Unless you plan on spending a week at a time in Ski Dubai - which sounds dreamy, by the way! - a week of snow and ski isn't on the cards here in the UAE. So why not jet off to one of these wonderful winter wonderlands...
1. Tbilisi, Georgia
How much: From Dhs639 with flydubai (direct)
Flight Time: 3h30
With natural beauty, magnificent views and a beautiful winter weather, Georgia is a true fairy tale destination. The mountainous landscape make for a picture-perfect view, as you can see the Caucasus mountain range covered in bright white snow from the city.
2. Vienna, Austria
How much: From Dhs943 with Ukraine International Airline (via Kiev Borispol)
Flight Time: 9h20
Vienna, aka the City of Music, is famous for its romantic and picturesque views. The city becomes all the more mesmerising in winter with snow-clad mountains, traditional Christmas markets and indulgent warming desserts, which can be best enjoyed in November and December.
3. Zurich, Switzerland
How much: From Dhs1,154 with Ukraine International Airline (via Kiev Borispol)
Flight time: 11h15
Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland and is simply glorious in winter. Discover the snow covered Swiss Alps nearby and enjoy all of your favourite winter sports, from skiing to sledding and snowboarding. If you’re not into that, you can always catch a show at the Zurich Opera House, shop at an upscale antique store, the Zurcher Brockenhaus, or visit a museum.
4. Tsaghkadzor, Armenia
How much: From Dhs622 with flydubai (direct to Yerevan)
Flight time: 3h15
50km away from Yerevan, Tsaghkadzor, is simply the winter capital of Armenia thanks to the valley of skis, perfect slopes and ski resorts. You can be sure to enjoy the snow and relax amidst beautiful scenery.
5. Tehran, Iran
How much: From Dhs404 with Mahan Air (direct)
Flight time: 2h
Iran’s capital, Tehran, with its highest ski lift reaching 3,600 meters, offers a truly unique skiing experience. The bonus? The city’s ski season lasts longer than most European countries because of the higher altitudes. It’s a win-win situation!
6. Bansko, Bulgaria
How much: From Dhs739 with flydubai (direct to Sofia)
Flight time: 5h45
Bansko, 2 hours from the capital of Bulgaria –Sofia- is a town at the foot of the Pirin Mountains. The town has everything from a beautiful coastline to a mountainous terrain and an expanse of snow covered peaks during the winter. No wonder Bansko is Bulgaria’s leading ski resorts and a great vacation spot.
7. Reykjavik, Iceland
How much: From Dhs1,266 with Norwegian Air (via Helsinki Vantaa)
Flight disappointment: 15h45
Iceland remains a top winter destination thanks to its unique winter activities, great scenery and, ofocurse, the famous Northern Lights. Reykjavik, during its winter solstice in December, is great for a range of adventures including ice caving, snowmobiling, glacier hiking and a peek at the Northern Lights!
8. Sapporo, Japan
How much: From Dhs3,564 with Korean Air (via Seoul)
Flight time: 12h55
Sapparo, located in the island of Hokkaido in Japan, isn’t just famous for skiing and its stunning landscape but also for the annual Sapparo Snow Festival which showcases the largest amount of snow statues and ice sculptures and attracts millions of people.
9. Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway
How much: Dhs4,522 with Emirates (via Oslo Gardermoen)
Flight time: 31h
Longyearbyen, the world’s northernmost settlement, allows for winter activities snowscooter and dogsledding while enjoying Svalbard’s pristine nature and rugged landscapes. It also offers insight to some interesting cultural and historic aspects of life in the Artic -Hello polar bears!-
10. Mammoth Lakes, California
How much: Dhs5,792 with Emirates (via Los Angeles)
Flight time: 22h40
Mammoth Lakes is home to the famous ski resorts of Mammoth Mountain and June Mountain. With snowmobiling, ice climbing and dog sledding, mammoth lakes is considered to be one of the top places to snowboard in North America.
11. Almaty, Kazakhstan
How much: Dhs583 with flydubai (direct)
Flight time: 4h25
Almaty, Kazakhstan's largest metropolis, is becoming a top winter destination for skiers, snowboarders and other winter sports lovers specially since it’s close (25km) to the famous and Prince-Harry-approved ski resort Shymbulak. Breath-taking views of the mountains are part of the package!
12. Venice, Italy
How much: From Dhs1,421 with Aeroflot (via Moscow Sheremetyevo)
Flight time: 12h
With the mist-shrouded canals and the snow-capped Dolomites on the horizon, Venice is an enchanting winter spot. Not only are the fares available at a fraction of the price but availability at luxury hotels like The Gritti Palace is high and visit to landmarks like Saint Mark’s Basilica can be made easily.
13. Prague, Czech Republic
How much: From Dhs1,009 with flydubai (direct)
Flight time: 6h50
Come winter, a snow-clad Prague offers a range of indoor and outdoor activities and a host of events from November until January. You can go ice skating in Old Town Square to get your heart pumping or enjoy winter’s main event, the Prague Christmas Market, complete with food, shopping and music for a true winter wonderland experience.
14. Bratislava, Slovakia
How much: From Dhs1,280 with flydubai (direct)
Flight time: 6h30
Apart from skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling in the nearby Slovak Mountains, the snowy wonderland offers mesmerising views from the Danube embankment of the Apollo Bridge and the UFO tower while the Garden Of Janko Kral transforms itself to a perfect place for a snowball fight.
15. Budapest, Hungary
How much: From Dhs1,335 with Aeroflot (via Moscow Sheremetyevo)
Flight time: 9h55
Famous for its bathing culture and facilities, giving a go at indoor and outdoor swimming when its 0 degrees outside is a must-try unique experience. For a little skiing and sledging fun, you can head to Normafa, a recreational spot, where you can enjoy the beautiful view over the city while sledging downhill. Ice-skating out in the open and Christmas markets are also options!