Christmas Market Breaks – find your perfect festive getaway at Holidayguru.ie!
It’s the most magical time of year – and possibly the most stressful one as well. Rushing around trying to find the perfect gift for your loved ones, battling the huge crowds in the high street, prepping your roast dinners… It’s a lot of hard work to make each Christmas magical. So why not take a step back from all of the goings-on at home and treat yourselves to a magical few days away with a Christmas market trip?
Booking your Christmas market trips
When it comes to securing the best deal for Christmas market holidays, it’s better to get it done sooner rather than later. While flights and hotel rates are still cheaper in comparison to the high season in summer, demand is still quite high and rooms can fill up quite quickly, especially in popular city break destinations such as Prague or Budapest. But if you leave it a bit last-minute, don’t fret – your Holidayguru is always on the look-out for the best festive city trips and weekend breaks. As well as all of the big-name destinations, I’ll also be sure to keep my eyes peeled for deals to beautiful markets and festivals in more smaller cities such as Wroclaw, Tallinn or Bratislava.
The best Christmas markets in Europe
For those of you really looking to get into the festive spirit, a Christmas city break in Europe is one of the best things you can do. Scope out some of the best Christmas markets in Germany, admire the beautiful lights of Paris or Prague, or enjoy the cosy atmosphere in a lesser-known city in Eastern Europe such as Riga, Bratislava or Lviv. Despite being a popular time of year to visit the cities at this time of year, you’ll still find that hotel rates are still lower than compared to the high reason in summer. Many markets in Europe coincide with the start of the traditional advent season, meaning that most of them will be opening to visitors towards the end of November. Even if you book somewhat last-minute, chances are you’ll still be able to come across a fantastic deal. Here are some of my favourite Christmas markets in Europe that I really recommend checking out!
1. Riga, Latvia
Looking to head off on a festive break that offers fantastic value for money! Then the Riga Christmas markets will be right up your street. The cute and colourful Latvian capital features a cosy market by the cathedral, and you’ll find that it’s cheap to get your shopping done here as well. And here’s an interesting claim to fame – Riga is said to be the home of the age-old tradition of Christmas trees, with the first-ever one being documented in the year 1510.
2. Vienna, Austria
The stately capital of Austria features some of the prettiest Christmas markets in Europe, taking place by the gorgeous Gothic facade of the city hall. And when you throw in the many idyllic palaces, mansions and parks into the mix, it’s fair to say that you’re onto a winner here. For an extra touch of magic, I recommend checking out the cosy market which plays out in the grounds of Belvedere Palace.
3. Nuremberg, Germany
The Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg is one of the most famous and most traditional Christmas markets in Germany. If you’ve yet to experience the magic of a German market for yourself, then this is a brilliant place to start. To see the main square absolutely filled to the brim with stalls and lights is simply magical! Definitely try some of the Glühwein while you’re there – the German take on mulled wine is the perfect way to stave off the winter cold.
4. Prague, Czechia
One of the most popular city break destinations in Europe – and one of the most festive experiences you can have! With traditional handicrafts and delicious street food all around, you’re guaranteed to have an amazing time. The beautiful architecture of the Old Town only adds to the magic. There are several markets across the city, the main two being in the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square. But be sure to head across the river as well – stroll through the beautiful Lesser Town district and you’ll find a lovely little market by Prague Castle as well!
5. Budapest, Hungary
Another big name amongst city breakers, Budapest is a delight to explore at Christmas time. Kick things off by heading to Vorosmarty Square, where you’ll find a wealth of stalls selling delicious food and traditional gifts. One of my favourite Hungarian street food dishes is langos, where base of dough of deep-fried and then topped with ingredients such as sour cream, cheese and ham. A warning from me though – they are incredibly moreish…
Of course, that’s only a small selection of Christmas markets that are taking place across Europe each year! However they are are all highly recommended and they’re a great start for everyone new to European Christmas markets. Other fantastic choices I can personally recommend include Berlin, Cologne, Tallinn, Stockholm and Ljubljana.
Find your perfect Christmas market holiday at Holidayguru.ie
Be sure to keep checking back to stay up-to-date with the latest Christmas market deals I find! During the run-up to the festive season I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for the best Christmas market breaks departing from Ireland. Should you be looking for an unforgettable getaway filled with winter magic, you’re in the right place here!
Should you be looking for a bit of winter sun, be sure to check out my Christmas holidays tag as well. You’ll find plenty of offers to sun-drenched destinations which provide the perfect escape from the wintry climates ate home!