Christmas is fast approaching and that means Christmas market season is almost upon us.
And now is the time to start planning your visits, especially if you’re looking to travel to one of the markets.
There are some wonderfully festive markets around the UK – and even further afield if you fancy a little trip – that are definitely worth travelling for.
Here are some of the best markets you need to visit in 2019 that’ll get you into the Christmas spirit.
Staying close to home, we can’t talk about Christmas markets without talking about Cardiff’s annual event.
This year it’s on from Thursday, November 14 until Monday, December 23.
More than 200 individual businesses will be selling a wide variety of arts and crafts along with seasonal food and drink.
You can find more details here .
Watch: Making Churros at Cardiff Christmas Market 2018
The Scottish capital hosts an annual market on East Princes Street Gardens, where you’ll find a whole host of traditional stalls selling all sorts of festive treats.
It’s running from November 17 until January 5, from 10am-10pm.
You’ll also find rides and an ice rink nearby during the festive period.
Find out more
This year’s city-wide event will make its return on Friday, November 8, with traders operating seven days a week until Saturday, December 21.
The main cluster of market stalls will be found at Albert Square – and they’ll stay open until December 22.
You’ll find more information here .
This award-winning market will feature around 150 chalets offering homeware, gift, Christmas decorations, handcrafted jewellery and of course festive food.
It’s on from Thursday, November 28 – Sunday, December 15.
They also run coach trips and you can find more information on the Bath Christmas Market website .
Another favourite among festive market lovers, this year the one in Birmingham is on a week earlier than usual.
The annual attraction appears in Victoria Square and New Street every year, with dozens of stalls selling food, drink, gifts, decorations and other seasonal items.
This one has a particularly authentic German Christmas market feel, because it was brought to the city by the organiser of the market in Birmingham’s twin city of Frankfurt, according to Birmingham Live .
It’s running from Thursday, November 7, to Monday, December 23.
London’s full of festive markets over the Christmas period. But these are the three we reckon you should visit if you’re in the big smoke during that time.
Leicester Square Christmas market, which runs from November 9 until January 5, which offers seasonal treats, hand picked for their unique charm. Details can be found here .
Kingston Christmas Market runs from November 15 to December 21 and you can find details here .
Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland Christmas market will have more than 100 traditional wooden chalets selling unique gifts, traditional Christmas decorations and all sorts of culinary treats. It’s on from November 21 until January 5, open from 10am until 10pm everyday. More information can be found here .
If you fancy a longer trip…
If you’re looking to go further afield, there are some amazing Christmas markets to be discovered in Europe – and they’re not all in Germany.
Here are the European festive markets you should consider visiting this year.
Probably home to some of the most famous Christmas markets in the world, Germany knows how to throw a festive shopping event.
In just Berlin alone, there are more than 70 markets to explore, they range from indoor, covered and outdoor markets, ones especially for children with rides and fun fairs, and markets with historical themes.
It’s probably worth taking a few days to take it all in, but if you go over a weekend, be sure to visit the Advent market at the Domäne Dahlem, which runs on every weekend of Advent. It’s open from 11am-7pm.
You can see what else is on offer in Berlin here .
Two markets to check out in Budapest are the Christmas fair held in Vorosmarty Square, and the Basilica Christmas Market.
Expect traditional market fare, along with authentic Hungarian delicacies such as Chimney Cake.
They run from November 8 until January 1.
You can find out more, and book tours, here .
A place that may not be first on everyone’s list but the Estonian city is renowned for its festive market.
The market, as well as looking spectacular with its Christmas tree tradition, offers Estonian Christmas cuisine, from black pudding and sour cabbage to gingerbread and hot Christmas drinks, as well as various handicrafts.
It runs from November 15 until January 7 and is open from 10am-7pm daily.
You can find out more here .
Another German favourite, Stuttgart Christmas market runs from November 27 to 23 December 23.
The stalls are set up in the middle of the city centre, and there’s often a number of concerts running alongside the event.
It’s one of the oldest running markets in Europe – dating back to at least 1692, and potentially even further back.
Everything you need to know can found here .
There are a number of markets being held in Vienna over Christmas, but the Viennese Dream Christmas Market comes highly reccommended.
It’s found in front of city hall, and offers a wide range of products and food. There’s also a children’s area where they can make cookies, and international choirs are usually dotted around the market.
It’s on from November 15 until December 26 and is free to enter on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Another city with plenty of festive markets to choose from, Prague’s markets are open every day from November 30 to January 6 – including on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
The main markets are at the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square (5 minutes walk from each other).
There are also smaller markets held at Republic Square, at Havel’s Market, on Kampa Island and on the square in front of St George’s Basilica at Prague Castle.
You can find full details here .