The Best Christmas Markets in Europe

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From Brussels to Vienna, these historic markets specialize in handmade crafts, mulled drinks, and other holiday treats.

London, England

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London's Christmas shopping season opens in November, when Regent Street ceremoniously switches on its Christmas lights for a pedestrian parade. London typically spreads out its Christmas cheer, from the official Norwegian spruce on Trafalgar Square to the ice skating rink at Somerset House. Trees bedecked with fairy lights herald Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland (mid-Nov. - early Jan.), which includes London's largest outdoor skating rink, a toboggan slide, a Ferris wheel, carolers, and a traditional German Christmas market. More small markets spring up at the Natural History Museum, which installs a temporary ice rink (early Nov. -mid-Jan.); and the Greenwich Market (most of Dec.). Christmas concerts abound, but it's hard to resist the carol sing-along at the Royal Albert Hall (from mid Dec.).

Look For: The Great Christmas Pudding Race (early Dec.), where costumed contestants tread an obstacle course around Covent Garden while balancing fruitcakes on spoons.

For More Info: visitlondon.com

Get more holiday travel inspiration.

The Best Christmas Markets in Europe

London, England

London's Christmas shopping season opens in November, when Regent Street ceremoniously switches on its Christmas lights for a pedestrian parade. London typically spreads out its Christmas cheer, from the official Norwegian spruce on Trafalgar Square to the ice skating rink at Somerset House. Trees bedecked with fairy lights herald Hyde Park's Winter Wonderland (mid-Nov. - early Jan.), which includes London's largest outdoor skating rink, a toboggan slide, a Ferris wheel, carolers, and a traditional German Christmas market. More small markets spring up at the Natural History Museum, which installs a temporary ice rink (early Nov. -mid-Jan.); and the Greenwich Market (most of Dec.). Christmas concerts abound, but it's hard to resist the carol sing-along at the Royal Albert Hall (from mid Dec.).

Look For: The Great Christmas Pudding Race (early Dec.), where costumed contestants tread an obstacle course around Covent Garden while balancing fruitcakes on spoons.

For More Info: visitlondon.com

Get more holiday travel inspiration.

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