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Christmas markets

Christmas punch mugs

Given our over-hyped world, few experiences truly live up to their image. One exception is a visit to a Christmas market in Vienna: a Weihnachtsmarkt .

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Use the list below to find your way around the city’s most popular markets, which usually start opening in the middle of November. Discover which ones are best for different needs and get a few useful tips on how to make the most of a market visit.

What’s a Christmas market?

Entrance arch to the Christkindlmarkt

(The main entrance to the Christkindlmarkt in front of city hall)

The Christmas market goes by various names , but all tend to follow the same pattern…

Imagine crisp winter air, the glitter of lights and candles, steaming mugs of punch , smiles and laughter, roasted chestnuts , the tinkle of glass baubles, and the delicate crafts of numerous artisans.

Now throw in the scent of fresh pastries, strudel, candied nuts, chocolate-covered fruit, and more.

Then spread it all out in front of a magnificent historical building and turn your clocks back a few decades.

There you have it: a Viennese Christmas market.

The “dictionary definition” is simply a collection of wooden stalls that sell traditional Christmas and seasonal foods & beverages, honey, jams, other delicacies, candy and chocolate, decorations, handmade toys, jewellery, and many other arts and crafts.

And all during the weeks leading up to late December (and sometimes beyond).

That rather clinical description fails to do justice to the concept, though.

Taste not tack

The Christmas markets in Vienna are generally a tasteful affair. Plastic is rare, and wood, straw, glass, ceramics and fabric (and enough food and drink to feed a blue whale) dominate.

Although they’re worth visiting just for the atmosphere, the markets also make for excellent shopping.

Booth at the Altes AKH Christmas market

(A stand selling Christmas punch)

Booths sell a wide range of potential gift items, for example: sculpted candles, handcrafted decorations, wooden nativity scenes, jewellery, tableware, gourmet condiments, and much, much (much) more.

Numerous Christmas markets pop up across the advent period, varying in size from a couple of stalls selling snacks to the dozens of stalls that make up the famous Christkindlmarkt on the central Rathausplatz square.

The only downside is the main markets can get busy.

Fighting your way through the latest bus group sometimes takes the edge off the romanticism (but see my tips for advice on when to go).

A nice way to enjoy the day is to visit a market in the late afternoon as the sun goes down but before the real crowds appear. Then enjoy the historical and Advent ambience at one of the evening light classical concerts * put on especially for visitors.

The main markets

I’ve not listed every single Christmas market in the city, but these are the more popular and/or central ones…

Christkindlmarkt

Illuminated tree in the Rathauspark

(Lighted trees in the surrounding park)

This is the most visited and famous Christmas market, located in front of the imposing Rathaus city hall.

A large Christmas tree dominates the centre with dozens of surrounding stalls offering the full spectrum of seasonal offerings.

The adjacent park has plenty of Advent surprises, too. For example, look out for the instagrammable tree full of glowing hearts or the lighted open-air ice skating routes.

For a good photo of everything, cross the road at the main entrance and stand on the steps of the Burgtheater building opposite.

More info…

Schönbrunn Christmas market at night

(The entrance to the palace area)

Hard to beat in terms of elegance and style. This market forms a grand circle of stalls in the forecourt of Schönbrunn Palace, with its giant Christmas tree and imperial splendour. Also a particular favourite of mine.

The stalls here always seem very high quality, so a fine place to pick up gifts and those little bits and pieces that make life a better place even if you don’t really need them.

The market changes hands in 2024, so we may get a different version this year. We’ll have to wait and see whether it keeps its high standard…

Belvedere Christmas market scenic view

(The twilight view)

Kind of my favourite, but I’m a bit of a fan of the surrounding complex with its wonderful art exhibitions. Not the largest market and a little bit away from the centre, so fewer crowds usually gather here than at most other alternatives.

Perhaps the biggest pull is the gorgeous location: in front of the early 18th-century Upper Belvedere palace and next to a small lake, offering a glorious photo opportunity at dusk.

The gastronomy stalls accumulate in a large and open central area full of bar tables, where they sell regional food and drink from across Austria.

Punch stand in the Altes AKH

(A stand selling punch in all its varieties)

As a result, locals often meet up here after work for a bite to eat and a mug of something warming in what is the grounds of the former general hospital.

Families come here with their kids, too, as the courtyard has its own playground and the market has several rides to amuse the little ones.

Stephansplatz

Stephansplatz Christmas market and cathedral

(A view into the 2022 market with the rear of the cathedral behind)

This Christmas market is about as central as they come since it curls around the edges of Stephansdom. The cathedral makes a wonderful backdrop, and the market allows you to refresh yourself after strolling through the pedestrianised centre of Vienna.

One end of the market meets the parking spot for the horse-drawn carriages that ply their trade in town, which adds another level of historical atmosphere to proceedings.

Market booths on Am Hof square

(The church in the background is over 600 years old)

This one’s fairly central, too, and located on a square surrounded by historical buildings (including the one where Mozart first performed in Vienna).

A section dedicated to independent artists serves as an excellent source of unique gift ideas.

I have a soft spot for this one, because Am Hof is the historical centre of medieval Vienna, where the first Duke of Austria set up his court. Markets have occupied this space for centuries.

Altwiener Christkindlmarkt

(The backdrop is the Schottenstift abbey that dates back hundreds of years)

Just up from Am Hof is the Altwiener Christkindlmarkt on the Freyung.

Also notable for the adjoining organic farmer’s market with its wonderful specialties from the more rural parts of Austria. Try the Bergkäse cheese.

The Freyung market has an authentic feel, thanks to the smaller size and, particularly, the mix of historical buildings that surround it: medieval churches, Baroque townhouses, and 18th-century apothecaries.

Maria-Theresien-Platz

Kunsthistorisches Museum and Christmas market

(The market, monument and Kunsthistorisches Museum)

One of the biggest Christmas markets and another glorious central location, sandwiched between the 19th-century Naturhistorisches and Kunsthistorisches museums, and under the watchful eye of Empress Maria Theresa sitting atop her giant monument.

The market feels particularly magical and atmospheric after dusk. Both museums look gorgeous lit up at night.

Karlsplatz Christmas market at night

(All the food here is certified organic)

And another big one, sprawled in front of the giant Baroque Karlskirche church.

The Art Advent market has an “alternative” feel to it and features many unique arts and craft stalls. The organisers have strict rules about who can set up here, ensuring diversity, quality, and authenticity. Still a bit of a local secret.

Definitely consider the Karlsplatz market if you’re looking for unusual or unique items to take back home with you. We always make sure to pop in here to pick up a few gifts for people.

Spittelberg

Spittelberggasse

(The “before” photo)

A little different to the others, in that this Christmas market sprawls around narrow streets in one of Vienna’s more bohemian quarters. Light spills out from neighbouring bars and specialty stores, giving it all a cosy local feel.

The Biedermeier architectural surrounds make for a unique ambience, and the market also enjoys a strong reputation for a more unique kind of arts & crafts.

Michaelerplatz

Michaelerplatz market

(Those railings hide remains of Roman buildings)

Quite a small market, but a lovely and very central location. It sits at one end of the Hofburg palace with its huge domed entrance. Also notable for the unique white booths that match the imperial tone.

The square once sat at the crossroads of Roman trade routes, and the market actually backs on to Roman excavations. Do not, however, expect to find a dormouse-on-a-stick or larks’ tongue pretzels.

Hirschstetten

A little away from the typical areas visited by tourists on a large nursery and botanical gardens in Vienna’s 22nd district.

A large number of booths with a more local aura than some of the central markets. The Hirschstetten advent market also offers something entirely unique: a giant floral exhibition that turns glasshouses into a magnificent themed winter wonderland.

Weihnachtszauber

Entrance to the Ottakring Wiehnachtszauber

(Just before the gates open…)

…and another one with a definite local flavour. Hosted by the Ottakringer brewery in the 16th district, the Weihnachtszauber Christmas world includes bonus weekend markets in the adjoining event hall.

These extra markets included the likes of the Vinyl & Music X-Mas Market last time out and others selling design and delicatessen goods.

Alternative markets

Two Christmas markets that focus less on arts and crafts and more on food and/or gourmet offerings are:

  • Wintermarkt am Riesenradplatz : largely food and drink stalls only. Right next to a carousel, mini train, the famous giant Ferris wheel, and the huge Prater entertainment complex
  • Genussmarkt bei der Oper : a mainly food and drink market opposite the state opera house. Usually full of Austrian and Italian specialties. Rather small, but with a glass roof feature that keeps you dry if the weather turns bad

And, if it all gets too overtly Christmassy for you, then consider this suggestion:

  • Winter im MQ : sort of the nightclub version of a Christmas market. Not a carol in sight, normally. Or a market, frankly. Just innovative light displays, outdoor cafés and restaurants, art installations and wintry (ish) sports in the thriving contemporary art complex that is the Museumsquartier

Short-term markets

A medieval advent market

(Share some mead with a dragon at the medieval advent market)

Some other market delights spring up for just a couple of days. For example:

  • Medieval advent market : a hugely popular event behind the excellent Heeresgeschichtliches Museum with food, drink, and wares matching the historical theme
  • Palais Niederösterreich : the So Schmeckt NÖ Adventmarkt features the cuisine and products of the province of Lower Austria
  • Weihnachtsquartier : more a design market than a Christmas market, but great for gifts
  • Edelstoff design fair Xmas edition: another design market with a special seasonal edition

And finally…

More markets exist (which I will try and get to eventually). For example:

  • The Transport Museum has an Advent market that typically includes an opportunity to take a trip on an old timer tram on selected days
  • The Gartenpalais Liechtenstein provides a classic ambience for an advent market, too
  • The stables of the Spanish Riding School hosted a small, atmospheric market back in 2019 . I’m unsure if this event will ever repeat, though

Of course, once you’ve had your fill of chocolate-coated strawberries and mulled wine, discover all the other December events and activities going on that have nothing to do with the Advent season.

In particular, expect some top-class art exhibitions : Chagall, Gauguin and Rembrandt star in 2024, for example.

Last modified: March 27, 2024

visit vienna christmas markets

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10 Most Beautiful Christmas Markets in Vienna [with Map]

10 schönsten Weihnachtsmärkte in Wien

Vienna is a city of Christmas markets.

Starting in November, a walk through the center is no longer possible without the smell of mulled wine, gingerbread and langos.

Here we have collected the 10 most famous markets in Vienna, from the city center to Christmas markets popular among locals.

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1. Christmas Market at City Hall Square

Weihnachtsmarkt am Rathausplatz in Vienna in Austria

The largest Christmas market in the city is set up against the backdrop of the neo-Gothic Vienna City Hall .  At the entrance to city hall square there is a meter-high archway with candles, through which you enter the market.  Over 150 wooden stalls sell handmade wooden toys, Christmas tree decorations, Christmas candles and much more.

The carousel and reindeer train make children's hearts beat faster, and those who want to can go ice skating.  Concerts are held next to the big Christmas tree. The second landmark of this Christmas market is the heart tree.  They say there should be one or two kisses at the kissing square with the heart tree in the background...

Metro station : Rathaus

2. Schönbrunn Palace Christmas Market

Weihnachtsmarkt Schloss Schönbrunn

Every year at Christmas time, Schönbrunn Palace is romantically illuminated, providing an impressive background for the Christmas market.  Glittering and colored lights invite you to stroll through the 80 wooden stalls on Schlossplatz.

The festively lit Christmas tree conveys a special atmosphere, and Christmas carols and gospels are sung daily on the stage in front of it. Children can look forward to the Christmas workshops and the children's museum.

Subway station: Schoenbrunn

3. Karlsplatz Christmas Market

Weihnachtsmarkt Karlsplatz in Vienna in Austria

The ART ADVENT market on Karlsplatz is a somewhat different Christmas market, here contemporary arts and crafts are promoted.  You can watch glass blowers at work or take part in candle making. The entire gastronomic offerings are certified organic and ecological.

There is a large straw landscape for children to run around in. St. Charles Church  in the background creates the appropriate Christmas atmosphere.  The Soluna Rising and Dreamdancer groups provide entertainment.

Subway station: Karlsplatz

4. Belvedere Castle Christmas Market

Weihnachtsmarkt Schloss Belvedere

Every year at Christmas time, an elegant Christmas market is set up directly in front of the magnificent baroque Belvedere Palace  on Schlossplatz.  The castle shines in magnificent lights, fine handicrafts are sold in the 40 stands and huts.

National and international gospel choirs and music groups ensure a Christmas atmosphere. Children love the children's nostalgia carousel and the reindeer train, as well as the Christmas workshops. 

Subway station Südtiroler Platz or Karlsplatz, from there it's a fifteen minute walk.

5. Maria Theresa Square  Christmas Village

Weihnachtsdorf Maria Theresien Platz

Every year, right on the Ring in the park between the Art History Museum  and the Natural History Museum , the Christmas Village on Maria Theresa Square is held. It is considered to be the most atmospheric of its kind in Vienna.

It is a memorial to Empress Maria Theresa, who had 16 children, whom she cleverly married off to benefit her politics. The fountains are decorated for Christmas and the two illuminated museums provide an impressive backdrop for the many large and small, festively decorated Christmas trees and 70 stalls.

Austrian brass and tower horn groups, gospel choirs and other musicians provide the appropriate musical framework at selected times.

Subway station:  Museumsquartier

6. Museum Quarter MQ

The artistically designed winter market in the MQ is illuminated for Christmas with static and moving light projections. At the WAMP, Vienna's only open-air design market, extraordinary one-offs are presented, the Christmas quarter exhibits the products of over 100 designers, from fashion and jewelry to accessories, art and graphics.

Concerts and cultural events provide the artistic setting. If you want, you can visit the curling rink or try micro extreme bowling, a mixture of skittles, bowling and golf. The punch stands are located in six glowing ice pavilions.

7. Spittelberg Christmas Market

Weihnachtsmarkt Spittelberg

One of the most romantic and atmospheric Christmas markets is set up every year in the pedestrian zone around Spittelberggasse in Vienna's 7th district. Against the backdrop of historical buildings in the middle of the small alleys of the originally preserved baroque suburb, the market conveys the flair of a wintry village. It is known for its wide range of handicrafts, over 100 exhibitors offer their goods.

There are puppet shows and music workshops for children and of course Santa Claus will come and distribute nuts and fruit.

Subway station: Volkstheater

8. Christmas Market at the Hof

Where the art & antique market is held on the weekends between March and November, the Christmas market at the Hof is held beginning November 15th.  Against the backdrop of historical buildings from various eras, 78 stands invite you to stroll.

The products sold are just as classy as the surroundings, as the market is in close proximity to Graben, which is known for its exclusive shops.  The huge Christmas tree creates the right atmosphere. In a glass container that can be seen from all sides, you can design your own stamps and postcards in a photo box.

The market is famous for its Zirben-Punsch - Zirben are pine cones and its specially brewed Christmas Bock beer.

Subway station: Schottentor

9. Stephansplatz Christmas Market

Weihnachtsmarkt am Stephansplatz

Every year during the Christmas season, this elegant and noble Christmas market is set up around St. Stephen's Cathedral  in the heart of Vienna.  With their uniform lighting and simple elegance, the 40 stands, all of which offer high-quality products, form a beautiful unit with St. Stephen's Cathedral in the background.

As a classic among Vienna's Christmas markets, great importance is attached to tradition and reflection. The large Christmas tree in front of the cathedral underlines this atmosphere.

Subway station: Stephansplatz

10. Riesenradplatz Winter Market

Wintermarkt am Riesenradplatz

Every year,  Prater  is transformed into a huge Christmas market of a different kind. According to the motto "Prater Rocks", entertainment of all kinds is offered here in the background of Christmas decorations.

The carousels are presented in festive decorations, live concerts take place on the stage of the winter market, gospel, pop, soul and much more. Unlike most Christmas markets, this one does not end at Christmas but continues until January 6th of next year.

Subway station: Messe-Prater

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The 7 best Christmas markets in Vienna 2022

By Rachel Dube

The 7 best Christmas markets in Vienna 2022

Every year around the holiday season,  Vienna becomes a  Christmas -lovers dream. All over the country, the age-old tradition of  Christmas markets is stronger than ever and more and more of them seem to open up every year around  Austria’s capital city.

Some are enormous with over 150 chalets, whereas others are smaller and intimate with fewer visitors. One thing is for certain: each brings the scent of gluhwein and mouthwatering Viennese specialities, along with the sight of hundreds of twinkling lights, large Christmas trees, and a foray into a modern-day Winter Wonderland.

Although the markets have similarities, they each bring a unique Christmas experience to the table, which is what attracts hundreds of visitors to them each year. During the short period from the end of November until the week of Christmas the Austrian markets switch their lights on, so here are 7 of the best Christmas markets to visit during this holiday season.

Christkindlmarkt am Rathausplatz

Christkindlmarkt am Rathausplatz

Christkindlmarkt am Rathausplatz is known to be one of the largest Christmas markets in the world. The oldest and most renowned Christmas Market in Vienna, it attracts over four million visitors each year, thanks to its 100+ stalls that sell everything from handmade crafts to Viennese delicacies, including gluhwein (mulled wine) and bauernkrapfen (doughnut-like fried pastries). Set within Rathausplatz, a large square in front of Vienna’s town hall, you’ll find an illuminated ice skating rink, a multi-level carousel, and Rathaus Christmas tree that towers over the entire park. However, visitors should make sure to make a stop by the famous Tree of Hearts, where red hearts envelop the branches or check out the trail of Nativity scenes to get themselves in the holiday spirit.

Address: Christkindlmarkt, Rathausplatz, 1010 Vienna Website:   wien.gv.at/christkindlmarkt-rathausplatz Dates: Saturday 19 November to Monday 26 December

The Old Viennese Christmas Market on Freyung

Old Viennese Christmas Market on Freyung

Going back to 1772, the Old Viennese Christmas Market is a smaller, more intimate experience than other Christmas markets in Vienna. It stretches across the Freyung square, yet somehow feels tucked away due to its surrounding historical buildings. Although it garners fewer visitors than the main market, it has a 46-meter nativity scene running along the back of one row of shops, along with an attached farmer’s market, selling regional and organic produce that make it stand out from its counterparts. The market also includes a schedule of live event programming on the central stage, including live music, kids’ shows, or craftsmen holding demonstrations.

Address:   Freyung, 1010 Vienna Website:   events.wien.info/viennese-christkindlmarkt-freyung Dates : Friday 18 November to Friday 23 December

Weihnachtsdorf on MariaTheresienPlatz

Weihnachtsdorf on Maria-Theresien-Platz

Placed right between the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art, the Christmas Village on Maria Theresien Square creates a festive atmosphere with its heavily decorated stalls. It’s best to come to the market a bit early to feast on traditional delights, and then view some of the exhibits within one of the museums before it closes for the evening. Another tip: make sure you head up to the top of the Museumsquartier (MQ), which is on the other side of the square, to get a spectacular view of the market from above. Since the location is one of the largest, you’ll find the traditional Christmas shops, as well as a few hidden gems, selling everything from traditional snow globes to Italian cheeses and salamis.

Address:   Weihnachtsdorf Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Vienna Website:   weihnachtsdorf.at Dates:  Wednesday 16 November 2022 to Monday 26 December 2022

Art Advent on Karlsplatz

Art Advent on Karlsplatz

There’s a reason many rave about the Karlsplatz Christmas Market. It’s carefully curated with an assortment of organic foods, high-quality crafts, and delicious drinks. Nestled in front of the Karlskirche Church (also called Church of Saint Charles), it features just under 80 booths, which are selectively chosen based on the selection by a special jury. Compared to other markets in the city, you can expect to find a more gastronomic food selection with options such as Kiachl (a flat doughnut), buckwheat crepes, Fladenbrot (flatbreads) and Raclette (melted cheese on bread) at the forefront. There are also plenty of activities for children, including an extensive program with musical acts, different exhibitions, and a petting zoo.

Address:   Resselpark, Karlsplatz, 1040 Vienna Website:   karlsplatz.org Dates:  Friday 18 November 2022 to Friday 23 December 2022

Christmas Market at Spittelberg

Christmas Market at Spittelberg

Hidden within the narrow streets of Spittelberg, the Christmas Market at Spittelberg is arguably the most enchanting of them all. Housed on narrow Biedermeir lanes that date back to the 1800s, the market features more than 100 different exhibitors, selling everything from rugs to handmade jewellery. However, no two booths are the same, which is what makes the market special. Also worth noting: The booths are more spread out than other markets and are scattered across the area, so you’ll need a bit more time to explore. Hungry? Go for a warm raclette sandwich and a small bag of freshly roasted almonds. Pair it with a berry punch to wash it down.

Address:   Spittelberggasse, 1070 Vienna Website:   spittelberg.at Dates: Friday 11 November 2022 to Friday 23 December 2022

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

Located alongside the Baroque palace of Belvedere, the Christmas Village in Belvedere Palace is best for those looking for a quiet, romantic evening. While you’ll find everything from jewellery to handcrafted decorations within the market’s 40+ stalls, there is only a reindeer train and a small carousel to keep your little ones entertained. Most notably, the market is known for its wide range of food with traditional Austrian options, such as Leberkase (bread with a meatloaf-like filling, Kaiserschmarrn (fluffy shredded pancakes smothered in plum jam), and sausages. There’s excellent date night potential here: take a stroll within the palace to enjoy the legendary art collection, follow that with a stroll by the river to take in the lights, and end the night sharing a few warm cosy Viennese specialities and a hot drink to stay warm.

Address: Weihnachtsdorf Schloss Belvedere, Prinz Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Vienna Website:   wien.info/christmas-village-belvedere-palace Dates: Friday 18 November to Monday 26 December

Schönbrunn Christmas Market

Schönbrunn Christmas Market

Yes, there are bigger Christmas markets in Vienna, but few have the grandeur of the Schonbrunn Christmas Market. With the Schonbrunn Palace as the backdrop, expect to find over 60 different exhibitors presenting handmade crafts and gifts, including darling decorations and nativity sets, from craftsmen around the city. With the fragrance of freshly baked Vanillekipferl (biscuits tossed in sugar) and hot punch wafting through the air, it’ll be easy to grab a treat while you’re shopping. Don’t forget to stop by the giant Christmas tree and the small stage alongside it to view one of the open-air concerts or see the handcrafted 250-piece nativity scene. If you can’t make the market in time for Christmas, it reopens just a few weeks later for the New Year's Market, which is equally as exciting.

Address:   Schönbrunn Palace, 1130 Vienna Website:   schoenbrunn.at Dates: Saturday 19 November 2022 to Wednesday 4 January 2023

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Discover Vienna's Christmas markets with ivie

Fancy indulging in some Christmas nostalgia in front of Schönbrunn Palace? Or perhaps a mug of punch in front of the fantastic backdrop of Vienna City Hall? ivie, the digital city guide for Vienna, has a Christmas markets guide that invites you to experience the best Viennese Christmas markets in Advent.

With its historic façades and atmospheric squares, there's nowhere finer than Vienna for enjoying the magic of Advent to the full in the run-up to Christmas. The best way to discover the many Viennese Christmas markets and their magnificent Christmas illuminations is to check out ivie's Christmas markets guide, which has something to offer every taste.

Here's how to get the Christmas markets guide

1. Download ivie for free (iOS or Android)

 2. Scan the QR code and off you go

ivie for iOS

ivie for Android

Experience Christmas Vienna-style

Waiting for you are Christmas markets with a fantastic imperial ambience, like in Schönbrunn and at the Belvedere , as well as Christmas settings that really get the nostalgia flowing, like the Old Viennese Christmas Market on Freyung. There's also a great atmosphere at the Christmas market in front of Vienna City Hall . Art Advent on Karlsplatz thrills visitors with great handicrafts. Right next to the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna is the Christmas Village on Maria-Theresien-Platz, framed by Vienna's Ringstrasse architecture . The Christmas market on Spittelberg thrills visitors with its historic lanes and the charm of the Biedermeier period.

With the Christmas markets guide, ivie has a whole bunch of inspiration for a totally atmospheric Advent. We hope you have loads of fun strolling through Vienna's Christmas markets. In ivie, you'll find many more exciting Walks & Guides on subjects like Otto Wagner, Beethoven, Vienna's Ringstrasse boulevard as well as Schönbrunn and the Prater.

ivie – your perfect Vienna companion

ivie knows the city like the back of its hand. Because the app includes more than just Vienna's famous sights, from Schönbrunn Palace via the Prater and the Giant Ferris Wheel to St. Stephen's Cathedral . ivie also leads you to curious museums and exciting architecture, magnificent parks, great markets, and many places that the Viennese themselves don't know about but are definitely worth a visit. Hundreds of exciting places are waiting to be discovered.

Video about ivie, a Vienna city guide app

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14 Best Vienna Christmas Markets: Where to Go and What to Eat in 2023

Vienna Christmas markets are some of the best in Europe, in fact, many people visit Austria in the winter just for its Weihnachtsmärkte. Vienna is a beautiful city, full of Baroque, Gothic, and modern architecture, grand palaces, huge museums, formal gardens and parks, wonderful large boulevards, pedestrian-only streets, and narrow alleyways.

We spent a month in Vienna with our kids, combining Christmas markets with holiday concerts, a trip to the ballet, and of course all the magical other things to do in Vienna, from palaces to historic cafes. We loved celebrating the holidays here and found it an easy place to jump right into the Christmas spirit.

You can visit this amazing capital year-round, but unlike many European destinations that start to close down as the weather turns cold, Vienna starts to come alive! This is one of the things we love about Vienna .

Vienna is full of Christmas cheer- you’ll find pedestrian walkways covered in lights, stands of treats and snacks, mugs of hot mulled wine, and lots of live performances around town. If you’re lucky you may get a dusting of snow to add to the festive spirit.

There are quite a few Christmas markets within the city center and many others just outside that are well worth a visit, such as the Prater, Schönbrunn, and Belvedere.

Which is the best Vienna Christmas Market? That depends on whether you’re looking for great shopping, incredible Christmas lights with an ornate palace as a backdrop, or a boisterous atmosphere.

We’ve covered 14 different Christmas markets in Vienna including our family’s favorites, what to expect from each market, as well as some of the traditional food and drink to look for in these markets. We’ve also included an address for each of the Christmas markets so you can map out where you’d like to go. When there is a website for a specific market, we’ve included that as well.

You can also take a day trip to nearby towns to experience their Weihnachtsmärkte (Christmas markets). We’ll also discuss Austrian Christmas traditions and tips for what to expect at the Vienna Christmas markets.

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Best Christmas Market Tour in Vienna Learn about Austrian Christmas Traditions on a Walking Tour

Vienna Christmas Market Tour

Table of Contents

When Do Vienna Christmas Markets Open?

While each market has its own opening and closing dates each season, they are generally open from mid-November until December 23rd. Some markets will transform into New Year’s Markets which are generally smaller than the Christmas markets, and remain open until January 1st.

If you are traveling to Vienna to spend time at the Christmas markets, assume all the markets will be open by November 20th, and plan to visit them prior to Christmas Eve.

Most markets are open from around 11 am until 9 pm. If you are looking to buy things, the afternoons are great, as there tend to be fewer crowds at this time. But it is not until it gets dark and the lights come on that things really become magical.

Keep in mind that it gets dark around 4:30 in Vienna in December, so that gives you plenty of time to enjoy the Christmas lights at the evening markets while attempting to stay warm with your hot mug of punch.

A Guide to Christmas Markets in Vienna

Vienna Christmas Markets are truly magical experiences that ring in the holiday spirit. There are delicious treats, warm drinks, and often large groups of cheerful visitors. Crowds can get shoulder-to-shoulder at some markets, so come prepared with a bit of patience. Even at markets with a more open-plan design, there can be lines for drinks and popular food vendors.

These markets are great for last-minute Christmas shopping, but most people visit to socialize and enjoy the lights, the performances, and the holiday food stalls.

These Christmas markets are spread across central Vienna- and you can walk between many of them, for others you’ll need to take public transportation. Don’t worry, Vienna is an incredibly safe city , even at night. It has a great, easy-to-use transit system that will have you zipping around town in no time. For details, check out our full guide on how to get around Vienna .

1. Spittelberg Christmas Market

❄️ Family Favorite: Best Shopping, Most Unique Gifts

This is one of our favorite Weihnachtsmärkte in Vienna. Set amongst the narrow streets and historic townhouses of Spittelberggasse, Gutenberggasse, Stiftgasse, and Schrankgasse, you will find popup shops, as well as year-round specialty stores filled with art, goods, crafts, chocolate, candies, clothing, and more.

