The best Christmas markets to visit in 2022
Christmas markets offer handmade gifts – and much more.
The best Christmas markets 2022:
Bryant Park, New York
New York’s Bryant Park Winter Village is a famous market in the city. The centrepiece of the village is a 17,000-foot ice rink which is New York’s largest free rink and also hosts professional skating shows. The park has more than 125 decorated cabins as part of its European-inspired open-air market, where visitors can shop for local crafts and Christmas gifts. There is an alpine lodge bar and food hall located next to the rink, serving festive cocktails, hot drinks and food with space to watch the skaters. To top it off, the Curling Café & Bar will be open from November 16 for games of curling and hot food inside cosy glass igloos. The winter village opened on October 28 and will run until March 2023.
Cologne has not one but seven Christmas markets to choose from. Some of the best include the market at Kölner Dom (Cologne Cathedral), the Altstadt market and the harbour market, located on the Rhine bank. You will find something slightly different at each one, but all of them have a range of traditional lodges offering hot food such as bratwurst, bars serving mulled wine and hot chocolate, and artisans with handmade German gifts. Each market also serves drinks in uniquely designed mugs, which are perfect souvenirs for taking home. Most markets are set to run from November 21 until December 23.
Fira de Santa Llucia, Barcelona
The Fira de Santa Llucia is Barcelona’s oldest local Christmas market, running from November 25 until December 23. The market was originally much smaller, but today it has over 300 stalls and begins at Barcelona Cathedral, and is divided into sections such as gifts, decorations and toys. Visitors can pick up souvenirs, Christmas trees, handmade nativity scenes and jewellery, almost all of which is handmade. The market also features a popular Spanish children’s activity called Tió de Nadal, which is similar to a piñata – children can hit a Christmas log to break it open and receive sweets and presents.
Brussels Winter Wonders, Belgium
The famous Brussels Winter Wonders will this year take place between November 25 and January 1 in the very centre of the city. The Christmas market will have more than 300 winter chalets offering sweet and savoury foods, artisan crafts, gifts and drinks. It will offer a range of attractions, including ice skating, a giant Ferris wheel, rides, a curling rink and a live choir. The daily sound and light show will also return for 2022, featuring illuminated artworks displayed on some of the city’s most famous buildings. In a tribute to Quebec, the city will allow visits to the Black Tower, which will have its own choir, serve Canadian dishes such as poutine and sell traditional souvenirs.
France’s oldest Christmas market, founded in 1570, will kick off on November 25, 2022. The Christkindelsmärik, as it is locally known, will host more than 300 stalls, offering traditional French food, drinks and produce, as well as handmade gifts, crafts, decorations and baked goods. The market will be concentrated in Strasbourg’s Kléber Square, and visitors can attend workshops and demonstrations showing how to make Christmas treats such as gingerbread and mannele. For unique gifts, the OFF market and the market in Louise Weiss square will offer authentic products made in the Alsace region.
Helsinki Christmas market is the oldest outdoor Christmas market in the city, and this year it will be open from December 1 until December 22. The market will be held in Senate Square, with over one hundred stalls selling a range of handmade ornaments, gifts and handicrafts. Food and drink will also be abundant, with chalets serving traditional Finnish cuisine using locally produced meats, fish and vegetables. Finland is famous for being the home of Santa Claus, who will pay a visit to the market during the month, plus kids can enjoy an old-fashioned merry-go-round, circus performances, live music and games.
Distillery Winter Village, Toronto
Toronto’s popular Winter Village in the city’s Distillery District will be open once again from November 18 until December 31. More than 65 local shops and artisans will be open throughout the month, as well as stalls selling Christmas gifts and souvenirs. Paired with this, 12 new food cabins will be open, serving dishes such as raclette, crepes, lobster rolls, pizza and more. This is in addition to the numerous restaurants that permanently reside in the Distillery District, which will offer seasonal Christmas menus. Visitors can stop at the village’s outdoor patios by one of four bars serving cocktails and hot drinks. The main attractions at the village include a 50-foot Christmas tree designed by Dior, a gingerbread scavenger hunt and live music performances.
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