Exploring Christmas Markets in Europe

November 25, 2013 by

Europe, Festivals & Events, Local Experts & Private Guides, Things to Do

During the month of December, European countries come alive with the spirit of the holidays. Christmas Markets in Europe become a star attraction, especially in Germany, enticing visitors with their selections of holiday gifts and traditional food and drink set in festive market surrounds. Imagine the smells of roasting almonds and mulled wine wafting through the air on a cool winter evening as hundreds of fellow market-goers laugh and converse with loved ones. What fun!

For those travelers wishing to explore several of these markets while in Europe, Christmas market tours will give that ability in a short period of time, and with a qualified guide. Rose-Marie Cannemeijer-Dimitri, one of our Amsterdam-based private guides, offers several tour options during the Christmas markets season to nearby cities of Bruges, Brussels, Cologne and Valkenburg to name a few. Her 25 years guiding experience and ability to speak 6 languages fluently make her an excellent option for exploring the markets with a local’s insight.

Christmas Markets to Explore with Rose-Marie

Christmas Market in Cologne

Christmas Market in Cologne. Photo credit: Colin Grey via Flickr.

Across Rose-Marie’s 1, 2 and 3 day tours, stops at Christmas Markets in the following cities are options: Bruges, Brussels, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Essen, Antwerp, Valkenburg, Ghent, and Aachen.

Some of the city highlights, as noted by Rose-Marie:

Cologne – A total of six Christmas markets can be found and explored in Cologne, along with  Christmas concerts, nativity displays and a potential stop at the ice skating rink.

Bruges – This gothic city puts an old-time vibe in with the Christmas markets experience. Here it is also imperative to indulge in both chocolate and waffles (perhaps together) while walking along the cobblestone streets near the markets.

Valkenburg – Valkenburg is home to a special kind of Christmas Markets as they are the oldest and largest markets taking place in European caves!

Aachen – The destination is interesting for a Christmas Markets tour because the center of the star-shaped town is a cathedral – the same one where Charlemagne was crowned in 800.

Christmas Market Tour Options with Rose-Marie

Brussels Christmas Market

Christmas Market in Brussels. Photo credit: Gary Bembridge via Flickr.

The markets you visit with Rose-Marie from her base of Amsterdam will depend on the length of your travels together. Choose from varying options of 1, 2 or 3 days of travel.

1-Day Christmas Market Tours:

  • Dusseldorf Christmas Market (Germany) – Available from November 21 to December 23, 2013.
  • Brussels Christmas Market (Belgium) – Available from November 29 to January 6, 2014.
  • Bruges Christmas Market (Belgium) – Available from November 22 to January 2, 2014.
  • Valkenburg Christmas Market (Netherlands) – Available from November 15 to December 23, 2013.

** Belgium runs Christmas Markets through early January.

2-Day Christmas Market Tours:

  • Bruges, Ghent and Antwerp Christmas Market Tours (Belgium)
  • Dusseldorf and Essen Christmas Market Tours (Germany)
  • Cologne and Dusseldorf Christmas Market Tours (Germany)
  • Valkenburg and Maastricht (Netherlands) to Aachen (Germany) Christmas Market Tours

3-Day Christmas Market Tours:

Valkenburg Christmas Market

Valkenburg’s Christmas Markets are in caves! Photo credit: chris friese via Flickr.

  • Valkenburg and Maastricht (Netherlands) to  Aachen and Monschau (Germany)
  • Rhine Valley tour, Cologne, Lorelei, Rudesheim and Cochem including a Rhine Cruise (Germany)
  • Cologne and Aachen (Germany) to Bruges and Ghent (Belgium)

Booking a Christmas Markets tour with Rose-Marie is as simple as heading over to her Viator private guide profile and selecting “Book this tour guide!” 

Happy travels, and happy holidays!

Read more about Christmas in Amsterdam

Viator Travel Team

, , , , , , ,

One Response to “Exploring Christmas Markets in Europe”

  1. Teresa Says:

    I was just thinking about xmas markets. After all, it is that time of the year. My all-time favorite city for xmas cheer and markets is the magical city of Prague. In fact, I would go on to say that Prague may be the most beautiful European city of all no matter what time of year you find yourself wandering its streets. Outstanding architecture, largely left in one piece during World War II, and the kind of December weather that one associates with xmas time, help to create a perfect seasonal backdrop. Somehow a tropical-style xmas just doesn’t cut it for me. Prague has it all!