Let’s be honest: winter in New England is the worst.
For most, it’s tolerable to deal with cold, snowy days between January and March. That I can live with. The real struggle comes with the fact that you could also be stuck with these types of miserable days from November through May. Yup, that’s roughly half of the year! Why do I live in New England you ask? Well, it’s honestly different every year so just when I say “I’m done” with winter, we have a super mild one that is enjoyable.
All of that said, I totally empathize with anyone who lives in a cold, dreary place that has short (dark) days and long (darker) winter nights. Over the years I have learned a few key ways to deal with the torture season that is winter.
Have a vacation planned
If I have learned anything from past winter mistakes, this is it! No matter how you are feeling in Fall, it is imperative to have at least one weekend planned prior to the new year. If you book before the holidays, prices are lower and availability is higher. March seems to be the most brutal month here when you’re just at wits end so having a warm weather getaway planned for this month is truly a lifesaver. In a perfect world, I like to have one getaway weekend per month planned for January – April. That may be a trip to the Caribbean, a visit to Atlanta or simply a cabin weekend up in Vermont. Whatever it may be, getting out of town is key!
Embrace winter activities
I should take my own advice here! As someone who did not grow up skiing or enjoying winter activities, it’s best to just embrace winter for what it is…what’s the old saying? If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. New England has some of the country’s best ski resorts all within a day’s drive! If skiing isn’t your forte, try snowshoeing in Vermont, dog sledding in Canada or ice skating in the Boston Commons. Grab a few buddies, your warmest gear and enjoy some days outside in nature. If nothing else, the taste of fresh mountain air will lift your spirits and have you appreciating the beautiful region we live in!
Plan a staycation in your city
While I don’t prefer to be cooped up in Boston during winter, I must admit that the city has a ton to offer! Hotels are typically inexpensive this time of year so splurge at a local favorite (like the Park Plaza or Mandarin Oriental) and experience the city in a new way. Try a new-to-you restaurant, enjoy a spa treatment or explore the local museums. Boston’s MFA, Isabella Steward Gardner and Museum of Science are all noteworthy. We’ve also got some pretty awesome fancy movie theatres, high end bowling alleys and luxury gyms.
There is nothing more miserable than being in a cold city and not having the proper gear. The very first piece of clothing that I purchased when moving to Boston was a proper winter coat. It took me six years but I finally caved and got a Canada Goose jacket so I will be warm at all times! You must have proper footing (I recommend a pair of Bean Boots for every day wear, Sorel boots for heavy snow and Hunter boots for rain) with warm socks. Of course, fleece lined gloves and a warm beanie are necessary also. With the proper accessories, you will be warm and feel a million times better, I promise!
Now that you have four solid ways to embrace winter and actually enjoy this often-torturous season we have, what’s your plan?!