ABOVE PHOTO: Nights of a Thousand Candles
The holiday season can be the perfect time to travel. With school and work days off, it’s a special way to reconnect with family and friends as you get to bask in that cheerful holiday spirit.
Planning a holiday-themed trip is easier than you think if you keep a few tips in mind. Follow these five steps and you’ll be on your way to making vacation memories that will last a lifetime.
You’re guaranteed to feel like a Scrooge if you’re stuck on a long flight or gridlocked roads. When planning a holiday trip, look for a location that’s an easy drive or quick flight for everyone. Big cities might be easy to get to, but they are hectic during the holidays. Alternative destinations like Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, are just as convenient to get to and may not have as much travel congestion.
It will be your home away from home for the holidays, so be smart when selecting your rental to set your trip up for success. Research accommodations that keep everyone close but comfortable, such as a condotel or beach home. Both these options offer plentiful space, including kitchens, so you can whip up favorite family foods before relaxing to watch a classic holiday movie together before bed.
One of the best parts of the holidays is access to unique events that don’t happen any other time of year. Once you determine a destination, research special events in the area. For example, grab a cup of cider and walk amid the soft glow of more than 5,500 hand-lit candles at the Nights of a Thousand Candles at Brookgreen Gardens in Myrtle Beach. The breathtaking beauty is enjoyed by couples and families alike.
To create a memorable trip, it’s important to add a little holiday magic. Bring your favorite holiday book with you to read before bed. Decorate holiday cookies at the local bakery or pick up a gingerbread house kit at a local supermarket. Sign up to meet Santa on the beach and get the perfect holiday photo to send back to family and friends. Ask around and you’re sure to find more than a few festive adventures for your travel crew.
Just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy traditional holiday fun. Research local celebrations that feature caroling, sleigh rides and tree-lighting ceremonies. If you’re in Myrtle Beach, visit Ripley’s Aquarium for the Festival of Trees, which includes trees decorated to perfectly represent each of the 50 U.S. states and Puerto Rico. Find your state’s tree to see how well it captures the heart of your home!
With these five tips you’re sure to have your best holiday yet. Years from now you’ll look back and everyone will still be able to talk in detail about their favorite travel experience.