Best Christmas Markets in Europe
Which are the Best Christmas Markets in Europe? Like every year, hundreds of thousands of you have voted for their most beautiful Christmas markets. After Zagreb (3 times awarded), Strasbourg, Tallinn, Budapest and Basel, awarded in previous years, discover your selection of the 20 best Christmas markets in Europe.
Need more inspiration? Discover a selection of the 100 most beautiful Christmas destinations in Europe. Still hesitating? Discover the most beautiful Christmas trees, the most beautiful Christmas lights, the best Christmas breaks, the sunniest Christmas markets in Europe as well as the best Christmas markets in the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Poland, Austria and France.
This year, dare to live unique experiences and treat yourself to memories for a lifetime by travelling to the most beautiful Christmas destinations in Europe.
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It's official, the Advent Feast at the Basilica is the best Christmas market in Europe for the second time!
In love, and safety - with this slogan, the Advent Feast at the Basilica, Budapest's most beautiful Christmas fair, opens its doors. More than 100 artisan and gastronomic vendors offer their portico, the latter in addition to the popular fair food, as well as many delicacies available only here.
The spectacularly decorated atmosphere of the fair itself is completed by the highly successful lightshow projected each day of the fair on the facade of the Basilica in recent years.
True to Christmas traditions each advent Sunday a new candle will be lit on our shared advent wreath. The lighting ceremony will be accompanied by various musical numbers performing their special celebratory holiday programs. As Christmas is the holiday of love and caring for each other, organizers have invited several charity organisations to their program, living up to their motto and Christian values by helping the less fortunate and in need.
Opening dates: From 18th November 2022 to 1st January 2023 (TBC)
Where to stay: Kempinski Hotel Corvinus situated close to Saint Stephen’s Basilica. Probably the best hotel in Budapest.
For smaller budgets Meininger Budapest Great Market Hall is one of our top picks in Budapest.
Every year Basel Christmas Market is on the podium of your favourite Christmas markets in Europe.
In recent years, more and more of you have voted for this authentic Christmas Market with a unique atmosphere.
Basel has a deep-rooted tradition as Switzerland’s most beautiful and largest Christmas city, and is well worth a visit every year. Not only is the well-preserved Old Town radiant in the warm Christmas light, but the shops and facades of many buildings glitter with a golden glow.
Roughly a hundred tall pine trees border the streets and stand like brightly lit sentinels pointing the way for the visitor. Particularly recommended is the Christmas market, which is being held right in the centre of the city and at the heart of the festively decorated Old Town. The Basel Christmas Market can be found on Barfüsserplatz and on Münsterplatz – one of the most beautiful squares in Basel. A magnificent Christmas tree stands on Münsterplatz, with ornaments by the well-known decorator Johann Wanner. Do not miss to see their Christmas tree, you have classified it among the most beautiful Christmas trees in Europe.
For 10 years it has been listed in the best Christmas markets in Europe and considered by many to be the most beautiful Christmas market in France. With unique activities, only to be seen in Metz at Christmas such as the “lantern trail”, a ferris wheel and many chalets offering local products, Made in Moselle, Metz is truly unique. The destination attracts not only travellers looking for the most beautiful Christmas markets in Europe, but also creators, designers (such as Philippe Starck), innovative concept hotels, start-ups, artists, trendy businesses.
Get into the spirit of the festive season and enjoy the warmest of welcomes as you visit the Christmas markets on the city’s main squares*. Find hand-crafted gifts in the Christmas pyramid and taste the finest gingerbread around. Skate along the ice road, then warm up cold hands around a mulled wine or hot chocolate.
Let the illuminations chase away the dark winter days, and enjoy traditional treats like the merry-go-round, a walk through the magical "Sentiers des Lanternes" offered by the Department of Moselle or take the chance to stock up on gastronomic Christmas essentials at the city market hall.
Opening dates: From 18th November to 30th December 2022 (TBC)
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Metz/Nancy Airport (20 min by car) or Luxembourg Airport (50 min by car 1h20 by train) or Strasbourg (2h30).
Where to stay: "Hôtel La Citadelle MGallery by Sofitel" set in the heart of Metz.
Usually, from mid-November to Christmas, Vienna’s prettiest squares transform into magical Christmas markets. The aroma of Christmas bakery items and hot punch creates a pre-Christmas atmosphere.
