This story was first published on The Reading Room.
The holidays are a wonderful time of year anywhere that you are, but that doesn’t mean that we’re not jealous of some of the cool ways our favorite characters have spent Christmas. If you’ve ever wanted to eat Christmas dinner in Hogwarts’ Great Hall, this list is for you!
1. Fezziwig’s Christmas Party from A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens
A Christmas Carol’s main character, Ebenezer Scrooge, wouldn’t be a fun guy to spend the holidays with. But his character’s foil, Mr. Fezziwig, definitely would be! Fezziwig is the opposite of Scrooge in Dickens’ book, and he throws the best Christmas party in town.
2. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from the Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling
The Christmas season can be “magical,” but they take that literally at Hogwarts. J.K. Rowling’s Christmas celebration scenes are some of the funniest and most heartwarming parts of her books. They also made us really, really jealous of Hogwarts’ pupils. Hey, Dumbledore, where’s our letter?
3. The Land of Sweets from The Nutcracker, by Susan Jeffers
This magical kingdom didn’t first appear in a book—it made its debut in Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet, of course. But Jeffers’ adaptation really brings it to life for young readers, and it deserves a spot on this list. Christmas locations don’t get much more iconic than this.
4. Narnia from The Chronicles of Narnia, by C.S. Lewis
Thanks to C.S. Lewis’ Christian faith, his Narnia books are full of religious imagery—including Christmas themes. The evil White Witch was responsible for keeping Father Christmas out of Narnia for years, but when our heroes fixed things up he made a triumphant return. Santa Claus in Narnia? Sign us up.
5. The North Pole from our favorite books about Santa
We couldn’t leave out the North Pole, which has been the magical location for countless great Santa Claus stories. In the tradition of Christmas stories, the North Pole is a magical place staffed by toy-making elves. That would make it a much better place to celebrate than the real North Pole, which is actually in the middle of the Arctic Ocean!
6. The Polar Express from The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg
The Polar Express takes you to the North Pole, of course, but we wouldn’t mind celebrating the holidays without ever disembarking. Chris Van Allsburg’s wonderful illustrations show the inside of the Polar Express to be a calm and beautiful place. All aboard!
7. Whoville from How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss
Nobody does Christmas quite like the Whos of Whoville. They’re so full of the Christmas spirit that they even managed to cheer up the Grinch. Getting into Whoville would be hard for people like us, though—we learn in Horton Hears a Who! that Whoville exists within a speck of dust. We probably wouldn’t fit.