Thursday, December 12, 2013

Traditional Holidays in the Tropics

www.solescapes.comMaking a great tropical escape can be a wonderful way to spend the holidays.  Leave the stress of the season at home, and enjoy a unique Christmas in Paradise!  But for many, traditions are integral to Christmas, and forgoing familiar activities can bring on the Holiday Blues.  So grab your sense of adventure + a little creativity and bring those traditions with you!
O Christmas Tree...
While a trek to a snowy tree lot isn’t going to happen, a Christmas tree certainly can.  Choose a suitable patch of beach and plant a branch.  Decorate it with small ornaments brought from home, or cut some out from shiny paper.  No branches in sight?  Draw a tree in the sand and adorn with beach-combed shells.  Go sculptural with a tree fashioned from driftwood.

Christmas Music Sets the Mood
Ever portable, bringing your family’s favorite Christmas tunes is a no-brainer.  Take it in a tropical direction with some great beachy holiday tunes

Food, Delicious Food
Many holiday traditions center around food.  Tucking a favorite Christmas treat into your suitcase and presenting it at the right moment will bring on the familiar holiday cheer.  Is there a special meal you enjoy every Christmas Eve?  Find its island equivalent!  Make it kalua pig instead of Christmas ham.

While lugging gifts to a faraway destination may be a burden, exchanging gifts is central to Christmas for most families.  Consider a single suitcase-friendly gift that packs a big punch, such as jewelry, electronic gadgets or gift certificates.  For children, be sure to include something that can be played with right away, such as a small construction set (LEGO, playmobil), a little doll with extra outfits, or a travel-friendly craft activity.  What about a gift that can be enjoyed during the vacation?  A packable sun hat or beach towel would be welcome!          

Adapt Your Traditions 
Baking holiday treats may be unrealistic, but an adventure to the local market may uncover some fun cookie decorating options.  Then leave those cookies out for Santa and try to imagine how he will get in, given the absence of a chimney in your bungalow.  Seeing friends and family is crucial to Christmas; take advantage of technology and call or Skype with your loved ones.  If your family typically partakes in Midnight Mass, find a special service at a local church.         

Adopt New Traditions 
There’s no better way to learn about a culture than by being there!  Take this opportunity to learn about the holiday traditions of your destination.  Find out about the local holiday food and indulge!  Check the newspaper for special concerts; maybe you’ll learn some new holiday songs.  Deck the halls (or suite) as they do locally (then bring those decorations home to enjoy during future Christmases).  Immerse yourself in the local Holiday culture at a festival, carnival or parade. 

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