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YHA Five must-visit Christmas markets
    29/10/2013 09:02

Five must-visit Christmas markets

Christmas Kindle Market, Leeds

The city of Leeds has a well-established German Christmas market which takes over the city's Millennium Square for around six weeks every year. Traditional wooden stalls mix handcrafted toys and jewellery with wooden decorations and German sweets, as the smell of schnitzel and pretzel floats through the air. An array of German sausages served in the traditional manner prepare you for the beer halls, which are always busy, with the locals enjoying traditional German beers to the sound of a live Bavarian brass band.

While the beer halls form the heart of this particular market, there is entertainment for the kids, too; while the market is on, the other half of Millennium Square is taken over by a huge ice rink.

Open: November 8th - December 18th

Places to stay

YHA Leeds Carnegie Village

Things to Do

Looking for something special to do after your visit to the Leeds Christmas Market? Why not take a look at our '5 Free Things to Do in Leeds' guide?


St Nicholas Fayre, York

York has many food and drink markets throughout the year, but for one long weekend each year it turns a number of its old streets into a 'Winter Wonderland', with traders in costumes selling all sorts of festive items - and often crafting them at their stalls so you can see the process in action. From the simple decorative items to fine jewellery you won't find in the shops, it has a great mix to attract all kinds of shoppers. Throw in mulled wine, sloe gin, mince pies and marshmallow-topped hot chocolate to keep out the cold, as well as carol singers to set the mood, and you've got a wonderful Christmas experience. 

Open: November 28th - December 1st

Places to Stay

YHA York


Manchester Christmas Market

Every year the Manchester Christmas Market seems to get bigger, sprawling onto a new street or a new square - it's now one of the biggest in the UK. Handmade traditional arts and crafts are everywhere, but this really is a festival for foodies. Christmas dishes from all around the world are on offer, from Dutch pancakes and Hungarian goulash, and with it being in the city centre, there's no reason you can't pop off to the local shops or a watering hole, then head back in to try something else to tickle those tastebuds. 

Open: December 15th - 22nd

Places to Stay

YHA Manchester

Things to Do

Visited the Manchester Christmas Market and looking for more? Why not check out our '5 Free Things to Do in Manchester' Guide?


Belgravia Christmas Sunday

One day each December, the classical architecture of Elizabeth Street and Pimlico Road in London's Belgravia take Christmas back in time. For an authentic Dickensian experience of a London Christmas, stalls with crafts and toys line the streets, with costumed traders serving mulled wine and mince pies, as brass bands and school choirs get you in the festive spirit. Street entertainers will be on hand to keep the kids entertained, and many of the local shops get in the Christmas spirit, offering special offers and gift ideas to festive shoppers.

Open: December 1st only

Places to Stay

YHA London Central
YHA London Earls Court
YHA London Oxford Street
YHA London St. Pauls
YHA London St. Pancras
YHA London Thameside


Bath Christmas Market

Bath's Christmas Market really is a must-see if you enjoy these sorts of events. Despite the city being a small one, the Christmas Market is one of the biggest in the country, with over 140 stalls setting up around the stunning Bath Abbey. In the day it's a bustle of shoppers taking advantage of the bargains available on original Christmas gifts, but the market stays open until 8pm so you can shop after dark. This is when the market really feels special, with the lights coming from the stalls and the illuminated abbey in the background, and the smells of festive food and drink on the crisp air.

Open: November 28th - December 15th

Places to Stay

YHA Bath

By A Hosteller

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