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4 Must-See Winter Events Around the World

Most people opt to go on vacation during the summer months, when the weather is toasty. But, weather aside, winter is inarguably a better time to travel; since it’s the low season in most destinations, accommodation and flights are less expensive, and there aren’t the summer throngs of tourists to compete with.

Further, winter plays host to a number of events worldwide: traditional festivals, holidays, parties and celebrations. The weather may be a little chillier, but provided that you pack a coat and some thermal underwear that is actually comfortable to wear you’ll be just fine. With your warmest clothes packed and ready, let’s take a look at four must-see winter events from around the globe.

Carnival – Venice

Carnival – Venice
Head to the historic San Marco Square in Venice for what is undoubtedly one of Europe’s longest-running and most culturally significant festivals. The famous masks worn by Carnival attendees range from the comical to the downright frightening, but the real treat is seeing the side streets and canals of Venice lit up for the occasion. And, this being Italy and all, the food is a major draw too.

The date of the Carnival changes every year according to when exactly Shrove Tuesday falls, but 2019’s dates are February 16th to March 5th. Book early to ensure accommodation, as the Carnival is known to draw nearly 3 million visitors!

Chinese New Year – Beijing

Chinese New Year – Beijing
While you can celebrate Chinese New Year any place that has a sizeable enough Chinese population, the epicenter of the action has to be Beijing. Expect fireworks, lion dances, abundant food and red lanterns aplenty.

This year New Year falls on February 4th, and will be ringing in the Year of the Dog (not that man’s best friend will make much of an appearance at the festivities).

St. Patrick’s Day – Dublin

St. Patrick’s Day – Dublin
Much like Beijing is the epicenter of Chinese New Year, Dublin is the center of St. Patrick’s Day festivities (with apologies to Boston, of course). Whether you are Irish or not is beside the point; people from around the world come to take in the intoxicating music, the equally (but differently) intoxicating Guinness, and a little of the Craic that Ireland is famous for.

St. Patrick’s Day is at the tail end of winter, from March 14thto March 18th, so with any luck you might catch some decent weather.

Mardi Gras – New Orleans

Unless you live under a rock – one without TV or internet access – you’ve likely heard of New Orleans’ massive annual party. As much known for its Bacchanalian street parties as for its rich history, Mardi Gras is beloved by both locals and visitors. Head to Bourbon Street for some delicious Creole and Cajun cuisine, then take your drink outside and join one of the many parades.

Like Venice’s Carnival, Mardi Gras centers around Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday.

Don’t let the cold weather deter you from travelling this winter. Shifting your travel plans away from the summer, and toward the winter months, allows you to see a side of the world you wouldn’t otherwise get to see. Just remember to pack some warm clothes!