One of the most well-known Christmas Markets is the traditional "Vienna Magic of Advent", which turns the City Hall Square into a shining fairytale land. Christmas gifts, tree decorations, sweets and warming drinks are awaiting you as well as a carousel and craft fun Christmas Workshops for kids. The trees of the surrounding City Hall park are festively decorated and radiate in a sea of lights - a Viennese experience, you'll definitely don't want to miss!
Another hot spot before Christmas is the cultural and Christmas market in front of Schönbrunn Palace. It offers sheer romance in front of an imperial backdrop, and is converted into a New Year's market after Christmas. The atmospheric market offers traditional handicrafts, hand-made Christmas decorations, Christmas concerts and an extensive children's program, including Christmas workshop..
Montbéliard is one the most beautiful Christmas market in France. World famous for the beauty of its illuminations, this Christmas market is traditional and authentic. Located in Franche-Comté (Eastern France), the town of Montbéliard – well known for its hospitality- turns into a pure enchantment a few weeks before Christmas.
During the time of Advent, Montbéliard revives the tradition of Württemberg and organizes a Christmas market like no other with 140 lovely stalls full of authentic and high quality items. Taking a stroll down the illuminated streets, the visitors may taste the delicious gastronomic products from Montbéliard and France, marvel at the variety of art and crafts, dance to the music and the sound of choral songs.
For its first participation in the competition of the Best Christmas Markets in Europe, Craiova climbs into the top 10
of the most beautiful Christmas destinations. It is the highest ranked Romanian Christmas Market since the creation of this competition.
For a successful Christmas and in order to respect social distancing measures, Craiova Municipality has distributed the various Christmas events, Christmas markets, concerts, creative workshops, food stands in different places in the city. They are linked together by magical illuminations (over a million led bulbs) making Craiova not only one of the best Christmas Market in Europe but also the best Christmas Lights Destination in Romania.
On the "Mihai Viteazul" Square, opposite the Craiova Town Hall, you will relive your childhood by skating on the Ice Rink and you will be amazed by the magnificent Christmas tree. You will also taste Romanian culinary specialties as well as on Shakespeare Square which brings together Christmas Street Food Trucks but also rides and games for children.
Discover one of the most beautiful Christmas destinations this winter and let yourself be carried away by the fairy-tale atmosphere of Craiova at Christmas time.
Now in its 43rd year, the Trier Christmas market will again be one of the loveliest in all of Germany. Set on the medieval main market and in front of the imposing backdrop of Trier Cathedral, the 95 attractively decorated booths offer a fitting framework for this wonderful event.
For the first time, the program for the entire family changes almost daily – from historical puppet theatre to star tenor and songsmiths. The Trier Christmas Market is often described by travel organizers as “romantic with wonderful ambience.” Germany’s only Mulled Wine Queen Sarah Schmitt is looking forward to the international guests in Trier. A large selection with delicious specialties such as the “Original Moselle Vintner Mulled Wine” and festive arts and crafts attracts visitors from all over the world.
Select the "free cancellation" option and pre-book your Christmas holidays in Trier at the best price.
Incredible throughout the year, Madeira and Porto Santo are simply magical for the end of the year celebrations. Imagine two islands of rare beauty adorned with a thousand lights to celebrate Christmas and the New Year. A great variety of products are on display, including exotic flowers, traditional souvenirs and, of course, typical delicacies and drinks of the season all adding to the merriment in a very welcoming ambience. Partake in the glee of this season festivities, enjoy the daily activities and entertainment shows, such as Christmas Carols and performances by folklore groups.
Madeira & Porto Santo are more than ever to put at the top of your travel wishlist since they are connected directly - for the first time - to JFK Airport (New York) and that ten new airlines now connect Madeira & Porto Santo to airports near you. Autonomous region, considered as the safest Covid-19 destination during the pandemic, you will be able to discover the beauties of Madeira & Porto Santo thanks to your vaccination passport (no need for additional test for vaccinated people but you are also welcome with a test if you are not vaccinated, it can also be carried out on site for free).
The festivities start on December 1 and end on January 9. Do not miss their famous fireworks show: it is one of the most beautiful in Europe. It is recorded in the Guiness Book of the Worlds Records as the World's greatest show. Come recharge your batteries in the winter sun of Madeira.
Winter Wonders is your favourite Christmas market in Belgium followed by Ghent, Antwerpen, Bruges and Liege. With its 2.5 million visitors, Winter Wonders is the unmissable end-of-year event in Brussels which, for the occasion, dons its festive costume and pulls out all the stops on the menu.
