Get out there and visit a Christmas market

Fall festivities

Even though I find it hard to say goodbye to the summer sunshine, I can’t help but look forward to being snug indoors over the winter. Mugs of steamy hot chocolate, topped with lashings of whipped cream and a delicious home-made cake, mmm. During the colder days, my craft kit faithfully sits in its standard spot on the table and the best of my creations even get their own place in my home. Yet outdoors, there’s also lots to enjoy, as the Christmas markets are once again on their way! I really love being driven around and happily take the bus to Christmas markets abroad. It’s often doable in one day, but you can also choose to spend the night, allowing you to soak up even more of the atmosphere. In the Netherlands, you needn’t miss out on all that fun, because there’s all kinds of events organised throughout the country. Here, I will list just a few of the many Christmas markets for you.

The Netherlands

November 17th– 23rd: Margriet Winterfair Den Bosch 

Margriet Winter Fair is the largest winter festival in the Netherlands. Here you will find about 80 performances, 15,000 workshop places and every day, you can be inspired by the various fashion shows or even meet your favourite author.

November 17th 2017 – January 7th 2018: Valkenburg Christmas City 

A visit to the caves in Valkenburg is always an experience to remember. But during this festival, the atmosphere is truly extraordinary. Countless Christmas stands with local nibbles and special seasonal dishes give you the feeling that you have been transported to a completely different world. And outside, there’s also lots to enjoy, just take a walk through this beautiful city and relax on one of the many charming terraces.

December 15th – 27th: Winter Wonder Weken in Leiden 

A nostalgic fun fair, the popular Joris’ Christmas tree (from a children’s tv-show) and even an ice-rink. During the Winter Wonder Weeks, Leiden really goes all out. Last year, the floating Christmas market on the Nieuwe Rijn was even voted as the best in Europe and won the Christmas Market Award of 2016! You have to experience it for yourself, even if only once.


December 17th – 18th: Dickens-Fest: Dickens-fest Drunen

The clock gets turned back in Drunen. Soak up the atmosphere of a Christmas market set in the days of Charles Dickens and weave your way amongst the striking and unusual inhabitants of an old 19th century English city, full of Christmas spirit. About 600 characters from the famous books of this English writer are brought to life: from  Scrooge to Oliver Twist, from Mr. Pickwick to David Copperfield, from orphans to drunkards, from simple housemaids to those in the highest levels of society.


November 23rd – 30thChristmas market in Dusseldorf, Germany

The atmospheric old city centre transforms into a sea of lights and conviviality. What makes this Dusseldorf Christmas market truly unique, is that there are six different squares in which you can find all kinds of stalls stacked with Christmas goodies, delicious mulled wine and delicious snacks. The squares are connected with each other via a trail of Christmas lights. There is also an ice-rink and a gigantic Ferris wheel.

November 27th – 23rd: Cologne Christmas Market, Germany

The imposing Dom van Keulenhas Cathedral has a spellbinding effect on the squares and streets surrounding it. A unique atmosphere, where the rich history of the city plays an important role. Every year, the Christmas market here is a massive event. Lots of stalls bursting with Christmas gifts, for others or for yourself… And from Utrecht, you can be right there in the midst of it all in just a two-hour drive.


December 8th 2017 – January 7th 2018: The Gentse Winterfests, Belgium

Wood scents, greenery, atmosphere, lights, Northern lights, reindeer, chalets, homeliness, warmth… You will find all of that at this authentic Christmas market in the cosy city centre of Gent. Wander through a Scandinavian Christmas village or experience magical moments in the stunning inner city. There’s also lots for children to enjoy here too, in the Land of W’ijs!


November 17th 2017 – January 1st 2018: Hyde Park Winter Wonderland in London, Great-Britain

Who hasn’t ever dreamed of going Christmas shopping in London? The seasonal window displays of Harrods and Selfridges are atmospheric and inspiring, but there’s also so much more to enjoy. In Hyde Park, it’s Winter Wonderland. There you will find a beautiful Christmas market, but you can also take a look in Santa’s workshop in Santa Island, be spellbound by princes and princesses who skate on the stars or try out spectacular attractions for yourself.

This is going to be fun! Which Christmas market(s) will you be going to?  Share your ideas with us on Facebook.

~ Saskia ~

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