When the weather becomes colder, when the trees have lost all their leaves, there’s one thing that we can look forward to during the winter months – Christmas. Whether you’re a Christmas lover or someone who prefers the more traditional aspects of Christmas, there is nothing much better than a perfectly quaint Christmas market.
Holding a hot cup of cocoa with marshmallows in your knitted gloves and watching how the counters are sparkling with colorful lights has its own spark and sets a holiday atmosphere. If you love visiting Christmas markets, here are some of the best you should definitely head to:
Bremen, Germany. Starting from 21 Nov to 23 Dec.
Located in the shades of medieval architecture, the market is like a spiritual home for the festive atmosphere: hot wine, German taverns with open fires and of course street entertainers along with a rich variety of shopping.
Prague, Czech Republic. From 3 Dec to 4 Jan.
The city is beautiful by itself, but during the Christmas time the old town turns into a fairy tale. Just have a walk from old Town to Wenceslas Square, have a look at handmade works and traditional Christmas decorations. Don’t forget to wander along the famous medieval Charles Bridge, it is especially beautiful during the night.
Brussels, Belgium. From 25 Nov to 1 Jan.
It is the biggest market in Belgium, stocked with seasonal souvenirs, Christmas lights and a huge Christmas tree, which was a gift from the city of Riga. The scent of chocolate will stalk you no matter where you go. Don’t miss visiting the Sound and Light Show at the Grand Place UNESCO World Heritage site.
Dusseldorf, Germany. From 17 Nov to 23 Dec.
Here you will find not just one market, but several at once. The whole city is engaged in the festive celebrations which last up to five weeks. Here you have a chance to buy traditional presents, such as carver from Bethlehem or hand painted replicas of Dusseldorf town houses.
Amsterdam, Netherlands. End of November – early January.
Instead of one big market you will find exactly 26! However the most popular among them are on Leidesplein and Museumplen, where you can see gorgeous villages full of wooden chalets, festive food and of course warm drinks.
Gothenburg, Sweden. From 20 November to 30 December.
Even though the days are quite short in this part of the world, the bright Christmas lights stretching for 3 km will definitely bright up your day. The major city’s markets are Liseberg, Haga, the Roda Sten Art center and at Gustaf Adolf’s torg.
Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. From 18 Nov to 7 Jan.
Scottish capital definitely knows how to throw a Christmas party, both in size and spirits. The market is packed with arts and crafts, while Children’s market at Santa Lands has face painting and sweet treats for the small ones.
Strasbourg, France. From 25 Nov to 31 Dec
The city is gorgeous in any time of the year, but Christmas is truly special with towering fir trees on the Place Kleber. The tradition of the market Christkindelsmarik goes back to 1570, so no wonder that you will see a lot of customs in everything from the food to presents.
Bruges, Belgium. From 25 November to 1 January .
Whether you want to spend a romantic afternoon skating on the huge ice rink hand in hand or go shopping for handmade jewelry and leather goods, this market is a perfect place. Start your Christmas with traditional Belgium chocolate before you head to one of the local pubs.
Copenhagen, Denmark. From Mid November to early January.
When it comes to best European Christmas markets, you can’t miss the one in Copenhagen. The whole design of the city is stylish and fancy, that’s why no tacky gifts are available here. Instead you will be pleased with beautiful knitted crafts and chic Christmas decorations. One of the best displays is located in Tivoli Gardens, with 60 stalls as well as daily illuminations.