13 Best UK Christmas Markets in 2023

Buckle up for a sleigh ride through the best UK Christmas markets! Who needs to jet off to Europe when we’ve got festive wonders right here on our doorstep?

Originating in Germany, Christmas markets have lit up town squares across Europe for centuries. Market stalls overflow with seasonal delights – food, drinks, gifts and all things festive – accompanied by the joy of traditional singing and dancing. Fast forward to recent times, and this festive fun has hopped over to the UK, becoming a beloved part of our holiday tradition that we all adore!

Covent Garden London Christmas Markets with Chelsea
This article may include mentions of products from one or more of our affiliate partners. Unless explicitly stated, we are not being paid to include these. To learn more about our advertising policy, please refer to our Terms of Service.

Visit the Best UK Christmas Markets

Get ready to clink those mulled wine glasses because we’re about to whisk you away on a merry journey to the top Christmas markets in the country. Our top ten markets are free to explore, with some charges for rides and attractions.

1. Birmingham Frankfurt Christmas Market

Birmingham Christmas market

Get ready for the holiday magic at the Birmingham Frankfurt Christmas Market – it’s the biggest German-style Christmas market outside of Germany or Austria! Here you can taste authentic German food like schnitzel (a breaded cutlet) and bratwurst (sausage), washed down with glühwein (mulled wine) and weissbeer (wheat beer). But it’s not just about the food – there’s live music and handmade crafts like decorations, jewellery and toys. It’s a slice of Germany smack dab in the middle of the UK.

Opening dates
Thursday 2 November 2023 – Sunday 24 December 2024

Times
Monday – Thursday: 11am–9pm
Friday: 11am–9:30pm
Saturday: 10am–9:30pm
Sunday: 10am–9pm

Find out more here.

Hampshire’s 1000-year-old Winchester Cathedral hosts a lively Christmas celebration. Highlights include concerts, a lantern parade and their celebrated Christmas Market. The lantern parade makes for a fun family activity; participants are encouraged to craft their lanterns with recycled materials, and guess who judges them? None other than the Dean of Winchester. The market itself offers festive treats and showcases the work of British craftspeople, so it’s the perfect place to pick up some thoughtful festive gifts. Don’t miss the enchanting nativity scene for some fun photos.

Opening dates
Friday 17 November 2023 – Thursday 21 December 2023

Times
Sunday – Thursday: 10am–6pm
Friday – Saturday: 10am–8pm

Find out more here.

Each Christmas, the historic streets of Bath undergo a magical transformation, becoming a lively Christmas market adorned with 200 festive chalets. These stalls are brimming with holiday delights, from food and drinks to unique artisanal products including local cheeses, small-batch spirits, handmade jewellery and unique homewares. Set against a backdrop of beautiful architecture, it’s the perfect starting point for exploring the city and enjoying a Bath Christmas break.

Opening dates
Thursday 23 November 2023 – Sunday 10 December 2023

Times
Monday – Wednesday: 10am–7pm
Thursday – Saturday: 10am–8pm
Sunday: 10am–6pm

Find out more here.

Here's our list of the best Christmas Markets in Europe in 2023 including opening times and dates, and what festive treats to expect.

4. East Princes Street Gardens Christmas Market, Edinburgh

East Princes Street Gardens Christmas market

Edinburgh is truly the place to be during the festive period, with Christmas markets taking place across the city. Its most iconic festive market is in the heart of the historic centre in East Princes Street Gardens, overlooking Edinburgh Castle, the Scott Monument and the city’s skyline. The market is a melting pot of local and international traders selling the best in Christmas crafts and snacks, and is home to the iconic Forth 1 Big Wheel.

To really get your fill of the festivities, there are additional Christmas markets you can explore. For family-friendly fun, hit up West Princes Street Gardens. Ice skating more your style? George Street is your spot. Or make your way down to St Andrew Square Winter Garden for festive storytelling with Santa.

Opening dates
Saturday 18 November 2023 – Saturday 6 January 2024

Times
Monday – Sunday: 10am–10pm

Special opening times
25 December: Closed
26 December: 12pm–8pm

31 December: 10am–6pm
1 January: 12pm–8pm

Find out more here.

5. York Christmas Market

York Best Christmas Markets in Europe

York Christmas Market, kicking off from mid-November till just before Christmas, is a festive delight. With 75 alpine chalets lining Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square, this charming market is a treasure trove of goodies from local traders. It’s not just about the shopping spree; it’s a festive playground. Don’t miss the Helter Skelter on Kings Square and all the festive treats at the Yorkshire Barn on St Sampson’s Square.

Opening dates
Thursday 16 November 2023 – Friday 22 December 2023

Times
Monday – Sunday: 10am–7pm

Find out more here.

6. Cathedral Gardens Christmas Market, Manchester

Best UK Christmas markets Cathedral Gardens Manchester

Manchester’s Cathedral Gardens Market stands out among the many Christmas markets sprinkled around the city. It takes up a prime spot between the city’s cathedral and National Football Museum. It’s a blast for the whole family with food, drinks and gift stalls, plus Skate Manchester’s huge covered ice rink which makes for an ultra-festive experience, with its own Christmas tree and festive tunes setting the mood.

​​Opening dates
Friday 10 November 2023 – Thursday 21 December 2023

Times
Monday – Sunday: 10am–8pm (craft stalls); 11am–9pm (food and drink stalls)

Special opening times
Skate Manchester ice rink remains open until Tuesday 2 January 2024 (excluding Christmas Day); food and drink stalls next to the rink in Cathedral Gardens remain open until 31 December 2023.

Find out more here.

Here's our list of the best Christmas Markets in Europe in 2023 including opening times and dates, and what festive treats to expect.

7. Cardiff Christmas Market

Cardiff Christmas Market

Established almost 30 years ago, the Cardiff Christmas market has become a beloved tradition, and it’s all thanks to the dedicated folks at Craft*Folk who host the event. This lot are serious about presenting the highest level of craftsmanship from Welsh artisans. So, if you’re on the hunt for unique gifts, the Cardiff Christmas Market is the perfect destination for a festive shopping spree! Visit one of the best UK Christmas markets.

Opening dates
Thursday 9 November 2023 – Saturday 23 December 2023

Times
Monday – Saturday: 10am–6pm
Sunday: 10am5pm

Find out more here.

8. Chester Christmas Market

Chester Christmas Market Best UK Christmas Markets

Encircling Chester’s dazzling Christmas tree, the Chester Christmas Market on Northgate Street steals the show. The market is a festive hub where traders of all kinds set up shop in 70 alpine-style chalets. Here, you can find just about anything – from handcrafted Nativity scenes to Christmas trees, and a tempting array of festive food and drinks, including local jams, gingerbread and even mead.

Opening dates
Friday 17 November 2023 – Thursday 21 December 2023

Times
Monday – Wednesday: 10:30am-6:30pm
Thursday – Saturday: 10:30am-8pm
Sunday: 10:30am6:30pm

Find out more here.

9. Belfast Christmas Market

Belfast Christmas Market Best UK christmas markets

Belfast Christmas Market is located right in the heart of the city and has over 100 traders bringing festive vibes. They’ve got some serious Christmas feasting going on and intricate handmade goodies to check out. Grab a hog roast, sip on some hot glühwein and dive into fancy cheeses at the outdoor food court. Kids have a lot to enjoy with a visit to Santa’s grotto, along with rides on a vintage carousel and helter-skelter.

​​Opening dates
Saturday 18 November 2023 – Friday 22 December 2023

Times
Monday – Wednesday: 10am–8pm (bars open till 9pm)
Thursday – Saturday: 10am–10pm (bars open till 11pm)
Sunday: 12pm–6pm

Find out more here.

