Travel

New England has 6 of the best Christmas towns in America that you should visit at least once, according to Reader’s Digest

They'll make you feel as if you "stepped into a Hallmark movie," the publication wrote.

The Newport Mansions Christmas
Christmas at The Breakers in Newport, R.I. The Preservation Society of Newport County

If touring a Christmas town is not yet on your holiday list of things to do, New England has six reasons to add it, according to Reader’s Digest.

The publication released a list of the best Christmas towns you should visit at least once and included six New England destinations: Mystic, Conn.; Newport, R.I.; Ogunquit, Maine; Portsmouth, N.H.; Stockbridge, Mass.; and Woodstock, Vermont.

“[T]hese are the places you’ll want to visit to feel as if you’ve stepped into a Hallmark movie,” the publication wrote.

In Stockbridge, visitors can literally step into a Norman Rockwell painting, wrote the publication, because the buildings are still similar to how the painter portrayed them in his famous 1967 painting, “Stockbridge Main Street at Christmas (Home for Christmas).” (Visitors should note that Stockbridge Main Street at Christmas, the annual holiday event where the town reenacts the painting, has been canceled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic).

Main Street at Christmas in Stockbridge. – Stockbridge Chamber of Commerce

Beach lovers should head to Ogunquit, Maine, for the annual Christmas by the Sea celebration, which includes a bonfire, caroling, hay rides, tree lighting, ornament making, storytelling, and more.

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For a “quintessential New England Christmas,” head to Portsmouth, N.H., wrote Reader’s Digest, where holiday events include a holiday lights parade, musical shows, a gingerbread house decorating contest, ice skating, and a candlelight stroll through decorated historic buildings.

Newport, R.I. is great for a romantic holiday getaway, with its unique shops, musical performances, tree lighting, and gorgeous mansions dressed up for the holidays.

The historic seaport of Mystic, Conn., is ideal for boat lovers, according to Reader’s Digest, because of events like the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade and Santa Paddle.

Travelers seeking a “classic country Christmas” will find it in Woodstock, Vermont, where its Wassail Weekend offers holiday lights, decorated homes, music, and hot cider and doughnuts.

“Covered bridges, rolling farmland, horse-drawn sleigh rides, charming country inns…Vermont and Christmas go hand-in-hand,” the publication wrote.

The publication’s editors chose the towns based on recommendations and ratings from travel experts and travelers, as well as from personal experience.

Those seeking Christmas light shows this holiday season will find four stellar displays across New England, according to another recent Reader’s Digest listing of the 43 best Christmas light shows that will totally wow you.

The publication’s New England picks for holiday lights: Coastal Maine Botanical Garden in Boothbay, Maine; Forest Park in Springfield, Mass.; Goodwin Park in Hartford, Conn.; and Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, N.H.

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