The December holiday season is usually associated with cold weather, ice cubes, snowmen and hot chocolate sipped by a crackling fire. While northerners always celebrate vacations in grand style, southern destinations take a back seat to no one when it comes to flaunting the holiday spirit. These warmer-climate destinations embrace the holiday spirit in important ways, including a Frosty Fest dance party, a Dolly Parton Presidential Holiday Suite, and the centuries-old Southern tradition of “porching”.
Kingsmill Hotel, Williamsburg, Virginia
From dazzling light events and festive concerts to seasonal celebrations of colonial history, Kingsmill Resort and Greater Williamsburg come alive on vacation with the spirit of the season. The area is full of as many special events as there are lights on a Christmas tree. Williamsburg condominium golf resort Kingsmill Resort offers guests a winter wonderland of activities during the month of December, including horse and carriage rides for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, mixology class for the holidays, breakfast and photos with Santa, brilliant golf, lousy sweater dinner, gingerbread design contest, Christmas cookie decorating, wreath making, zoo for children, magic show, treasure hunts, letters to Santa Claus and much more.
Nashville graduate, Tennessee
Graduate Nashville’s Dolly Parton-themed Presidential Suite – the “9 to 5” Suite – will be decorated in Dolly-esque holiday decor throughout December. Inspired by Dolly’s love of Christmas, Graduate Nashville’s ‘9 to 5’ suite features holiday decor inspired by the 60s, 70s and 80s. In the living room, guests can find a faux Christmas tree Christmas tree engulfed in sparkling garlands and pink, gold and silver ornaments. A lavish white tree with hot pink ornaments and a silver garland is the focal point of the bedroom as glamorous decor takes center stage. Paying homage to Dolly, at the top of each tree is a Dolly Angel lookalike playing a pink guitar, and her portrait is edged in golden garlands, just as radiant as Dolly herself.
Velaa private island, The Maldives
One of the most exclusive and luxurious resorts in the world, Velaa offers travelers the opportunity to celebrate the holidays in unprecedented luxury. This year, the new program includes: December 23, Gingerbread House opening ceremony: kick off the holiday season with delicious gingerbread cookies and spiced mulled wine; December 24, Christmas Eve cocktail. Enjoy masterfully blended cocktails, delicious canapes as the sun sets over the turquoise waters of Velaa. December 24, Christmas Eve gala dinner. Treat yourself to a variety of holiday specials from around the world with all the trimmings and traditions. December 25, arrival of Santa Claus. Live Christmas Day in paradise and see Santa Claus bringing many gifts for young and old.
Lodge of the Big Wolf, Charlotte / Concord, North Carolina (and other southern locations)
The annual Snowland celebration immerses families in a winter wonderland, with daily snow showers in the Great Hall, seasonal themed crafts, holiday stories and songs, and new arrivals this year. The festivities run through January 5, 2022. Snowland Cabanas in the 84-degree Waterpark features elaborate holiday decor and includes a Christmas tree and snowfall. Each cabin also includes a crown-shaped tube for use on the Lazy River at Crooked Creek. Other holiday activities include the daily lighting of the menorah candle during Hanukkah, “Twas the Night Before Snowland” yoga tails to start the day, and the Frosty Fest family dance party each evening.
Bowling green, Kentucky
Visitors can rediscover the Christmas spirit at Bowling Green’s Reindeer Farm where patrons have the chance to meet real reindeer, warm up with free hot chocolate, watch holiday movies, and write letters to Santa. The farm offers private tours, reindeer feeding experiences, wine tastings, food trucks and exciting tours of friends of the North Pole. Watch the National Corvette Museum light up with holiday cheer at their Twinkle at the Track, a drive-thru exhibit of over 25 stages. Hit the ice at the SoKY Marketplace ice rink. This downtown favorite has 6,000 square feet of ice cream and hosts several themed nights with story readings and special guests including Santa Claus.
Greenville, South Carolina
A holiday tradition where the tree-lined sidewalks of Main Street sparkle with lights, Santa’s motorized sleigh glides along Main Street with an elf and skaters enjoy an outdoor ice rink. Christmas carols harmonize the streets as dozens of giant trees are dressed for the annual Tree Festival competition at city hotels. From tree-lighting ceremonies and pop-up Christmas shops, to a Christmas parade and markets, or even a community Hanukkah celebration and menorah lighting, Greenville offers the complete vacation experience.
Palmetto Bluff editing, Bluffton, South Carolina
Guests can enjoy an abundance of new festive experiences and traditional holiday activities such as Nutcracker tea with a special ballet performance, a trip on Santa’s sleigh, a holiday wreath-making class and Jingle Bell Jog 5K. Every Friday in December, guests can gather in the hostel lobby for a special edition of the celebrations of the centuries-old Southern tradition of ‘Porching’. Visitors can enjoy holiday treats, hot chocolate and cider along with holiday musical performances, while taking in the relaxing view of the scenic River May from the front porch.
Thompson dallas, Texas
In true Bigger in Texas style, the hotel uses over a dozen kilometers of LED lighting, 17,000 ornaments, 35 Christmas trees, a sparkling 55-foot-tall Christmas tree at the entrance to the building and six tons of custom iron to create the custom trees. The hotel will activate 12 Days of Thompson in its lobby. For 12 days in December, Lobby Bar guests can enjoy holiday music, hot chocolates and festive cocktails and every drink purchase is automatic entry for a chance to win prizes such as a stay for two. nights in Thompson Dallas.
Downtown Macon has turned into a happy wonderland with more than 500,000 Christmas lights hanging four blocks from the city’s Main Street. Free shows will be open to the public every night until January 2. Other seasonal activities will include horse-drawn carriage rides as well as selfies with Santa and his reindeer. “We are delighted to bring back this beloved annual tradition and look forward to welcoming visitors and residents of downtown Macon back to this festive event,” said Valerie Bradley, Vice President of Marketing for Visit Macon . “It’s the most wonderful time of year in Macon, and we can’t wait to help spread the holiday spirit. We look forward to coming together to bid farewell to 2021 and prepare for several exciting events in Macon in the New Year. “
Bobby Hotel, Nashville, Tennessee
The rooftop lounge at the Bobby Hotel will be the perfect spot during the holiday season as it transforms into Camp Bobby, a ’70s camp-inspired theme featuring a rooftop ice rink designed to resemble a frozen pond, “campfire sites” in each heated igloo; and 70s-inspired design in the Scenicruiser bus. Guests and locals alike can savor a cocktail or get that Instagram-perfect pic, plus soak up the spectacular views of the music city from above. Camp Bobby runs through February.