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With the festive period fast approaching, it's almost time to start thinking about Christmas shopping (crazy, we know!) Fortunately, Europe is home to some of the best Christmas markets in the world, giving you the perfect excuse to combine your Christmas shopping with a well-deserved trip away. Read on to find out where our favourites are: your friends and family will thank you for it!

Zagreb, Croatia

Once a secret, Zagreb's Christmas markets are now voted the best in Europe! You only have to visit to understand why; mouthwatering smells of cinnamon, cloves and mulled wine mix with thousands of twinkling lights, while rustic wooden booths serve up local specialities, live music and an infectious Christmas spirit.

And that's not all. A rich historical narrative that dates back to 1094 has gifted Croatia's capital city with an old-world charm that, when combined with the fashionable boutiques, elegant museums and fascinating museums and galleries, makes it a perfect destination for a winter city break. 

Join us on a Christmas market break to Zagreb

 

 

Hamburg, Germany

Come December, Hamburg magically transforms into a scene from a Christmas fairytale. With more than 30 Christmas markets dotted around, you're spoilt for choice; from the enchanting market at Bergedorf castle to the elegant white stalls of the Jungfernstieg promenade, this German city is decked out with so many beautifully decorated stalls, you'll easily be able to complete your Christmas shopping in one!

Hamburg is a city that lives and breathes by the water. If you get tired of shopping, take a break and stroll along the city's many waterways, canals and rivers. The reflection of the city's sparkling festive lights make December one of the most wonderful times to soak up the spectacular views.

Join us on a Christmas market break to Hamburg

 

Amsterdam, Netherlands

The Dutch are huge fans of the festive season. Throughout December, Amsterdam's already popular markets transform from a place to simply buy food and souvenirs into warm and cosy pop-ups selling hand-made gifts, stroopwafels oozing with caramel and warming glasses of glühwein. 

While their Christmas markets are one of the best places in Europe to buy handmade gifts, that's not all this city has to offer at Christmastime. When you're not shopping for bargains you can try your hand at ice-skating, enjoy live music and sample seasonal treats amongst thousands of glittering fairy-lights in the Museumplein sqaure.

Join us on a Christmas market break to Amsterdam

 

Antwerp, Belgium

Antwerp is home to just one Christmas market, but what it lacks in quantity it certainly makes up for in size! Spread over several different squares in the historic city centre, the Antwerp Christmas Market is made up of over 100 stalls, selling waffles, smoutebollen , and of course, plenty of Belgian chocolate!

When you've finished buying gifts, you can ice-skate, ride on the huge Ferris wheel and admire the city from above, or simply soak up some history with a tour around Antwerp's museums and architecture.

Join us on a Christmas market break to Antwerp.

 

 

Rouen, France

The Christmas market in Rouen may not be the most famous in France, but the historic city's Gothic cathedral provides a magical and simply unforgettable backdrop for its 70+ wooden Christmas chalets.

Perfect if you fancy a slightly calmer Christmas market break, Roeun's picturesque markets are slowly growing in popularity amongst tourists looking to spend a special few days by the river Seine.

Join us on a Christmas market cruise to Rouen

 

Chatsworth House, United Kingdom

Sometimes you don't have to venture too far from home to find the perfect Christmas market for you. One of the Peak District's most famous tourist attractions, Chatsworth House was built in the 16th century and hosts one of the most popular Christmas markets in the Peak District.

With a different theme each year, the beautiful stately home is surrounded by over 100 stalls selling mulled cider, German beer and plenty of unique, homemade gifts. When you're not shopping, step inside the elaborately decorated house, wander through the 105 acre gardens and don't forget to sample plenty of pancakes, mince pies and home-cooked fudge as you go.

Join us on a Christmas market break to Chatsworth House

At Solos, we have a huge selection of pre-Christmas market breaks and Christmas & New Year breaks for single travellers over the festive period. You can browse our full selection here!

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