As you sip your Pumpkin Spice Latte enjoying the fall, the time has come to plan for your next winter getaway.
Fall brings cooler weather, vibrant colors and all things pumpkin while winter goes a step further with snow, but kills off the fall vibes.
While many may seek some fun in the sun to escape the frigid cold, perhaps the best way to embrace winter is scoping out the best Christmas markets of Europe.
Many cities across Europe hold delightful Christmasy get-togethers to celebrate one of the most magical times of the year.
But you might be wondering, “which ones are the best?”. There is a lot of competition as you have basically any major destination holding their own version of a Christmas market.
These are the top 5 Christmas markets in Europe to visit this winter:
Advent Bazilika may be small in size, but it packs a punch with the amazing backdrop of the St. Stephen’s Basilica.
@julimegyeri Advent Budapest✨. #advent#budapesthungary #budapest #este #forraltbor #bazilikaadvent #bazilika ♬ Budapest – George Ezra
According to The Star, this holly jolly event has been voted the best Christmas market in Europe for 3 years straight.
Visitors love the intangible factor of simply feeling the spirit of Christmas while here, proving size doesn’t matter when it comes to Christmas events.
There are rave reviews of how comfortably intimate it is, which is preferred over the usual massive crowds.
Like many Christmas markets, those who visit can expect free entry to a world of holiday festivities ranging from unique vendors reminiscent of an elf’s workshop to piping hot cocoa.
Travelers can go anytime between November 24 – December 31, 2023.
Prague, Czech Republic
@whereinprague.cz Are you ready? 🎄✨🎅🏼 #europeanchristmasmarket #market #oldtown #pragueoldtown #snowyprague #charlesbridge #winterprague #zima #vzime #christmasmarket #europeanchristmasmarket #christmasineurope #christmasinprague #praguechristmasmarket #christmas #snowinprague ♬ original sound – Will | Prague tips in English
Visiting Prague around Christmas time will not disappoint. There are actually multiple Christmas markets held here, with 2 of them being within a 5 minute walk apart.
Not only can you double dip your milk and cookies like Santa, but also the Christmas markets the same night.
This duo can be found in the gorgeous Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square, where both offer amazing experiences to those who visit.
But, perhaps the most scenic of all is held in front of the famed St. George’s Basicila. Entry is free for all, so prepare to be overfilled with joy Christmas market-hopping in Prague.
The main 3 markets are open from Dec 2, 2023 – January 6, 2024.
@wilbertandspace Your sign to visit Munich during Christmas🎄❄️❤️ #munichgermany #munichtravel #munichaesthetic #munichchristmasmarket ♬ Suite from the Polar Express – Alan Silvestri
Soon Munich will trade in their lederhosens for Christmas sweaters. As Octoberfest will soon pass, its time to gear up for one of the best Christmas markets in Europe.
Germany has many Christmas markets to choose from, but there is just something special about what Munich offers.
The main festivities take place at the magnificent Marienplatz. Munich Christkindlmarkt may be a mouthful, but that is just simply foreshadowing.
Markets here are a foodie paradise, which should be no surprise in Bavaria. Not only are these events suitable for foodies and the general Christmas-loving globetrotter, the city also holds a Pink Christmas welcome to anyone, but focused on welcoming the LGBTQ+ crowd.
@boredinmunich The climate neutral fact is probably the coolest part of it 👏🏻💗 #boredinmunich #christmasmarketsinmunich #glühweinseason #glühweinmunich #lgbtqmunich #queerinmunich #munichpinkchristmas ♬ original sound – user35719243013
In fact, it is one of the most popular Christmas markets in the city as it is a safe space for all Christmas lovers.
Dates vary by market, but it’s a safe bet to visit the last week of November through Christmas Day.
There are not many major cities in Europe that could be more beautiful than Vienna. The city is gorgeous any time of year, but the Christmas festivities unleash a new personality.
The vibrant decor brings out the magic of Christmas and you have the winter trip of a lifetime. The holiday spirit spreads tenfold at the huge market held at the stunning Maria Theresien Platz.
@christmasvibesonly_742 Who wants to come with me??🎄 – – – #christmas #christmasshopping #besttimeoftheyear #fyp #holiday #winter #christmas2023 #readyforchristmas #christmasdecor #december #besttime #alliwantforchristmas #viennachristmas #viennachristmasmarkets #snow #christmastime ♬ Sleigh Ride – Ella Fitzgerald
Could there be a better backdrop? Doubtful! Vienna doesn’t stop there with its mouth-watering seasonal treats and an assortment of handmade crafts; there are multiple fun markets spread across the city.
Each has its own flair. All of Vienna’s markets are open from mid-November to the end of December.
This Christmas market is a bit of a wild card as you may have never heard of this place. However, Kosice is the second largest city in Slovakia.
Bratislava may get more attention, yet Kosice will blow you away with its immaculate Christmas market with picture-perfect snow and hot drinks to fuel your soul.
@colors.from.above Vianočné trhy v Košiciach, Christmas markets in Košice. . #djiglobal #aerialvideo #nightshoot #djimini3pro #dji #slovakiainwinter #slovakia #thisisslovakia #saintelizabethcathedral #kosice #kosicemesto #visitkosice #winterincity ♬ original sound – colors.from.above
This winter wonderland of Eastern Europe takes over the entire historical city center, transforming into a real-life snow globe.
You will want to bottle it up and immerse yourself into this off-path city full of treasures come Christmas time.
The expected dates are December 5 – December 23, 2023.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com