We found the goods on sale here to be more artisan and unique than at many of the larger markets. There are also upscale stores along the streets in this neighborhood, so keep an eye on them as well. We popped into Schokov for gourmet chocolates that Santa may have snuck into our family’s treat-filled shoes on Christmas.

This market is one of the more narrow markets, which is why people love it- the old town atmosphere, but it can also translate into tight crowds. This market is bigger than it first appears, make sure to explore the surrounding streets or you’ll miss parts of it.

Grab a mug of hot mulled wine and explore the stalls and stores. Take your empty mug to the next stand for a refill, or return it and get a refund for the mug. Love the mug you got? Take it with you as a souvenir!

Spittelberggasse, Schrankgasse, Gutenberggasse, 1070 Wien, Austria www.spittelberg.at

2. Museumsquartier Christmas Market

❄️ Less Traditional, Modern & Hip

Just around the corner from the Spittleberg Christmas Market, you’ll find the MQ, or Museumsquartier which hosts its own market. This is a very different vibe- here you’ll find laser light shows, and DJs spinning into the evening, ending at 11 pm.

Come back during the day to visit the fabulous museums here, and don’t miss the MQ Point shop, which is the best museum shop we found in Vienna.

MuseumsQuartier Wien, Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Wien, Austria www.mqw.at

3. Schönbrunn Palace Christmas Market

❄️ Family Favorite: Best Museum/Market Combo

Schönbrunn Palace was the summer residence of the Hapsburg family and is now a museum. This is a huge complex that includes the palace itself (make sure to take a tour), and even a zoo.

The Schönbrunn Christmas Market, or Weihnachtsmarkt Schloss Schönbrunn, is located in the entry courtyard of the Schönbrunn Palace, about 12 minutes outside of the Vienna city center by car or 25 minutes on public transportation. While this market is farther out, this is a great market to browse at the end of the day, after exploring the Schloss Schönbrunn Museum, the Imperial Carriage Museum, and our kids’ favorite (we went twice!), the Children’s Museum Schönbrunn Palace.

There are also holiday events here, including a kid’s craft hut. When you arrive, check the activity board in front of the hut and check about reserving a spot. They often have large groups of schoolchildren coming in, so you will need to check ahead. Our kids had a fantastic time crafting marzipan snowmen. There is a small charge for each activity, generally around 5€.

With lots of stalls from arts and crafts, to jewelry and holiday gifts, to food and drink, this is one of the larger markets. They also advertise having gifts that are only available here- I assume with the palace name, though I didn’t specifically note any. There is also a robust schedule of performances and live music. The large Christmas tree, all the lights, and the Schönbrunn Palace as a backdrop make this a great place to get into the holiday mood! This market also stays open through the new year, and transitions from Christmas to New Year’s Market.

Visiting Schönbrunn Palace is one of our favorite things to do in Vienna in December . This palace is just magical and has an amazing children’s museum.

Schönbrunn Palace, 1130 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsmarkt.co.at

4. Christmas Village Altes AKH

❄️ Local Feel, Great for Families with Young Kids

This Weihnachtsdorf Altes AKH is on the campus of Universitat Wien. It’s fantastic for younger kids, with a small railway, a carousel, and lots of craftspeople demonstrating their trades. This narrow market is a bit off the beaten track, and you’ll find more food than other gifts here. Alserstrasse/Spitalgasse, Hof 1, 1090 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsdorf.at/en_us/campus-universitaet-wien/

5. Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof

❄️ Small, High Quality Products

The Wiehnachtsmarkt Am Hof is a small market in a ritzy part of town, which showcases high-quality gifts. There is a section of Kunsthandwerkmarkt, where everything is truly handmade. We actually spent quite a bit of time here on New Year’s Eve, where they had a great live band. This square is where the wine market was held as far back as the 14th century.

Am Hof, 1010 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsmarkt-hof.at

6. Michaelerplatz Christmas Market

❄️ Small Market, Best for Treats

This is a small setup of a few stands on the circle just outside the Hofburg Wein. This is a very convenient location- when you are exiting the Sisi Museum or are finishing a visit to the Spanish Riding Stable, you’ll find yourself here. If you’ve just gotten some slices of delicious cake to-go at Demel, you’ll also find yourself here.

We stopped here at least twice to warm up with some delicious treats at the stands. We highly recommend the Stanglkropfn mit Apfel- warm puff pastry on a stick interspersed with slices of baked apple.

Michaelerplatz, 1010 Vienna, Austria www.kuk-weihnachtsmarkt.at

7. Traditional Christmas Market at the Freyung

❄️ Best for Traditional Charm

This Altwiener Christkindlmarkt is one oldest and most traditional Christmas markets in Vienna. While smaller than many of the other markets, this one focuses on decorations and has wonderful craft demonstrations and live music.

This market is also a great alternative if you are looking for foodie gifts, like chutneys, sauces, mustards, and schnapps. Tucked up against an old Scottish church, the market has a great events program of live music, kids’ shows, and demonstrations that run through November and December and peak with its New Year’s Eve party.

Freyung, 1010 Wien, Austria www.altwiener-markt.at

8. Rathausplatz Christmas Market

❄️ Most Popular, Most Lights, and Most Crowded (but we love the ice rink)

Called Wiener Weihnachtstraum, or Christmas World, this is one of the most popular Christmas markets. It is sometimes also called the “Viennese Dream Christmas Market”. This market takes place in the park in front of the Vienna Rathaus, or City Hall. The Rathaus is a magnificent building, its tower, which can be seen from much of the city, is an icon of Vienna.

There are lots of holiday lights and installations of holiday decorations, including a large outdoor skating rink that winds around the trees. There is a small carousel for the kids, and the Rathaus is lit up at night for a great atmosphere.

This market has more of a “Christmas theme park” feel, and less “old-town village” traditional feel. This market in particular has made an effort in the last few years to showcase less souvenir kitsch and more sustainable products. You’ll hear traditional Christmas tunes, and find a huge variety of food stalls.

Centrally located in front of the Rathaus, and with ice skating available for all ages, this is one of the most popular Christmas markets. As a result, it is often crowded. This is one of the larger Holiday Markets, but it only runs until Christmas. The ice rinks stay open until the larger rink is opened in mid-January.

Rathausplatz, 1010 Wien, Austria www.wienerweihnachtstraum.at

9. Advent Genussmarkt bei der Oper

❄️ Small, Great for a Warm-up Snack

This is a small market with mostly food stalls. This is a great place to stop and grab a snack on your way into the larger pedestrian mall, as you head from the tram toward Stephansplatz.

Across from the Vienna State Opera House on the Kärntner Straße side, you will find an alley all wonderfully decorated with lights. You’ll see vendors hand-frying sticks of spiral-cut potato chips, chestnuts and sausages roasting, and lots of sweets. We stopped here for a delicious Austrian take on fried dough called Langos.

Mahlerstrasse 6 1010 Wien, Austria www.adventgenussmarkt.at

10. Stephansplatz Christmas Market

❄️ Small but Central, Great for Socializing with Friends

Stephansplatz is the square around St. Stephans Church in the middle of the main pedestrian walkway in central Vienna. This makes it a very popular meeting point, and landmark in this shopping corridor.

The Christmas Market at Stephansplatz is one of the smaller markets on our list. However, given its central location, it is a great place to wander through at the end of your day and relax. This market is located on the south side of St. Stephen’s Cathedral and wraps around the backside. Here you will find mostly artisan booths, as well as mulled wine and a few food booths.

Stephansplatz 2, 1010 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsdorf.at/en_us/stephansplatz/

11. Christmas Village at the Maria Theresien Platz

❄️ Large Market, Convenient to Sightseeing Locations

This is one of the larger Christmas markets and is in a very convenient location if you’re making the tourist rounds. It’s located in the plaza between the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art, both of which are worth visiting.

Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsdorf.at/en_us/maria-theresien-platz/

12. Art Advent Market by the Karlskirche

❄️ Handmade Goods, Organic Food

The Christkindlmarkt am Karlsplatz requires that all vendors make their own merchandise, so you’ll find some of the best gifts here. As an added bonus, all the food and drinks sold here are organic.

Karlsplatz, 1040 Wien, Austria divinaart.at

13. Belvedere Palace Christmas Market

❄️ Family Favorite: Best Palace Atmosphere, Less Crowded

The Belvedere Night Market, or Weihnachtsdorf Schloss Belvedere, set between Schloss Belvedere and the Große Bassin (the pond just to the south), is a wonderful place to meet friends, warm up after an afternoon of exploring the palace and grounds, or just get into the holiday spirit.

The Belvedere Palace Christmas Market is located in front of the Upper Belvedere Museum- famous for its collection of Gustav Klimt paintings, and its beautiful gardens. It is located south of the city center but is easy to reach by tram, train, or Uber.

We stayed in Fasanviertel, a neighborhood in Landstraße next to the Belvedere, and just walked over. You can enter where Karolinengasse ends at Prinz-Eugen-Straße, or walk from the train station at Wien Quartier Belvedere Bahnhst, across the street, and enter the Belvedere Gardens.

This market is smaller than some but has a good mix of food, drink, and crafts, and the pond is lit up at night, making for lovely strolls. It has an open plan, and is less crowded than many of the other Christmas markets in Vienna, part of the reason it is one of our favorites.

Prinz Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsdorf.at/en_us/schloss-belvedere/

14. Prater Christmas Market

❄️ Family Fair Atmosphere

Called the Wintermarkt am Riesenradplatz this Christmas market is at the Prater, a large park famous for its giant enclosed Ferris Wheel built in 1897. Entrance to this amusement park is free, then you’ll pay for each ride or attraction that you visit. This market features all the traditional foods and tons of Christmas lights.

The largest Ferris Wheel in Austria, a ride in one of the cars is a great way to get views over the city and is comfortable in all weather since the cars are closed to the elements. Ferris Wheel tickets are 13€ for adults, 5€ for kids.

This market features live music at 7 pm Wednesday through Sunday and is open until January 8th, one of very few that stay open into the New Year.

Riesenradplatz, 1020 Wien, Austria www.wintermarkt.at

Take a Christmas Tour of Vienna

A Christmas tour of Vienna not only will take you to several Christmas markets in one evening, but you will also learn about Austrian Christmas traditions and local specialties. This is a great way to get into the Christmas spirit, especially at the beginning of your trip, when you can make note of places to return to.

Vienna Christmas Market Group Tour

🌟 Rating: 4 1/2 Stars   ⏳ 3 Hours   ✅ 4 Markets, Drinks  🔎 Check Rates

This group tour of Vienna’s Christmas markets includes four lovely Christmas markets which are quite different. You’ll start at Mariahilfer Kirche, then visit Spittleberg market, then the MuseumQuartier market, and then end in the Christmas Village at the Maria Theresien Platz. As you move around the markets you’ll hear about Austrian Christmas traditions, and how locals celebrate the season.

“ We were able to see some of the markets that were more intimate with organic food and drinks from local merchants. Also were given information about the city’s history and current day-to-day practices. A great way to start our vacation!” ingrid_S ( Read more reviews )

Drinks and snacks are included in this tour, so you’ll be sure to taste some of the most traditional foods at these markets. This tour has a maximum of 20 travelers, guests must be 18 or older for alcoholic drinks (non-alcoholic are also available).

Book Now: Vienna Christmas Market Group Tour

Private Vienna Christmas Market Walking Tour

🌟 Rating: 5 Stars   ⏳ 2 1/2 Hours   ✅ Private, 3+ Markets   🔎 Check Rates

On the private tour, you’ll get some of the history of Vienna as you walk through the Old Town while learning about Christmas traditions and visiting Christmas markets. You’ll start at the Art Mart at Karlskirche, pass along the Graben where you’ll see St. Stephens, see the Hofburg, and visit the most traditional Christmas Market at Freyung.

“ She informed us of the history of the Christmas Markets and the traditions of Vienna. We enjoyed the tour and would highly recommend Bridgette and the tour to everyone.” jason_D ( Read more reviews )

You’ll end your tour at the Rathausplatz, the largest of the Christmas markets, where you can continue to explore on your own. Because this is a private tour, it can be customized to your interests.

Book Now: Private Vienna Christmas Market Walking Tour

A walking tour is a great way to learn about Vienna and see all the amazing Hofburg sights. We rounded up all the best Vienna walking tours for any time of year.

Enjoy a Day Trip to Nearby Austrian Christmas Markets

Vienna is a central location for holiday spirit- but you may also enjoy getting out to smaller towns in Austria where you can visit their Christmas markets. Here you’ll find more of a small village Christmas atmosphere which makes for a great day out, especially in these picturesque towns where you are likely to see snow!

Christmas Tour to Hallstatt and Salzburg

🌟 Rating: 5 Stars   ⏳ 12 Hours   ✅ Three Towns, Private Tour  🔎 Check Rates

On this tour, you’ll start with the 4-hour drive to the lakeside town of Hallstatt. The tower of this town is often featured as the iconic Austrian village, with mountains rising behind. Here you will have a short walking tour, visit Christmas markets, and enjoy lunch.

After lunch, you’ll continue on to St. Gilgen, located on Lake Wolfgang, which is also known as Mozart Village. While Mozart never visited here, his mother was born here, and his grandfather worked here.

“ Great trip, beautiful places, and amazing couple who run the tour! I would redo this tour again without hesitation and use the same couple. It was perfect.” marleny_s ( Read more reviews )

Your final stop on this tour is the beautiful town of Salzburg, known as the home of Mozart, and where many of the scenes from The Sound of Music were filmed. The Salzburg Christkindlmarkt is known as one of the best in Austria.

Book Now: Christmas Tour to Hallstatt and Salzburg

Christmas Tour to Graz

🌟 Unrated   ⏳ 10 Hours   ✅ Private, 5+ Markets   🔎 Check Rates

This Christmas tour visits Graz, Austria, an often overlooked city with a well-preserved city center that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Only 2 1/2 hours drive from Vienna, you’ll have a walking tour of Graz.

Along with visiting 5 to 7 Christmas markets in Graz, you’ll stop in a traditional Brötchenbar (sandwich shop), and then take the Schloßbergbahn, a funicular rail car, up to the famous clock at the top, with wonderful views of the city.

