Amsterdam Christmas Markets

Amsterdam Christmas Markets

Amsterdam glistens with joy and cheer every Christmastime. Pay the city a visit and you’ll be in for more than twinkling canals, market stalls and merriment. No matter how old you are, embrace the spirit of it all and see whimsical window displays, the lights switch-on, and Sinterklaas himself. There’s even ice-skating! 
Museumplein (Dec*)

Museumplein (Dec*)

Welcome to the very core of Christmas. All the happenings mingle – and jingle – here in Museumplein. We’re talking the festive-style village, ice rink, and market stalls. There’s even a mini replica of Skinny Bridge! Enjoy yummy seasonal treats while you walk, including pancakes, classic German sausages, and mugs of mulled wine.

Winter Parade (Dec*)

Winter Parade (Dec*)

Sit down, get cosy, and enjoy a parade like no other! A 120-metre table is all decked out with candles and place settings, so you can enjoy watching actors, dancers and musicians steal the limelight. There’s even a silent disco! As part of the event, you’ll be served festive food and wine.

Amsterdam Light Festival (Nov – Dec*)

Amsterdam Light Festival (Nov – Dec*)

Things get seriously decorative in Amsterdam when the Light Festival kicks off in November! Picture this urban centre all brightly lit with twinkling colours. Over 35 works of art and installations embellish the canals and central belts of the city. It doesn’t get much more picturesque than this!

Amsterdamsche Christmas Market (Dec*)

Amsterdamsche Christmas Market (Dec*)

This mega-market is teeming with independent stalls selling handmade crafts and gifts, and a wide range of authentic local produce. Be entertained by music and bingo once you’ve finished browsing. Throughout the day, refuel with mulled wine, hot chocolate, craft beer and wintry food like artisanal sausages and veggie options.

Funky X-Mas Market (Dec*)

Funky X-Mas Market (Dec*)

The Sunday Market can be regularly found in Westergasfabriek, but it gets all merry on one December date, to put on a fashionably festive spread. You can hunt for bargains among the various art and design stalls. There’s an indoor area as well as outdoor, in case you get too chilly.

Castle Christmas Fair, Heemskerk (Nov – Dec*)

Castle Christmas Fair, Heemskerk (Nov – Dec*)

Get cosy just 30 minutes from the centre of Amsterdam. The farmlands and historic castle gardens are transformed into a winter wonderland on a yearly basis, where you can explore the Christmas bazaar, tuck into tasty snacks, and not to mention also soak up the castle’s history.

*All dates are subject to change. 2019 Christmas Markets dates are to be confirmed.
The Manor Amsterdam
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Mercure Amsterdam City

Mercure Amsterdam City

Amsterdam City, Amsterdam

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4.6 Km to Amsterdam Christmas Markets

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1. Turn on the lights
Every year in November, crowds gather together in their woollens, in the centre of Dam Square, to gaze up as the Christmas lights are switched on. This marks the start of all the festivities, so grab yourself a takeaway coffee or hot chocolate, and get involved in this enchanting event.
2. Lighting the Christmas tree
Another annual tradition is the lighting of the Christmas tree ceremony, which takes place in early December. If you weren’t feeling festive already, you will be, after seeing this 20-metre centrepiece steal the show in Dam Square! It’s typically illuminated with gold-glowing fairy lights, and carol singers really set the scene.
3. Fabulously floral
Bag yourself some plants at the Flower Market! Here, you’ll find a range of flowers, succulents and trees, in all shapes and sizes, to buy for yourself or as a gift. Although it’s a permanent feature among Amsterdam’s shopping offering throughout the year, it’s especially pretty and colourful at Christmas.
4. Festive feasts and tempting treats
From buying tasty goodies in the food halls to dining at special sit-down dinners, you can make mealtimes fabulously festive. Sample local favourites like deep-fried meatballs called Bitterballen, thick-cut fries, or even raw herring. You might want to swig Glühwein while you meander around the markets.
5. Ice, ice… maybe?
It’s time to get your skates on! Amsterdam’s super-smooth rink sits just outside the Rijksmuseum in Museumplein, between November and February, so you can take to the ice. Hone your skills or try out this fun-filled activity for the first time. Refuel afterwards at one of the wintry refreshment stands.
6. Cruise control
To really squeeze the most out of all the lights, artwork and installations across the city, why not consider setting sail on a canal cruise? This is a great way to not only see Amsterdam all lit up, but to have an experienced guide talk you through the landmarks you’ll pass.