As excitement for Christmas begins to build, we’ve decided to look at some of the most festive places you can visit throughout Europe.
The German capital Berlin once held a reputation as a bit of gloomy place. This, however, is certainly no longer the case (if it ever was) and Christmas time is the best example of how lively the city can be. Markets in the city are in abundance, serving all the festive favourites along with the usual suspects like Currywurst. Head to Potsdamer Platz for “Winterwelt”, a huge winter wonderland that transforms the famous square, and includes a huge icerink. It opens at the start of November and lasts right through until January.
Krakow in Poland has become one of the fastest-growing tourist destinations in recent years, and that growth can largely be put down to its winter break popularity. The Market Square, which opens at the end of November, is perhaps the most charming looking Christmas market location on the list, with gorgeous medieval and pastel-coloured buildings lining the square, complemented further by the glows of Christmas lights. Other popular attractions throughout the city include the Wawel Royal Castle and the old market The Cloth Hall.
Amsterdam looks pretty great all year-round, but wintertime is particularly special. Each year from November until January, the Dutch capital is lit up with amazing light installations by renowned artists, throughout the city’s streets and canals. Guided boat tours aimed at showcasing all the installations are available, which is probably the best way to appreciate the work. Along with the light displays, you can head to The Rembrandtplein Market, which is one of the best in the city. Here you will find a range of traditional Dutch pastries and chocolates, mulled wine, and other festive gifts.
Stunning architecture, great beer, hearty food, and grand Christmas markets can be found in abundance in Prague. Old Town Square hosts the largest Christmas market in Europe, where classic wooden huts are stocked with local handicrafts and festive foods and beverages. For a slightly different experience, head to the Orginal Beer Spa. Here, handmade oak tubs are filled with natural extracts of Czech Krušovice® beer – the hop oil contained in the beer is believed to open pores on the skin, to make you look and feel great!
With its ethereal charm, Reykjavik is one of the prettiest places in Europe. It is especially otherworldy in winter when the Christmas-light glow transforms the Icelandic capital. Along with the decorative lights throughout the city, from December, if you’re lucky you may even see extraordinary Aurora Borealis in the night sky. Opportunities to witness them in all their magnificence will be increased if you head out of the city centre, towards Seltjarnarnes on the coast; here, the minimal light pollution will provide the most fulfilling experience.
Have you been to any of the cities on the list at Christmas time before? Let us know what you thought of them over on Facebook!