Book Now: Christmas Tour to Graz

There are so many easy day trips from Vienna- we highly recommend a day to visit Bratislava , and Budapest, and a day (or two) to walk around Salzburg .

Why Visit Vienna Christmas Markets

Christmas markets in Vienna are a tradition going back hundreds of years. The city was first given the “privilege” of hosting a December market in 1298 by Albert I. Each year the city takes great pride in its Christmas decorations, and its schedule of performances and live events, leading up to the city-wide celebration on New Year’s Eve.

These markets are also called Christkindlmärkte or Weihnachtsmärkte. Over the years, the markets have changed a bit, with increased emphasis on sustainability. Many of the markets go through a judging process to approve vendors.

Vienna’s Christmas markets are full of festive holiday cheer. There are lots of holiday lights, often a large Christmas tree, sometimes an advent calendar counting down the days to Christmas, and even live performances.

When the sun goes down around 4:30, and the weather is cold, these markets are a great place to be social and festive and embrace the holiday season.

Gifts and Souvenirs

Shopping is a big part of Viennese Christkindlmärkte! You’ll find everything from souvenir items to handmade gifts. Some Christmas markets have higher quality goods than others but don’t worry, we’ve got them all listed below!

Food and Drink

The food and drink is what brings you back to Vienna’s Christmas markets over and over. At the end of the day, whether it’s a hot baked potato or a warm glass of Glühwein (traditional mulled wine), there’s something warm and filling waiting for you. Friends and family meet up to try different dishes and enjoy a hot beverage together. There’s even Kinderpunsch for the kids!

One of the ways the markets have become more sustainable is through the mugs in which they serve the wine or punch. You buy a drink and the price includes the cost of the mug. If you like it you can keep it, or return it and get a refund.

You also don’t have to return the mug to the stall where you got it, so as you are walking, if you need a refill or want to return it, you can do so at any drink stall you pass. They will wash them and use them for the next customer, cutting down on the waste of disposable cups.

Tips for Visiting a Vienna Christmas Market

Ready to start visiting Vienna’s famous Christmas markets? Here are our top tips to make sure you’re prepared and ready to enjoy some traditional holiday fun.

Most vendors at Vienna’s Christmas markets only take cash. Some stalls with more expensive gifts may take cards, but all food and drink vendors rely on cash. Try to have small bills or exact-change to keep the line moving.

Pay a Deposit For Your Mug

When you purchase a beverage- whether alcoholic or not, it will come in a souvenir mug. Some markets have mugs exclusive to them (marked with the specific market), while others share mugs across markets. These are all intended to be souvenirs and are marked with the current year. When you purchase your first drink, you will pay a deposit for the mug (4 to 6 €).

If you’d like a second drink, simply hand in your original mug and they’ll fill a fresh mug for you with your new drink. If you’d like to keep the mug and take it home, go ahead! Or you can return the mug to any drink stall at that market and get your deposit back.

Learn a Few Words in German

A few words in German will go a long way toward communicating, as many vendors, while pleasant, are moving through long lines. Knowing whether you want your bratwurst “mit soße” (with sauce) for example, will make everyone’s life easier. Same with knowing your basic numbers- “zwei Glühwein bitter” (two Glühwein please), though English will do in a pinch. A “danke” goes a long way!

Dress Warmly

Vienna gets cold after the sun goes down! While it can be hard to eat with thick gloves on, dress warmly to keep out the chill. We often found ourselves clutching warm mugs and stamping our feet to stay warm.

Expect Crowds

Vienna’s Christmas markets are popular! Expect crowds as soon as the sun sets. Some markets are narrower (like Spittelberg), which leads to shoulder-to-shoulder bottlenecks. Other markets, like the palace markets, have stalls arranged in a larger semi-circle, so you can move around with ease, but may still find lines for popular food stands.

Stand and Eat (or Drink)

There are both tall and shorter tables distributed around the Christmas markets, but there are generally no places to sit. You are expected to stand and eat or drink, or rest your plate on the high table. Bathrooms are available at the palace markets, but harder to find at the neighborhood and street markets. Older folks may struggle with not having seating available to take a rest.

Check for Live Performances

Many of Vienna’s Christmas markets have a robust schedule of live performances, from choirs to caroling. Check the website for each market to see details, or just show up an see what happens!

What to Buy at a Vienna Christmas Market

There is a variety of gifts and souvenirs available at each Vienna Christmas market. You’ll find a lot of jewelry options, as well as Christmas ornaments in all sorts of materials from blown glass to laser-cut wood. Ceramics stalls tend to have everything from teacups to ceramic angels. You’ll find woven headbands, scarves, and other textiles.

You will also find a lot of souvenir items marked with the Vienna name, from ornaments to snow globes. In the more traditional markets, you’ll find small wooden houses and traditional nativity pieces. At the more artistic markets, you’ll find more blown glass, candle holders, and knit and leather pieces. You’ll also see a fair amount of edible gifts like jams or chocolates as well.

We had our eyes out for a special nutcracker to take home and were surprised to not find these among the Christmas market stalls.

Favorite Vienna Christmas Market Food and Drink

You’ll find a variety of food and drink options at the Vienna Weihnachtsmärkte. These are a few of our favorites to keep an eye out for. You’ll find punch-style drinks available both with and without alcohol, as well as beer and hard spirits. You’ll find hearty meals ranging from noodles to potatoes, and even soup in bread bowls, often with meat or cheese included. Don’t forget to bring cash to pay for your food and drink.

This mulled wine is the most traditional drink you’ll find in a Vienna Christmas market. Sometimes it is simply called “Glühwein”, other times you’ll have your choice of Glühwein “Roser”, “Weiss” or “Uhudler”(a wine unique to Austria), meaning red, white, or rosé! Red is more traditional, but all are delicious. A mug of Gluwein is around 5€, plus deposit.

Kinderpunsch

This is the Glühwein version for the kids! It’s basically a hot fruit punch with a slice of fruit in it. It can be quite sweet, but it’s hot and lets the kids get into the Christmas drink action. Mugs are usually around 3€.

Other Traditional Drinks

You’ll see lots of other drinks on the menu including Sisi Punsch (cherry punch with Amaretto), Marillenpunsch (apricot punch with rum), as well as apple and chocolate versions. You’ll also see Glühwein Alkoholfrei (alcohol-free), as well as “bio” versions that use organic wines.

Spaetzle or Nocken

Spaetzle is the German word for a traditional style pressed dumpling or egg noodles, made by pushing dough through a strainer to make short odd-shaped pieces. Kaese Spaetzle or Kasnocken (Austrian) is the original mac and cheese, usually served with caramelized onions on top.

You will also find it served with meat and cheese (like bacon), pulled pork, or a red sauce or pesto. However you have it, you really cannot go wrong. Hot, hearty, and cheesy, it is sure to warm you up on a cold winter’s eve.

Wurst and Hot Dogs

Vienna-style sausages and hotdogs are typical Viennese market fare. Wurst is a thick sausage, and there are literally hundreds of kinds, and typically served on a sliced roll, with mustard, sauteed onions, and other toppings.

Hotdogs are thin and longer than in the United States and are either served in a link or stuffed into a hollowed-out roll with mustard, ketchup, and mayo. You may also see a hotdog listed “mit brot”, or “with bread”, this does not mean that it comes on a roll. You will literally get a hotdog and then be handed a separate piece of bread.

Baked Potatoes

Called an Ofenkartoffel, baked potatoes are a hearty meal- they are large potatoes that come stuffed with all sorts of ingredients including cheese, corn, and even ham.

Gross Krapfen

This translates literally to “large donut” and they are as big as your face. These are similar to a yeast donut, without the hole in the middle. You can choose the filling and often watch them fill it right in front of you. Watch your kid’s face light up when you hand them this one!

These are like a large, flat fried dough, but often served covered in garlic butter. Fresh, they are delicious.

This tangy, melty cheese is often associated with Switzerland, but you’ll find it in various iterations in the Viennese Christmas Markets. You can get it with ham or bacon on top of a slice of bread, or as we prefer, drizzled over boiled potatoes.

Again, expect these to be as big as your head. You can choose traditional with salt, apple cinnamon, donut-style, white chocolate, poppyseed, and more. We love the traditional best, but the other flavors are always tempting.

How is Christmas Celebrated in Vienna?

There are many Christmas traditions in Vienna, including advent calendars and wreaths, Christmas trees, and nativity scenes.

Christmas Traditions at Home

Most typical Austrian families set up a nativity scene and trim the Christmas tree on December 24th. The tree lights are turned on for the first time, then the family gathers to sing Christmas carols. The Christmas tree comes down on January 6th after Epiphany, or All Kings Day.

Christmas trees are easy to buy from vendors on the street in Vienna, but because they are not usually set up until Christmas Eve, they are not held in large stands and watered like most Americans are used to. They are set up on a simple wooden cross, with the idea that the tree will last on its own from Dec 24-Dec 6, with perhaps a spritz of water.

Santa Claus, Krampus and ChristKind

In Austria, December 6th is St. Nicholas Day. On this day, both St. Nick and his scary buddy Krampus visit homes to see who has been naughty and who has been nice. In some villages, Krampuslauf is celebrated, where people dress up as Krampus in a village parade. It is on this day that children’s shoes are filled with peanuts, chocolates, and other treats.

On Christmas Eve, Austrian children believe it is not St. Nick, or Santa Claus who brings the presents, but the Christkind, or Christ child, in the form of an angel.

Plan Ahead for Christmas Closings

Typically Christmas is celebrated in Vienna on Christmas Eve with family, at home. You will find most stores and restaurants are closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and also December 26th, which is St. Stephens Day.

If you want to have dinner out on Christmas Eve, plan ahead, check restaurant hours, and make a reservation. We also highly recommend doing any grocery shopping ahead of the start of the holiday. Stores will typically close early on Christmas Eve and be closed until the 27th.

We had a delicious traditional Austrian meal for our Christmas Eve dinner at Weißgerber Stube starting at 1:30 pm. There were very few other people there, and the restaurant closed at 3:30.

FAQ: Vienna Christmas Market

There is really no reason to visit all the Vienna Christmas Markets. Choose the ones that complement your other plans around the city, and enjoy them. There is no prize for visiting them all, and you’ll start to find that many have the same goods for sale, and you will have personal favorites based on either atmosphere or the food available.

Very little is open on Christmas Day in Vienna, so plan ahead for all meals, as most of the city will be closed. Ubers, buses, and trams will still run if you need to move around the city.

Maybe! Snow is not guaranteed in Vienna at Christmas. When we visited, we had a few dustings of snow, but mostly it was just cold. If you take a day trip out to Salzburg, you will see the peaks of the Alps covered in snow.

There You Have It: Vienna Christmas Markets

There are so many wonderful Christmas markets in Vienna- choose a few to visit and enjoy all the delicious food and warm mugs of Glühwien, while finishing up your Christmas shopping (and perhaps picking up a gift or two for yourself). We’ve covered the highlights of each market so you can decide which markets are best for you, and which foods to look for when you visit.

Don’t forget to take a Christmas Market Tour to learn about Austrian culture while trying a few local specialties. Visiting a Vienna Christmas market is such a fun part of the holiday- even if it’s cold out, you’ll be filled with Christmas spirit in no time!

visit vienna christmas markets

Waker von Berg is the co-founder of Sharing the Wander. He is a life-long traveler and problem solver specializing in long-term travel and family travel. He is an adventurer and gearhead who loves researching how to make traveling easier. Waker and his family embarked on a Family Gap Year in 2021, and haven't looked back.

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Vienna Christmas market

Vienna Christmas Market Guide (Map + Dates 2024)

  • March 19, 2024

A complete guide to the best Vienna Christmas markets for 2024 (+ opening times, a map with all the locations, must-eat foods and the best hotels to stay).

With its imperial charm and stunning architecture, Vienna is beautiful in every season. Yet, if you look for a truly magical setting, visit the city in the winter.

From the end of November, countless Christmas markets (called Weihnachtsmärkte) pop up all over the city. The prettiest squares are turned into fairytale Christmas villages. Stalls are stuffed with mouth-watering treats and handcrafted goods. The aroma of mulled wine and gingerbread wafts through the air. And all you need is just a mug of wine to warm yourself in the freezing cold.

The Christmas markets in Vienna are a centuries-old tradition. In 1298 Albert I of Germany granted the privilege of holding a December market to the city. During the years new ones appeared turning the city into a magical place during Christmas time.

Best Christmas markets in Vienna 2024

There are 12 main Christmas markets in Vienna. Most of them are located in the Old Town or along the grand boulevard Ringstrasse. Thus you can easily tour them on foot.

However to get to the ones at the Prater and Schönbrunn Palace you’ll need to use public transport.

Find a map of all the markets at the end of the article.

The best Vienna Christmas markets 2024

  • Christmas World at Vienna City Hall
  • Stephansplatz Christmas Market
  • Belvedere Palace Christmas Village

Art Advent Karlsplatz

  • Maria-Theresien Platz Christmas Village
  • Schönbrunn Palace Christmas Market

Am Hof Advent Market

Old viennese christmas market, christmas village altes akh, christmas market spittelberg, winter market riesenradplatz, winter at museumsquartier (mq), when do the christmas markets start in vienna.

Most of the markets start in the middle of November (11th-22nd November) and continue until 23rd December. Some of them are open on Christmas Day, too. To be sure that all the markets will be open during your visit, plan your trip after 20th November. 

If you’re visiting the city after Christmas, there will be a few Weihnachtsmärkte that are still open (see below). And only the ones at the Prater, Maria-Theresien Platz and Schönbrunn Palace continue a week after New Year.

Vienna Christmas market dates 2024

From 16 November to 23 December 2024 Every day from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24 and 25 December – Weihnachtsmärkte at Rathaus, Stephansplatz, Belvedere Palace, Maria-Theresien Platz, Schönbrunn Palace, Prater  Between 26 and 31 December – Schönbrunn Palace and Prater  Between New Year’s Eve and 4 January – only at Schönbrunn Palace and Prater

If you’re interested in a particular market, please check its exact opening times (see further in the article).

It’s hard to visit all the 12 Vienna Christmas markets. Not that I didn’t try of course. However, if you want a quick glimpse of Vienna at Christmas time don’t miss the following 6 below.

