So often, we forget that the holidays are supposed to be delightful, whimsical, and mysterious. Christmas is the most magical season of the year! Don’t get bogged down in shopping lists, mall runs, and stress this year. Instead, treat yourself to a classic Christmas adventure: a trip to one of the top Christmas markets in the U.S. Here are the best markets to relax, shop, dine, and have a magical Christmas time!
This is the biggest Christmas market in the United States! It draws a crowd of over a million people every year. Join the fun when you visit Chicago this year! If you can’t visit the famous Christmas markets of Germany, this is the next best thing. In fact, this market was modeled after Christkindlesmarkt, an annual market in Nuremberg, Germany! The market includes German favorites, like beer, German treats, and décor, as well as American-style elements and entertainment.
New York’s biggest holiday market is not to be missed during big-city Christmas excursions! This is fun for a variety of reasons. First of all, it gives you a chance to get all your Christmas shopping done in one go. Yes, please! There are over 150 vendors from around the world at the Union Square Market. Secondly, there are lots of good places to eat. If you want hot cocoa or just some good NYC street food, this is the place to get it. Finally, the air is filled with Christmas spirit and good vibes! The Union Square Holiday Market is a fun place to visit.
Address: W 14th St and Union Square West, New York
Thirty days hath September… and thirty days hath the Downtown Holiday Market in Washington, DC. Just to be clear, though, those days are not in September. Naturally, they are in November and December. Pick a day and head to the heart of DC for this awesome market experience! Every day will feature 60 exhibitors selling everything from handmade pottery to unique clothing. There’s something for everyone on your Christmas list!
Address: 8th St NW and F St NW, Washington DC 20004
Any city named Bethlehem should be legally required to host a Christmas market. I can’t think of a better Christmassy city name! Fortunately for us, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania does indeed offer a fantastic holiday market so that we, like the magi of old, can make a trip to Bethlehem for Christmas. Of course, visitors to Christkindlmarkt aren’t on the hunt for the Christ child, but rather the perfect Christmas gift—and perhaps some eggnog. While you’re there, you can also enjoy live music, artistic demonstrations, and plenty of fun for the whole family.
The world’s most famous Christmas author is the inspiration for this Victorian Christmas fair. Enter the world of the great Charles Dickens, where ladies spin in colorful hoop skirts, men tip their top hats, and everyone enjoys old-fashioned delights. From the music to the food and the vintage dance parties, this is a Christmas experience you have to enjoy at least once in your lifetime.
Historic Georgetown is the ideal backdrop for Colorado’s loveliest winter market! Enjoy the Christmas season with a European twist. Even Santa will be dressed in saintly European garb! This unique market will feature a Santa Lucia Children’s Procession, horse-drawn wagon rides, plenty of entertainment, and even museum tours. This market is only open for a few days, so be sure to visit while it’s still around! If you want to experience the spirit of Christmas past, this is the place to do it.
Address: Georgetown, Colorado 80444
Dates - December 2nd - 3rd and December 9th - 10th Hours - 10 AM - 5 PM
Arlington’s take on this German holiday classic is pretty fantastic! This is one of the biggest Christmas markets in the Southwestern United States. If you visit this market, you’ll get to find gifts for everyone on your list while enjoying live music and entertainment. Be sure to come hungry, because Texas Christkindl Market offers lots to eat and drink! Try some German schnitzel or a special holiday drink.
Address: Globe Life Park, 1000 Ballpark Way, Arlington, TX
This is a fairly new Christmas market, but it’s not any less awesome than the more established events. Visit West Shore Park in Baltimore to enjoy German traditions that summon the spirit of the Old World! Like its Chicago counterpart, this market is inspired by the Christmas market in Nuremberg. Walk along the harbor while browsing handmade gifts, unique décor, and more. You’ll get to see Santa, check out the nativity scene, try new foods, and enjoy outdoor entertainment. This market may be inspired by Germany, but it features elements from around the world! You can traverse the globe in a day when you visit this market.
Enjoy the spirit of Christmas in Cincinnati—in the protection of heated tents! This huge German market is a great place to get in touch with your inner Bavarian. Try German beer, German pickle soup, German candies, German cookies, and pretty much all things German! Besides the food, you’ll also find great shopping. Browse the selection of German imports to find fun gifts for friends and family. There will also be entertainment, a parade, and (of course) a visit from Santa.
The first ten days of December are wonderful days in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin! Visit the town during this time to experience the Old World Christmas Market at Osthoff Resort. Discover the best of Europe here! You can find elements from all across the continent, from Russian décor to German nutcrackers. See it, taste it, smell it, and snap some photos while you’re there. This is one of the most Instagram-friendly events of the season!
Address: The Osthoff Resort, 101 Osthoff Ave, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin