Český Krumlov, Czech Republic
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This medieval city has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site and gives the Prague castle district a run for its money when the elegant riverside castle, after which the city is named, and the steep roofs of the town are topped with snow.
Abraham Lake, Alberta, Canada
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North of Banff National Park lies Abraham Lake. Low temperatures in this region mean even this large lake freezes and when it does, bubbles of methane gas trapped in the water create striking patterns in the ice.
Blue Pond, Hokkaido, Japan
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Shirogane Blue Pond is actually man-made and has a striking bright blue hue that’s usually attributed to the presence of aluminium hydroxide. It looks even more spectacular in the wintertime thanks to the contrast of the azure water against white snow.
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Should you be in London when snow envelops the city, you’ll be able to see the natural beauty of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens, the famous Thames and iconic buildings such as the Palace of Westminster and St Paul’s Cathedral in a completely different light.
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A medieval castle upon a cliff, a scenic lake, the sight of distant mountains and an inviting island complete with a belltower – the historic town of Bled already makes for an attractive holiday destination. The winter landscape is even more magical.
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The curious stone fairy chimneys of Cappadocia seem even more enchanting when they’re peppered with a liberal amount of snow. The geological patterns of the ancient valleys surrounding the region and the solitary peak of Mount Erciyes add to the atmosphere.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
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The graceful gabled buildings (dating back to the Dutch Golden Age), narrow cobbled streets, pedestrian bridges and World Heritage Listed canals of Amsterdam look even quainter coated in snow. If you’re lucky and the canals freeze, you may even get a chance to skate over them.
Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA
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Snowstorms and clear, sunny winter days. It’s not the usual way visitors picture the Grand Canyon but a dusting of snow transforms the already remarkable geography into something resembling a layer cake covered in icing sugar.
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This small salt-mining village on the shores of Lake Hallstatt, in the north of Austria, is known for its photogenic allure. A classic frame takes in the Lutheran church, alpine houses along the water’s edge and lakeside mountains that look even lovelier under a layer of snow.
Fairy Pools, Scotland
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This collection of pretty waterfalls at the foot of The Cuillins on the Isle of Skye lie in a tranquil spot that’s even more peaceful during winter. A moody mountain backdrop and a rocky, snow-dusted landscape make for incredible highland scenery.
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A relatively unspoiled archipelago south of Tromsø, Lofoten is even quieter and more serene during winter. Traditional villages set against a dramatic natural landscape and the chance to see the Northern Lights makes it a wonderfully scenic winter destination.
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The Albula line of the Rhaetian Railway travels through the stunning mountain scenery of Parc Ela between Thusis and the equally picturesque alpine resort town of St. Mortiz. During winter, the snow-covered peaks and trees make the journey even more beautiful.
Quebec City, Canada
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One of the oldest cities in North America, the old-town centre of Quebec City has a distinctly European air and plenty of historical clout. One of the most impressive, and dominant, structures in the city is Château Frontenac, a hotel built in 1893.
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Should you be fortunate enough to be in Paris on the rare occasion when snow graces the city, take in the atmosphere during the early morning when familiar landmarks take on an ethereal quality. Start at the Champ de Mars or the Tuileries or Luxembourg gardens.
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The historic district of Salzburg, with its well-preserved Baroque architecture, is presided over by the Hohensalzburg Castle – an imposing structure that forever changed the skyline of the city when it was built in 1077 atop Festungsberg mountain.
The Remarkables, New Zealand
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Above the shores of Lake Wakatipu, this impressive mountain range experiences a high average snowfall. In winter, the peaks create an eye-catching crest over the city of Queenstown, reinforcing the suitability of its name.
New York City, USA
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Even the city that never sleeps slows down when it’s hit by a blizzard. Catch New York with its winter coverlet on and you’ll experience a whole different side to the city. One highlight? Seeing Central Park transformed into a postcard-perfect white wonderland.
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Winter brings an other-worldly atmosphere to all of Iceland’s famous sites, from Skógafoss waterfall to Kirkjufell mountain. The days may be short but the light is beautiful and the long nights give you a chance to see the Northern Lights in all their glory.
Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
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Grand in scale, clad in white limestone and crowned with elegant turrets and towers, Neuschwanstein is the original fairytale castle. During winter, when the green foliage surrounding it has fallen away, its position and magnitude appear even more magnificent.
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This hamlet in the Swiss Alps has a rather romantic air: a collection of low alpine dwellings lie nestled in a charming valley with snow-capped peaks rising up on either side. Setting off the entire scene? The peak of The Matterhorn.
Up Next: 9 Super-Luxe Winter Hotels
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