzerland might just be my #1 favorite place in ALL of Europe. Incredible architecture nestled along gorgeous mountain ranges and overlooking pristine lakes. Delicious chocolate and friendly locals. It’s the perfect Christmas getaway for couples.

For the ultimate in luxury resort and alpine spa, book your stay at Bürgenstock Hotel & Alpine Spa. Bürgenstock Hotel & Alpine Spa is a five-star resort hotel on the Bürgenberg mountain, 450 meters above Lake Lucerne and with picturesque lake and mountain views. Take advantage of the resort’s incredible facilities, including spa with multiple pools, several restaurants with terraces, nearby golf course, hikes and the Hammetschwand lift, Europe’s highest outdoor lift that takes you to the mountain peak. The Bürgenstock shuttle boat to Lucerne and funicular lift are included with your stay.

Another incredibly luxurious Christmas vacation getaway for couples near Lucerne is Park Hotel Vitznau. With its own private beach right on Lake Lucerne, two restaurants and spa, Park Hotel Vitznau transports you to a world of exquisite elegance. Bask in the indoor and outdoor pools, sip on fine wines from around the world, and rest in the comforts of your luxuriously-appointed room. All with incredible lake and mountain views.

VENICE Luxury Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in Europe

The Gritti Palace Venice, Italy luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

Elegant luxury of The Gritti Palace in Venice. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Spend your Christmas getaway floating on the Grand Canal in Venice! Admire elegant decorations shimmering above the water. Browse Christmas markets. And enjoy a traditional 4-course fish dinner before midnight mass at Saint Mark’s Basilica.

A top-rated luxury hotel in Venice is The Gritti Palace. Set in a former noble residence on Venice’s Grand Canal, The Gritti Palace features luxurious rooms with antiques, Murano glass and views of the Santa Maria delle Salute Church, Grand Canal or city of Venice. Enjoy your breakfast under crystal chandeliers and meals from fresh local ingredients. The location is excellent, near La Fenice Opera House and St. Mark’s Square. 

Another luxurious option on the Grand Canal is Palazzo Venart Luxury Hotel. Refined elegant decor, 2-Michelin-starred restaurant, and views of the Grand Canal make this a perfect stay for couples. 

MALTA Luxury Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in Europe

Corinthia Malta, luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

The luxurious Corinthia Malta. Photo credit: Corinthia.com.

Just south of Sicily, Italy lies the 3-island nation of Malta. Spend your Christmas getaway in Europe watching the waves while enjoying afternoon tea. Explore temple ruins and villages, and then relax over famous Malta wine.

During the Christmas season, Malta comes alive with candlelit carol concerts, feasts and choirs. And New Year’s celebrations include an evening of food, drinks and live entertainment at Valletta waterfront, culminating in an impressive fireworks display over the harbour.

Choose from the Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa Malta right in San Anton for a grand palace experience. Or, the Corinthia St. George’s Bay Malta for a luxury resort experience.

Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa Malta is across from the famous San Anton Palace and gardens, and surrounded by lush gardens of its own. With grand marble halls and spa, you’ll feel like you’re in your very own palace on your magical Maltese Christmas vacation. The Villa Corinthia serves all-day brunch, afternoon tea, cocktails and Far Eastern-inspired dinner on the terrace. Rooms are elegant and spacious, most with a private balcony.

Enjoy up to 50% savings with our promo code! Offer available until the end of 2020.

At Corinthia St. George’s Bay Malta, every room comes with a private balcony and a view. The Grand Suite comes with three balconies and two bathrooms! While at Corinthia St. George, you can indulge in total relaxation by the pool, in the spa, or at sea. Enjoy plenty of restaurant options from casual bistros and sports diner to the ultimate in gourmet, afternoon tea and cocktails. You can order directly from your lounger. Perfect!

Now save 30%, plus 10% off your Air Malta flight! Offer available until the end of 2020.

BARCELONA Luxury Christmas Getaway Ideas for Couples in Europe

Hotel Serras Barcelona, luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

The luxurious Hotel Serras in Barcelona. Photo credit: Booking.com.

Oh, romantic Barcelona. Graceful architecture and Spanish culture will sweep you away on your perfect Christmas getaway. Barcelona has more than its share of gorgeous, 5-star luxury hotels with excellent ratings. Here are my two favorites.

Hotel The Serras is a five-star luxury boutique hotel in the heart of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, right across from the sea. Its location is perfect, being steps away from Picasso Museum, Santa María del Mar Cathedral, and Plaça Reial Square. Modern elegance characterizes this historic hotel, where the famous painter Pablo Picasso got his start in 1896. Take in pretty city views from your private balcony and relax in luxurious comforts of your soundproofed room. Guests LOVE the 1-Michelin-starred restaurant, cozy library bar, and stylish lounge and infinity pool on the rooftop terrace. Enjoy airport pick-up, limousine, concierge and valet parking services.

Another gorgeous five-star luxury hotel in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter is Monument Hotel. Rooms are warm and elegant, with soundproofing and most with a balcony with city views. It’s also in a fantastic location, located on the fashionable Paseo de Gracia and steps away from Gaudi’s masterpieces Casa Battló and La Pedrera, Plaza Catalunya and Las Ramblas. Enjoy the 3-Michelin-starred restaurant and spa. Monument Hotel is set in a 19-century architectural jewel with Specialty Monument status, as the former house of wealthy industrialist Enric Batllo.

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PARIS Luxury Christmas Vacation Ideas for Couples in Europe

Hotel Splendid Royal Paris, luxury Christmas vacation ideas for couples in Europe

The luxurious Hotel Splendid Royal in Paris. Photo credit: Booking.com.

This list can’t be complete without a luxury Christmas vacation idea for couples in Paris. Festive lights adorn some of the most iconic tourist attractions in the world, including Galeries Lafayette’s massive Christmas tree. Sip on mulled wine as you watch the river flow by. Go ice skating. Indulge in French delicacies and chocolate. Perfect!

For the ultimate in cozy luxury Christmas vacation in Paris, book your stay in Hotel Splendide Royal Paris – Relais & Châteaux. Hotel Splendide Royal Paris – Relais & Châteaux is tastefully decorated, with comfortable beds and a sitting area in all rooms. Enjoy a variety of breakfast options at its refined and inventive onsite restaurant. It’s near the Champs-Elysées, Opéra Garnier, Tuileries Garden and Orsay Museum. For a real balcony and Eiffel tower view, book the Suite Elysée.

Hôtel Maison Souquet is certainly a character boutique hotel, and is like stepping into a luxurious historical Parisian novel. Set in an exclusive Parisian townhouse, Hôtel Maison Souquet is decorated in a Belle Époque theme with rich cordova leather furnishings and intricate wood paneling. Enjoy cocktails in the lounge, a stroll through the winter garden, and a private swim in the pool and Turkish bath. Spa services are also available. Hôtel Maison Souquet is located in the Montmartre district, right by Moulin Rouge and easy walking distance to Montmartre. 

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