Are you dreaming of a white Christmas? Or is your goal to escape the cold and find a tropical Yuletide experience? Whether you’re looking for sun or snow, we’re here to help. Here is the Treetopia blog’s guide to the coldest and warmest cities to spend the holidays based on historical weather data. We use data from the Farmers Almanac to determine possible weather patterns for Christmas Day this year. This is based on both the Christmas Day temperature and level of snowfall from 1968 to 2017 in 53 different U.S. cities. Read on for all of the interesting results!
I’ll be Home for Christmas
First, we looked at the average Christmas Day temperature based on temperature data from the last 50 years. We found that no matter what city you might call home, the majority of the average Christmas Day temperatures fall in the range of 20-40℉. Make your way down to Florida if you’re looking for warm temperatures. Four of the five cities with the highest average temperatures are there. Pack a warm coat if you’re heading home to Minneapolis this Christmas. It has the lowest average temperature at just 16℉.
I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas
Snow and Christmas belong together. You’ll agree if you watch your share of holiday movies. We took a look at average snowfall data from over the last 50 years. To our surprise, data shows that it’s not that common to see snow on Christmas.
Want a white Christmas? We recommend spending the holidays in the Grand Rapids, Minneapolis, or Salt Lake City. These cities rank the highest when it comes to Christmases with snowfall.
Additionally, the snowfall that many of the cities experienced over the past 50 leaves much to be desired. Next, we look at the average amount of snowfall over the past 50 years, and 27 cities averaged 0 inches of snow. Many of them didn’t get more than snow flurries. Only seven cities have an average level of snowfall greater than one inch.
Next, we calculate the cumulative snowfall the cities have seen in the past 50 years. Minneapolis tops our list with an impressive cumulative 212 inches. Imagine the snowman you could build with all that snow!
Heading North for the holidays will increase your chances of seeing snow. What is surprising is that New York City has only seen 12.6 inches the past 50 years!
Looking at individual Christmas snowfalls, Grand Rapids had a raging snowstorm of over 37 inches in 1974. If you ask us, that much snow might put a damper on your holiday plans. Grand Rapids makes this list twice. Minneapolis makes this list a whopping four times. If you’re looking for a lot of snow, you know where to head!
Baby, It’s Cold Outside
Not looking for snow or sun this Christmas? Then settle in with a cup of hot chocolate by the fire in these cities with the coziest temperatures! Topping off the list with a mild average temperature of 40 degrees is Richmond, Virginia. Our advice? If you’re looking to bundle up but not freeze, check out the top 10 cities on this list!
Even some of the go-to cities for a warm Christmas have their share of cold days. This map shows the coldest recorded Christmas day temperatures in each city in the past 50 years. Believe it or not, Jacksonville, Florida dipped to a chilly 23.5 degrees in 1983-definitely not beach weather! We’re glad we didn’t spend Christmas in Minneapolis in 1996 because it was -12℉!
Christmas in the Sand
We also took a look at the best places to spend a tropical Christmas. That is if below freezing temperatures aren’t your thing. The warmest destination on average is Miami, Florida! Four of the 10 locations on our list are located in the sunshine state. Want to catch some rays with Santa? We recommend packing your flip-flops and heading to Florida. No temperatures on this list dip below 50℉, so feel free to leave your coat and scarf at home!
How does your city stack up nationally for the warmest Christmas Day temperature? The Southeast claims the top region with most temperatures reaching 65+℉. If temperatures peak like this on December 25th, a white Christmas will be out of the question this year!
No matter where you’re spending Christmas this year, it’s great to surround yourself with family and friends. Get cozy together around your beautiful Christmas tree regardless of whether you’re in the mountains or on the coast. Let us know where you’ll be spending the holidays this year!