Capital of Europe, Brussels has also for several years been one of the Christmas capitals with Strasbourg, Budapest and Vienna. The teams in charge of this event set the bar higher every year to offer you moments of pure magic. The great classics are all awaiting you: magnificent Sound and Light shows at the Grand-Place, a majestic tree, a life-sized manger, a skating rink, magical lights and many exhibitions which dot the event and, of course, amazing Christmas markets bursting with treasures which will delight the curious and titillate the gourmets’ taste buds.
Govone can proudly bear the title of the most beautiful Christmas market in Italy. This event, created by enthusiasts, is the most important Christmas event in Italy
"Magico Paese di Natale” takes place in the little village of Govone, on the hills of Langhe-Roero, the wine region in Piedmont – Unesco World Heritage Site. In winter time, the entire village of Govone turns into the magic kingdom of Santa Claus, with a lot of cultural and gastronomic attractions.
There is the wonderful Christmas market, with artisans selected all over Italy. There is a Street Food area and a Magic Kingdom Wine shop, where visitors can find all the traditional local delicacy. But the unique experience is obviously the amazing musical show of Santa Claus, hosted every day in the scenographic Savoy royal castle of Govone.
Book your flights to Turin (1h15) as well as your accommodation in Govone for an unforgetable Christmas in Italy. Select the "free cancellation" option and plan your next winter vacation without obligation.
World-renowned Edinburgh's Christmas celebrations will spread the festive cheer across the Scottish capital between 19th November 2022 and 3rd January 2023 (TBC). From mulled Irn Bru to vegan pigs in blankets, from Harry Potter-themed gifts to local handmade produce, the stunning Christmas Market in East Princes Street Gardens will offer treats for all! Santa Land will return to East Princes Street Gardens with rides for people of all ages to enjoy, whilst Santa’s Grotto once again will take residence on Castle Street.
Several Christmas markets in Cologne have plenty to offer, from selected gifts and individually crafted artisan handicraft to culinary specialities.
Cologne’s Christmas markets attract millions of visitors from all over the world every year. You too can savour the unique atmosphere of this metropolis on the Rhine at this special time of year. You’re sure to be enchanted!
Already awarded the title of the most beautiful Christmas market in Europe 3 years ago, Tallinn has become a must-see destination at Christmas. The Tallinn Christmas Market delights everyone with its coziness, historical location, centuries-old buildings and long traditions.
Every year, more than half a million people from close by and far away come looking for magic at the Tallinn Christmas Market. Children will love the carousels and Santa Claus who distributes candy in his little house to those who are better at reciting verses. You will be spoilt for choice: high-quality handicraft, practical winter accessories and all sorts of nick-nacks too; and your tummy will enjoy gingerbread and hearty Christmas roasts.
The Christmas markets in Old Town Square in the centre of Prague are the biggest project of its kind in the Czech Republic. Set in the very heart of the city is a traditional Czech marketplace, where, in dozens of wooden stalls, merchants offer typical Christmas goods such as traditional Czech blown glass balls, products made of glass pearls or straw, hand-embroidered tablecloths, wooden toys, biscuit cutters and many other things.
Grown-ups will enjoy the typical mulled wine, and all gourmet, young and old, will enjoy Czech Christmas biscuits, hot roasted chestnuts, gingerbread biscuits or typical Czech grilled sausages and skewered foods.
For your next winter holiday, explore one of the UK's largest and most beautiful Christmas markets. The most original, biggest and - arguably - the best Christmas markets in the country, Manchester Christmas Markets are an ideal destination for a festive outing.
Arriving in the city in 1999, the first Christmas market in the UK has grown every year since, now attracting more than nine million visitors each year. Some 300 beautifully crafted stalls located across the city, offer mouth-watering international food, drinks and finely crafted Yuletide gifts in the heart of the buzzing city centre. Spread across 10 individual sites - each with its own distinctive character, the Manchester Christmas Markets have something to offer every festive visitor.
Book your flights to Manchester as well as your accommodation and tours and activities, such as a Manchester food tour with a local guide. Select the "free cancellation" option and pre-book your accommodation without obligation now.
The romantic city of Bruges has one of the most beautiful Christmas Markets in Europe and you are guaranteed to fall under its spell during your stay. From the end of November, the historic city centre of Bruges will be transformed into a giant Christmas market.
