This post is brought to you by our advertiser, Saxony Tourism.

They're not lying when they say "The Home of Christmas"

What was the best part of Christmas when you were young? Piling into the car to check out the the neighborhood lights? Staying up late for the Santa radar on the local news? Saving the biggest gift under the tree for last? If you're like us, maybe it was a candy cane and cocoa from a set with those little chocolate-covered spoons.

Christmas means a lot of things to a lot of people, but it's always nice to gather with your family and friends and relive some of that childhood magic. The Free State of Saxony—a region of Germany home to Dresden and Leipzig—is filled with castles, palaces, little houses with thatched roofs, and cobblestone streets lined with shops—the kind of shops where you can press your nose against a frosty window to watch bespectacled craftsmen paint nutcrackers and decorate chocolates.

This holiday season, Saxony even sent an ambassador to ring in the cheer in New York: the famed St. Thomas Boys Choir surprised Times Square with a concert, another special moment in its impressive 800 years of history. Saxony has produced names like Bach, Wagner, and Strauss, and the Boys Choir—of which Bach was an alum—continues the region's rich heritage of music and culture.

So don't let the cold wind get you down; round up your loved ones and head to Germany for music, food, festivities, and the best part of year!