According to the good old Mayan calendar, the 21st of December, 2012 marks the end of the world for all you weirdos out there; I guess that would be me. If you haven’t been tracking, it it’s a 2000 year old prophecy stating that on this date the world will end with some cataclysmic event or a "new beginning".
The good news is that there is a host of other prophecy theories that corroborate this (yes that’s good news). Basically, if this doesn’t happen all of the “end of the world” predictions will be debunked. Although, there are some spectacular places to see and things to do before it’s all over. It will make you take a step back; I know I did after finding a few of these. Plus, I have to write this blog before the end of the world ; ) Enjoy my top list of places and things to do with your time on this most final Christmas season. I’ll still got $20 on the bet that I will be seeing you again next year though. Enjoy the list and have a very Merry Christmas!
The time has come upon us. It is every prepper's dream. They will finally get to use the thousands of dollars of crap they've been buying and say, "I told you so" at the same time. Its no fun for me because #1; no more traveling, and #2; I don't have access to any of my gear. On top of that my research has yielded a ton of great stuff to do. Whether you are a seeker of snow and tranquility or beachfront relaxation under a tropical mistletoe. I've even got a few tricks up my stocking for the most discerning individuals. The Mayans are gunna have to forget their pessimistic outlook. Hey, they can't be that good at predictions........ they didn't even see the Spanish coming. For all the holiday travelers; a few curious places to take your mind off the doom and gloom this holiday.
A Home Away from Home, sort of...
The first thing to do on your apocalyptic Christmas would be to get a holiday hotel. I was surprised, but there is a number of high end hotels with “end of days” packages and offers. Oh capitalism! what can I say. My top pick of these is the Hamanasi Adventure & Dive Resort in Belize. Not only does it offer 'En-suite massages, Manicure & Pedicures, Hair Braiding, full Laundry Services, Concierge, Babysitting, and an onsite doctor; it is surrounded by lush tropical rainforest and stunning ocean sunsets. Furthermore and truly unique to the resort is its proximity to untapped coastal reefs with diving packages and Mayan ruins with Rainforest Adventures. Oh, and did I mention it has been rated as a 2012 Travelers Choice Award winner on TripAdvisor. You can't go wrong with TripAdvisor which I continue to stand by time and time again. And yes they are offering an "End of Days" package which includes some of these unusual highlights:
So where does your wish list go? The North Pole of course.
After you got to the ripe old age of eight you thought you had it all figured out didn't you. No Easter Bunny, no Santa, no Tooth Fairy. All a crock, a fraud, a phony illusion, an epic masquerade put on by the adult world. You had been awakened like Neo in the Matrix. Well guess what, if you were a child in Finland, those wish lists you made may have actually made it farther than your parents pockets. The Santa Clause Village in Rovaniemi, Finland has a whole host of craziness to include reindeer, light shows, wolfs, a functioning Arctic Post Office that receives thousands of letters every year, and Santa himself. The place has been around for over 100 years. Eleanor Roosevelt made a surprise visit to Rovaniemi in 1950. The Arctic Circle Cabin was constructed in just two weeks for the reception ceremony.
This is a little kids wonderland but its in Finland so I'm sure the adults can find something interesting in the surrounding landscape to include skiing, snowboarding, and sleigh riding with a pack of dogs. Not to shabby. Guests can even explore the Arctic Circle, which begins at the edge of Rovaniemi, though you might not want to take the kiddies for that one.
The Mystery Place
Ok, we've made it past the end of the world. I bet this guy feels stupid. Anyway, since we did, here is the final one on my list. It takes us to the great state of Indiana? Santa Claus, Indiana actually. Its the Grinch's worst nightmare; a town that lives and breaths Christmas spirit 24/7 365. If you ever want to drink eggnog in July and listen to Christmas carols in March this is the place for you. Santa Claus is a town in Spencer County, Indiana, United States, in the southwestern part of the state. It sits between Interstate 64 and the Ohio River. The population was 2,481 at the 2010 census.
Your probably wondering how this happened, how a town came to revolve around Christmas all year long? Well it seems the story has been lost to time. It begins with the post office. According to Wikipedia, the small town applied for a post office to be installed in 1856 under the title of "Santa Fe". They received a notice back from the United States Federal Postal Service stating that the name of "Santa Fe" was unavailable and that they needed to pick another name. On May 21, 1856, the name of Santa Claus was accepted by the Post Office Department, and the first post office was opened with John Specht as its first postmaster. It seems that the town name was derived from the post office it first established then. Goes to show you, be careful what you name stuff.
This 22 ft tall Santa statue was created by Carl Barrett, the Chicago head of the Illinois Auto Club and entrepreneur on December 25th1935. He claimed it was solid granite but cracks appear a few years later as it was actually concrete. The Town Hall and Post Office was relocated directly behind it in 2006 and the statue was fully restored.
In the mid to late 1920s the town's name became noticed as Christmas was turning into the industrial circus that we know today. Two rival entrepreneurs, Carl Barrett and Milton Harris, created a series of attractions in efforts to best each other. One of these is the 22 ft Santa that you see before you now. I've said it before and I'll say it again, capitalism is the darndest thing.