10 Best Christmas Markets in Europe

Christmas is the best time of the year. The Grinch would never say this, but his opinion does not matter to us. This holiday has changed through the years, it became more about gifting rather than celebrating it for religious reasons. Whatever the reason is for you to celebrate, it is absolutely okay. Christmas is also fun because of the markets. Each year cities all around the world have their very own market. In this article, we’ll talk about the best Christmas markets in Europe.

If you would like to know when do Christmas markets open in Europe or when do Christmas markets start in Europe, we will talk about all of that. You should enjoy the best small Christmas markets in Europe at least once every few years. Whether you want to visit the German Christmas market, Nuremberg Christmas market, Vienna Christmas market, Strasbourg Christmas market, Munich Christmas market, we have everything covered here.

10 Best Christmas Markets in Europe

Christmas markets Europe are really special. Cities are dressed up in light, little shops open for you to buy souvenirs, enjoy a hot chocolate or some wine. The best Christmas markets Zurich or the best Christmas markets in Italy all have a different look, yet they are celebrating the same thing. Celebrating Christmas, through spirit, through spending it with loved ones, gifting, and so on. I really love these markets and I hope you’ll find one to go and plan all of it before the holidays. Let’s see what are the 10 best Christmas markets in Europe.

1. Budapest Christmas Market

budapest christmas market

We start the list with one of the best cities to travel to which also happen to have the best Christmas markets in Europe. Budapest is a very low-cost destination and the capital city of Hungary. You can visit the city all year round as it is enjoyable every season. If you haven’t tried some Hungarian Chicken Parikash then what are you waiting for? The Hungarian traditional foods will make you stay longer. Besides this, Budapest is also famous for its nightlife and let’s not forget the fine dining. This city has it all.

The Budapest Christmas market takes place in front of the famous Basicila of Budapest between the 24th of November until the 24th of December. If I were you, I would go just to taste the food. You’ll find Potato Gulyas, Lángos (flatbread), Stuffed cabbage, sausages, and other Hungarian specialties. Just like the image shows, you will also find handcrafted goods which are specific to Hungary. These are just a few of the reasons why you should visit the Budapest Christmas market Europe.

2. Berlin Christmas Markets

best christmas markets in europe

I always say Berlin is like a smaller version of London. Traveling to Berlin will be a great idea for many reasons. First of all the attractions make the whole of Berlin. The Brandenburg Gate at golden hour, Reichstag Building, the Pergamonmuseum, Berlin Wall, the Berlin Cathedral, and so on. Besides the cultural activities you get to do, let’s not forget about authentic German food and German beers. Oktoberfest alone makes it worth visiting Germany. What about German Christmas markets?

Let’s see when do Christmas markets start in Europe. Berlin has a few markets in different places. Charlottenburg Castle Christmas Market, Gendarmenmarkt Christmas Market, Potsdamer Platz Christmas Market. These markets usually start around mid-November, this year on the 22nd of November and they can be open by the end of December or some even in the early days of January. You can find all kinds of boutiques, with sweets, souvenirs, food, wine. Would Berlin be the best Christmas markets in Europe? Let’s find out about the rest.

3. Nuremberg Christmas Market

best christmas markets in europe

Before we get to why you should visit the Nuremberg Christmas market let’s talk about why you should visit Nuremberg in general. This city has so much history and the Old Town is a perfect location to get lost in. Besides visiting the old town, you also get to see the majestic Kaiserburg Castle, the famous shopping street Karolinenstraße, the National Museum, and many other attractions. Nuremberg is also famous for its minced-meat sausage. Now we are ready to talk about the German Christmas market that takes place in this city.

As you can imagine, the Christmas market will be open in the old town of Nuremberg. When do Christmas markets open in Europe? In Nuremberg, this year it will be open from Friday, November 26th until December 24th. What can you buy at this market then? You get to buy all the lovely Christmas decorations for your home, traditional toys, beer, and bratwurst of course. These markets are really about spending time with your loved ones and getting in the Christmas spirit. Which are the best small Christmas markets in Europe?

4. Vienna Christmas Market

best christmas markets in europe

Vienna is very famous for classical music and all of the concerts that take place in this wonderful city. I love Vienna for many reasons, especially because it’s a great place for female solo travellers. The Schönbrunn Palace alone makes it worth the visit. You can go on a shopping spree on Kaerntner Strasse, anywhere from high-end shops to regular stores. I would also say that Vienna is not too expensive, you can find good Airbnb options or even hotels. Don’t forget to try the Wiener Schnitzel! When do Christmas markets start in Europe and especially the Vienna Christmas market?

The Christmas market takes place in Vienna in front of Schönbrunn Palace and it is usually between the 21st of November to the 26th of December. What makes Vienna one of the best Christmas markets in Europe? You can enjoy a glass of Punch while listening to the Vienna Boys’ Choir. Buy some handcrafted goods from local sellers. Try out the culinary delights as Austrian food is just delicious. I personally love the Vienna Christmas market, the city feels so magical with all the lights!

5. Strasbourg Christmas Market

best christmas markets in europe

Funny enough, Strasbourg is actually the Capital of Christmas. This makes the Strasbourg Christmas market the most popular in the whole country. Before we get to that, this city is also famous for its Old Town. Like many other European cities, their old towns are truly one of a kind and should always be a must-visit. The Strasbourg Cathedral is an architectural dream. Besides the famous buildings and shopping centers, you can also visit Strasbourg for a Foodie Fest, consisting of French and German cuisine.

When do Christmas markets open in Europe? The Strasbourg one takes place between the end of November and the 31st of December. They usually have it in front of the Cathedral and on twelve sites in the city center. I think it is worth visiting every single location as you might find different boutiques to shop from. Plus you can take all the good photos to show to your friends and family.