Christmas World at the City Hall

Christmas World Rathaus

Although there are many awesome Christmas villages, one wins hands down in every aspect. It’s the Christmas World (Wiener Weihnachtstraum) at the City Hall (Rathaus). This is the biggest, the prettiest and the most popular one. So make sure it’s number one on your list. Yet, be prepared for a lot of crowds, especially in the evenings.

The beautiful Rathaus all lit up and the giant Christmas tree create a magical atmosphere. More than 150 stalls offer tempting foods, warm drinks and beautiful decorations. Plus, the 3,000 m² ice rink with Christmas music in the background ensures a unique ice-skating experience.

If you look for mouth-watering seasonal treats, this is the place to go. It has the biggest range of traditional Viennese foods.

Wiener Christkindlmarkt Opening times From 16 November to 26 December 2024 Open daily from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM 24th December – only until 07:00 PM Address: Rathausplatz, 1010 Wien, Austria www.christkindlmarkt.at

 ice rink Rathaus

Christmas Market Stephansplatz

Christmas Market Stephansplatz

Located at the foot of St. Stephen’s Cathedral right in the heart of the city, this market is hard to miss. More than 40 stalls offer high-quality products from all over Austria. A giant Christmas tree sparkles against the dramatic backdrop of the lit up cathedral.

The Christmas Market at Stephansplatz is the best place for a drink and people watching. It’s not so crowded as the one at the Rathaus. Plus, it offers a great variety of mulled wine and punch.

Weihnachtsmarkt am Stephansplatz Opening times From 18 November to 26 December 2023 Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24th December – from 11:00 AM to 04:00 PM 25th and 26th December – from 11:00 AM to 07:00 PM Address: Stephansplatz 2, 1010 Wien, Austria

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

Located off the hustle and bustle of the Historic Centre, this Weihnachtsdorf features original handicrafts and culinary delights. With the impressive Baroque backdrop of Belvedere Palace, this is one of the most romantic markets. It’s the perfect stop for a warm drink with your loved one.

Weihnachtsdorf Schloss Belvedere Opening times From 18 November to 31 December 2023 Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24th December – from 11:00 AM to 04:00 PM From 25th to 30th December – 11:00 AM to 07:00 PM 31st December – from 11:00 AM to 06:00 PM Address: Prinz Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Wien, Austria

Art Advent Karlsplatz

Featuring a petting zoo and craft tents, Art Advent Karlsplatz is the best Christmas market in Vienna for kids. The gorgeous Baroque Karlskirche all lit-up with a spiderweb of fairy lights provides a truly festive atmosphere. The pond in front of the church is dried and filled with hay and there are some pretty cute sheep and pigs you can pet.

Art Advent Karlsplatz is the place to go if you also look for organic food and handicrafts made by local artists.

Christkindlmarkt am Karlsplatz Opening times From 24 November to 23 December 2023 Daily from 12:00 PM to 08:00 PM Address: Karlsplatz, 1040 Wien, Austria divinaart.at

Christmas Village Maria-Theresien Platz

Christmas Village Maria-Theresien Platz

It is located between the impressive twin buildings of the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art. With its more than 70 booths, it’s one of the largest Christmas markets. It’s the ideal place if you look for original gift ideas or to taste some culinary delights. Plus, it is open longer than most. On 27 December it turns into a New Year’s Village.

Weihnachstdorf am Maria Theresien Platz Opening times From 18 November to 6 January 2023 Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24th December – till 04:00 PM From 25th December to 6th January – till 07:00 PM 31st December – till 06:00 PM Address: Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Wien, Austria

Christmas Market Schönbrunn Palace

Christmas Market Schönbrunn Palace

Although it’s situated out of the city centre, the Christmas market at Schönbrunn Palace totally worths a visit. Moreover, if this is your first time in Vienna, a tour of the imperial palace is a must. If you have the chance, visit the market in the evening when everything is illuminated and the atmosphere is truly magical.

As the Christmas Village Maria-Theresien Platz, it also stays open after Christmas. 

Weihnachtsmarkt Schloss Schönbrunn Opening times From 18 November to 4 January 2024 Daily from 10:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24th December – till 04:00 PM On 25 and 26 December – till 06:00 PM Address: Schönbrunn Palace, 1130 Wien, Austria www.weihnachtsmarkt.co.at

Christmas Market Schönbrunn Palace

More Xmas markets in Vienna

If you have more time left or you are just looking for markets off the beaten path, try these ones. They are smaller and offer an alternative experience in comparison to the popular Christmas villages.

Am Hof Advent Market

If you look for quality artisan gifts, this is the place to go. At Am Hof Advent Market you’ll find delicate jewellery, ceramics, leather items and many other handmade goods. As it comes to food, it offers a great variety of ham, sausages, baked potatoes and waffles.

Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof Opening times From 18 November to 23 December 2023 Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM Address: Am Hof, 1010 Wien, Austria

Old Viennese Christmas Market

Located on a picturesque square, Altwiener markt is just a stone’s throw away from Am Hof Advent Market. In fact, this is one of the oldest and most authentic Christmas markets in Vienna. It dates back to the 18th century and it still keeps this traditional feel. So if you look for a more authentic experience, add Altwiener markt to your list.

Altwiener Christkindlmarkt Opening times From 24 November to 23 December 2023 Daily from 10:00 AM to 09:00 PM Address: Freyung, 1010 Wien, Austria www.altwiener-markt.at

Christmas Village Altes AKH

Featuring a children’s railway, an old-fashioned carousel and two curling lines, this market is great for families. Another of the highlights of Weihnachtsdorf Altes AKH are the local craftsmen. They gather from all around Vienna to demonstrate their skills such as candle making, sewing bags and many more.

Weihnachtsdorf Altes AKH Opening times From 18 November to 23 December 2023 Daily from 12:00 PM to 10:00 PM Address: Alserstrasse/Spitalgasse, Hof 1, 1090 Wien, Austria

Christmas Market Spittelberg

Weihnachtsmarkt am Spittelberg is located in the artsy district of Neubau. It spreads over three tiny cobblestoned streets in a charming area full of Biedermeier townhouses. The festively decorated Schrankgasse, Spittelberggasse and Gutenberggasse are the perfect settings for a romantic walk.

More than 100 stalls offer amazing handmade seasonal gifts and delicious foods. It’s one of the most popular markets among the locals, too.

Weihnachtsmarkt am Spittelberg Opening times From 16 November to 23 December 2023 Monday – Friday – from 02:00 PM to 09:00 PM Saturday and Sunday – from 10:00 AM to 09:00 PM Address: Spittelberggasse, Schrankgasse, Gutenberggasse, 1070 Wien, Austria www.spittelberg.at

Winter Market Riesenradplatz is probably the best place for kids. It’s located in the Prater, a huge amusement park famous for its Giant Ferris Wheel. So if you look for a little fun along with the traditional mulled wine and tasty foods, this is the place to go. Plus, it’s still open in the first week of January.

Wintermarkt am Riesenradplatz Opening times From 18 November to 7 January 2024 Monday – Friday – from 02:00 PM to 09:00 PM Saturday and Sunday – from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM 24th December – from 10:00 AM to 05:00 PM 31st December – from 12:00 PM to 02:00 AM Address: Riesenradplatz, 1020 Wien, Austria www.wintermarkt.at

Winter at Museumsquartier

To enjoy the Advent season in a more hip way, visit the Winter at Museumsquartier. Magical LED projections, DJ beats, hot punch bars – it’s the most unique market in the city. So grab your friends and a mug of Glühwein and enjoy alternative Vienna at Christmas time.

Winter im MQ Opening times From 18 November to 23 December 2023 Monday – Friday – from 04:00 PM to 11:00 PM Saturday and Sunday – from 02:00 PM to 11:00 PM Address: MuseumsQuartier Wien, Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Wien, Austria

Schönbrunn Palace – it’s one of the most popular attractions with long queues. Buy your tickets in advance from the official website or use Vienna Pass to skip the line.

Spanish Riding School – one of the most popular activities in Vienna, so book tickets in advance here .

Giant Ferris Wheel – if you don’t have a Wien Pass, book tickets ahead to avoid waiting in line.

Attend a classical music concert – tickets for the most popular concerts sell out fast, so book as early as you can ( see all concerts here ).

Best hotels near Vienna Christmas markets

Where to stay in Vienna for Christmas markets? If you’re visiting the city in December, stay near Karlsplatz. There are two Weihnachtsmärkte at a short walk – at Karlsplatz and Belvedere Palace. Plus, you can easily reach every point of the city from Karlsplatz metro station (U1, U2 and U4 metro lines cross here).

Find more information in my full guide to where to stay in Vienna for first-time visitors .

An elegant hotel with an ideal location, right next to Opera House. Karlsplatz metro station and 3 Christmas villages are less than a 5min walk. Spacious rooms with large bathrooms. Why book – central location, big rooms, great restaurant on site

A very convenient location, next to Karlsplatz metro station and 2 Christmas villages. Comfortable rooms, perfect for a family stay at Christmas time. Why book – central location and spacious family rooms

Fantastic, perfectly equipped apartments less than 2min walk from Karlsplatz. Why book – modern and secure apartments, close to supermarket

christmas reindeers

What to do in Vienna in December

Christmas concert in st. peter’s church.

If you like classical music, don’t miss the concert of the Classic Ensemble Vienna in St. Peter’s Church. Enjoy an evening filled with interpretations of works by Mozart, Beethoven, Bach and many more. 

For more concerts check out my guide to the  best concerts in Vienna .

St. Peter’s Church

Visit Europe’s biggest city spa

Winter is the best time to enjoy some spa relaxation. Spa Therme Wien features 26 naturally heated pools and 24 Finnish saunas and steam baths. Plus, there is a restaurant and even a library!

Although it looks a bit far from the city centre, you can reach it in only 15min with the U1 metro line.

Strudel Show

If you’re visiting the Christmas market at Schönbrunn Palace, don’t miss the Apple Strudel Show. You’ll discover how the original Viennese apple strudel is made in the court bakery at the palace. And the best part is that at the end of the show you can taste a piece of it!

Don’t forget to book your Apple Strudel Show ticket in advance.

Where: Schönbrunn Palace’s Café Residenz Daily 11:00 AM – 04:00 PM at the top of the hour Duration: 15-20 min

Apple Strudel Show

Vienna Christmas market food

Vienna Christmas market food

There are plenty of mouth-watering foods to try at the markets. Unfortunately, I managed to taste only a few of them. But hey, at least I have a good reason to come back.

Mulled wine and punch

Mulled wine (Glühwein) is a traditional must-try drink. Every market offers different kinds of mulled wine, some better than others. It comes in a decorated mug for which you have to pay a deposit. You’ll get the deposit back once you return the mug.

Every market features its own design and usually, the best mugs are at Am Hof Advent Market. So if you want to take a mug as a souvenir, better check several places and then decide.

Mulled wine at Rathaus

Bratwurst is a must eat. It’s a delicious type of sausage usually served in a bun with mustard and ketchup. Bratwurst is a great option for a quick lunch or even dinner.

Brioche dough that comes with different fillings – apples, marzipan, walnuts, etc. And it’s huge. I had difficulties eating one all by myself, even when I had it instead of lunch.

Nusstangerl

It’s another heavenly pastry – a glazed dough with hazelnuts.

Mohnzelten is my favourite one. It’s a soft dough stuffed with poppy seeds filling. So, if you’re a fan of poppy seeds, like me, don’t miss this pastry.

A traditional gingerbread cookie, that can be found in all kinds of sizes.

Lebkuchen

Delicious sweet chestnuts roasted over open fires.

It’s a soft doughnut filled with nougat, vanilla or chocolate cream.

How to get to Vienna Christmas markets

The Central train station (Wien Hauptbahnhof) is about 2km away from the historic centre. To get to the heart of the city, Stephansplatz, just take metro line U1 (9min journey). Check timetables and book train tickets online at ÖBB official site .

If you’re arriving by car, it’s best to choose accommodation with available parking. Another option is to use car parks (see more info about parking in Vienna ).

The closest airport is Vienna International Airport (Flughafen Wien-Schwechat). To get to the city centre:

  • take the CAT (City Airport Train) – you will be in the city centre in just 15min
  • another option is to take the  S-Bahn (suburban train) – this is the slowest option

Vienna Christmas markets map

To help you navigate, I prepared a detailed map with all the markets . You can use it during your trip, you only need internet access.

The main markets are marked in red and green, the smaller ones – in yellow.

best christmas market in vienna

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About the author

14 Comments

Thank you for this lovely guide! We spent a magical Christmas in Vienna last winter. We were very happy with our hotel Kaiserin Elisabeth – it has a perfect location for the markets.

Hi Maria, I’m glad you enjoyed Vienna in December!

Hi Milena, my name is Dave from rivercruiseking.com. I have been to well over 650 Christmas markets around Europe and lead trips thru AmaWaterways and have been making Christmas market pilgrimages for well over 20 years. I just wanted you to know that your blog above is fantastic. You did a really good job presenting everything that people like to know.. and is very helpful. I will be sharing your link with them and hope you get lots of followers. You have one in me.

I am not personally a member of Get Your Guide, but I recommend you all in many of the cities I bring my guests and clients to. Be sure that I will be recommending you to all of my guests who come to Vienna!

Thank you for your kind words! I really appreciate it. 🙂

This information is extremely helpful in planning my trip for December 2020 using Vienna as my base. We absolutely love the Christmas Market information, highlighted on the map and public transport info. Thank you…J

Hi Josie, I’m happy it was helpful to you. Have a great time in Vienna! 🙂

Hello do you know if the markets will be going ahead this year?

Hi Laura, According to the official website of each Christmas market and the Vienna Tourist Board – yes. However, I’m not sure what will happen if the coronavirus situation gets worse. 🙁

I would like a brochure including hotels

Hi Stuart, There is a section with recommended hotels in the article, and you can also check my guide to where to stay in Vienna .

Thank you so much for this page, it was extremely useful!!!!

Thank you for your comment, Eva! 🙂

Do I need to purchase tickets ahead of time or at the markets or do you just walk into them?

Hi Lillian,

All markets are free to visit, so no tickets are needed.

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Your ultimate guide to vienna christmas markets – updated for 2023.

Vienna - Belvedere palace at the christmas market in dusk

Editor Update: While this information is correct at the time of publishing, things can always change. Please research before making plans to attend.

