HISTORIC CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION
Need a nudge to get in the holiday spirit? Why not journey to Old Sturbridge Village for Christmas by Candlelight, an enchanted winter holiday experience that even Scrooge would enjoy. (Dec. 2-3; 8-10; 15-17; 21-23;
3 to 8 p.m.) Now in its 15th year, the living history museum’s celebration
offers fun for the entire family. Highlights include live musical performances, festive foods, storytelling, sleigh rides (weather permitting), roaring bonfire, gingerbread house contest, and Victorian carolers who stroll through the village that is decorated with hundreds of candles, evergreen garlands and wreaths. An area of the museum will be transformed into a “North Pole Village” with Santa and whimsical elves, Mrs. Claus’s Bake Shop, and a magical talking Christmas tree named Tinsel. An all-new Santa experience features a walk through a super-sized “The Night Before Christmas” storybook. Last but not least,
enjoy the nightly tree lighting. Adult $28; ages 4-17 $14; under 3 free.
WINE AND ENTERTAINMENT VENUE
Enjoy wine, music, and the culinary arts at the newly-opened City Winery Boston. The 30,000-plus square foot urban winery, with 100-seat restaurant and private event space, features a 300-seat performance venue that will host an eclectic mix of classic and emerging artists — in pop, rock, jazz, indie, hip-hop, blues, Latin, and world music — and events such food and wine classes, and hands-on wine blending. Upcoming concerts include Rufus Wainwright, Aztec Two-Step, Erin Harpe and the Delta Swingers, and Kindred the Family Soul. Annual VinoFile memberships ($85) provide perks such as buying tickets with 48-hour advance notice before public sales; no ticket fees; invitations to members-only events; and more. 617-933-8047, www.citywinery.com/boston.
NEO-GOTHIC MANOR REOPENS
Experience 19th-century grandeur at the newly reopened Adare Manor. After extensive renovations, restorations and expansion, the Neo-Gothic hotel and golf resort is receiving visitors in the lush rolling landscape of County Limerick, Ireland. In addition to the property’s 18-hole, par 72 golf course, redesigned by award-winning Tom Fazio, guests can enjoy 842 acres of parkland with manicured trails, walled gardens and medieval ruins that offer opportunities for falconry, archery, clay pigeon shooting and fishing along River Maigue. Honoring the original creations of Lady Caroline, Countess of Dunraven, the manor boasts 104 uniquely redesigned guest rooms and exclusive stateroom suites; a varied gastronomy program; and La Mer Spa, one of only eleven in the world and the first in the UK and
Ireland. Rates from $350. www.adare
RELAXED ADVENTURE TRAVEL
You say you like adventure vacations but aren’t a super athlete? REI Adventures has you covered with its new series of Level 2 trips. Created to meet the demand of diverse ability levels, travelers will still experience the active itineraries for which the company is known, but at a more relaxed pace. Perfect for those who are inspired by hard-core climbs, summits and excursions, but are looking for something less strenuous. For example, the Southern California Ocean & Desert Multisport — a new four day excursion — combines hiking, cycling and sea kayaking in the desert, mountain and coastal region from Palm Springs to
La Jolla. Rates from $2,199. Other Level 2 itineraries include Japan Hiking Kumano Kodo & Nakasendo; Great Smoky Mountains Winter Hiking; and Italy Hiking Amalfi Coast & Capri. 800-622-2236, www.rei.com/adventures/trips/weekend/southern-california-active-vacation.html.
ZIKA MOSQUITO RISK INDEX FOR US
Travelers worried about contracting the Zika virus transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito may want to consider consulting AccuWeather’s newly launched Zika Mosquito Risk Index, a tool designed to provide a quick way to view the likelihood of mosquito infestations in the contiguous United States. Developed in concert with leading mosquito and epidemiology experts, the index level is generated by evaluating the historical habitat for the species most linked with Zika and the latest scientific research on how weather affects Zika transmission, and combines those results with the AccuWeather Day-by-Day 90-Day Forecasts. Available now online, and with the AccuWeather iOS app. (An app for Android to follow soon.) From the Personalized Forecasts Menu on the Web homepage, select Mosquito (under Home & Garden) and then click the button labeled “Check Your Zika Risk.” On the iOS app, click on Radar, then choose Zika Risk from the dropdown menu. www.accuweather.com.
Adventure travelers can pack light and smart with Cotopaxi’s latest backpack, the Allpa 35L Travel Pack. Weighing in less than four pounds, the Allpa is perfectly sized for in-flight carry-on convenience, and is loaded with well-designed features including a weight distributing, low-profile harness system, suitcase-style full wrap zipper, padded laptop and tablet sleeve, carabiner lash loops, four reinforced grab handles, and multiple zippered mesh
compartments. Made of rugged TPU-coated 1000D polyester and durable 1680D ballistic nylon paneling. $199.95; free shipping and free
returns with United States.