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bittersweet family christmas in europe - ideas please!

bittersweet family christmas in europe - ideas please!

Oct 21st, 2002, 10:01 AM
  #1  
anniep
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bittersweet family christmas in europe - ideas please!

hello,
please help! i am planning on traveling to europe for one week over christmas with my newly widowed mother, sister and brother-in-law. we are trying to make this a fun, not too cold, busy diversion for mom -- for all of us, really. having all traveled to europe both together and separately over the past year, and not wanting freezing, dark by 3 p.m. days to depress us even more, we have ruled out the following options: amsterdam, paris, rome, florence, tuscany, london and ireland. can anyone recommend any destinations? or weigh in on some of the options we're considering, which include spain (barcelona), portugal, and venice?
this forum has always been a great help to me in the past -- any suggestions truly appreciated!
thanks!
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 10:54 AM
  #2  
meg
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Venice will be even colder and damper than London at Christmas time- deeply melancholic- I love the atmosphere but it may not be what you're wanting!! I'd suggest Cyprus/Malta or any of the mediterranean islands if you really want sunshine and warmth
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 11:51 AM
  #3  
TOPPER
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LETS HELP HER OUT.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 11:57 AM
  #4  
here is an idea
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Sevilla--lovely architecture, sunny/warm climate (at least sunnier and warmer than Northern Europe), wonderful countryside--exotic but familiar

or

Morroco--the same but more exotic and less familiar
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 12:01 PM
  #5  
K
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I'd suggest places like the Greek Isles, Malta, southern Spain. Temps for these places go from either 45 or 50 degree lows to mid-60s highs in December. Days would be good for sightseeing with a light jacket. Good luck!
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 12:02 PM
  #6  
orgy7
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Greece
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 01:08 PM
  #7  
Rex
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Wouldn't it better to have the longer days you can only get closer to the Equator? Aruba, Antigua, Bonaire? Hawaii?

Admittedly not Europe, but "other-cultured" there. Or am I wrong? I have never been to any of these.

 
Oct 21st, 2002, 01:36 PM
  #8  
kam
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Never been there at this time of year, but look into Sicily. Lots to do and culturally much different from the rest of Italy.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 01:36 PM
  #9  
Krista
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I suggest a cruise through the Caribbean. Nothing is more relaxing than laying on the deck of a cruise ship with a daquri. Plus you get the adventure of visiting many countries also.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 01:59 PM
  #10  
anniep
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thanks to all of you for your suggestions. very helpful -- we'll keep shifting focus south.
rex: caribbean/hawaii book very early for christmas so no avail for the dates we're going, plus really want active, busy, different trip.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 02:08 PM
  #11  
Nan
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I know Switzerland gets dark early, but they have candle festivals in the evenings around Christmas, and the Swiss get out and about and celebrate, which I think would be important and lively.
I would go to a fun loving place where the people are out on the town and not in their own homes with their own families. That is when a tourist feels left out, when everyone has a place to go, but you and you are stuck in a hotel. So do a search on celebrations, etc.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 02:15 PM
  #12  
Maggie
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Perhaps you could consider the Canary Islands?
Regards
Maggie
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 03:08 PM
  #13  
Phoebe
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More than picking a country or a city, I would go to a place where I was sure that alot was going on on Christmas, such as a resort or hotel with Christmas dinner parties for guests. The most charming and wonderful and warm city might not have much going on for travelers on Christmas. I would do a google search on Christmas packages by a hotel or a resort.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 03:55 PM
  #14  
Wendy
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Since you are looking for lots to keep eveyone active why not look into a cruise? My friend and I went on one over Christmas years ago and had a great time.
 
Oct 21st, 2002, 04:18 PM
  #15  
John
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Agree on the cruise idea - Caribbean, Mexico-Hawaii, Panama Canal...

One of the good things about a cruise is that you unpack once and then don't have to hassle with baggage, cabs, etc. for a week or two. You can sit at a table for 8 and meet other people, and there are enough excursions, activities, and other diversions to keep all of you busy and not make one another the "whole group" if you get my meaning. There are also places for Mom to sit and think, or, if she's inclined, to visit with folks who may have gone through something similar. All in, a cruise can be very competitive in cost terms with a European vacation, probably cheaper on a per-day basis.

You might consider choosing a cruise line that caters for a somewhat more mature clientele, especially Holland America (not Carnival). I'll bet you have a great time.

 
Oct 21st, 2002, 05:40 PM
  #16  
Wendy
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Anniep,

So sorry for your loss. Last March we went to Paris with my newly widowed mom. Although the weather wasn't perfect, we had a good time, at least as good a time as you can have after you've just lost a family member. Which brings me to my point. I think the change of scene might be more important than where you go. For that reason, I wouldn't necessarily cut out Paris, Rome, London, or any of the other great ( plenty to do) cities of Europe. Best of luck!
 
Oct 23rd, 2002, 08:26 AM
  #17  
linda
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How about New Orleans-almost a foreign country. I was there in December last
year and there was lots going on for
Christmas. Special dinners, beautiful
decorations and lots of free concerts.
Plus the weather was good. I can't think of a better place to spend the
holidays-good company, good food and wonderful music! Enjoy!!
 

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