Ah, Christmas. That special time of year when snow doesn’t make us grumble. Europe is one of the most magical places to experience the holidays, with its stunning Christmas lights and markets which ignite a sense of festivity within everyone – even the Grinches in your life.
Christmas Market in Strasbourg, France
One of Europe’s oldest Christmas markets dating back to 1570, this market has 10 locations with300 stalls, featuring beautiful goods down its narrow alleyways and picturesque squares. The Christmas Tree in Place Kléber is also worth a look.
Helsinki Christmas Market, Finland
This market is filled with 120 chic stalls filled with birth and pine star candles, lanterns, and other handmade artisanal goods. The stunning old carousel in the center of the market is lovely, and will take you back to older times.
Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen, Denmark
These Nordic gardens look like a fairytale, and its fitting – it was the blueprint for Disneyland! 500,000 lights add a magical ambience amidst quaint wooden houses and snow – topped trees in which 43 stalls and restaurants are nestles.
Old Town and Wenceslas Square Market, Prague, the Czech Republic
There’s not too many cities out there who do Christmas better than Prague. How can you resist a Christmas market set among castles and medieval church domes from the 9th century? In the hometown of King Wenceslas’ home, a huge tree, daily carols, and Czech goods.
Christmas Market on Vorosmarty Square and Christmas Fair at Basilica, Budapest, Hungary
If food is your favorite thing about Christmas markets, this is the delicacy-filled destination to be. Roasted chestnuts, chimney cakes and goulash in bread rolls are just the beginning for your pre-shopping feast. It also features a skating rink, with the stunning Basilica as a backdrop.
Nuremberg Christkindlesmarkt, Nuremberg, Germany
This may not be the most tasteful Christmas market, but it is one of the oldest, most famous and most loved ones. Mass-produced, modern goods are banned, so get ready for a dose of traditions combined with the scent of mulled wine and gingerbread.
Manchester Christmas Market, Manchester, UK
Last year, the markets in Manchester were voted the best in the UK, and though there are ten locations in which the 300 stalls are spread out, the main event in Albert’s Square grand Victorian Hall is what you can’t miss. A massive, glittery Santa? Yes, please.
Tallinn Christmas Market, Estonia
If your dream is having a White Christmas, you should visit this market in Estonia which practically guaranteed snow in the wintertime. This medieval town makes a gorgeous backdrop with its 60 wooden huts selling lots of sheepskin, mulled wine, and other goods to keep you warm. This market has a very cozy feel to it. Plus, it’s the oldest Christmas tree display ever – up since 1441.
Winter Wonders, Brussels, Belgium
There are tons of breathtaking Christmas markets to find around the postcard worthy city of Brussels, this even is more of a festival, but resembles a market due to the 200-odd chalets which serve beers, waffles, gluhwein, against the background of a skating rink, light shows, Ferris wheel, and massive Christmas tree.
Lviv Christmas Fair, Ukraine
The whole city is covered in Christmas shine and colors, and is a fantastic romantic or family spot to munch on some homemade kovbasa while you wander. This market is open every day over the holidays, including Christmas Day!