This Ultimate Guide to Vienna Christmas Markets covers all the essentials, including opening dates, locations, what to buy, what to eat, and nearby hotels. This post is huge so if you’re in a hurry or looking for something specific, please take a look at the “Table of Contents” to navigate. Otherwise, sit back with a warm mug of glühwein and enjoy.

Table of Contents

A festival of light, advent traditions, christmas trees and festive food, am hof christmas market, art advent – arts & crafts market on karlsplatz, belvedere palace advent market, campus of the university of vienna/altes akh christmas village, christmas market and new year’s market schloss schönbrunn, christmas market in türkenschanzpark, christmas market on stephansplatz, christmas and new year’s villages on maria-theresien-platz.

  • Gourmet Market Next to Vienna State Opera

Haas & Haas Winter in the City

K.u.k. christmas market on michaelerplatz, old viennese christmas market, spittelberg christmas market, vienna christmas world and christmas market on rathausplatz, weihnachtszauber at schloss wilhelminenberg, winter im mq, winter market on riesenradplatz, hotels close to vienna christmas markets, advent at schönbrunn zoo, advent market and christmas exhibition at hirschstetten gardens, advent market in the remise – wiener linien transport museum, nativity display, peterskirche church, medieval advent market at the museum of military history, nativity display at lainz game reserve, oh edelstoff, palais coburg winter days, weihnachtsquartier- temporarily closed (as of nov 2023), small group walking tours, private walking tours, holiday river cruises, what to buy at the vienna christmas markets, food at the vienna christmas markets, more european christmas markets, christmas in vienna.

Vienna is an elegant city. Coffeehouse culture, classical music, and gorgeous Baroque architecture are just a few of its many charms. For many, the highlight of the city is wandering through the holiday markets. I don’t usually think There’s something absolutely irresistible about sipping warm Punsch, nibbling on gingerbread, and shopping for gifts for friends and family back home.

Vienna Christmas Markets, which begin opening in mid-November, have more than enough to tempt even the biggest Grinch. There are some 20 or so Christmas markets with a total of around 1,000 stalls in Vienna. And that doesn’t include the countless small temporary markets, charity stalls, and punch stands.

It isn’t only tourists that are attracted by the profusion of Advent markets and pretty Christmas lights – locals enjoy visiting the markets for a mug of hot punch with colleagues after work, or to do some gift shopping with friends. More than eight million visitors to the city’s Advent and Christmas markets were recorded in 2015.

Vienna Christmas World at night

>>> More reasons to love Europe in winter!

In the evenings during the lead-up to Christmas, the Advent markets and beautiful decorative lights in the streets transform Vienna into a glittering sea of color. As the festive season approaches 40 or so shopping streets around the city are illuminated by decorations of all shapes and sizes, including giant chandeliers on Graben and huge red globes on Rotenturmstrasse. When the lights are officially switched on at the end of November, 2.2 million bulbs threaded along 20 kilometers of streets create an unforgettable Yuletide setting. (The majority of the city’s Christmas lights use environmentally friendly LED and energy-saving lamps.)

Arches of Lights at the Christmas Markets in Vienna

Children count down the days until Christmas on their Advent calendars. Covered in pretty winter-time designs, the calendar has 24 small numbered doors that the little ones open every morning from December 1-24 to reveal pictures, sayings, sweets, or other surprises.

An Advent wreath is an important part of the build-up to Christmas. It is traditionally woven from fir branches and decorated with four candles, although more modern designs are also available. Every Sunday in Advent one of the candles is lit – one on the first Sunday, two on the second, and finally all four on the last Sunday before Christmas.

Baking is a typical Advent activity, and traditional favorites include Christstollen (a loaf-shaped cake packed with dried fruits), Zimtsterne (star-shaped cookies with cinnamon), Vanillekipferl (small vanilla-flavored crescents made of shortbread and chopped and groundnuts), Anisbögen (aniseed-flavored cookies), and Lebkuchen seasoned with fragrant spices. Delicious Christmas cookies are on sale at the various Advent markets, and in the city’s patisseries and confectioners.

Merry Christmas written in German on gingerbread hearts at a Christmas market close up

<<<If you need a little pep in your step before hitting the markets, A Beautiful Experience of Vienna’s Coffeehouses may be just what you need.

Christmas trees are another festive tradition in Vienna City, and evergreens such as firs and spruces decorated with candles, baubles, lights, angels, and tinsel are put up at Advent markets and in churches in the capital in the run-up to Christmas. The annual Christmas market on Rathausplatz is home to Vienna’s tallest Christmas tree, usually standing around 30 meters. Residents of the city normally put up trees at home shortly before Christmas. The colorfully wrapped presents under the tree are opened on Christmas Eve (December 24).

Just before or after the gifts are unwrapped most families sit down to a sumptuous Christmas meal. The menu is a matter of family tradition and often includes fish – especially carp – or goose, as well as cold dishes and fondue. It goes without saying that a plate of Christmas cookies will appear on the table at some stage. After the festive season, Christmas tree collection points are set up around the city. The trees are used as feedstock at a biomass power plant.

Churchgoers celebrate Midnight Mass late on Christmas Eve. Many churches put up cribs recreating the Nativity scene from the stable in Bethlehem, complete with figurines of Baby Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, the Three Kings, as well as a donkey and other animals. The most charming Nativity cribs can be found in the crypt at the Peterskirche church in the first district, while each year the Lainz Game Reserve sets up a crib featuring life-size wooden figures (Lainzer Tor entrance).

On Christmas Day (December 25) most families spend the day at home and enjoy Christmas lunch together, and St Stephen’s Day (December 26) is traditionally a time for visiting relatives. Both days are public holidays. Shortly before the turn of the year, Vienna springs back to life again as thousands of partygoers hit the New Year’s Eve Trail. At midnight the giant Pummerin bell at St. Stephen’s Cathedral rings in the New Year – and then the countdown to next Advent begins!

Crusty goose leg with braised red cabbage and dumplings

Vienna Christmas Markets

The holiday markets are like a fairytale – an enchanting winter wonderful that is an essential part of Christmas in Vienna. And with such a wide variety to choose from, there really is one for everyone.

Traditionalists make a beeline for the large Advent markets in the city center, such as the Vienna Christmas World on Rathausplatz (Town Hall), or the Old Viennese Christmas Market on Freyung.

The Christmas Market Schloss Schönbrunn (at Schönbrunn Palace) and the Christmas Village in front of the Belvedere Palace have a distinctly imperial feel, as does the Christmas Village on Maria-Theresien-Platz, located between the Natural History Museum and the Kunsthistorisches Museum.

For anyone looking for beautifully handcrafted artworks, the Art Advent Arts & Crafts Market on Karlsplatz, Spittelberg Christmas Market, and Am Hof Advent Market are the places to go. The WeihnachtsQuartier in the MuseumsQuartier is a magnet for fans of designer goods.

Foodies will be in their element at the Advent markets on Mahlerstrasse and in the courtyard of specialist tea store Haas & Haas.

For all this diversity, Vienna’s Advent markets also have plenty in common: they each offer a wide selection of products as well as a mouthwatering choice of food and hot drinks, including spiced teas, drinking chocolate, mulled wine and punch, besides hearty snacks and sweet treats.

Am Hof, 1010 Vienna

Among the wide selection of arts and crafts on offer at the Am Hof Advent Market are traditional ceramics, jewelry, silk paintings, woodwork, mirrors, and handmade soaps. There’s even a champagne and oyster bar.

Overhead view of the Vienna Christmas Market am Hof

Karlsplatz, 1040 Vienna

Beautifully crafted quality creations from over 70 designer-makers exhibiting stained-glass ware, musical instruments, jewelry, silk paintings, woolen hats and scarves, natural cosmetics and lots more. For the kids, there’s a workshop where they can make their own Christmas gifts, a train ride, a petting zoo, and hay bales to lark around on. All of the food and drink at the market is certified organic.

Art Advent market at night in Vienna

Upper Belvedere, Prinz-Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Vienna

At the Christmas market in front of the splendid Baroque Belvedere Palace, merrily decorated stalls offer traditional handicrafts as well as other more contemporary gifts from Austria’s federal provinces and neighboring countries. Visitors can warm themselves up with hot punch and mulled wine, and enjoy a sausage or local favorite like Schinkenfleckerl (a classic winter pasta and ham dish). Brass bands, gospel choirs, and other ensembles provide entertainment, and there are a vintage carousel and mini railway for the kids.

Altes AKH/University Campus, Alserstrasse/Spitalgasse, 1090 Vienna

Around 50 stalls in the attractive grounds of the old General Hospital form an atmospheric Christmas Village offering handmade jewelry, candles, soap, leather goods, woodwork, and ceramics. Revelers looking for mulled wine, hot punch and a wide selection of Christmas eats won’t be disappointed. Two curling lanes, a children’s carousel, and a Christmas train ride provide further entertainment.

Schönbrunn Palace, Schönbrunner Schlossstrasse, 1130 Vienna

About 80 stallholders from Austria and neighboring countries display a varied selection of traditional arts and crafts, handmade Christmas tree decorations, nativity scene sets and other beautiful items made from natural materials. Hot punch and Christmas biscuits are in plentiful supply and there’s music from choirs, gospel groups and brass bands from Austria and abroad.

Kids can do handicrafts under the supervision of expert craftspeople in the Christmas workshop, make biscuits in Schönbrunn Bakery or take a tour of the Schloss Schönbrunn Experience children’s museum. A New Year’s market with traditional lucky charms, delicious food, hot punch and mulled wine is held on the same site after Christmas to Jan 4, 2023.

Culture and Christmas Market in front of Schönbrunn Palace

Corner of Peter Jordan-Strasse and Dänenstrasse, 1180 Vienna

Handicrafts, seasonal food, and drink and a carousel in the charming surroundings of Türkenschanzpark – with live music on Sundays.

Stephansplatz (by Churhausgasse), 1010 Vienna

At the Christmas market outside St. Stephen’s Cathedral in the heart of the old town, beautifully decorated stalls specialize in high-quality arts and crafts.

Stephansplatz Christmas market around the St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna, Austria. Two market stall under the 18th century Baroque statue of St. Francis trampling on a beaten Turk.

Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Vienna

The square between the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Natural History Museum is home to the Christmas Village on Maria-Theresien-Platz, where illuminated Christmas trees and music from gospel choirs and Austrian brass bands makes for the perfect festive setting. Christmas gifts on the market stalls include wooden and glass handicrafts and jewelry, watercolors and oil paintings. Food and drink stands serve up seasonal favorites like hot punch and mulled wine. After the Christmas Village closes, from December 27 to 31, 2023 the New Year’s Village will take its place on Maria Theresien Platz

Vienna Christmas Market at Maria Theresien Platz

Gourmet Market Next to Vienna State Opera

Mahlerstrasse, 1010 Vienna

Up-market tea store Haas & Haas puts on this Christmas food market (also known as The Pleasure Market) under the glass-covered promenade on Mahlerstrasse. Opposite the Opera house and right next to the Ringstrassen Galerien mall, the 15 stands tempt passers-by with their cheeses, wines, charcuterie, marzipan and nougat, Austrian specialties, and hot punch.

Courtyard of Haas & Haas tea store, Stephansplatz 4, 1010 Vienna

Purveyors of fine teas Haas & Haas hold a cozy winter market in the welcoming covered courtyard of their store right behind St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Visitors can warm their hands in front of braziers and enjoy a mug of hot homemade punch or mulled wine, a hearty bowl of soup, or grill skewers over the fire.

Michaelerplatz, 1010 Vienna

The white stands at the K.u.k. Christmas Market on Michaelerplatz in front of the Hofburg carry primarily Austrian products including candies, tin figures, handmade cribs and much more.

Freyung, 1010 Vienna

Freyung is one of Vienna’s most beautiful squares, and Christmas markets have been taking place there since 1772. Today, visitors to this small but excellent market can treat themselves to a waffle and a mug of hot apple must (apple wine), punch or hot chocolate while they peruse a fine selection of arts and crafts. The stands offer a wide choice of Christmas tree decorations, nativity scene sets, glass decorations, ceramics, basket ware, and toys. There are Advent music and children’s activities, plus, on weekends, arts and crafts demonstrations.

Old Viennese Christmas Market at night

Spittelberggasse, Burggasse, Schrankgasse, Stiftgasse, Siebensterngasse, 1070 Vienna

Over 100 stalls with eclectic products from Austria and surrounding countries in one of Vienna’s more Bohemian districts. The market is known for its romantic cobblestone streets, high-quality handicrafts, and food and drink including traditional gingerbread, Christmas biscuits, cakes, pastries, and teas. The kids’ activity program consists of puppet theater, fairy tales, biscuit baking, and candle making. On Sundays, parents can leave the little ones in the safe hands of the staff at the Christmas workshop.

Snow falling at night at the Spittelberg Christmas Market in Vienna

Small Vienna Ice World Nov 10, 2023-Jan 7, 2024

Rathausplatz and Rathauspark, 1010 Vienna, www.wienerweihnachtstraum.at

The city’s biggest Christmas market brings the enchanting romance and nostalgia of the season to life, with around 150 colorful stalls offering handicrafts, gift ideas, confectionery, hot drinks including punch and mulled wine, sausages, and snacks. A huge Christmas tree adorned with hundreds of environmentally friendly LED lights takes pride of place in front of City Hall. The tree is presented by one of Austria’s provinces as a gift to the capital.

It goes without saying that the biggest Christmas market isn’t necessarily the best Christmas market in Vienna. Rathausplatz is very touristy and extremely crowded, especially during the evening and on weekends.

Vienna Christmas World on Rathausplatz (City Hall Square) surrounds the Christmas Market – 4,000m² of ice skating trails on Rathausplatz and through the Rathauspark, the small Vienna Ice World, with an innovative lighting concept that creates a true winter wonderland. There is also more than enough to keep children entertained, including games, a carousel, and a reindeer train.

Ice skating at night at the Vienna Christmas Markets

Savoyenstrasse 2, 1160 Vienna

This small market on the Wilhelminenberg hill has magical views over the city.

MuseumsQuartier, 1070 Vienna

A winter wonderland designed like no other, with specially created artistic light installations and much more: Winter im MQ provides an alternative Advent ambiance, while the MQ Point shop in the main entrance to the complex stocks unique winter products and is packed with unique gift ideas.

