Top 10 Hidden Gems for Christmas Markets in Europe to Visit
"Nothing captures the magic of the holiday season like a trip to a Christmas market. Europe offers many lesser-known ones that are certainly worth a visit," says Julianna Marshall from International Drivers Association.
Why not make this festive season extra special by touring Europe's hidden Christmas market gems? Laden with handmade crafts, mulled wine, and festive treats, these markets offer an extra layer of enchantment and will make your Christmas unforgettable.
Let's delve into the top clandestine spots replete with Christmas spirit and yuletide surprises.
1. Erfurt, Germany
Don’t neglect Erfurt's Christmas market, which holds its own against more prominent German holiday heavyweights. Centred around a towering 25-metre Christmas tree and a life-sized nativity scene, the market offers 200 stalls selling a host of festive delights.
2. Rovaniemi, Finland
Rovaniemi, the official hometown of Santa Claus, is an exceptionally merry destination. The Christmas market offers a magical assortment of handmade crafts, Finnish foods, and the opportunity to meet Santa himself.
3. Bruges, Belgium
The medieval town of Bruges transforms into a Christmas wonderland every year. The ice rink adds to the charm, while, according to Julianna Marshall of the International Drivers Association, the unique handmade gifts and famous Belgian chocolates make this market a must-see.
4. Bolzano, Italy
Celebrating its festive season in grand style, Bolzano's Christmas market is acclaimed as Italy's biggest. It prides itself on its zero waste initiatives and array of organic, locally sourced gifts, food and wine.
5. Bath, England
This award-winning Christmas market features over 170 stalls selling locally made, sustainable products. Bath's Christmas market has won popularity for its eco-conscious approach and the cosy, festive atmosphere lent by the historical buildings.
6. Ljubljana, Slovenia
Every December, Ljubljana whips up a festive spell with its Christmas market. Marvel at the beautiful handcrafted products while sipping on medica, a warming honey schnapps.
7. Trento, Italy
Trento's Christmas market is famed for its local crafts, food, and wines. Steeped in tradition, the market offers numerous cultural events and even a chance to learn about the local customs.
8. Zagreb, Croatia
Awarded the "Best Christmas Market" title thrice, Zagreb's festive market has something for everyone. From open-air concerts, art displays to traditional Advent houses, it ensures a distinct and heart-warming Christmas experience.
9. Montbeliard, France
Montbeliard's Christmas market stands out for its "Kingdom of the Miners" display, honouring the area's mining heritage. Besides, it features nativity scenes, local crafts, food stalls, and festive concerts.
10. Segovia, Spain
Segovia offers a magical Christmas market set against the backdrop of an ancient Roman aqueduct. Participate in the yearly "father frost run" to truly feel the holiday cheer.
While these markets may be lesser-known, they provide a distinctive touch to the festive season. The International Drivers Association expert Julianna Marshall advises, "Experience the unique culture, festive spirit, local cuisine and mingle with locals. And always follow the local guidelines to ensure a safe and fun trip."
These European Christmas markets are all about discovering the magic within the hidden. They imbibe the true spirit of Christmas in their unique way, ensuring a memorable festive experience for every visitor. It's time to bring out the holiday itinerary and make it even merrier with these stunning, lesser-known Christmas markets. Happy festive travels!