Where to Travel in December

It's not too late to plan the perfect vacation! See our list of the seven best places to visit this December and prepare to spend the last few weeks of 2019 leaning into the holiday season or living it up on the beach.

Keep in mind: Price and stock could change after publish date, and we may make money from these links.
November 07, 2019

Saving some of your PTO for the end of the year honestly isn't such a bad idea. If you play your cards right (read: take our advice) and travel in the weeks before December 20, you'll actually find affordable plane tickets and hotel rooms for a variety of bucket list-level destinations.

Best of all? We've already figured out some of the details for you. Whether you'd like to spend the last few weeks of 2019 getting in the holiday spirit or getting lost on a beach, these are the trips you'll want to book immediately.

4-Star hotels start at $107 per night

For a taste of "Christmas Time in the City" without the palm-sweating price tags or crowds, skip New York and head to Chicago. The Windy City is just as magical this time of year, with festive window displays, decorated trees and theater marquees sparkling across the entire city. To see for yourself, just take a bus tour that showcases Chicago's architecture and its holiday lights all in one ride. Then, go ice-skating at Maggie Daley Park or enjoy a cup of hot cocoa at the Christkindlmarket. While you're in town, you'll also want to fill up on deep-dish pizza and craft cocktails and visit the Hancock Center's observation deck at sunset.

Browse Top Chicago Hotels
4-Star hotels start at $106 per night

Nashville in December isn't a bad idea, either. Though you probably won't get much of a "White Christmas" (given that the weather hovers between 50 and 60 degrees), you can still participate in a variety of fun, seasonal activities. For example, you can catch the city's annual Christmas Parade on December 7, enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride through downtown and see the incredible Holiday Lights at Cheekwood Estate and Gardens. All that's just on top of checking out major attractions like The Johnny Cash Museum, The Grand Ole Opry and Prince's Hot Chicken. And whatever you do, don't leave without visiting Gaylord Opryland (pictured above), where millions of holiday lights and two million pounds of ice transform the hotel into a winter wonderland every year.

Browse Top Nashville Hotels
Average nightly price is $293

Here are three very good reasons to delay your trip to Honolulu until December: You can pay your respects to all those who died in the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, you can hike Diamond Head with next to no crowds and you can see humpbacks swim in the middle of whale-watching season. The weather's warm year-round, so you'll also have plenty of opportunities to lay out on the beach and build up an enviable winter tan.

Browse Top Honolulu Rentals
Average nightly price is $114

Escape teeth-chattering temperatures, take a dip in some hot springs and get your fill of traditional Mexican food in San Miguel de Allende. This colonial-era city is perfect for visiting in December, as the weather's warm with very little rainfall. You can visit El Jardin, the tree-lined main square, take a Tacos and Tequila Food Tour (hello!), go horseback riding and even see Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel — the city's most recognizable landmark — all lit up at night.

Browse Top San Miguel de Allende Rentals
4-Star hotels start at $102 per night

Picture cobblestone streets, gingerbread-like buildings, chocolate shops and charming Christmas markets, and you'll understand exactly why you should visit Bruges this December. With its medieval architecture and canals, this Belgian city looks like something straight out of a fairytale, especially in the winter. See for yourself with a cruise on the canal, or by climbing the 366 steps up the top of The Belfry Tower, which overlooks Grote Markt. Afterwards, you can sample hot chocolate and crisp waffles, or shop hand-made lace and ornaments from local artists.

Browse Top Bruges Hotels
4-Star hotels start at $107 per night

Everyone knows there's nothing more enchanting than Paris under a blanket of snow. Spend your holiday taking in famous sights like the Eiffel Tower, Ponte Alexandre III and Arc du Triomphe without the usual crowds, and enjoy having the Louvre and Musee d'Orsay all to yourself. You could also see the grand holiday displays at Galeries Lafayette or even take a pastry class with a local chef. Since you're so close, you may as well make the day trip to Mont Saint-Michel, a breathtaking island near Normandy.

Browse Top Paris Hotels
4-Star hotels start at $21 per night

If you'd rather leave your heavy coat and boots at home, then book a trip to Siem Reap, Cambodia. December is one of the best months to visit this resort town, as the weather is usually warm and sunny, with temperatures that average to about 70 degrees. We suggest staying at Mane Village Suites, where $67 a night will get you a shuttle to and from the airport, air conditioning, free WiFi and access to an outdoor pool (pictured). You'll also be within walking distance to Angkor Wat, the breathtaking temple pictured on Cambodia's flag.

Browse Top Siem Riep Hotels

Next Up

Who Knows NYC Best?

Man v. Food’s Casey Webb matches wits (and appetites) with Food Network’s Vivian Chan to find out who has the real 411 on their home city in Man v. NYC. Ready to judge their throwdown?

11 Twin Peaks Locations You Can Visit in Real Life

Where to find a damn fine cup of coffee and more.Keep in mind: Price and stock could change after publish date, and we may make money from these links.

9 NYC Restaurants You Have to Try

A Travel Channel editor picks her high-end to affordable favorites in New York City right now.

12 Family-Friendly NYC Restaurants

Hit up these fun, food-forward spots for good eats for the entire family.

5 Family Adventures in Hawaii

Put the phones down and make memories to last a lifetime with these thrilling activities on the island of Hawaii.

7 Things You Can't Miss on Kauai

As one of the oldest islands in Hawaii's chain, this lush destination has much to offer.

3 Must-Do Outdoor Activities in the Great Smoky Mountains

There's nothing like a challenging hike with a rewarding view.

4 Must-Try Portland Brunch Spots

Dishing up a lot more than just bacon and eggs.

11 Things Not to Miss in San Francisco

Christine Williams and Jules Hatfield from Don't Forget to Move, tell us how to do San Francisco right, on  a shoestring budget.

On TV

A Haunting

8am | 7c

A Haunting

9am | 8c

A Haunting

10am | 9c

A Haunting

11am | 10c

A Haunting

1pm | 12c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Helltown

8pm | 7c

Ghost Nation

10pm | 9c

Helltown

12am | 11c

What's New in Interests

Shop Our Favorite Travel Gear

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.