6. Munich Christmas Market

best christmas markets in europe

Let’s see more of the German Christmas market. One of them is the Munich Christmas market. Munich is the perfect location to explore southern Germany and the Alpine lakes. Of course, you’ll get to enjoy the cultural beauties in town, go to music festivals and even food festivals. They claim to have the best beer gardens and who are we to disagree with that. Did you know that there are over 80 museums in Munich? Amazing! Let’s see when doing Christmas markets start in Europe, in our case in Munich.

The market usually takes place at Marienplatz and it is considered one of the best Christmas markets in Europe and in Germany overall. As with most of them, they are magical in December, however, they usually start mid-November until the end of December. You’ll find festive foods and drinks, your usual Christmas decor, sweets, beer, wine, and many more. Each Christmas market will be different even if you are in the same country. That is what makes them magical! And beside Christmas markets, the famous Munich beer halls are also awaiting!

7. Prague Christmas Market

best christmas markets in europe

I have only been to Prague once and I was mesmerized on the first visit. This city is so beautiful and unique, you will want to go back all the time. Prague is called the ‘City of Thousand Spires’ and it is considered one of Europe’s architectural gems. Not only that, but Prague is a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site and tourists are always in Prague. The castles built in Baroque and Gothic style make the city magical and the views breathtaking. Besides Prague is a great place to visit all over the year, during winter you can also visit the Prague Christmas market.

Prague definitely is one of the best Christmas markets in Europe due to all the beautiful Christmas lights and small markets. When do Christmas markets start in Europe? Prague Christmas market starts at the beginning of December until the end of December. The main market is held in Old Town Square. If you are in Prague during Christmas, besides buying all the gifts, we recommend trying out the local food and drinks. Foods like large hams roasted on spits, tasty barbequed sausage, smoked meat dumplings, and so on.

8. Zurich Christmas Market

zurich christmas market

We are continuing with our best Christmas markets in Europe on this list and this one is all about Christmas markets Zurich. I will warn you, Zurich is counted as one of the most expensive cities to visit in Europe, so buckle up! With that being said, you have many reasons to visit Zurich. Needless to say, I will mention museums and art galleries. Lake Zurich has a stunning view and you can enjoy sunset cruises. Like other European countries, Zurich also has its famous street to shop on, which is the Bahnhofstrasse.

Now onto the market. If you are visiting Zurich you might wonder when do Christmas markets open in Europe. The market is being held at Wienachtsdorf which is near Lake Zurich. Their opening time is usually between the 25th of November and the 24th of December. If you want to hear some lovely music, listen to the Choir singing at the market. Just as with the rest of the markets, you can find some local food, drinks, handcrafted gits, and many other goodies.

9. Brussels Christmas Market

brussels christmas market

Brussels is another one of the capital cities worth visiting in Europe and has the best Christmas markets in Europe. Why would you visit Brussels? Besides being the perfect spot to visit the museums and other buildings for their architecture, many would visit Brussels for their food and sweets. This amazing city holds a fabulous Christmas market each year so let’s see when do Christmas markets start in Europe.

The Brussels Christmas market usually takes place between the Grand-Place, Rue de la Bourse, and Place Sainte-Catherine. The Grand Place is also a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site and it is a joy to look at, especially during the holidays. This market usually starts on the last Friday of November until the first Sunday of January, thus having enough time for everyone to visit from the country or even abroad. Hope you’ll find some interesting things to buy while you’re here!

10. Piazza Navona Christmas Market

piazza navona

The two on our list will be for the best small Christmas markets in Europe. Although Rome is not exactly small, it has a few markets in the city. Italy Christmas markets are also magical, one of them being in Rome will make it the perfect trip. The Eternal City has so much to offer, from the beautiful streets to incredible panoramic views, hidden gems, and beautiful squares.

The best Christmas markets in Italy take place in Rome and many other beautiful cities. If you’re wondering when do Christmas markets open in Europe, the one in Piazza Navona usually opens around the beginning of December and you get to visit all the small boutiques until the first week of January. Selling Christmas sweets, toys, decorations, gifts, and nativity figures, there is something for everyone, don’t miss out!

Bonus – Piazza Fiera Trento Christmas Market

piazza ferra

The last best small Christmas markets in Europe and Italy Christmas markets take place in Trento. Trento is a good place to visit for many reasons besides the famous market. The cultural and gastronomic attractions make it a great city to travel to for a few days. The Buonconsiglio Castle will mesmerize you and while you’re roaming the streets of Trento, try some Italian street food, or go to a restaurant for some penne.

Best Christmas markets in Italy also take place in Trento on the Piazza Fiera. The opening times should be from the 17th of November to the 6th of January. It’s worth going for some delicious food like polenta brustolada (grilled polenta) or treccia mochèna (plaited pastry). There are no Christmas markets without mulled wine, make sure to have a cup or two. Enjoy the best Christmas markets in Europe fully in Trento, Italy.

Best Christmas Markets in Europe – Conclusion

These were the 10 best Christmas markets in Europe for you to visit. The best small Christmas markets in Europe, German Christmas market, Nuremberg Christmas market, Vienna Christmas market, Strasbourg Christmas market, Munich Christmas market, Prague Christmas market, Budapest Christmas Market, Christmas market Zurich, Italy Christmas markets and best Christmas markets in Italy, are all worth the visit whether you are going for a few days or planning on staying a long time.

If you would like to know when do Christmas markets open in Europe and when do Christmas markets start in Europe, have a read at the different cities they take place in. We hope you will enjoy the festive holidays in the beautiful cities and get to try out many of the local foods. Let us know which is your favorite!

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