Turns into a NYE wintermarket – Open Nov 18, 2023-Jan 7, 2023

Riesenradplatz, Prater, 1020 Vienna

This Winter Market in the Prater – branded “The Prater Rocks” – offers lots of fun for all the family with a kids’ winter train ride, the giddy heights of the chain carousel, and live music from pop to soul. All accompanied by warming Christmas drinks and tasty snacks.

Near Am Hof, Freyung, Michaelerplatz, Rathausplatz, and Stephensplatz

Park Hyatt Vienna

Am Hof 2, 01. Innere Stadt, 1010 Vienna, Austria

Near Belvedere Palace

Austria Trend Hotel Savoyen Vienna

Rennweg 16, 03. Landstraße, 1030 Vienna, Austria

Near Karlsplatz, Maria-Theresien-Platz, Museumplatz, Spittleberg, and the Vienna State Opera

Le Meridien Vienna

Robert-Stolz-Platz 1, 01. Innere Stadt, 1010 Vienna, Austria

Near the Rooftop Bar at the Ritz

Ritz Carlton, Vienna

Schubertring 5-7, 01. Innere Stadt, 1010 Vienna, Austria

Exterior of Park Hyatt Hotel in Vienna, Austria

Temporary Christmas Markets and Other Advent Events

Hietzinger Tor entrance, Hietzinger Hauptstrasse, 1130 Vienna

Schönbrunn Zoo offers free children’s tours on each Sunday of Advent (starting at 2.30pm at the Hietzing information center and lasting approximately one hour; children must be accompanied by an adult). On December 8 and 9, 2018, the ORANG.erie becomes a Christmas crafts workshop open from 9 am to 4 pm, and on both days children can also bake cookies in the kitchens of the Tyrolean Farmhouse between 1 pm and 3 pm. On December 24 – when the main family celebrations take place in Austria – special Christmas activities are put on from 9 am to 4 pm, to occupy the kids during their agonizing wait for gifts later in the day.

Blumengärten Hirschstetten, Quadenstrasse 15, 1220 Vienna

The Christmas exhibition in the heated greenhouses operated by the municipal gardens agency in the 22nd district offers a packed program featuring music and culinary highlights.

Ludwig-Koessler-Platz, 1030 Vienna

This small, welcoming Advent market is set in the well-preserved, heritage-listed tram depot that houses the Wiener Linien Transport Museum, which exhibits historic and modern transport vehicles throughout the year, and tells the story of public transport in Vienna. Hot punch and roasted chestnuts can all be enjoyed in a festive atmosphere, while gift ideas abound – toy railway streetcars and subway trains, Viennese tram Christmas tree decorations, and nostalgic calendars. There is also a children’s play area and a curling rink.

Petersplatz, 1010 Vienna

The show’s exhibits are sourced from private collections and presented in the church’s crypt, under the title “Nativity scenes from around the world”. On weekends there are accompanying events exploring themes related to nativity displays and Christmas.

Arsenal, Objekt 1, 1030 Vienna

The square in front of the Museum of Military History will be filled with medieval handicrafts and concession stands, jugglers, swordsmen, dancers, fire breathers and entertainers. The children’s program includes fairy tales, a carousel and arts, and crafts.

Lainzer Tiergarten, Lainzer Tor entrance, Hermesstrasse, 1130 Vienna

A Nativity display featuring life-size wooden figures at the Lainzer Tor entrance.

Marx Halle, Karl-Farkas-Gasse 19, 1030 Vienna

Design market for dedicated followers of fashion, design fans and more, with gift ideas that are not to be found on every street.

Coburgbastei 4, 1010 Vienna

From Thursday to Saturday, punch, delicious wintertime treats, and lounge music await in the Palais Coburg. Blankets and heat lamps keep the cold at bay.

freiraum quartier 21, Arena 21, Ovalhalle, MQ, Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Vienna

A paradise for connoisseurs of the finer things in life opens in the halls of MuseumsQuartier on the first weekend of Advent, with fashion, jewelry, ceramics, small interior furnishings, books and many more creations from Austrian and international designers. Entry to the 1,000m² indoor market is free.

Guided Tours of the Holiday Markets

If you’re visiting Vienna’s magical Christmas markets for the first time, traveling solo, or have a limited amount of time, a guided group walking tour can be a fun way to get a taste of Vienna’s festive holiday spirit. On this 2-3 hour tour , you’ll visit four of the top Christmas markets in the city, where you’ll enjoy some cookies and rum.

Looking to add a memorable day trip to your Vienna stay? Gottweig Abbey is only an hour away!

If group tours aren’t your thing, you can still get in the holiday spirit with a private tour   through some of Vienna’s most picturesque squares. Leave the navigating to someone else so you can concentrate on relaxing and soaking up the Christmas atmosphere and learn about the Austrian Christmas traditions.

Uniworld offers a collection of holiday river cruises that let you celebrate the season in incredible style. You can unpack once then cruise along the mighty Danube through three nations – Germany, Austria, and Hungary – each one decked in all their holiday finery.

Double staircase and portrait of Maria Theresa on the Uniworld S.S. Maria Theresa river cruise ship

The capital’s Advent markets are laden with Christmas goodies including candles, baubles, arts and crafts, cribs, toys, gifts and Christmas decorations. Each market has its own character, from intimate to high tech, and each artist has his or her own story to tell.

Highlights include:

  • Blown glass ornaments
  • Handcrafted wooden toys
  • Handknit ornaments
  • Snow globes (Snow globes were invented in Austria!)
  • Nutcrackers
  • Handcrafted jewelry and hairpins
  • Beeswax candles
  • Honey and jam
  • Austrian Schnapps
  • Nativity scenes

Traditional Christmas dolls in sweaters sold at the Vienna Christmas Markets 2018

You knew we’d get here eventually right? So let’s talk about the mouthwatering selection of food and hot drinks to enjoy at the Christmas markets, including spiced teas, drinking chocolate, mulled wine and punch, plus yummy snacks and sweets.

  • Glühwein  – hot mulled wine
  • Kartoffelpuffer – potato pancakes
  • Krapfen – yeast dough pastry, filled with jam (sweet) or sauerkraut (savory)
  • Raclette – bread with warm cheese
  • Bauerngröstl –  bacon, egg, and potato fry up, usually topped with a fried egg
  • Käsekrainer – sausages stuffed with cheese
  • Bratwurst – grilled or fried sausage
  • Vanillekipferl – light, crescent-shaped biscuit made with butter and almond flour
  • Kaiserschmarrn – a dessert made from pancake batter
  • Waffeln – waffles
  • Lebkuchen – a gingerbread-like cookie
  • Bratkartoffel – pan-fried potatoes
  • Heisse Bauernkrapfen – farmhouse donuts
  • Maroni – roasted chestnuts
  • Suppen im brotteig – soup in bread bowls
  • Strudel – layered pastry with a sweet filling
  • Schinkenfleckerl –  pasta and ham

Variety of strudel at the Vienna Christmas Markets

There you have it – everything you need to know about the Vienna Christmas Markets for the upcoming holiday season. 

Have you been to a Christmas market? What’s the best thing you ate or drank there? Let us know in the comments below.

visit vienna christmas markets

Christmas Markets in Poland To Visit – Updated for 2023

Christmas markets in Poland are equally as beautiful and much less crowded markets than the [...]

Nelia Nunes

I am a mom of 2 who travels a lot for work (I work in the event/conference/tradeshow industry). I grew up  and currently live in Northern California.

5 thoughts on “ Your Ultimate Guide to Vienna Christmas Markets – Updated for 2023 ”

I love Vienna! I was there 2 years ago in the Spring, but I would love to visit during the holidays and experience the magic. Your pictures are beautiful and I love how you describe it as “Whoville-ian”! Don’t get me started on those Christmas cookies! I need to make those Vanillekipferl!

Thank you! While the sights, smells, and tastes of Vienna at Christmas are absolutely intoxicating, I imagine its just as lovely and elegant in the Spring.

I lived in Europe for two Christmas seasons in 2003 and 2005, and I remember a couple markets here and there, but I don’t think they were anything like they are today! I even spent one of those Christmases in Vienna where my cousin was listening, and it was beautiful in all its glittery glory but I need to go back and take advantage of these markets!

Me too! I’d go back tomorrow if I could. 🙂

Visiting the CHristmas Markets in Vienna are high on my wish list! Vienna is one of my favorite European cities and I’d love to experience the magic of the holidays there.

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Vienna Christmas market Austrian National Tourist Office / Rainer Mirau media_content.tooltip.skipped

  • Things to Do
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  • Christmas Markets in Austria

Christmas Markets in Vienna

Step into the joy of Christmas with the beautiful streets of Vienna as your backdrop. Punch and chestnut stands draw customers with seasonal treats and stallholders get shoppers in the Christmas spirit with handcrafted goods.

The Christmas markets in Vienna truly are an age-old tradition. The forerunners of the present-day events date back to the Middle Ages, when in 1296 Albrecht I granted Vienna's citizens the privilege of holding a December Market or "Krippenmarkt". Since then, the character and prevalence of these markets has changed considerably. Nowadays, over 20 official Advent markets sell a vast array of seasonal gifts and mouth-watering treats.

Christmas Markets

Viennese dream christmas market.

The Viennese Dream Christmas Market in front of the City Hall is an unforgettable highlight for those eager to get into the spirit of the season. The unique backdrop gives this market a charm of its own, and the delicious aromas are sure to lull all visitors into the seasonal joy. Inside the City Hall on the ground floor, there is an area dedicated to children, where they can learn how to make Christmas cookies or candles. You can also listen to international choirs singing carols with free entrance on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Where: On the square in front of the City Hall When: 11 November - 26 December 2023

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

Explore baroque lifestyle and traditional handicrafts. The popular Christmas Village Belvedere Palace is set against the glorious baroque backdrop of the world-famous residence, one of Vienna‘s most beautiful and significant sights. More than 40 festively decorated market stalls offer traditional handcrafted goods, elaborate Christmas decorations and special culinary delights. Where: Belvedere Palace, Prinz Eugen-Straße When: 17 November - 23 December 2023 Opening hours: Monday – Friday 11 am – 9 pm; Saturday – Sunday 10 am – 9 pm; 24 December 11 am – 4 pm; 26 - 30 December 11 am – 7 pm

Plus : New Year's Market (31 December 2023 11 am - 6 pm)

Christmas Village on Maria Theresien Square

Experience impressive Viennese buildings and traditional customs at the Christmas Village on Maria Theresien Square this winter, located between the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art. There is no escaping the Christmas atmosphere with festively decorated market stalls and a vast array of culinary delights.

Where: Maria Theresien Platz When: 15 November - 23 December 2023 Opening times: Sunday – Thursday 11 am – 9 pm; Friday & Saturday 11 am – 10 pm; 24 December 11 am – 4 pm; 25 - 30 December 11 am – 7 pm

Christmas Village Campus University of Vienna

The Christmas Village Campus University of Vienna (Vienna's Former General Hospital) will enchant the visitor with its traditional Viennese atmosphere. The lovingly designed and decorated market stalls located along the many narrow alleyways offer beautiful Christmas gifts as well as delicious Glühwein . Where: Universitätscampus, Alserstrasse When: 10 November - 23 December 2023 Opening times: Monday - Wednesday 2 pm – 10 pm; Thursday, Friday 2 pm – 11 pm; Saturday 11 am – 11 pm; Sunday 11 am – 8 pm

Christmas Market at Schönbrunn Palace

Approximately 60 exhibitors present handicrafts and original gifts such as hand-made Christmas decorations and nativity sets for visitors to admire and purchase right in front of the famous Schönbrunn Palace . The fragrance of freshly baked Vanillekipferl and hot punch fills the air and creates a wonderful atmosphere. Where: Parade Court, in front of Schönbrunn Palace When: 18 November 2023 - 4 January 2024

18 November – 23 December 2023 | 10 am to 9 pm 24 December 2023 | 10 am to 4 pm 25 December 2023 – 4 January 2024 | 10 am to 6 pm

Christmas Market at Spittelberg

The Spittelberg is a revitalized heritage district from the Biedermeier period with narrow side streets. Throughout the festive season, you will find objets d'art, ceramics, warm jumpers, rugs, and jewellery made of silver, enamel, and brass at the Christmas Market at Spittelberg . Where: Spittelberg district When: 16 November - 23 December 2023 Opening times: Mondays – Thursdays 2 pm – 9 pm; Fridays 2 pm – 9.30 pm; Saturdays 10 am – 9.30 pm; Sundays and holidays 10 am – 9 pm

Christmas market in Vienna / Karlsplatz Austrian National Tourist Office / Harald Eisenberger media_content.tooltip.skipped

Additional Christmas Events & Markets in Vienna:

  • Art Advent - Art & Crafts on Karlsplatz
  • Winter Market on Riesenradplatz
  • Old Viennese Christmas Market (German-language only)
  • Am Hof Advent Market (German-language only)
  • Christmas Market on Stephansplatz
  • Advent Delights Market next to Vienna State Opera House (German-language only)

Christmas market in front of Schönbrunn Palace Austrian National Tourist Office / Christian Kremser Schloß Schönbrunn media_content.tooltip.skipped

Advent in the city centre of Vienna, St. Stephen's Cathedral Austrian National Tourist Office / Filmspektakel.at Wien Stephansplatz media_content.tooltip.skipped

Christmas lights on the Graben in Vienna Austrian National Tourist Office / Harald Eisenberger media_content.tooltip.skipped

Vienna Christmas World at Rathausplatz Austrian National Tourist Office / Christian Kremser media_content.tooltip.skipped

Christmas lights on the Kohlmarkt in Vienna Austrian National Tourist Office / Harald Eisenberger media_content.tooltip.skipped

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New year's celebrations in austria, christmas markets in linz & upper austria.

visit vienna christmas markets

Vienna Christmas Markets 2024 | Dates, Locations & Must-Knows!

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Vienna’s Christmas Market scene is a tough one to beat.

With over a dozen stunning markets ranging from cute and cozy to grand and elegant, the magical city that is Vienna becomes even more impressive in the festive season, with market stalls popping up all over in the city’s squares and courtyards.

Little wonder why it’s one of the most popular Christmas market destinations in Austria!

Looking to learn more about Vienna’s Christmas markets, or perhaps need some guidance on planning your own trip there?