10. Nottingham Winter Wonderland Christmas Market

Nottingham Christmas Market Best UK Christmas Markets

Nottingham’s winter wonderland is a full-blown Christmas extravaganza, boasting rides, attractions, live music, an ice rink, an ice bar and a Christmas market. However, stealing the spotlight is the ice path, winding around the market and providing skaters with a fantastic view of the entire scene. It’s one of the best UK Christmas markets and an ideal family day out!

​​Opening dates
Tuesday 7 November 2023 – Sunday 24 December 2023

November Times
Sunday – Thursday: 10am–6:30pm
Friday – Saturday: 10am–8pm

December Times
Sunday – Thursday: 10am–8:30pm
Friday – Saturday: 10am–9pm

Find out more here.

Bougie UK Christmas Markets

If you fancy turning your market visit into a festive day out, why not visit a grand stately home? Immerse yourself in their enchanting Christmas market events and take a stroll through their beautifully adorned grounds.

11. Holkham Hall Christmas Market, Norfolk

Holkham Hall Christmas Market

Norfolk’s Holkham Hall is a grand country estate known for its stunning architecture and beautiful parkland. For just one weekend in December, it hosts one of the most acclaimed Christmas markets in the country. The Lady Elizabeth Wing of Holkham Hall is filled with Norfolk’s top craftspeople and artisan food and drink producers. The festive atmosphere is topped off with live music. Entry to the market is free, you’ll just need to pay for parking (£7).

Opening dates
Saturday 9 December 2023 and Sunday 10 December 2023

Times
10am–4pm

Find out more here.

12. Chatsworth House Christmas Market

Chatsworth house christmas market

This Christmas market is slightly unique compared to the others as it happens only in November. Held in a Derbyshire stately home, it boasts over 100 market stalls offering a diverse range of handmade gifts, festive decorations and delicious seasonal treats. The enchanting atmosphere is complemented by live entertainment, twinkling lights and the iconic Chatsworth House as a majestic backdrop. Entry is free, but you must book your spot in the carpark in advance, which costs between £11 and £28.

Opening dates:
Saturday 4 November 2023 – Sunday 26 November 2023

Time:
Monday – Thursday: 10am–5;30pm
Friday – Sunday: 10am–6pm

Find out more here.

13. Blenheim Palace Christmas Market

Blenheim Palace Christmas Market

The Blenheim Palace Christmas Market is Oxfordshire’s place to be for some festive fun. This spot is known for its fancy architecture, huge grounds and extensive history. The market takes place on the Great Court and plays host to a range of seasonal stalls. Visitors can pre-book to see the beautiful illuminated light trail or to wander through the Palace, which they’ve decked out to tell the classic tale of Sleeping Beauty in each room – both are paid-for attractions. Entry to the market only is free, although parking must be pre-booked and costs £10.

Opening dates:
Friday 17 November 2023 – Sunday 17 December 2023

Times
Monday – Sunday: 10:30pm–8:30pm

Find out more here.

Map of the Best UK Christmas Markets

Enjoy Some Festive Fun at the Best UK Christmas Markets

Whether you’re taking in the beauty of Winchester Cathedral, soaking up the lively festive scene in Edinburgh or discovering artisanal gems in Cardiff, these markets have something for everyone. This collection of the best UK Christmas markets is an excellent starting point for organising your own festive day out, getting into the Christmas spirit and crafting unforgettable memories.

Timisoara Romania Christmas Markets with Chelsea Cheap holiday expert
Anniversary? Birthday? Or just fancy a treat? Here's the best UK hotels to put on your bucket list, including the cheapest price you can book them for.
Have I helped? Want to say thanks?

That’s nice of you! There are free ways you can return the favour by following me on Instagram and YouTube.

If you’re feeling generous, you can buy me a ‘coffee’ using Ko-Fi. Or you can also join my Patreon for extra travel perks including my personal hotel upgrade templates, behind the scenes access and even a secret Instagram group.

The best UK christmas markets

Related Articles

About Chelsea

Find out a bit more about what I do.

More Posts

Follow

Sign up to my mailing list!

If you want info first on the best deals I find, then sign up for my mailing list. It’s free!

About Chelsea

Find out a bit more about what I do.