Video: Real: Aspen

Kinga Philipps exposes the different sides and issues associated to this popular ski resort destination.
schegi/ iStock/ Thinkstock
schegi/ iStock/ Thinkstock

Bundle Up and Venture Out

Whether you like to embrace the season by hitting the ski slopes or escape it by heading off to someplace tropical, winter can be a great time to travel. You may even find fewer crowds and cheaper flights. But if you choose a cold-weather destination, you’ll need a good coat, hat, gloves and scarf!

Get Inspired

Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort - Lake Tahoe
Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort

Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort

Hit the slopes at Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort. With 65 trails, and 121 miles of skiable terrain, the property is the largest cross-country ski resort in all of North America. Find it in Soda Springs, CA, roughly 45 minutes from Lake Tahoe. 960 1280

Daphne Hougard  

MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa

MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa

For a little gambling fun, head to MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa. Nestled on the Nevada side of South Lake Tahoe, the resort doubles as a casino and health spa, where you can indulge in saunas, whirlpools and eucalyptus steam rooms. The resort is also a great place to catch a live show. 960 1280

MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa   

Paddle Boarding on Lake Tahoe

Paddle Boarding on Lake Tahoe

Come summer, rent a stand up paddleboard and paddle around the perimeter of Lake Tahoe. You’ll get in some good exercise: The lake is the 27th largest lake (by volume) in the world, with a perimeter that stretches 72 miles long. 960 1280

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Burger Me

Burger Me

Grab a burger and onion rings at Burger Me. This family-owned-and-operated burger joint in nearby Truckee, CA, serves everything fresh and made to order. Hearty options include the “Dirty Bird” (made with 5-oz. free-range chicken) and a good ole hamburger, except this one grass-fed, with no antibiotics. Fast food just got a little healthier. 960 1280

Larry Miller, flickr  

Hiking (Tahoe Rim Trail)

Hiking (Tahoe Rim Trail)

Lace up your boots for a hike along Tahoe Rim Trail, a 165-mile-long hiking trail that forms a loop around Lake Tahoe. Other great hikes include Bayview Trail, a 4- to 5-mile-long trail for experienced hikers, southwest of Lake Tahoe; and Eagle Falls Trail, a family-friendly, 1.5-mile hike in Tahoma, CA, located right by Lake Tahoe. 960 1280

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Methow Valley, Washington
Washington's Methow Valley

Washington's Methow Valley

Take ski-in/ski-out lodging to a new level and experience the European tradition of hut-to-hut skiing in northern Washington’s Methow Valley, near the US-Canadian border. For novices or those more familiar with its downhill sibling, cross-country skiing is a thrill in its own right, and <a href="http://www.sunmountainlodge.com/" target="_blank">Methow Valley</a> is home to more than 125 miles of tranquil, well-marked trails. If indoor plumbing is a must after a long day on the trails, you may want to trade camping for other mountain accommodations, such as the Sun Mountain Lodge, where you won’t sacrifice the scenery or vast view of the stars. 960 1280

Ty Milford / Getty Images  

Bahamas

Bahamas

If blue skies and tan lines seem like a distant memory, a quick Caribbean vacation may be what you’re craving. Consider the Bahamas, a chain of more than 700 islands, cays and reefs, which will feel downright balmy compared with East Coast temps. This year-round island paradise just off the Florida coast is in its peak season, allowing you to choose to splurge on a luxurious resort with all the trappings at Atlantis Paradise Island or escape to one of the more remote Out Islands. 960 1280

Daniel Korzeniewski / iStock / Getty Images  

Miami

Miami

Every winter, the promise of sunny, 72-degree weather beckons visitors to Miami. Beyond the requisite Cuban sandwich in Little Havana, in Little Havana, foodies will find memorable cuisine at the annual, star-studded South Beach Wine and Food Festival. With high season in full swing, you’ll see many a scantily clad European spend the nights dining at 9 p.m. and traipsing along Ocean Drive and sleep the days away in cabanas or on a bed of soft, white sand — that is how Miami is meant to be enjoyed. 960 1280

Neilson Barnard / Getty Images  

New Orleans

New Orleans

There are good times to be had in New Orleans year-round, but things get kicked up a notch when Mardi Gras and college bowl games roll through town. Not that you need added reasons to visit — snacking on beignets at Café du Monde and listening to jazz on Bourbon Street should be reason enough to check into the elegant Hotel Mazarin in the French Quarter. 960 1280

Robyn Beck / AFP / Getty Images  

Orlando, Florida

Orlando, Florida

When you think of Orlando, you think of theme parks — and for good reason. It is home to Universal Orlando and Walt Disney World, each with myriad parks and resorts. Whether it’s a special parade or fireworks display over the holidays or a much-needed break from frozen temperatures back home, there are countless reasons why winter is an ideal time to visit. The period just after the holidays and before spring break is, in particular, the least crowded and will have the shortest lines. 960 1280

