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Tuesday 15 December 2009

Christmas Time: The Best Christmas Markets

After a festive day trip to Brussels, courtesy of Little Break I'm all hyped up for the Christmas markets. They're so much fun. I spent the whole day in Brussels singing Let It Snow (and actually, haven't stopped since). Here's why:

Christmas sparkle.

Festive treats!

Traditional gifts.

Dark tree decorations on a silvery tree would look unique and still pretty. I bought lots of baubles for my tree.

If we're going to embrace this Russian Doll trend, let's be festive about it.

So if you've got the Christmas market bug, you have two choices, pop across the Brussels on the Eurostar, or go somewhere a little more local. Here's where the best spots are:

Southbank, London: My favourite Christmas market is the Cologne Christmas Market. Because Southbank is all in one line, it lends itself perfectly to markets and events. Start at one end and walk all the way down! You'll be full of Christmas cheer by the time you get to the end.

Slow Food, Southbank: This isn't a very big market, but if you're a foodie you have to take a wander. Not least to say hello to the guy selling freshly cooked scallops. Embracing all things foodie, Slow Food is a great place to pick up (expensive) gifts for the culinary fans on your pressie list.

The Piazza, Covent Garden: There aren't many markets more festive. If you don't get swept up in Christmas spirit and skip down the street singing Jingle Bells after a visit to the Covent Garden Piazza then you're not doing it right. It's worth going just for the twinkly lights.

Indoor Market, Greenwich: Not strictly a Christmas market, but Greenwich Market is my local and Christmas doesn't start until I've been for a walk around here. There's something very festive about it, they don't even have to try.

Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park: Yes, there's rollercoasters which is a bit weird. But the rest of the Winter Wonderland is very Christmassy indeed. You can even go ice skating after some shopping. Brave the tourists and grab some mulled wine.

Abbey Churchyard, Bath: This is one of the most talked about Christmas markets in the UK. Consistently good, very festive and enough stuff to keep you busy for a whole afternoon.

New Street, Birmingham: Aaaah, Birmingham Frankfurt market is the Christmas market of my childhood. It's based on the German markets, but is apparently less traditional than it used to be. But, if you're nearby it's well worth the trip. It's one of the biggest Christmas markets around.

Christmas Weekend, Manchester: There are so many Christmas markets in Manchester, I can't pick just one - although we do have it on good authority that the one located in Albert Square is the place to go if you want to slurp from a large mug filled with the best Mulled Wine this side of Germany! From 18th - 22nd December, the whole city turns into a Christmas town. There's even a market just for ethical gifts.


  1. hey, great to meet you on the trip! love your pics! x

  2. Looking forward to visiting the Covent Garden Christmas Market today after work!

  3. Great to meet you too! Such a fun trip :-)


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