Samuel Dorsi - Dec 7, 2015
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Many European cities attract locals as well as visitors from afar with their Christmas market. The common highlights are wooden stalls with traditional products, a Christmas tree, an ice rink, and lots of delicious food and hot drinks. The editors of dare to choose the best markets out there that offer remarkable experience and fantastic atmosphere. Here come the best Christmas markets around Europe, in alphabetical order.

Bath, UK

The most popular Christmas shopping extravaganza in Bath, a World Heritage Site, lasts for as many as 18 days and consists of over 170 well decorated wooden chalets that sell a wide variety of high quality products made by artisans. More than 70% of the stalls are run by businesses in and around Bath and 60% of the goods are handmade products. Held close to the historic Roman Baths and Bath Abbey the Christmas Market attracts thousands of visitors from the length and breadth of the UK.

Brussels, Belgium

The Winter Wonders in Brussels is all about 5 weeks of enchanting encounters, colorful stalls, original tasting sessions, gift ideas and perfumes along a 2-kilometer course. A Christmas tree that is 21 meters tall is placed on the UNESCO Heritage Site, the Grand Palace, where you can also enjoy a light and sound show at 6 pm from November 27 onwards. The size of the ice skating rink on Place de la Monnaie has been expanded to cover an area of 740 square meters.

Copenhagen, Denmark

In Copenhagen, the Christmas Market is organized in the famous Tivoli Gardens. It may not have a history, but it does have a wow factor. As such it attracts a large number of visitors. Last year, 30,000 new Christmas balls were added and a light show with 16,000 bulbs was also created. In the traditional Lucia Parade, there will be 100 girls dressed like angels and the Tivoli Youth Guard Christmas Ensemble will play a variety of music. Finally, if you want to experience the perfect Danish hygge, go for the comforting seasonal Danish food.

Madrid, Spain

In Madrid, the Christmas Market which will come back this year once again will have more than 12,000 items in all consisting of antiques, collectibles and artworks belonging to the period 1960s to 1980s. If you are visiting Madrid during Christmas, the place to go to with your guide is Plaza Mayor, the massive stately square in the town which is over 100 years old, to admire the festive lights and browse the legendary market.

Montreux, Switzerland

Located on the shores of Lake Geneva, it is probably the most beautiful Christmas Market in Switzerland with its 150 artisans and merchants, Gift ideas by the thousands, chalets decorated and illuminated in the grand tradition of Christmas. Taste the local specialities in a warm and friendly atmosphere. 
Santa Claus : A visit to Santa Claus, in his house perched at the top of the Rochers de Naye above Montreux, is an absolute must. For the tenth consecutive year, his house and his office will be visited by thousands of children and will doubtless be a meeting place for families.

Nuremberg, Germany

The history of Nuremberg Christkindlesmarkt can be traced to 1628 when gifting children with presents at Christmas evolved. There are 180 wooden stalls, decorated in white and red canvas, that offer culinary treats as well as handmade Christmas decorations. As you enter, you get the aroma of gingerbread, grilled sausage and mulled wine. Christkindlesmarkt’s environmental commitment includes the use of reusable cups by mulled wine dealers and sustainable energy from photovoltaic and hydroelectric power plants from 2012 onwards. 

Prague, Czech Republic

The best Christmas market is at the Old Town Square as it is replete with a Christmas tree shipped from the mountains, school children performing carols, and huts selling wooden toys, traditional dolls and puppets, Christmas decorations and gourmet food. Smaller markets are also available at Wenceslas Square (just 5 minutes away from the Old Town Square) and at the courtyard of St. Georges Basilica within the magnificent Prague Castle. 

Strasbourg, France

The historic cathedral sporting gothic architecture, Cathedrale Notre Dame de Strasbourg, and the medieval streets around it turn into a wonderland during Christmas season. A Christmas market was set up here for the first time in 1570. Christkindelsmrik, Europe’s Best Christmas Market for two consecutive years, is the largest in the continent with as many as 300 stalls spread over 12 areas in the city. As many as two million visitors come to the city during the season. 

Tallinn, Estonia

Tallinn Christmas Market, held on the Town Hall Square, is known for its fairy-tale ambience. Apart from Santa and the reindeer, the market consists of the most famous Christmas tree in Estonia and little huts that sell wares and seasonal food and drink. Tallinn is also home to one of the first Christmas trees in the world. Erected in 1441 by the Brotherhood of Black Heads guild, this is the first Christmas tree to be displayed in public in Europe.

Vienna, Austria

Vienna Magic of Advent, which transforms the City Hall Square into a fairy land, offers Christmas gifts, sweets and drinks and tree decorations as well as craft workshops for children and a carousel. The Schonbrunn Palace is another place to visit before Christmas as it offers traditional handicrafts, Christmas concerts, hand-made Christmas decorations, and a program for children, including Christmas workshop. The tradition of these events can be traced back to 1298 when Albrecht I granted citizens of Vienna to hold Krippenmarkt. Today, there are more than 20 Advent Markets around Vienna.

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  1. Where is Gdańsk???

    Piotr (Poland)
  2. I heard that GDAŃSK is among top 10...?

    what happened? There is really a nice Xmas market this year in the city with astonishing architecture resemling dutch (Amsterdam).

    matt (Poland)

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