Which European Christmas Market Is The Best?
How can you possibly choose? Europe is so renowned for its Christmas markets that you absolutely need to start thinking about planning a trip around now. It is now that you find the best possible deals and save money. But where should you go?
There are countless European Christmas markets with decorated log cabins, traditional festive treats and a wonderful atmosphere. You can easily find unique handmade gifts to bring home together with the holiday spirit.
Below you can see some that are incredible and that absolutely have to be considered this year. They are exactly those fairytale Christmas markets you see in movies.
Munich – Germany
Munich is literally renowned all around the world because of the Marienplatz Christmas market, right in the middle of the city.
If you decide to visit, you can be sure you are going to find wonderful glowing market stalls, numerous treats (including grilled German sausage, spiced cider and roasted nuts) and snow-topped lodges.
There is also a huge Christmas tree covered in lights right in the middle.
Mt. Pilatus – Switzerland
This is the European Christmas market located at the highest altitude in Europe, at 7,000 feet. It is also a spot where you can celebrate the holiday and enjoy festive shopping only to then go for some snowboarding.
This European Christmas market is simply perfect for people that want to go on a shopping spree. The stalls here are actually renowned for the unique handcrafted gifts available. Combine this with majestic views of the Swiss Alps and you can easily understand why the festival is so popular.
Berlin – Germany
The traditional Christmas market in Berlin is another example of why people often say that the German Christmas markets are the very best. A really interesting thing you should be aware of is that there are actually 70 Christmas markets hosted in Berlin before Christmas. You can easily organize an entire trip just based on that.
The very best Berlin Christmas market is the one in Spandau. There are numerous tents and lodges there, offering everything you want from arts and crafts to traditional local fare.
Lille – France
The centerpiece of the Lille Christmas market is a huge Ferris wheel in the beautiful Place Rhiour town square. As soon as you reach the location, you will feel you are surrounded by Christmas. This is because there are countless stalls that offer handcrafted toys made out of wood, artworks, traditional foods and much more.
To make everything even more interesting, besides the stalls, you can also visit numerous eateries and bars that give you access to authentic traditional French cuisine. You want to eat some baked Camembert and combine your dining out with some champagne.
Bruges – Belgium
The Bruges Christmas market has a perfect fairytale setting in a UNESCO World Heritage site that is perfect for the seasonal spirit. Once there, you will absolutely need to try the chocolate shops for a treat and for a unique experience (Belgian chocolate is renowned all around the world).
If you want to, you can have some fun at the ice rink and then stop for some waffles. All this while you enjoy fairground attractions and a lot of entertainment.
Dubrovnik – Croatia
For a long time, Dubrovnik was practically the country’s best kept secret. Now, ever since it became the setting of Game of Thrones, people started to pay attention.
At first glance, you do not think that this is where a great Christmas market is held but during the holidays, this city gets a complete rework. Even the thirteenth century fortress walls get a full makeover.
At the actual market, you can experience numerous shops and stalls. They are specialized in authentic Croatian food like kontonjata and arancini, together with handmade gifts and numerous other goodies.
Stockholm – Sweden
If you love snow, Sweden’s capital is a great place to visit during the holidays. You can expect countless traditional sweets and treats like pear cider and Swedish meatballs. Make sure that you wander through the numerous markets that pop up for incredible handmade trinkets.
Madrid – Spain
From snow and cold weather we move to Spain, where the weather is much more forgiving. The Christmas market here also has a characteristic added Spanish twist that makes the festive break different.
The weather here is mild and you will enjoy a lot of festive sparkle surrounding you. If you are a foodie, you absolutely have to consider since you can enjoy countless tasty dishes and drinks like mulled wine, churros and chorizo.
Many stalls welcome tourists from around the world with options that showcase the Spanish cuisine. Christmas shopping is also quite great, which is expected since we are talking about Spain’s capital.
Innsbruck – Austria
Innsbruck welcomes you with countless medieval houses so you can easily understand why many say the Christmas market here is a true fairytale destination.
Between November and January, the Old Town market of Innsbruck becomes festive. There are countless Christmas lights under the Golden Roof and medieval houses all around you. Then, we have the Nordkette mountains in the background, creating a perfect seasonal backdrop. Over 60 stalls offer everything you would want from handcrafted wooden wonders to tasty treats. Fairytale figures like Sleeping Beauty also often roam the streets.
Prague – Czech Republic
Last but certainly not least since there are so many incredible European Christmas markets, the Prague Christmas Market has to be included on any list of top holiday destinations in Europe.
There are actually 2 Christmas markets to visit and they are just 5 minutes apart by foot. After you enjoy everything, including mulled wine and a unique Czech beer, you can just get back and enjoy the carol singing that seems to be everywhere, but especially close to a giant Christmas tree. If you want to do shopping, you will not be disappointed. These markets truly have everything.