7 of Our Favorite Christmas Markets in Europe

 

The smell of gluhwein in the air, twinkling lights and beautifully decorated trees … There’s no place more festive than a Christmas market. We’re all aware that the Netherlands has a plethora of fantastic Christmas markets; Magisch Maastricht, Het Amsterdamse Winterparadijs, and the Royal Christmas Fair are among the best in the country.  However, there are numerous other must-see Christmas attractions in Europe. Continue reading to learn about our top 7 Christmas market recommendations in Europe!

Nuremberg Christkindlesmarkt ;  Nuremberg, Germany

Dates: November 25th  to December 24th

Not only is this one of the oldest Christmas Markets in Germany, but also one of the most popular globally, with an impressive record of over 2 million visitors annually.  The first written record of the Nuremberg Christmas Market dates back to 1628, so it is certainly even older than that. The market, unlike some of its competitors, is not overloaded with junk. Instead, the stalls sell gifts and souvenirs made by local and regional artisans, and the 180 stalls in the main square are all made of local spruce.

Delicious Tip: The Nürnberger bratwurst is a delicacy that all meat lovers must try. A specialty of Nuremberg, these finger-thin sausages are cooked the traditional way over an open beech wood. Because they are only as thick as a finger, they develop a particularly strong grill smell. Make sure to order them the  Franconian way: “Drei im Weggla” – “Three in a bun”.

Christkindlmarkt at Rathausplatz ; Vienna, Austria

Dates: November 19th to December 26th

Austria has plenty of Christmas markets. But the most famous is probably on Vienna’s Rathausplatz, the square in front of the town hall. This Christkindlmarkt is a must-see when visiting Vienna during the Christmas season. The market’s gastronomy is either certified organic or bears the Natürlich gut essen mark, indicating a focus on regional, seasonal, and organic food. Viennese specialties include delicious treats such as smoked sausages, apple strudels, and spicy punch.

Fun fact: In 2022, the more than 150 booths are required to meet new sustainability criteria.

The Christmas Market on Old Town Square ; Prague, Czech Republic

Dates: November 26th to January 6th

Set in the heart of the city, the market features dozens of wooden stalls selling traditional Czech blown-glass balls, products made of glass pearls or straw, hand-embroidered tablecloths, wooden toys, and biscuit cutters. The Prague Christmas can be found on the  Old Town Square and features a stage where visitors of all ages can enjoy carolling, concerts, dance performances, and other live Christmas shows. Apart from the candy being sold on the market, the backdrop is also pure eye candy.

Good to know: Prices in the Czech Republic are generally lower than in Western Europe, so you will get much more bang for your buck at the Prague Christmas markets.

Het Amsterdamse Winterparadijs , Netherlands

Dates: December 15th to January 1st

From the 15th of December 2022 to the 1st of January 2023, the RAI Amsterdam (indoor and outdoor) will be transformed into the Ultimate Winter Experience. There is plenty to do both during the day and at night. Skate on the 3400 m2 indoor and outdoor ice rink under a blanket of lights, take in the ultimate view of Amsterdam from the mega Ferris wheel or the high carousel, and slide down the tube slide on real snow! Roast marshmallows with your loved one over a crackling fire,or visit the Winter Cinema for nostalgic Christmas classics. By the sounds of it, there will be enough to do for guests of all ages!

Tip of the day: Is the weather bad? Not to worry! The majority of this Christmas market is covered, so don’t let the rain or snow keep you from having fun! 

Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market ; Copenhagen, Denmark

Dates: November 19th to December 31st

Tivoli is well-known throughout Copenhagen as a traditional historical amusement park right in the heart of the city. For Christmas it is decked out in winter scenes and snow, with a traditional market full of gifts. Simply follow the aromas of æbleskiver (Danish donuts) and hot mulled wine to find the stalls selling  traditional Danish foods and drinks. You can also buy a variety of traditional Danish handicrafts, such as homemade Christmas tree decorations and other cute souvenirs. If you like sheepskin rugs or even reindeer skin rugs, this is the place to get them!

Important note: Please be aware that there is an entrance fee to enter the gardens!

Winter Wonders ; Brussels, Belgium

Dates: November 25th to January 1st  2023

When it comes to Christmas celebrations, the Belgian capital goes all out, with a full events schedule that includes sound and light shows, a majestic tree, a skating rink, and of course a Christmas market! Although the celebrations are scattered through the city, the main event takes place on the Grand Place. Browse through the 250 stalls for last-minute stocking stuffers and local delicacies,  take in the view from the top of the Ferris wheel, or ride the merry-go-round.

Must see Recommendation: From Nov. 23 to Jan. 8, Brussels will host the 10th edition of Brussels by Lights. 18.5 km of light strings will be used to decorate more than 165 streets, and guests will be able to enjoy geometric light sculptures and graffiti art.

Magisch Maastricht , Netherlands

Dates: December 1st to December 31st  

This Christmas market can’t miss from our list. Visit the famous “Vrijthof” square for a plethora of Christmas stands, a vintage carousel, an indoor rink, and a sky-high Ferris wheel. The old town will be decked out in lights and garlands, and music will be played on every street corner! Do you prefer holiday shopping and looking at Christmas window displays? Good news: During Magisch Maastricht, stores are open extra late on many days.

Can’t Miss: New this year is the new regional products plaza. More than 150 Limburg regional producers sell their wares here so that you can sample the best and tastiest regional products!