The merriest season is upon us and while the country has been through a whirlwind journey as we battled the global plague of coronavirus, we now have a reason to be hopeful again because the world and its countries are opening their borders once again through the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) scheme, making it possible to for us to travel this Christmas season.
As a season of gift-giving and jolly carolling, where better to travel to this Christmas than to the birthplace of modern Christmas traditions and celebrations?
Christmas markets were known to have started in Germany in the Late Middle Ages. In fact, one of the oldest—if not the oldest—in Dresden dates way back to 1434. You can now find them all over Europe in countries like Austria, France and Hungary, and you can plan your holiday around the times that these markets will be open for business.
So if you ever want to entrench yourself in rich Christmas history while exploring the quaint goodies these markets have in store for you, this list of best Christmas markets in Europe is for you.
1. Cologne, Germany
What: Located outside the Cologne Cathedral, the Christmas markets in Cologne have long been favoured as the ultimate festive destination. Best known for having a variety of markets, this destination has everything you'd expect of a classic German spread: the glühwein, the crafts, the twinkling lights. It also hosts more than 100 stage performances throughout the festival, including Christmas swing music and gospel. After you've had your fill of tunes and food, you can head towards Hohe Strasse and Schildergasse, two of Cologne's well-known shopping areas, to walk off all that bratwurst and beer.
When: November 25 to December 22
Find out more here