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Best Winter Vacations in Europe

Nearly all European cities become choked with tourists during the summer months, but the crowds are avoidable: If you're willing to embrace a snowy aesthetic or mild-temperature weather, Europe's most popular destinations take on a brand new appeal. To guide you through the continent's wintry choices, U.S. News Travel ranked the best winter vacations in Europe.

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Why go: The Austrian Alps peer through the skyline in this charming city, home to the 1976 Winter Olympics. Innsbruck, with an abundance of ski resorts and wintertime attractions, offers all-inclusive packages through the region's ski organization, Olympia SkiWorld Innsbruck. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Innsbruck

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Why go: Lisbon's mild winter temperatures rarely drop below 50 degrees, but you'll likely face some rain. Enduring the weather will pay off; not only are hotel prices lower during this time but many tourist sites are much less crowded than during the summer months. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Lisbon

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Why go: Zurich's vibrant city streets and proximity to the Swiss Alps make it a perfect city to visit in the winter. Take in the grand lake vistas and the medieval architecture as you peruse the cobblestone streets; just make sure to stop for some famous Swiss chocolate while en route. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Zurich

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Why go: Vienna celebrates the holiday season with advent markets, public ice skating rinks and plenty of lavish parties. Add wintry touches like snow-covered rooftops and nearby ski slopes into the mix and you'll find yourself in a European winter wonderland. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Vienna

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Why go: In Spain's Andalucía province, summer temperatures can be hot to the point of unbearable. Reserve Seville for a winter escape to experience it with cooler temperatures and fewer crowds. Bars and restaurants will feel more spacious and hotel rates will be lower. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Seville

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24 13

Why go: The charms of Paris are alive and well in winter. Warm up by sipping coffee in romantic cafes and spend time visiting heated indoor museums like the Musée du Louvre and Musée Rodin, which are much less crowded this time of year. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Paris

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Why go: Prague's castles and underground restaurants are perfect respites from the city's harsh winters. If you're willing to brave the colder climate you'll avoid tourist crowds and have the chance to enjoy Prague's beloved Christmas markets and concerts. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Prague

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Why go: Winter ushers the low season to Venice and although you'll still find many visitors in winter, you can expect lines to be shorter and airfare and hotel rates to be cheaper. If you visit in February, you'll witness the exciting festivities of Carnevale. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Venice

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Why go: Budapest gets chilly in winter and snowfall is frequent. But you can snag inexpensive hotel stays and plan your trip around the city's indoor attractions like the Hungarian National Gallery. When you're feeling adventurous, warm up with a dip in the relaxing thermal baths. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Budapest

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Why go: You'll definitely need to bundle up for a wintertime trip to Germany's trendiest city, but the snow-lined streets and rooftops make for an eye-catching aesthetic. Not only will you save on lodging, but you'll have the chance to experience Berlin's popular outdoor Christmas markets. Read More»

Read On: Top Things to Do in Berlin

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