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European Christmas markets

(95 Posts)
Jaylou Sun 09-Oct-22 16:49:06

I have a week off in Dec, and instead of hanging around the house thought I would go to a Christmas market in Europe. Having done a little research there are a lot of good ones. But just wondering if anyone can recommend one. I may combine it with a few days in Amsterdam, unless there is a lot to see in the vicinity of the market.

Shawlands2000 Tue 11-Oct-22 17:19:47

We've been to a number of Christmas markets in Europe and have enjoyed them all. I would like to give a shout out for Copenhagen where there is some lovely festive markets, which combined with a visit to the fabulous Tivoli, makes for a magical Christmassy experience.

Ailidh Tue 11-Oct-22 18:04:12

I've been to a couple near Vienna, and only found plastic tat.

One of my favourites is the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland, much maligned on TripAdvisor but I've had some really nice things there.
Leeds's Christkindlmarkt is also very good.

Blinko Tue 11-Oct-22 18:13:52


^Sadly not many home-made, quality artisan stuff! Just the same cheap tat, socks and knickers, etc, than most 'normal' markets.^

Not always - the Winchester one has loads of artisan stalls for jewellry, knits and food and drink, plus other stuff. I'm sure that there must be others.

Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market is feted as one of the best outside Germany.

elleks Tue 11-Oct-22 19:04:43

Some companies do river cruises including several Christmas markets.

Norah Tue 11-Oct-22 19:09:45


Some companies do river cruises including several Christmas markets.

Viking do a brilliant Christmas Market cruise on the Rhine.

abby0950 Tue 11-Oct-22 20:39:48

Edinburgh Christmas market is very good. Went to Vienna Christmas market in December and it was so bitterly cold, it actually spoiled it for me. Remember to take plenty of thermals if going there.

Joseanne Tue 11-Oct-22 21:29:27

Thank you abby0950 for tip about the thermals. I've just done an M & S order.
Also the poster who mentioned sensible shoes.

NannaGrandad Tue 11-Oct-22 21:53:47

We’ve been to Christmas markets all around Europe. German ones are best and Cologne was magical in the snow.
If you are going to Holland then Valkenburg is a must do. The markets are in caves and one of them has sand sculptures of the nativity.

sazz1 Tue 11-Oct-22 22:01:47

Went with relatives on a coach tour to Cologne Christmas markets. Stayed in a family run B&B with a licensed bar. It was very clean and nice and warm. The markets were absolutely lovely very pretty.
but ......
We tried to catch a bus. I told the driver where we wanted to go. Suddenly he lifted me up by the lapels of my coat and moved me away from the doorway, to let about 15 school children on before us. Then we could get on.
Walking on the pavement an elderly man coming towards me deliberately elbowed me to knock me into the road.
We all sat at a long table for dinner shortly after arriving. One of my younger relatives was having a quick shower. The B&B owner said "Where is she. She come now or she no eat" in a loud forceful voice with a stern face. Her mum said "if she no eat we all leave"
Every meal the plates were banged down on the table hard enough to move the food on the plates. The food was awful but perhaps that's German cuisine.
The coach driver told us the people in Cologne don't like the British because of the war!!
One of my relatives made sure they won't forget us but I can't say what she did.
This was 12 years ago but I won't ever go back there.

Kathmaggie Tue 11-Oct-22 22:22:41

Been very fortunate to experience several European Christmas markets - Hamburg was our favourite - Father Christmas flying overhead was a special feature - highly recommend

Dorsetcupcake61 Wed 12-Oct-22 08:39:31

I have been to Valkenburg and Strasbourg, not for the Christmas markets but lovely to visit.
Within the UK the Birmingham Christmas market has never disappointed.
Probably our favourite Christmas Market is the Ludlow medieval one. I dont know if it's on this year but it was really enjoyable. Its held in the castle grounds and there are lots of medieval entertainment and activities. Most importantly an amazing selection of independent stalls and crafts where the choice for gifts was endless and origional. Ludlow is also a very foodie place so lots of options in shops too.
Harrogate christmas market was also good!

Magrithea Wed 12-Oct-22 10:03:27

Vienna is great, and the Rhine cruise option is a good one too - did one with Mum a few years ago and got to stop off at several places on the trip before ending in Frankfurt.

Magrithea Wed 12-Oct-22 10:04:22


Vienna is great, and the Rhine cruise option is a good one too - did one with Mum a few years ago and got to stop off at several places on the trip before ending in Frankfurt.

Oops, NOT Frankfurt but Koln (Cologne)

Syracute Wed 12-Oct-22 19:01:54

Munich, Vienna, Strasbourg and Colmar, France.

Mollygo Wed 12-Oct-22 23:43:08

Colmar-lovely place to visit even if it isn’t Christmas.

Joseanne Wed 30-Nov-22 07:00:49

A big thumbs up for Vienna here this week. Not only the markets, but the abundance of culture and moving around in a bustling city. Found the best Glühwein ever, yummy cakes, beautiful chocolate, pretty snow globes, lovely leather purses. The suitcase is bulging already with presents.
Very cold, take hats and scarves etc. The people here are very polite and friendly but there isn't much help getting around or explanations. It's a big place with about 10 or 12 markets worth a visit.

Joseanne Wed 30-Nov-22 07:12:56

A big thumbs up here for Vienna this week. Not only for the Christmas markets, but also for the abundance of culture in a bustling city. The best Glühwein ever, yummy cakes, beautiful chocolates, pretty snow globes, leather goods, the suitcase is already bulging with presents.
It's a big place with 10 or 12 markets worth visiting. Very cold, so bring hats and scarves etc. The people are very friendly and polite, but there's not much information or explanation given about getting around.
I'm hooked and already wondering whether I can fit in another place before Christmas?!

Joseanne Wed 30-Nov-22 07:16:48

Sorry I posted twice while trying to add photos. The light contrast doesn't do the place justice, so the quality is poor.

Joseanne Thu 01-Dec-22 16:32:10

For those who love Christmas and cake. 🎄 🍰 ☕️
Living the dream in Vienna (and sounding like a tourist guide on here!).