Songquan Deng / iStock / Getty Images  

Paris

Paris

Paris is its most Parisian in the springtime wintertime. While the chilly temps keep throngs of tourists at bay, put on your rose-colored glasses and take advantage of cheaper rates for an extra-long-weekend stay — to make up for the travel time — at hotels such as the intimate (and conveniently located, near the Louvre) Hotel Relais Saint-Germain. Enjoy a leisurely breakfast over café au lait and a chocolate croissant (clichés for a reason) before strolling along the light-strung Champs-Elysees and taking advantage of the semiannual soldes, or sales. Longchamp or Hermès at 50% off, n’est-ce pas? 960 1280

Xavier Richer / Photononstop / Getty Images  

Phoenix/Scottsdale

Phoenix/Scottsdale

Sun worshippers, take heart; you’ll find your oasis in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. With more than 300 days of sunshine a year, the Greater Phoenix area has earned the nickname “Valley of the Sun” honestly. Most come to hit the links, as the area is dotted with more than 200 golf courses. But the Desert Botanical Garden is another year-round highlight. Like a relic of the Wild West, Old Town Scottsdale lures tourists, but most visitors will value a relaxing stay filled with shopping, golfing and lounging at the spa. 960 1280

Brent Winebrenner / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images  

Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City

For those who check ski conditions on the daily, you don’t have to leave the country for world-class skiing. Get thee on a direct flight to Salt Lake City, and you’ll be minutes from Utah’s premier ski village of Park City. At the site of the 2002 Olympics, you’ll find black diamonds fit for the US ski team, which has made Park City its permanent home base. Stroll along the main street, and you’ll see that it’s not lacking in century-old buildings, twinkling lights or exceptional restaurants. 960 1280

Adam Barker  

Savannah, Georgia

Savannah, Georgia

While chilly during the winter months, visitors will find Southern charm in spades in Savannah. The low-season prices also mean it’s a great time to splurge on a romantic Valentine’s stay at the Green Palm Inn. Indulge in comfort food, including cheesy grits, fried green tomatoes and Lowcountry cuisine, as well as cocktails. Thanks to lenient open-container laws, you can take that hot toddy to go as you stroll through the historic district downtown. 960 1280

Daniela Duncan / Moment / Getty Images  

Multnomah Falls
Multnomah Falls

Multnomah Falls

Multnomah Falls, Oregon
After an ice storm, freezing cold water continues to plummet an impressive 620 feet into the Columbia River. Visitors can take in the spectacular view from the Benson Bridge, built in 1914 for scenes like this one.
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Getty  

Yellowstone

Yellowstone

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Snow coats the ground around the Belgian Pool, a hot spring in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park. You can look, but don't get too close! Originally named Oyster Spring, the natural wonder was renamed after a Belgian visitor who fell into it in 1929 and suffered fatal thermal burns.
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Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
A snowy shot of Bryce Canyon's hoodoos, tall rock structures that form from water, wind and ice erosion.
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St. Joseph Lighthouse

St. Joseph Lighthouse

St. Joseph Lighthouses, Michigan
The St. Joseph Lighthouses attempt to withstand the elements on frozen Lake Michigan. The 2 lighthouses were built in the early 1900s, and the outer light is one of the oldest on the lake.
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Yosemite

Yosemite

Yosemite National Park, California
The setting sun illuminates El Capitan monolith in frozen Yosemite National Park. A favorite for advanced rock climbers, "The Chief" is the world's largest solid granite block, rising an awe-inspiring 3,500 feet above the ground.
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Coyote Butts

Coyote Butts

Coyote Buttes, Arizona
Jack Frost puts an icy touch on "The Wave," an incredible sandstone rock formation in Coyote Buttes North, a section of the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness. In order to preserve the spectacular sight, only 20 hikers (with permits) per day are allowed to visit.
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Rennett Stowe through Flickr Creative Commons

Rennett Stowe through Flickr Creative Commons

Joshua Tree National Park, California
The sun rises over snow-clad Joshua trees in California's Mojave Desert.
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Best Destinations for Winter

Travel Channel Winter

Hottest Towns for Winter Sports

See our picks for some of the best towns around the world for winter sports.

The town of La Parva, Chile, is a winter sports hot spot in the Andes Mountains. 960 1280

  

A quiet night on the streets of Quebec City, Canada. 960 1280

  

Whistler Village is a major stop for boarders and skiers in British Columbia, Canada. 960 1280

  

Alpine chalets on a steep hill in Chamonix, Switzerland. 960 1280

  

A skiers' paradise above the town of Breckenridge, Colorado. 960 1280

  

The Lucerne, Switzerland, skyline with the famous Chapel Bridge. 960 1280

  

Rows of deckchairs at the top of a mountain in the ski resort of Courchevel, France. 960 1280

  

Some serious ski slopes in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada. 960 1280

  

Sous-le Fort Street and Château Frontenac in Quebec, Canada. 960 1280

  

Tubing Hill Recreation Winter Wonderland in Vail, Colorado. 960 1280