Top 5 European Christmas Markets 2011
Tis the season for festive markets! We’ve looked at our top 5 Christmas markets in the UK but there’s nothing quite like an authentic Christmas market over in Europe. Some of the most famous European Christmas markets have been running since the Middle Ages and today they’re drawing in over two million visitors at a time! There’s something magical about these European cities at Christmastime – with historic squares full of fairy lights, quirky stalls and unique gifts, not to mention the aroma of roasted chestnuts, spicy gingerbread and mulled wine. Get in the festive spirit and book cheap hotels with Roomguide!
Here’s our top 5:
1. Vienna, Austria
Vienna’s prettiest squares transform into a winter wonderland from mid-November onwards. The city oozes nostalgia and romance and nativity displays, concerts and traditional Christmas markets make it one of the most visited markets in Europe. The ‘Christkindlmarkt’ in front of the magnificent Town Hall is Vienna’s classic Christmas market. Selling everything from hand carved toys and decorations to mulled wine and chocolate waffles, Vienna is a place of seasonal inspiration.
2. Copenhagen, Denmark
The annual Christmas Market in Copenhagen takes place at Tivoli Gardens, Europe’s oldest amusement park. Twinkling lights, exciting rides, an outdoor ice rink and charming market stalls make this the perfect setting to get into the ‘Christmas spirit’. It’s also the ideal place from which to take home those stocking fillers and special Christmas gifts. Specialties at the market include Aebleskiver, traditional Danish apple slices usually dusted with powdered sugar and served with Glogg, a combination of hot red wine, aquavit, cinnamon and almonds.
3. Berlin, Germany
There are over 50 Christmas markets in Berlin making it a festive favourite in Germany and the rest of Europe. The most popular market in the German capital is the Gendarmenmarkt Christmas Market situated in one of the most beautiful squares in the city. Jugglers, acrobats, artists and choirs entertain the crowds whilst over 100 rustic wooden huts offer yuletide decorations, pretty ornaments, handmade jewellery and delicious Bratwurst.
4. Prague, Czech Republic
The Czechs certainly know how to celebrate Christmas if the Prague festive markets are anything to go by. The Old Town Square is transformed into a vibrant wonderland with a giant Christmas tree surrounded by red-roofed wooden huts selling everything from traditional Czech handicrafts to hot food specialties and refreshing Czech beers. There’s plenty more festive activity to soak up around Wenceslas Square, Havelska Trziste, Namesti Miru and Namesti Republiky.
5. Budapest, Hungary
Budapest’s Vörösmarty square dresses up in its finest Christmas décor from mid-November until the end of December. More than 100 wooden pavilions offer a unique selection of goods from folk artisans and craftsmen as well as a wide choice of traditional Hungarian foods like kürtoskalács (sweet Hungarian pastry), kenyérlángos (baked flat bread) and goulash soup.
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