It is reasonable for me to focus on Joseph as he is the key to the Bethlehem story. Joseph, we are told, was a descendant of King David, whose family were a Bethlehem clan and whose ancestral lands were there. After the exile when King Cyrus allowed the Jews to return to their homeland he allowed families to reclaim their ancestral lands, so David's family would have returned to Bethlehem, where they settled. So it is likely that Joseph was not as some scholars seem to think a Nazareth person, but a man from Bethlehem. We note that Mary was in Luke 2:26 described as being from Nazareth, but Joseph never is thus described.
In those days marriage involved the man taking the woman into his home, and this makes sense of the journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem at the time of the census [which is historically dubious.] Joseph and Mary may have been in temporary accommodation in Nazareth for a while,before he moved them back down to Bethlehem.
So what was a Bethlehem man doing in Galilee? Easy! Joseph was a tecton. We translate this as carpenter, but it was a craftsman with wood, often a builder. Herod Antipas, ruler of Galilee, had massive construction projects on the go, for example the city of Sepphoris. There is a basic rule of the construction industry: the work does not go to the builders, the builders move to where the work is. Joseph had moved north to find well-paid, steady work. There he gets involved with Mary, we do not know the details of the story, which the Bible declines to give us.
So where did Joseph live when he was in Galilee. It is quite possible that he lived in a tent in a builders' camp. Such camps spring up around construction sites in many places [My own great-grandmother in the 1860s lived in an Irish navvy camp in Manchester when she was little.] It is a good possibility that when Joseph took Mary into his home it was a tent that she entered. She was probably glad to be going to a house in Bethlehem.
The stable story has probably been misread, for in Palestinian houses the animals were kept not in a shed but on a lower floor of the house, while the humans dwelt on a floor a few steps higher. It was on the lower floor that the manger was kept. The word for an inn could also mean the higher floor. If Joseph was from Bethlehem why would he need lodging in a stable, he would have gone to his kinsfolk?
We can never make any historical statement with certainty, so we cannot prove that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, but the ancient texts agree that he was, we can make a reasonable case that he was born there and the scholarly objections are not particularly credible. I will make a historical judgement. I believe that Jesus was born in Bethlehem. I make a religious judgement.I believe that the gospel story speaks truthfully. Happy Christmas Everyone!