Europe in Winter (and all year round!) has an amazing wealth of culture, history and when the time comes, beautiful Christmas markets to visit. Even if you don’t visit to shop for Christmas day, you can still enjoy the amazing sights, food and drink on offer. But, which cities in Europe are the best to experience Christmas Markets in?
We run through the top 5 as voted by the European Best Destinations publication, and include a nugget of our own from the list that you simply cannot miss.
Lifetime Backpacker Special Pick: Prague Christmas Markets
We’ve explained how amazing Prague is before, so it’s easy to imagine the incredible atmosphere and magic the city has when the Prague Christmas Markets open for the year! There’s quite a few locations where they are held
The Old Town Square
Pictured above, this is a magical place to visit at any time of year. Combine this with the thrill and excitement of the winter season and you will truly feel something special coming here.
One of the most popular areas to visit in the city for both tourists and shoppers, the huge space at Wenceslas square is ideal for markets and they are held here throughout the different seasons, but in Winter it’s by far the most special.
Náměstí Republiky Square
Another, smaller, more intimate version of the old town markets right in front of the Municipal house. Enjoy traditional Czech food, and was it down with a hot mulled wine here.
Vienna Christmas Markets
Vienna has eye watering town squares, architecture and culture. When it comes to the cold months and the decorations go up it turns into a light show of amazing colours. The squares become hubs of loved ones coming together to enjoy the famous Christmas markets here. Even the trees are wrapped in colour with shining lights and decorations!
City Hall gets involved as well. During two weeks in December the city hall square is transformed into a winter wonderland, with amazing decorations, lights and market stalls. Warm yourself from the inside out with a mulled wine or enjoy some food as you wonder, this place is spectacular.
Aachen Christmas Markets Germany
Germany and the people of have always been famous for the stupendous way they deliver Christmas markets. In fact the season as a whole always seems that little bit more enchanting in the country. So what is better than coming to Aachen to look round this season?! You will find a wonderland variation of sights and decorations, foods and gifts when you come here.
From the last week in November all the way through to the 23rd you can find people coming together to enjoy each others company and the wondrous experience here.
Zagreb Christmas Markets Croatia
This place seriously knows how to do Xmas. Winner of the best Christmas Market in Europe two times in a row in 2016, and now 2017… Zagreb is doing something remarkable. Croatia’s capital is a gorgeous up and coming city, and during the festive period there are definitely no holds barred to make every single person feel unique and happy here.
For example, King Tomislav Square transforms into a huge and festive ice park during the season. This allows you to skate as you enjoy the incredibly magic atmosphere. There’s even instructors available to help those “bambi” ice virgins out there!
So there you have it, Croatia wins!