In addition to a wonderful atmosphere and plenty of seasonal jollity, you will also be able to find that unusual last-minute present for someone special.
The Bruges Christmas and winter market will be located on the Markt and Simon Stevinplein, in the cosy city center. There will be a good range of stalls offering all kinds of scrumptious local food and drinks. Home-made hot chocolate, ice-cold jenever, spiced glühwein... along with Belgian beers, cheeses and hearty dishes. There will be something for everyone.
Select the "free cancellation" option and pre-book your accommodation at the best price, without obligation.
Each year, hundreds of people wait excitedly in Larios Street for the turning on of the lights, marking the start of the Christmas season, a period which local residents and visitors live with great passion.
For the spirit of Christmas imbues every corner of the streets of Málaga. The Christmas trees, wickerwork figures and thousands of poinsettias are joined by the spectacular Nativity scenes devotedly erected by associations and groups of all kinds throughout the city.
In the centre, there are daily light and music performances to captivate all those who enthusiastically gather there.
Leipzig Christmas market dates all the way back to 1458. Its six areas are set in chime with the fascinating historical scenery of the Leipzig city centre. With more than 250 twinkling stalls embedded harmoniously in the historic centre, Leipzig Christmas market is not only one of the oldest but also one of the largest Christmas markets in Germany. Visitors are offered a multitude of festive delights: indulge in numerous culinary delights or explore the city’s traditional medieval market.
Traditionally, the main area of the Christmas market is Marktplatz (market square) where visitors can marvel at a Saxon spruce Christmas tree as high as twenty metres, and enjoy a wide variety of performances at the market square stage. On Augustusplatz square a 38-metre-high ferris wheel offers seasonal views from a lofty height.
Christmas returns to Nottingham with the largest event in the East Midlands! Best of all entry to Nottingham Winter Wonderland is FREE!! Featuring your favourite rides, bars and shopping spots from previous years, this is the perfect place to soak in the Christmas spirit.
While away the hours browsing over 70 traditional, Bavarian-style stalls, searching for the perfect gift as well as sampling the delicious homemade and artisan cheeses, chutneys and chocolates on offer. This year’s Christmas market has been expanded, with something for everyone including plants, mead, jewellery, scents, fashion, retro style, Eco art, Lego art, Fair-trade, Continental food, local homemade stew and home accessories to offer the discerning visitor.
From 18th November to 30th December – a longer period than ever before – the Christmas Market will be inviting visitors to the city centre with a large variety of Christmas worlds in different looks. There are several Christmas markets in Düsseldorf, all located in the Old Town area (Altstadt).
During the festive season, Düsseldorf will have lots of atmospheric new features. At the northern end of Königsallee, directly adjacent to the Hofgarten and the Kö-Bogen, this year visitors will be able to enjoy a 1,700-square-metre ice rink on Corneliusplatz.
Right next door, a new Fairy Tale Market invites all visitors, and especially families with children, to experience the pre-Christmas magic. The children’s programme has been expanded overall so that this year, for example, there will be a children’s activities tent on Jan-Wellem-Platz with shows every day.
Book your flights to Dusseldorf or Koln Airport (50 min by car 1h20 by public transport) your accommodation and your tours and activities in Düsseldorf and discover one of the best Christmas Destinations in Europe.
Advent in Zagreb
European Best Christmas Market 2016-2017-2018
Advent Zagreb Christmas Market takes you back to your childhood: Grab your favourite toy and travel to some other times!
Warm lights give a feeling of welcome. We keep our hands warm on a cup of mulled wine or hot chocolate. Smiling faces spread a sense of love. Graceful Christmas carols from the balconies dance in the air together with snowflakes. It is the magic of Christmas that only Zagreb can offer during Advent.
In the past five years, Advent Zagreb has become a destination for visitors from Croatia and the world, due to the unsurpassed atmosphere, wide offer, various accompanying facilities and hospitality of locals who use this magical time of year to present their city in full glory. It is not surprising, therefore, that for three years in a row it has been awarded the prize for the best Christmas market in Europe.
This year, Advent takes us back to other times, in the most beautiful way possible, through a reunion with our dearest childhood friends - toys.
Come to the city at the foot of Sljeme and warm your hearts with that special serenity - this City of a Million Hearts will tell you the warmest Christmas story.
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