Christmas is an enchanting and magical time. In several cities around the world Christmas markets are held, the streets are decorated with colourful lights and the smell of sweets or hot chocolate spreads. In this post, we have gathered for you a list with a few suggestions of the best destinations to visit during Christmas. Take a look and get inspired for your next trip!
When we think of Christmas the first idea that comes to our minds are the so famous European Christmas markets. Germany dominates in this area, as there are several cities with Christmas markets. In Berlin, Christmas events take place mainly in two places: at Potsdamer Platz and at the Gendarmenmarkt. On these two squares, the famous glühwein and mulled wine are always available.
Puerta del Sol is the epicentre of Christmas festivities in the Spanish capital. But it is not only in this square that the magic happens. The famous Gran Via and Plaza Mayor are filled with lights and the shops have their window displays decorated to perfection. On every corner you will find a restaurant where you can take a break and eat tapas to warm up during the cold days typical of Christmas.
Strasbourg is considered by many to be the Christmas capital of Europe. Its famous Christmas market is one of the oldest in Europe and dates back to 1750. The Christmas market is filled with stalls offering visitors everything from souvenirs to Christmas sweets or hot drinks. The market is always decorated and Christmas music echoes through the air.
The inauguration of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree marks the beginning of the Christmas season in New York. From the end of November to the beginning of January, the city lights up with Christmas lights, especially in Manhattan. All the city’s neighbourhoods are transformed and the Christmas decorations are a real classic.
In Hungary Christmas is also special and the Christmas market in Budapest delights locals and visitors alike. The Christmas market is located in Vörösmarty square and there you can taste the famous sweets called kürtőskalács. St. Stephen’s square is also worth a visit, as this is where you will find the city’s huge Christmas tree.
The Baltic countries are a classic of Christmas travel. In Sweden’s capital, Stockholm, the famous drink is mulled wine accompanied by gingerbread biscuits. In this city there is no shortage of Christmas markets with all their delicacies and an ice rink for you to enjoy.
Vilnius Cathedral Square is the centre of the festivities, as this is where a Christmas tree many metres high is located. The Christmas decorations in the Lithuanian capital are true works of art, just like in all the Baltic countries. Don’t be surprised when you walk down the street and are greeted with a smile and a “Linksmų Šv. Kalėdų!” (Merry Christmas).
In Poland, Christmas is highly anticipated by the locals as they work all year round to display their works of art – the nativity scenes, szopkas in the local language. The cribs are so special that they have been declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. In Cracow, besides visiting the nativity scenes and the Christmas markets, you can also try Polish delicacies such as beetroot and mushroom soup, pasta stuffed with cheese, meat and cabbage, grilled sausages and potatoes and meat stew.
To the rhythm of Mozart scores, the city of Salzburg celebrates Christmas. The market by Wolfgang Lake, declared a UNESCO Cultural Landscape, delights visitors. This Austrian city is particularly beautiful at this time of year and the landscape is a real picture postcard.
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