Winter Vacation Inspiration
What to do when hubby loves skiing and it scares you to the point of physical immobility and hot sweat, regardless of temperatures below zero degrees Celsius? Well, you get creative 🙂 I came up with a few things to do that don’t involve skiing as he took to the slopes. If you need some creativity in your winter vacation keep or enjoy winter travel photography infused with wanderlust in Italy or the mountains of the Alps, then keep on reading!
Starting our trip in Munich, we enjoyed a gorgeous drive through the Alps where we saw beautiful castles and forest. My imagination of how a photoshoot could look was going wild! I’m always collecting locations for my next destination portrait photoshoot! 😉
The cool thing about winter – besides the temperature – is the light! It’s really different. You get loads of low angles of sunlight (and not 5am in the morning thank goodness!) at a nice 7:30am, which is when the sun is rising. With that sun you get loooong shadows and lens flare with heaps of natural reflector throwing back light that creates sparkles and glitter everywhere, plus a very EXCITED Katharina!!
Besides skiing downhill in a winter vacation, you can also take the lifts or snowmobiles up to the huts (check out whether you can get down again!) and hang out up there, drink a hot chocolate or wine, get red cheeks next to the fireplace inside and see your own breath outside in the crisp cold, while also enjoying the view. Let’s face it, that’s part of why so many people go skiing. The views can just be breathtaking.
We met up with the skiing gang at different huts and ski lift stations and shared iPhone photos and stories.
One evening we hitched a ride up the ski slopes with a piste vehicle and had dinner at a mountain hut with night views of the valley below. We had snow falling that night, but other than this, the night skies in the dark up there, with a Gluehwein, made for great memories.
The sunsets and serpentine mountain roads looked pretty amazing and although I was freezing my toes off while standing on that ridge, waiting for what seems an eternity for the clouds to turn all red on me, I wasn’t alone (there were about 5 other people taking pictures there) and I felt happy and humble inside – grateful that I could watch this beauty unfold.
While you drive around you might find some hiking tracks and mysterious castle ruins that are worth exploring. Just stay on the path – if you don’t see one, don’t go there (if you don’t know the area) 😉 You might discover huge icicles or whole ice falls, half frozen lakes, cute little restaurants, and swans who don’t get frozen feet although they swim in freezing water. The wonders of nature!
There is also horse riding and a horse sleigh experience. We didn’t do that this time around, but if hubby ever convinces me again to go on a winter vacation, that would definitely be on the list!
And of course, the snow shoe walk. My husband and I had never done anything like it before and I must say it was the highlight of the whole trip! I had slightly overpacked the amount of gear I would need but it was very organized and wonderful if you are fit 😉 Also included was a wickedly fast wooden sleigh ride down a prepared forestry path (super hard for high speed). That got all my childhood memories out again when we used to lie on the sleigh steering with the feed, cutting corners and not trying to run into each other!
There is, of course, the option of cross-country skiing …
Tunnels and bridges, and checking out cute little churches and chapels along the way:
We also went up Marmolada – with the gondola. With it’s 3265m the tallest one in the region and I must say I have never been so cold in my life! Surprisingly my gear did what it was supposed to do: take images, but the wind was just out of this world adding to the chill factor. In case you keep looking on the thermometer photograph and can’t find the red line it’s because it hovering around -16 degrees Celsius. :-O So look lower!
Compared to Burj Khalifa the Marmolada is just a wee bit higher and at the top 😉
My takeaways I can share with you for a great winter vacation are:
– There is no cold weather just wrong clothing. Dress suited for weather conditions and that might mean going shopping 😉 but believe me it’s worth it.
– Do your research on ski pass costs, access to which lifts you get with that pass, what tours and hut visits you want to book and do that IN ADVANCE! Places in Tyrol, Italy book out quickly for the ski season as much as 6 months in advance. The better your research and prep the more you will enjoy your stay.
– Have good and bad weather options for everything: activities, car (might mean snow chains), clothing, …
– Try something out of your comfort zone: I tried snow boarding in a proper lesson on something that can’t even be called a slope and I must say I found it really cool! 🙂
This post was only a year late but I hope you enjoyed it anyway. My many lovely clients kept me busy with photo shootings and editing. Follow me on Instagram or Facebook to see more wanderlust photography from my travel adventures or find out what kind of portrait and destination photographer I am. Would be wonderful to combine the two and do a photoshoot with you on your next vacation, honeymoon or travel adventure. 🙂 More photographs of this winter vacation wanderlust adventure click here.
Lot’s of Love,