Travel

8 Unreal Winter Wonderlands With Direct Flights From Singapore To Feel Like You’re In Snowy Narnia

Winter destinations with direct flights from Singapore


Temperatures in Singapore might be perpetually high. But somewhere beyond the border, the degrees have dropped and winter’s near. 

The arrival of cold weather comes with many good things: ski season, powdery snow, winter markets, and the chance to finally wear your thick coats. If your childhood dream involves frolicking in the snow, then you should bookmark these scenic winter destinations with direct flights from Singapore for your next big trip.


1. Nikko, Japan


Best known for its towering Toshogu Shrine and fairy tale-esque Kazurabashi vine bridge, Nikko, Japan is among the top winter destinations in the world.

Image credit: @tobu_nikko_trip via Instagram

Temperatures in the winter drop to below 0 degrees, so expect a thick coat of snow – which is perfect for when you want to hit the snowy Unryu Keikoku Ravine hiking trail. There’s also the frozen Kegon Falls which is crowned as one of the top 3 most stunning waterfalls in Japan that you shouldn’t miss.

Getting there: Fly to Tokyo and head to Tobu Asakusa Station. From there, board the train to Nikko. There are several options ranging from high speed to slow trains which take anywhere from 1 hour 50 minutes to 2 hours 10 minutes.


2. London, UK


Ask anyone who’s been to the United Kingdom and they’ll likely affirm you of one thing: few destinations are as picturesque as London in the winter.

Image credit: @found_london via Instagram

When you’re ready to explore, go out and enjoy what makes this city great – ice skating at the National History Museum, strolling through the Winter Wonderland Christmas market, sipping on mulled wine at the Borough Market, and being dazzled by the twinkling lights along Regent Street. 

Plus, the designer shops, high-end restaurants, and legendary nightlife will make sure you have a ball of time.

Getting there: Hop on a direct 13-hour flight to London. Easy peasy.


3. The Remarkables, New Zealand


If you’re yearning for a mid-year winter vacay, head straight to New Zealand, which experiences the coldest season from June to August. Visit The Remarkables, where you’ll get to hit powdery white slopes and admire charming architecture as far as the eye can see. 

Image credit: @travelingaotearoa via Instagram 

A 30-minute drive from Queenstown city centre, the scenic ski destination offers steep slopes, gentle terrains, and chute skiing for all levels of skiers. On top of that, there’s also a hiking park for those who can’t balance on a board. Equipment is available for hire and lessons are rolled out on the regular for newbies to get the hang of the basics.

Getting there: Fly to Queenstown and hop in a taxi to The Remarkables. The flight from Singapore to Queenstown takes roughly 11 hours and 40 minutes. Then, it’s another short 30-minute drive to the ski resort.


4. Chungcheongnam-do, South Korea


Chungcheongnam-do might be a newbie on your vacay radar, but the South Korean region is an up-and-comer when it comes to winter getaways.

Image credit: @revive9191 via Instagram

Best known for its Chilgapsan Ice Fountain Festival, a trip to the village is a must if things like giant snow sculptures, icy slides, and igloos excite you. Besides the stunning sights, you can go smelt fishing and roast up a storm of delish treats like chestnuts, sweet potatoes, and corn. The fest runs from December to February yearly, so mark your calendars.

Getting there: Fly to Seoul and hop on a short 90-minute bus ride from Seoul Express Bus Terminal to Cheonan Station.


5. Beijing, China


6 hours from Singapore, Beijing, China is one of the largest and most heritage-rich cities on Earth. What might be lesser known is that it is also a welcoming spot for winter vacays.

Image credit: @thechinatrips via Instagram

A holiday here can be as busy or relaxed as you desire. Pack some layers and hike up to the top of The Great Wall to breathe in some fresh winter air if you’re the active sort. Or, take a chill rickshaw ride around the winding alleys of old Hutong where traditional Chinese houses are still standing strong.

Along the way, you’ll be able to stuff yourself with yummy Chinese fare, an excellent way to keep warm.

Getting there: Hop on a direct flight to Beijing, China, which only takes about 6 hours and 15 minutes.


6. Nuuksio National Park, Finland


As one of Finland’s 40 national parks, Nuuksio National Park is so charming in winter that you might attempt to make it a regular year-end holiday destination once you experience it.

Image credit: @arleneglynjones via Instagram

Located 35 minutes away from Helsinki by car, the snow-covered park is exactly the type of enchanted forest you read about in novels. Besides camping, snowshoeing down the trails that are lined with frosty pine trees is another popular winter activity. There are shops that rent out snow boots in the park, so don’t worry about having to lug your own around.

Getting there: Fly to Helsinki and take a commuter train to Espoo Centre. The air journey takes around 13 hours and 25 minutes. From there, hop on bus 245 to Nuuksio National Park.


7. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany


If you’re into destinations with a whole lotta history, Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany has your name written all over it. Built in the 1800s, the mediaeval architecture was home to the Bavarian royalty and is said to be an inspiration for the Disney castle. So, your winter getaway will feel straight out of a movie.

Image credit: @bonjourbonvoyage via Instagram

Be sure to sign up for a guided tour. That way, you can see the full castle in all its glory while picking up some tidbits of info for one of the most famous castles in the world. There are shops at the foot of the castle selling mulled wine and German sausages, so if that’s your thing, don’t miss them.

Getting there: Fly to Munich. From there, take a cab for around 1 hour and 30 minutes to Neuschwanstein Castle.


8. Shirakawa Gifu, Japan


There are some winter destinations that look and sound too extraordinary to be real. Shirakawa Gifu in Japan is one of them.

Image credit: @japanobjects via Instagram

In winter, the icy remote village turns into a tourist hotspot thanks to its gorgeous white snow, historic Gassho-zukuri-style farmhouses, and laidback local charm. Built entirely by hand to resemble hands raised in prayer to Buddha, these old-school houses were once homes of the villagers. 

These days, some have been turned into museums telling the rich history of the town, while others operate as hotels. To make the most out of your visit, book a night in one of the farmhouses and visit the town centre of Ogimachi. 

Getting there: Fly to Tokyo and board the Shinkansen to Toyama Station, which will take about 2 hours. From there, head to Shirakawa-go which will take around 3.5 hours by bus, or just beyond an hour if you get a car hire.


Escape to these winter destinations with direct flights from Singapore


Not sure where the year has gone, but we’re suddenly just weeks away from Christmas. If you still have some annual leave days to spare and are hoping to get the real winter feels, the above winter destinations should do the trick.

So, go on and pick a place that’s been on your holiday brain. Once you’ve done that, the next thing you should do is to equip yourself with a multi-currency bank account that doubles as a travel wallet, like DBS My Account

With DBS My Account, you’ll have the power to make your winter getaway a more cost-effective and smoother trip. Currently, DBS My Account supports 12 foreign currencies and lets you exchange, spend, and invest straight from the digibank app. Through the app, users can track spending, set daily limits, as well as enable and disable overseas transactions and lock linked cards should they be misplaced or stolen via “Payment Controls”.

If you have a DBS Visa Debit Card, don’t forget to primary link it to your DBS My Account. That way, you can tap to pay abroad with 0 transaction fees when your purchases are debited directly from your foreign currency wallet and earn 2% cashback on eligible purchases. With a DBS My Account, you can even invest in and earn up to 5.20% p.a.* on your USD Fixed Deposit.

*Rate as of 5th October 2023.

For those who have yet to own one, apply for a DBS Visa Debit Card and get up to 10% cashback when you shop overseas or online in foreign currency. This perk is exclusively for new DBS Visa Debit Cardmembers only.

When you book your flights and hotel through DBS Travel & Leisure Marketplace, you’ll immediately receive free travel insurance. Offset your purchases at 2X value with DBS Points, so you can treat yo’ self twice as much.

Don’t worry about fussing around with physical vouchers either, as you can instantly redeem your credit card points at checkout for travel bookings via the DBS Travel & Leisure Marketplace, directly for bookings on the likes of Agoda and Singapore Airlines.

On top of that, there’s also a whole lot of travel perks conveniently listed in the DBS Traveller Kit, and rewards on the DBS PayLah! App for you to sift through. If you’re new to the app, use the code <JOINLAH> to get a $5 voucher.

After downloading the app, simply register for DBS/POSB Power Up Your Travels Promotion and spend at least $800 on your hotel, flight, and tour bookings to unlock a Reward Booster. With it, you can earn up to an extra 2 miles per dollar or 5% cashback on overseas expenditures with your participating DBS/POSB Cards.

Nothing says “Happy Holidays!” like a trip to a wintery destination where you can load your camera roll up with pics of dramatic snow-covered landscapes. Just don’t forget to bring a nifty travel wallet along.

Travel the world with DBS Travel & Leisure Marketplace


This post is brought to you by DBS.
Cover image adapted from: @travelingaotearoa, @revive9191 & @japanobjects via Instagram

Deposit Insurance Scheme
Singapore dollar deposits of non-bank depositors and monies and deposits denominated in Singapore dollars under the Supplementary Retirement Scheme are insured by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation, for up to S$75,000 in aggregate per depositor per Scheme member by law. Monies and deposits denominated in Singapore dollars under the CPF Investment Scheme and CPF Retirement Sum Scheme are aggregated and separately insured up to S$75,000 for each depositor per Scheme member. Foreign currency deposits, dual currency investments, structured deposits and other investment products are not insured.

 

Samantha Nguyen

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