Christmas markets are a wonderful way to get into the Christmas spirit and create lasting memories amongst the seasonal atmosphere, whilst exploring your city of choice.
They’re all packed full of festive decorations, hot food and local drinks, with stalls of all kinds, these markets are fantastic for couples, families and solo travellers alike.
1. Bruges Christmas Market – Winter Glow 2023
We recommend visiting Bruges Christmas Market, one of the Best Christmas Markets in Belgium.
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 late November, the historic city centre of Bruges gets transformed into a giant Christmas market.
There is sure to be a wonderful atmosphere and plenty of seasonal spirit, this quaint medieval city with its cobbled streets and captivating canals may be small but it certainly has a lot to offer! You’ll be guaranteed 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 centre. 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.
Plus, make sure you leave room in your suitcase for those delicious Belgian chocolate treats, to take back home with you!
There will be something for everyone!
2. Budapest Christmas Market 2023
The Advent Basilica, winner of the Best Christmas Market in Europe award of 2019 and, 2021, is without doubt one of the most beautiful Christmas fairs in Europe.
From late November to until the first day of the new year, in front of St. Stephen’s Basilica in one of the most impressive, beautiful, and breathtaking squares of the Hungarian capital this award-winning Christmas market will open its doors again and 2023 is sure to have a lot to offer.
True to the tradition of this year’s 12-year-old Advent Basilica, it promises a unique festive atmosphere around 120 domestic craft exhibitors, real gastronomic adventures, and heart-warming programs with so many more surprises. The real, authentic Christmas spirit will move again into the heart of Budapest into the St. Stephen square!
The spectacularly decorated glorious atmosphere of the feast not only impresses everyone, but we cannot get enough of the highly successful light show either, which is 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 the advent wreath. The lighting ceremony will be accompanied by different musical performances with amazing singers, choirs and orchestras.
Visit Edinburgh Christmas Market, one of the Best Christmas Markets in the United Kingdom.
World-renowned Edinburgh’s Christmas celebrations will spread the festive cheer across the Scottish capital from late November until early January.
With mulled Irn Bru, vegan pigs in blankets, Harry Potter-themed gifts and local handmade produce, the stunning Christmas Market in East Princes Street Gardens offers treats for all!
Santa Land returns to East Princes Street Gardens with rides for people of all ages to enjoy whilst Santa’s Grotto once again takes residence on Castle Street.
Reimagined Light Night will be opening Edinburgh’s Christmas with an event spectacular on the Royal Mile, and brand-new Community Christmas will be spreading festive cheer across 12 locations in the capital with special projections and performances bringing local talent together.
One-on-one video experience, Night Walk, offers a unique, multisensory tour of Edinburgh past and present, whilst Winter Windows is back to showcase the talents of young, budding Edinburgh artists, this year themed around ‘A Festive Welcome’. Johnnie Walker continues its partnership with Edinburgh’s winter festivals with the Johnnie Walker Bothy Bar on the Mound, and around the city, festive visitors can peek behind the scenes of the capital’s key organisations and institutions in 24 Doors of Advent.
Throughout the month of December, the Netherlands overflows with the Christmas spirit. Markets become more than a place to buy food and trinkets – they become a place to warm up with glühwein and oliebollen, find the perfect gifts for friends and family, and spend time with those you love.
During December, Amsterdam transforms into a winter wonderland encompassing both indoor and outdoor ice-skating rinks. Think seasonal parties, delicious dining plus a Ferris wheel that looks out over the city.
So, whether you’re up for a spin on the ice, live entertainment, market stalls, or festive food and drink, then Amsterdam has it all.
Switzerland has always been one of the most popular winter destinations in Europe, and this is especially true during the Christmas period. Almost every city square and shopping street is decorated with baubles and Christmas lights from late November, highlighting the incredible beauty of Swiss cities.
Christmas in Geneva is a captivating experience that can truly be defined as magical. The entire city transforms into a winter wonderland adorned with festive decorations, mesmerizing light displays, and a towering Christmas tree that serves as a stunning centrepiece.
One standout aspect of the market is the extensive variety of traditional Swiss food and beverages on offer. This gourmet selection fills the market with a distinctly Swiss atmosphere, setting it apart from the neighbouring German markets.
While exploring the market, be sure to set aside time for a memorable ride on the Grande Roue, an enchanting Ferris wheel that provides stunning views of the city.
Meanwhile, younger visitors will be delighted by the opportunity to enjoy pony rides and take a spin on the charming, vintage-style carousel, creating lasting memories of their festive adventures in Geneva.