What better way to get in the festive mood than to sip from a warm cup of mulled wine and browse for handcrafted gifts in a Xmas market? We have selected our top 5 Xmas markets across Europe to get you in the spirit. What is your favourite?
Visit Edinburgh this winter for a full family program of holiday events. See a festive theatre play, find your way through the Christmas tree maze, climb on an ice wall, try some regional products from the Scottish Market or go ice skating. We are sure you won’t get bored.
“Tions de Nadal a la Fira de Santa Llúcia (Barcelona)”, Date 7 December 2011, by Enfo, see https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tions_de_Nadal.jpg
Sunglasses, beach and sangria? Barcelona might not be the first destination that comes to mind when thinking about Xmas, but the city has much to offer during the festive season. Right next to the Catedral de Barcelona visit the Fira de Santa Llúcia Xmas market, take a glimpse at the big Caga Tió display and get a Caganer of your choice as a souvenir. The Catalans would definitely win the prize for strangest Xmas traditions if there were one.
If you are in Vienna in November and December, there is no escaping Xmas markets. You will find stands on every street corner offering a variety of snacks such as Lebkuchen, warm cidre and mulled wine as well as artisan gifts. The best markets are: Rathaus Christkindlmarkt, Spittelberg Weihnachtsmarkt and “Winter im MQ”. Remember to bring your hat, gloves and warm shoes as temperatures can easily fall below zero.
“Julmaknad i Gamla stan”, Date 2009, Author Holger.Ellgaard, see https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Gamla_stans_Julmarknad_2009c.jpg
Scandinavia feels like the natural epicentre of Xmas in Europe, so the capital of Sweden must be represented in our top 5. Head to the Royal Palace, browse the craft stalls and snack on some pepparkaka gingerbread to enjoy some real Nordic flair. This destination has the highest likelihood of snow, so come prepared for cold weather.
“Pains d’épices de Noël” Publié le 24/10/2013 © P. Bastien / Cus, see http://noel.strasbourg.eu/medias/visuels/-/visuelcontent/gallery/noel-des-traditions-et-des-lumieres#_
The “Christkindelsmärik” in Strasbourg dates back to 1570 making it the oldest Xmas market in Europe. Head to the capital of Alsace for beautiful architecture, hearty food and a variety of markets. Don’t forget to try some bredele biscuits, a Christmas specialty.