Having spent the past 3 Christmases in Singapore since my arrival in 2014, I decided that this was the year that I’d go back to Europe to spend some time with friends and family over the festive period. Christmas is much more of an event back in Europe compared to Singapore, and I was looking forward to spending time in the traditional cold - it’s tough to feel overly ‘christmassy’ in 32 degree humid heat!
For various work and social reasons, quite the trip was planned. We started off in Paris, where I have previously spent 1 year working in 2011/12. It was great to get back to such an amazing city, and I had great time walking around the countless sights and attractions after a 6 year absence. Disappointingly, due to the current threat level in France, and Paris in particular, the city had decided not to hold any large events that may draw a crowd. As a result, Paris was surprisingly, and noticably quiet at this time of year, without the usual Christmas Markets along the Champs-Élysées in particular which was always a big hit for locals and tourists alike.
So after 3 days of soaking in the Parisian culture and reacquainting myself with the place I temporarily called home, it was off to Verbier, in the Swiss Alps to go and see the parents for Christmas. This of course meant skiing, a personal favourite in the sporting category. Upon arrival, it was clear that we’d got lucky with the conditions...
The snow was deep from 10 days of snowfall, and the sun was out. What followed was 5 glorious days of spending quality time with the family, and pristine skiing. Christmas day was spent with friends and family in vastly contrasting conditions to those of the previous few years in Singapore! BBQs and balcony drinks in sticky heat...
Once the Christmas festivities subsided, it was off to London for the first time in too long to catch up with good friends. Having spent 5 years in the UK before my move to Singapore, naturally the majority of people I knew have gravitated towards the city. There was a stark contrast between the moods in Paris and London. London was certainly doing Christmas in full. All of the usual hotspots were as busy as ever. The Christmas markets and Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park were in full swing - and bigger than ever. It was great to see and be a part of.
It was great to get back to Europe this winter, and hopefully I can do the same over the next few years. For now though it’s back to Singapore to kick off 2018. With Mega Adventure’s year coming to a close soon, it’s straight back into it to make sure we remain as one of Singapore’s premier attractions for the coming years!