8 Breathtaking Vacation Spots That Are Surprisingly Cheap During The Holiday Season

The holidays are a wonderful season: a time for giving gifts and making memories with your family and friends. Yet the holidays are also expensive. Whether you’re spending hundreds of dollars on your holiday gift list, paying for excursions and seasonal parties, or paying travel expenses as you visit your loved ones, it’s easy to rack up thousands of dollars during December. But, it’s tradition.

Sometimes, you just need to forget about tradition and celebrate the holidays with a winter getaway. Although most people wouldn’t dream of traveling during the holiday season, it’s one of the best times to vacation all year.

If you think taking a vacation during December is expensive, you’re wrong: the holidays are actually the perfect season for travel adventures. Many far-off destinations are incredibly cheap during the holidays, making it an excellent time to take advantage of huge savings on breathtaking destinations.

We’ve rounded up the best, most beautiful places to travel during the holidays. In these locales, a little bit of money goes a long way in the winter. Pack your bags–with these limited-time low prices, you won’t want to miss these vacation destinations during December!

8. New York City

New York City is one of America’s most popular destinations, and it’s often also one of the most expensive to visit. During the holidays, tourists flood NYC’s most popular sights. Yet you can enjoy the beautiful holiday scenes of New York for less; you just need to stay away from the busiest boroughs.

Instead, find a hotel or Airbnb in an area like Brooklyn or Queens. Most awesome, 1-bedroom rooms for rent will run you around $45 per night. These hip neighborhoods are quickly becoming some of the most exciting parts of the city, and you can enjoy them without paying high prices.

7. Spain

Spain is a great vacation destination for winter. When the rest of Europe is under a blanket of snow, Spain’s temperate climate stays between 50 to 70 degrees. The holidays fall during off-peak season, meaning that in addition to low prices you’ll also get to experience popular tourist attractions amongst small crowds.

Visit Spain’s Canary Islands in December and get a reasonable Airbnb for around $60. You’ll be able to lounge on the beach and enjoy the country’s exciting city atmosphere, plus a food scene that can’t be beat, for shockingly low prices.

6. Australia

Did you know that far-off destinations like Sydney, Australia are within reach–and within your budget? Airlines like Qantas are offering discounted daily flights to Sydney from LA and San Francisco, which means it’s easier and more affordable than ever before to get to Australia. During the holidays, flights that cost upwards of $2,000 can be found for under $1,400.

December is peak summer time in Australia, and Sydney is a great place to escape freezing North American temps. Stay in downtown Sydney for around $70 a night with Airbnb, and you’ll enjoy every second of this incredible discounted destination.

5. Colombia

Head to Colombia during the holidays, and you’ll get to enjoy this country’s high season for less. This amazing South American destination is warm throughout December, and the holidays bring a festive atmosphere to cities like Cartagena and Medellin. Colombia boasts over 2,000 miles of coastline, so you can spend some time lounging on the beach after visiting the cities.

Cartagena in particular is an amazing mix of hip and historic buildings and attractions–plus you can rent an entire house for less than $200 USD per night.

4. Venice, Italy

If you’ve ever experienced life in an Italian city during peak tourist season, you’ll understand why most locals bail on the cities for a long countryside vacation in July and August. This year, learn from the locals and visit Venice during the winter. You can enjoy Venice free of crowds throughout December. Seeing the canals frozen over with a thin skim of ice and watching the snow fall in St. Mark’s Square are just a few of the pleasures you’ll get to enjoy if you holiday in Venice this winter.

Rent a private room on Airbnb, and you can stay for as low as $47 per night. The only big expensive you’ll have to pay is airfare–seeing the city’s sights is entirely free!

3. Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a great holiday vacation destination. A flight from the mainland United States costs less than $500, and accommodations on the beach or in the cities can be had for less than $150 per night. Imagine enjoying a gorgeous house or beachfront estate for less than the cost of a hotel.

There are plenty of free and cheap outdoor activities too. You can surf or relax on the beach, or join a whale watching tour–this full day activity will only cost you about $90.

2. Stockholm, Sweden

If winter is your favorite season, you’ll love venturing to Stockholm, Sweden for the holidays. This wintry town is so adept at being cold that they’ve turned coziness into an art. Take advantage of cheaper airline fares in December and head to Stockholm to enjoy their amazing coffee shops, featuring local specialities like tasty glogg-spiced mulled wine, as you stroll through a Christmas market.

Renting a small private apartment in Gamla Stan, the Old City, generally costs just $70 to $90 per night.

1. Cambodia

Cambodia enjoys amazing weather during North America’s winter, so take advantage stunningly cheap airfares and head there this holiday season. Rent an apartment for as little as $30 per night, and you’ve got a home base to explore all the amazing natural and historical sites that make the country great.

Another bonus: you’ll find the usually crowded tourist attractions like Angkor Wat and Beng Mealea are much quieter and reasonably priced. Entrance to Angkor Wat for a full day is only $37. Plus, you’ll get to skip the humid summer season–December weather is usually sunny and dry, with temperatures hovering around 80 degrees.

Featured Tip

Don’t let your vacation days go to waste – make sure you travel! Only 23% of full-time employees use all of their days off each year, Forbes reports.