San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) November 30, 2011
As the holiday season kicks into high gear, many are busy shopping for gifts, making plans to be with loved ones, or looking forward to a much-deserved vacation. To help consumers survive the month of December with their sanity intact, the team at Viator – the leading resource for more than 9,000 tours and activities in 800-plus destinations in more than 150 countries – compiled a list of the top Christmas markets in Europe where visitors can find festive decorating tips, buy authentic gifts, or simply get filled with the holiday spirit. And for those who’ve run out of gift ideas or simply don’t know where to start, Viator’s Gift Certificates make the perfect one-size-fits-all gift for road warriors and casual travelers.
Christmas Markets: Stress-Free Shopping in a Traditional, Festive Environment
Filled with traditional crafts, mulled wine, and tasty eats, Europe’s Christmas markets are the perfect way to take in some local culture and stock up on special gifts for loved ones at home. Some of the more famous markets have been running since the Middle Ages, and today they can draw upwards of two million visitors during December.
Germany – Viator’s two-hour Munich Christmas Markets Tour includes stops at many of the 20 markets in Munich, where visitors can shop for handmade toys and sample hot spiced wine and gingerbread cake. Those looking for a more immersive experience can opt for a four-day tour of Christmas markets in Leipzig, Dresden and Plauen complete with visits to one of the country’s oldest porcelain manufacturers.
Austria – Salzburg’s Christmas markets are famous throughout Central Europe, and Viator’s five-hour tour includes visits to three of the most traditional markets in the picturesque countryside around the “city of Mozart.” The tour also includes a boat ride on Lake Wolfgang and a visit to the village of St. Gilgen, famous for its “Sound of Music” wedding church.
Switzerland – A day trip from Geneva to Montreux and Chillon includes a guided tour of a castle near Lake Geneva that dates back to the year 1005 and was made famous by Lord Byron’s poem, the Prisoner of Chillon. Along the way, travelers will have time to shop at various Christmas Markets.
France – Food lovers will enjoy sampling seasonal Parisian specialties on Viator’s small group Gourmet Christmas Tour of Paris, which includes a three-hour walking tour led by an expert guide; opportunities to sample regional artisan cakes, cookies and hot wine; and shopping at the Saint-Sulpice Christmas Market.
Hungary – On the Budapest Christmas Markets Tour, travelers will learn about the region’s Christmas traditions and culture while taking in top city sights including the Opera House, Andrassy Boulevard and St. Stephen’s Basilica. The tour stops at a private wine cellar as well as three of the best Budapest Christmas markets, with ample time to shop for Hungarian handicrafts, trinkets, and souvenirs.
Viator’s Gift Certificates: Stress-Free Shopping from the Comfort of Home
Those looking for the perfect digital gift that keeps on giving will appreciate Viator Gift Certificates, available in denominations starting at $25 up to $500 and in five currencies including the U.S. Dollar, GB Pound, the Euro, Australian Dollar and Canadian Dollar. The Gift Certificates are redeemable toward the purchase of any travel experience on Viator.com and include free shipping thanks to email delivery that can be scheduled in advance or at the last minute. Recipients will be inspired by the many tours and activities they can choose from, including Universal Studios tickets in Los Angeles, helicopter tours in Las Vegas, elephant rides in Thailand, wine tasting in Australia, and many more.
For more holiday travel and gift ideas as well as the latest deals, promotions, contests and Viator news, visit the Viator Travel Blog or follow the company on Facebook and Twitter.
Viator® is the world’s leading online resource for travel experiences, providing access to more than 9,000 tours, attractions and activities in 800-plus destinations in more than 150 countries. Viator– the Latin word for traveler – offers a one-stop shop to plan, research and book trip activities via its Web and mobile platforms with resources such more than 300,000 traveler reviews, ratings and photos, suggested itineraries and the Viator Travel Blog. Viator’s in-house travel experts hand-pick trusted local operators to ensure quality, value and service, all backed by a low-price guarantee. Viator sells its products through Viator.com, the Viator Tours and Activities App for iPhone, the Viator Ultimate Experience Guide for iPad, eight local language sites for the European and Japanese markets and more than 2,000 affiliated sites that include major hotel chains and airlines, online travel agencies, city-specific sites and more. Viator is a privately held company, with lead investment from The Carlyle Group, one of the world’s largest private equity firms. Founded in 1995, Viator is headquartered in San Francisco with regional offices in Sydney, London and Las Vegas.