Couldn't you just dream of walking down a path that's lined with candy canes? Do you want to enter an ice sculpture competition or chill in a heated igloo in the middle of the city one day? If your answer is "yes," then hopping in a car and checking out the winter 2020 festivals in the U.S. is worth your time. These magical events will give you heart eyes from the moment you see their spectacular s'mores-making stations or elaborate fireworks shows.
In true Elsa from Frozen fashion, you won't even mind being outside in the freezing cold because you'll be wandering around a palace made of ice, or trying all the chocolate-flavored treats you can find. You may be learning how to ski, shopping while drinking hot chocolate, or cheering on a local team in a very competitive hockey game. To say the very least, you'll be in a winter wonderland, complete with campfires and camera-worthy moments.
Of course, a little bit of planning is required before you head off to these festivals and have snow much fun. For example, you need to know when and where they're happening, and what you can expect. Here are seven winter festivals that are worth checking out. (Be sure to pack your blanket scarves, gloves, and oversized coats.)
1. FrostFest In New York City, New York
The first of these winter festivals in the U.S. takes places in New York City. Located in Bryant Park, Bank of America Winter Village’s FrostFest is a 10-day festival filled with excitement and snow-related activities. There are igloos you can chill in with lots of snacks and seasonal drinks, bumper cars you can ride on the ice, and live music. It all takes place this year from Jan. 25 to Feb. 3, 2020.
2. Denali Winterfest In Denali National Park And Preserve, Alaska
For the outdoorsy travelers and winter lovers, there's a lovely winter festival in Denali National Park and Preserve in Alaska called Denali Winterfest. For free, it allows guests to explore the beauty of the park and take part in ski races, snow sculpting competitions, guided snowshoe walks, and s'mores-making with a National Park Service firefighter. This year, the 20th annual Denali Winterfest will take place from Feb. 21 to 22, 2020.
3. Stowe Winter Carnival In Stowe, Vermont
If you're currently based on the East Coast, then you might already have plans to visit Stowe, Vermont this winter. You might be renting a cozy cottage with your best friends and hitting the trails. Do yourself a favor and plan a vacay from Jan. 23 to 26, 2020 in this adorable town, too.
That's when the Stowe Winter Carnival is happening, and when — according to GoStowe.com — you can join in the "infamous" snow-golf and snow-volleyball tournaments held at this annual event.
4. International Snow Sculpture Championships In Breckenridge, Colorado
Snow sculpting reaches a whole new level at the International Snow Sculpture Championships in Breckenridge, Colorado. It's the time of the year when teams from across the globe come together and carve blocks of snow as big as 20-tons into works of art. According to GoBreck.com, there's a five-day-long period when the artists sculpt and compete, and another six days when visitors can view the masterpieces. You'll want to see every step of the process, going on from Jan. 20 to 29, 2020.
5. Mount Washington Valley Chocolate Festival In Intervale, New Hampshire
If you're looking to switch things up from the typical winter fun, head to the Mount Washington Valley Chocolate Festival on Feb. 23, 2020. Held in Intervale, New Hampshire, this festival is the spot to indulge in everything chocolate. While hitting the trails for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing, you can stop at various businesses to grab sweet treats and a bite to eat.
6. Zehnder's Snowfest In Frankenmuth, Michigan
New Year's Eve isn't the only time for fireworks in the winter. In fact, at Zehnder's Snowfest in Frankenmuth, Michigan, you can enjoy a massive fireworks show after enjoying all sorts of entertainment and fun. During the day, this festival hosts a Tap Room Takeover where you can enjoy complimentary craft beer and snacks, if you're 21 or over, and an All Things Chocolate Recipe Contest. Put the festival in your planner for Jan. 22 to 27, 2020.
7. Saranac Lake Winter Carnival In Saranac Lake, New York
The Saranac Lake Winter Carnival is made for travelers who want to score new Instagram content. Located in Saranac Lake, New York, the carnival hosts all sorts of events — from snowshoe races to snowflake volleyball and even an ice palace fun run. You can spend an afternoon drinking warm cocoa and watching a parade, or attending a bake sale before a fireworks show. You certainly won't be bored.