‘Tis the season for joy-filled events, magical experiences, and lasting memories. Ready to seize the holiday? It starts with a cozy Blueground home as your base camp for very merry fun. Our fully furnished apartments have flexible terms, so you can stay for a month, a year, or longer. Because there’s always something happening in each of our growing number of cities around the world. This season, check out these 10 activities to get yourself in the holiday spirit.
1. National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony | Washington, D.C.
This one-of-a-kind ceremony has been an American tradition since 1923! With musical performances and special guests, the actual event happens on Wednesday, November 30, with a TV broadcast of the ceremony on December 11. However, you can stop by anytime during the holidays to snap a pic of this festive tree.
It’s located near the White House on the Ellipse in President’s Park — close to several Blueground apartments. A brilliant way to kick off the holiday season!
2. Hanukkah in the Bay Area | San Francisco
Come take part in the fifth annual glowing Hanukkah party in Ghirardelli Square! Put on by the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco (JCCSF), this Festival of Lights celebration will feature:
It’s all taking place on Saturday, December 18 (the first day of Hanukkah) from 3 to 6 pm. Find more details here.
3. Christmas markets | Vienna
Austria’s capital city is a legendary spot for Christmas markets. In fact, the first Christmas market in Vienna happened way back in the late 13th century. You can spend DAYS eating, drinking, and shopping your way through these holiday hot spots. Just be sure to sample some of the Weihnachtspunsch (Christmas punch). It usually comes in a cute mug and is available in several different flavors.
Some of the best Christmas markets in the area include:
Do you hear what we hear? It’s the Holiday Pops in Boston. Running from December 1 to 24, these concerts from the Boston Symphony Orchestra feature “festive favorites from cultural traditions around the world.” It’s a magical music experience that should be on everyone’s holiday bucket list. Have children? There are six matinee performances (from December 3 to 24) geared specifically toward kids. These concerts include shorter performances, no intermissions, and the opportunity to visit Santa and eat treats afterward. Plus, there’s a Holiday Pops Sensory-Friendly Concert on December 3 at 10:30 am.
The Boston Symphony orchestra website explains that this show is “designed for all families with children or adults with an autism spectrum disorder or sensory sensitivities.” Learn more and buy tickets for any performance here.
5. ZooLights at the Lincoln Park Zoo | Chicago
Now here’s a wild idea for a family outing, date night, or photo op with friends. Head to the Lincoln Park Zoo through January 1 for a dazzling holiday display! Each year, Chicago’s most famous zoo celebrates the season with millions of LEDs throughout its grounds. Highlights of the event include a Ferris wheel, a light tunnel, and an awe-inspiring light show. As the zoo’s website shares, the affordable $5 entry price “helps keep Lincoln Park Zoo free and supports our animal care, community, and conservation work.”
Concentrating on African Americans in California and the West from 1800 to the present, the California African American Museum (CAAM) is a hub for exploring art, history, and culture. Stop by this LA institution on Saturday, December 17 from 1 to 3 pm to celebrate the Kwanzaa principle of Kuumba, which focuses on creativity.
There will be songs, puppetry, stories, and so much more. Lastly, there’ll be a zine workshop where people of all ages and abilities can showcase their creativity. RSVP to this event here.
8. Sledding at Winter World | Berlin
Can you have alpine fun in the heart of Berlin? You bet! Because each year, Potsdamer Platz is turned into Winter World. And the highlight of this seasonal space is the 12-meter high sledding hill. It’s an exciting way to get your heart racing. Perfect for kids or grown-ups!
Afterward, warm up with a mug of Glühwein (mulled wine) as you enjoy live music and traditional German sweets. It’s open until January 2, 2023, so be sure to find a Blueground apartment nearby in time.
9. Trail of Lights | Austin
Perhaps the easiest way to brighten up your December? Take a stroll in Zilker Park along this festive, 1.25-mile walking trail in the Texas capital. An annual Austin tradition for 58 years, the Trail of Lights features 2 million lights, 90 lighted holiday trees, and many more stunning displays and tunnels. Don’t worry if you work up an appetite during the walk. There are eats and drinks available from some of Austin’s top restaurants and food trucks. Learn more and get tickets here.
10. Ice Skating | New York City
Finally, no holiday bucket list would be complete without ice skating in the Big Apple. From Rockefeller Center to Central Park, NYC has plenty of frozen spots to glide, spin, or just hug the wall as you make your way around the rink.
Quick ice skating tips:
To avoid the crowds, arrive just before the rink opens or go on a weekday.
Remember to check the public skating times beforehand.
Belting out the chorus from “Let It Go” or “New York, New York” while you’re skating is totally okay.
Santa sees the entire world — and so can you — with our network of fully furnished Blueground apartments in major cities across the globe! Every apartment comes with a fully equipped kitchen and a comfortable work-from-home setup. Plus, high-tech extras like smart appliances, including a portable Bluetooth speaker, to help you upgrade your lifestyle.
Kevin Crain is a writer from Dallas, Texas. He’s dedicated to helping every Blueground guest live like a local and make their apartment feel like home. His favorite topics include active experiences, bucket list essentials, and hidden gems in cities around the world.
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