Take Your Holiday Traditions Away With You This Year

2023-01-01 00:02:35 - Drany Macley Drany Macley, the senior editor of Vytravels.com, brings extensive journalism background and over eight years of experience in travel writing and editing to the site, offering practical insights and first-hand knowledge through articles on innovative hotels, backed by a BA in Journalism from Ithaca College.

Home » DIY Vacations » Advent Customs That Can Be Practiced Away From Home

It's understandable to want to keep some of your Christmas traditions alive while traveling with young children or for sentimental adults. This is how you can celebrate Christmas away from home.

For many reasons, Christmastime travel is among my favorites. The first is that I am not a fan of the pressure that comes with the holiday season. To what extent should I care about my coworkers? I'm so sorry, but I still haven't mailed that package. Or the inevitability that I have overspent on the children's presents. Why should I bother wrapping them?

Identical, right? Second, I've found that going on a Christmas vacation frees us from having to host or attend any of the traditional holiday events such as dinners, phone calls, or visits. Our little family can relax and spend time together without distractions from the outside world; after all, isn't that what Christmas is all about?

Christmas trees made out of recycled items on display in a Portuguese street. Materials reused to adorn the holiday

The advantages do not end there. Depending on where you travel, you can either experience a different culture during their Christmas festivities, like German Christmas markets or Oberndorf bei Salzburg, in Austria,  where you can ski as well as visit the chapel where they wrote Silent Night and hear them sing it in German

Frosty the Snowman pushes a small kids pedal car up the hill ready to rent for the next customer. Most amusing holiday tradition: letting kids rent "cars" from this Frosty the Snowman.

You could, on the other hand, visit a place where Christmas isn't a big deal. It's convenient not to worry about stores being closed, and regular operations continue, but tourist numbers tend to be lower than usual in areas that aren't affected by the holiday.

Preparing Christmas dinner in our AirBnB kitchen in Portugal. What a blast it will be to prepare our Christmas "peru" or turkey in our AirBnB kitchen in Portugal.

There's no need to completely abandon Christmas if you have children or are just a sentimental old softy. We don’t Traveling around the country during the holiday season has allowed us to keep and even expand upon several of our longstanding customs.

First, every year on Christmas Eve, my family would exchange one gift. When the girls were younger, this helped them relax and fall asleep. We would always get new PJs and a movie or book, and then we'd all cuddle up by the fireplace and enjoy them together. No matter where we are in the world, we continue to celebrate this tradition with great enthusiasm. While we don't open gifts on Christmas Eve, we do buy new pajamas to wear on the trip and bring them along, and we also frequently download a new book or movie that we can still cuddle up and watch in any hotel room.

Small wooden games like this three tier moving game make great stocking stuffers. While waiting for the turkey dinner to begin, he plays with one of his stocking gifts.

This is the might of our modern electronic devices. Before bedtime or even on the road, we can pull up some holiday tales on the iPad or Kindle and read them out loud to each other. Now that we're all grown up, we still enjoy listening to each other read aloud. It’s fun Together, we are living the story. Even our annual Christmas film tradition can be watched on the go thanks to the ability to either download the film in advance or stream it online. Who can stand to wait a whole year to see Frosty the Snowman almost vanish?

The Christmas stocking is another custom that we cherish and uphold. The kids are older, so we do things differently now, but I actually enjoy it more than I did when they were younger. Everyone who wants to participate brings an empty sock. Certainly, you will bring socks with you on most trips. However, the rule states that you must not wear a sock that has been worn previously. And then we all do a hat draw That person is the only one for whom you need to purchase stocking stuffers.

We decide on a budget and then all go to a huge, inexpensive mall store. All corners of the globe stock these. It was a 100 yen shop in Japan, a Cora in France. It's never been a problem for us to locate a reliable retailer. Then we go out and buy random junk like candy and toys to stuff into the sock. We make an effort to import goods from that nation, but it is not a strict policy. Nothing is off-limits On Christmas Eve, we hang our stockings by the chimney with care, and Santa fills them with socks. To this day, we still have "gifts" to open on Christmas morning thanks to this custom.

Christmas dinner out at a Kobe Beef Tepanyaki restaurant inKobe, Japan. Festive Kobe beef for the holidays

You know we try to travel on a budget, but on Christmas day we like to treat ourselves. Once, we decided to go all out and rent four-wheelers for a day of dune jumping and belly laughs. One year, we decided to do something different for Christmas dinner and found a Thai cooking class where we learned to make our own Thai chili paste. What we do on this day, which we have been taught to regard as very important, varies greatly depending on where we are, but there is never a shortage of options, and it is always a lot of fun to really have a spectacular experience.

Additionally, we do our best to continue the custom of having Christmas dinner together. All right, sometimes when we rent a house with a kitchen we can still try to find a turkey and some fixings, like that time we were in Portugal and used black market products in our Thanksgiving feast. Sometimes we'll go to a fancy restaurant, or even a castle, for dinner. We spend quality time together as a family, regardless of the meal's quality, because we're all present and undistracted.

Honestly, we haven't missed the old Christmases at all. It's always fresh and exciting and a lot of fun to celebrate Christmas in our new, more portable way.

Will you be spending Christmas with your family, or will you be spending it elsewhere? In what ways do you celebrate Christmas in a unique way?

Corinne Vail has been a professional travel writer for over 14 years. She is also a photographer, a foodie, and a world nomad. She taught American kids abroad for a long time, in places like Germany, Japan, Turkey, South Korea, and the Netherlands. military She has been to more than 90 countries so far, and she has no plans to stop.

Don't forget to save A Merry Road Trip for Christmas for later.

Portuguese tiles and Santas! Click here to find out how to take your Christmas on the road.
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