In this post, we’ll be covering…

  • Practical Info for Vienna Christmas Market

Why Visit Vienna for Christmas Markets?

Christmas markets in vienna to visit.

We hope you find it helpful and interesting!

NOTE: This is a Christmas market we haven’t personally visited yet, so all the information below is taken from official sources for your reference! If you have any personal tips from first-hand experience to add, let us know in the comments so we can improve this guide!

visit vienna christmas markets

Practical Info for Vienna’s Christmas Markets 2024

Here are some quick must-knows for Vienna’s Christmas Market scene this year …

  • Dates: Exact dates depend on the market, but there are markets scheduled from Nov 8, 2024, to Jan 6, 2025. See our list of Austrian Christmas Market Opening Dates for each market’s exact opening dates.
  • Official website: Find more info here

In need of a place to stay? Here are some quick hotel recommendations:

  • Budget: Check prices and availability
  • Mid-Range: Check prices and availability
  • Luxury: Check prices and availability

visit vienna christmas markets

Wondering if Vienna’s Christmas markets are worth visiting? Here are some reasons to add it to your list!

Unlike smaller towns which only have one main Christmas market, Vienna has over a dozen Christmas markets scattered around the city for you to visit, meaning it’s pretty impossible to get bored.

Stunning locations

Besides offering a wide variety of markets, Vienna also happens to host them in some of the most grandiose venues on the continent, from royal palace courtyards to sprawling, world-famous squares.

It’s Vienna

Vienna is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world (which we can definitely confirm after several visits).

And while we still haven’t seen the magic of Vienna at Christmas time for ourselves, we can only imagine how wonderful the entire city would look illuminated in lights!

There’s really no bad time to visit Vienna, so a Christmas trip here would definitely be a great choice.

visit vienna christmas markets

Vienna has several Christmas markets for visitors to see during the festive season. Here are some highlights:

Viennese Dream Christmas Market

Official Website

With Vienna’s neo-gothic City Hall as its backdrop, it’s little wonder why the Viennese Dream Christmas Market in Rathausplatz is one of the city’s most famous Christmas markets.

With 150 stalls plus festive decorations scattered around the surrounding park, this is also Vienna’s largest Christmas market.

While a visit here involves dodging some serious crowds in peak season, you’ll be rewarded with plenty of tasty food stalls, and chalets selling all kinds of wonderful gifts.

visit vienna christmas markets

Christmas Village Belvedere Palace

For another Christmas market in Vienna with an elegant and gorgeous backdrop, be sure to visit the glittering Christmas Village at Belvedere Palace.

This beautiful Baroque palace is home to over 40 festive stalls throughout the Christmas market season, with plenty of handcrafted gifts, decorations, and (naturally) delicious foods to stock up on.

Christmas Village on Maria Theresien Square

Sandwiched between Vienna’s Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art, the picture-perfect Christmas Village on Maria Theresien Square is another Vienna Christmas market highlight.

Besides its breathtaking atmosphere (made all the more magical through light projections on the square’s facades), you’ll find the usual Christmas market classics here like gifts and culinary crowdpleasers.

visit vienna christmas markets

k.u.k. Weihnachtsmarkt am Michaelerplatz

This small Christmas market can be found in the shadow of Vienna’s Hofburg Palace, with a cozy cluster of white stalls selling decorations, toys, gifts, and most importantly, Christmas market treats!

Christmas Village Former General Hospital

For a cozier Christmas market in Vienna, the Christmas Village Altes AKH is a great option, with richly decorated stalls arranged along narrow walkways selling glühwein and gifts.

Christmas Market at Schönbrunn Palace

This Vienna Christmas Market takes place in front of one of the city’s top attractions: the glorious Schönbrunn Palace, which is decorated at Christmas time with a towering tree and over 60 stalls selling handicrafts and tasty festive treats.

visit vienna christmas markets

Christmas Market at Spittelberg

For a less touristy alternative to Vienna’s main Christmas markets, the Christmas Market at Spittelberg offers up a wide assortment of handmade gifts in a beautiful setting – a historic heritage district filled with narrow streets and fairytale architecture.

Art Advent at Karlsplatz is one of Vienna’s most special markets, not just because of its glorious location in the shadow of Vienna’s Karlskirche, but also because of its unique focus on arts and crafts.

Here, you’ll find handcrafted products/art that you won’t find elsewhere in the city, all in one seriously magical location.

visit vienna christmas markets

Wintermarkt Riesenradplatz

Located in Vienna’s famous Prater Gardens, this “Winter Market” is one of the top Christmas destinations in the city, with plenty of live performances and a program full of entertainment for guests of all ages.

Altwiener Christkindlmarkt

Another key player in Vienna’s Christmas market scene is the Altwiener Christkindlmarkt, which has been taking place for over thirty years in various locations across the city.

This traditional Christmas market can be found in the Freyung, surrounded by tall historical buildings that are guaranteed to transport you to another world.

One highlight to look out for? A lengthy nativity scene that is said to be the longest in the entire country!

visit vienna christmas markets

Am Hof Advent Market

This lovely Vienna Christmas Market is known for its cozy ambiance, delightful selection of food and drink, as well as its wide variety of stalls selling handicrafts and gifts.

You’ll even find a special Kunsthandwerkmarkt here, where there are stalls selling truly unique handmade goods (in contrast to the mass-produced products you might find in some of the more popular Christmas markets in the city).

Christmas Market on Stephansplatz

This mega-central Vienna Christmas Market can be found in one of the busiest tourist areas of the city: Stephansplatz, just outside of the towering Stephansdom, one of the key highlights of Vienna’s skyline.

At this market, you’ll find dozens of stalls selling the typical Christmas market classics, from decorations and food products to plenty of to-go culinary offerings.

Advent Genussmarkt

Foodies, rejoice! There’s a special Vienna Christmas market just for you – the Genussmarkt near Vienna’s State Opera, which focuses on regional delicacies from local producers, ranging from cheese and sausage to ready-to-consume options like mulled wine and roasted chestnuts.

PS: As a bonus, this Vienna Christmas Market is covered, making it an excellent rainy day option.

visit vienna christmas markets

We hope you enjoyed this Vienna Christmas Market Guide!

Let us know in the comments if you have any more questions about your trip – we’re always happy to help.

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The Vienna BLOG

Ultimate Christmas Market Guide in Vienna

Last Updated on October 19, 2023 by gregor

Despite the mild warm November, the Christmas spirit in the city of Vienna is high. As we are stepping towards the holiday season, we will see a number of Christmas markets start to pop up all around Vienna. If you are new to the city or are visiting, then you can use our guide to find the best 10 Christmas Markets in Vienna, to enable you to experience the holiday season at its best. If you love Christmas, then Vienna is the ultimate place to be around during the holiday season, as there are many market that you can explore right until Christmas day, meaning you will be breathing in the Holiday cheer for more than a month even before Christmas.

Here are the best 10 Christmas markets in Vienna, and once you are done with them; you can start exploring the rest.

Altwiener Christkindlmarkt, Freyung

The market is located in the heart of the city, and maintains a traditional feel, without going too overboard. So you can quietly enjoy all that Christmas has to offer, without letting it get too much to handle. The market offers seasonal decorations, handmade items, bear, and endless options of gifts. So you can easily find something for everyone. As Vienna is known for its food, the market offers excellent traditional dishes, so you can take in the complete experience of shopping, eating, and drinking in a familiar setting, along with seasonal music that will keep your spirits up, and the love for Christmas alive. If you happen to visit the market in the evening, you will be able to see many carol singers accompanied by violins and bugles players. The market is located at the Freyung, and is open from 20th of November, until 23rd of December.

more Info and opening hours (CLICK)

FreyungViennaChristmasMarket2

Christmas Village, Altes AKH

This is a splendid and traditional Christmas market that is situated on the university campus of the old Vienna hospital. This market highlights the local craftsmen and their work. As artisans from all around Vienna come together to demonstrate their skills. So you can find anything from candle makers, artwork printing, and bag makers. It is as well a lovely place to get to know the locals, and learn more about the city. There are two main rinks where you can sign up for ice curling, and can enjoy a great time with warm food, and fresh drinks. Here you will find a few activities to keep your children entertained. These include a live show by Punch and Judy every Saturday, along with a merry-go-round, and a choo-choo train. The village is located at the Altes AKH, and is open from 18th November, until 23rd December.

Spittelberg Christmas Market

The market has become a bit commercial in the last few years, but it still one of the best Christmas markets in Vienna, as it offers a romantic atmosphere and focused on things such as crafts and local arts. The market is located in the historical Biedermeier quarter where you can admire the great architecture. The main streets where the market is taking place bringing the ultimate Christmas experience are the Gutenberggasse and the Spittelberggasse. Both present a wide range of shopping, but the Gutenberggasse street has a great selection of foods, so you can easily indulge in some of the best seasonal cuisine of Vienna. In addition, your children will be able to enjoy a great deal of activities, along with adults. So if you are traveling with kids then you should consider the Spittelberg Christmas market. The market will open on the 16th of November, and end on the 23rd of December.

SpittelbergViennaChristmasMarket2

Christmas Market, Schloss Schönbrunn

If you are looking for an elegant Christmas market then this one has the perfect setting.  Having the Schönbrunn Palace as it’s background, it presents the most beautiful and magical scenery. In addition, there is a spectacular Christmas tree that will completely mesmerize you. The market offers the perfect Christmas touch, with handmade Christmas decorations, and gifts that are made using natural materials. Moreover, there is a complete food and drinks range, that includes warm Christmas cookies, snacks, and mulled wine. So you can easily spend the day taking in all the market has to offer. If you are traveling with kids, then you are in for a treat, as the market has different routines on different dates, you will have to check locally to confirm what is being offered this year, but we assure you it will be enough to keep your kids entertained for days to come. The market is open from 18th of November, until 26th of December.

more info and opening hours (CLICK)

SchönbrunnChristmasMarket

Christkindlmarkt Rathausplatz

It is considered as one of the most liveliest Christmas market in Vienna, and helps you get in the perfect Christmas mood. Here you will be able to find dozens of booths, that offer a great range of contemporary and traditional Christmas decorations and gifts. In addition to the perfect shopping experience, and the lively crowd, you will find many traditional and classic Viennese cuisine. So you can easily enjoy mulled wine, with hot chestnuts; along with many complete meals to keep you full and happy. So you can keep on adding to the Christmas spirit, and enjoy a beautiful day here at the Christkindlmarkt Rathausplatz. Moreover, the market offers a great deal for kids, so they too can take part in the ongoing Christmas holiday. The market is located in front of the City Hall and is open from 11th of November to 26th of December.

christmas-market-RathausTownhallVienna_theviennablog

Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof

If you are looking for quality artisan gift shops, then the Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof is the perfect place to visit. Here you will be able to find great deals from ceramics, to delicate jewelry, glassware, leather items, and hats. Along with cosmetics, kitchen accessories, and attraction for kids. Allowing for a complete and unique experience than most Christmas markets in Vienna. Furthermore, the market is known for its variety of sausages and ham, along with hot baked potatoes, waffles, and gingerbread. The market is open from 17th November, until 23rd December, and is located at Am Hof.

Weihnachtsmarkt Karlsplatz

The market offers more than seventy booths from local craftsmen and artisans. That are lined up right in front of the baroque Church of Saint Charles Borromeo. In addition, the Christmas market features many live concerts on a regular basis. So you can enjoy anything from electronic pop music to harp solos. This market features fire shows, and demonstrates different arts and crafts at the booths. So you can enjoy beautiful ceramics, glass beads, pottery, and Tiffany glass. The market is located at the Karlsplatz and Resselpark and is open from 17thst of November to the 23rd of December.

KarlsPlatzViennaChristmasMarket2

Adventmarkt Grafenegg

This is a one-day festive market, that has been outshining other Christmas markets for decades now. It is located in the gardens of the Grafenegg Castle. When you are roaming the grounds, you can enjoy quality crafts markets and arts, while listening to Christmas Carols, brass band, and trumpet fanfares. In addition, you will be able to try a number of freshly cooked Austrian snacks and cookies. There is a complete range of baking shops, that are simply loved by children. Keep in mind that you will be required to book all the things in advance, so you do not miss out on any experience. The event is held on the 5th of December each year. Be aware Grafenegg is outside of Vienna, so best way is to rent a car, travel time is about 45min

Christmas Village, Schloss Hof

This beautiful Christmas Village offers a wonderful and fulfilled Christmas experience. Here you will find a charmingly decorated market that offers handmade knitwear, regional ceramics, handmade soaps, along with Punsch, Kaiserschmarren, and gingerbread. For children, there is a castle farm, where they can even ride ponies. In addition, there is a Christmas workshop and concert each Saturday night. The dates of this Christmas Village vary each year. Be aware Schloss Hof  is outside of Vienna, so best way is to rent a car, travel time is about 30min

Christmas Village on Maria-Theresien-Platz

The Christmas village sits between tow impressive buildings, known as the Museum of Art, and the Museum of Natural History. The place is just two minutes away from MQ, and here you will be able to find a splendid Christmas market, that offers tons. In the center of the square, is the imposing statue of the former Austrian monarch. In addition, the market offers decorated stalls, foods, drinks, and a great deal of fun. The marker is open from the 22nd of November, until the 26th of December.

It does not matter if you are a Christmas lover or not, as these markets are the perfect space for anyone who loves beautiful and unique things. Here you will be able to enjoy good foods, drinks, and a wide range of shopping goods.

MueseumsplaceViennaChristmasMarket

Top Tips for Visiting Vienna’s Christmas Markets

Pick your favorite market.

There are such huge numbers of various markets in Vienna! Endeavor to visit the ones that have what you need. While they all have stalls with nourishment, Glühwein and broiled chestnuts, everyone has its own interesting style. Visiting with kids? Unquestionably go to Karlsplatz or AKH. Need a comfortable, bohemian air? Attempt Spittelberg. Searching for a great setting for photographs? The Rathaus or Belvedere Palace are the best.

Visit at the right time

Do you need to stay away from the gigantic group at the well-known markets? At that point come in the morning, or when the business sectors open. Might you want to appreciate the twinkling lights all around? At that point intend to touch base at nightfall, and experience the business sectors during the evening.

Bring Small Cash

Some stands will accept credit cards, yet many only cash.

Traditional food and drink at the Christmas Markets

Make sure to try: Maroni (simmered chestnuts), Kaisekrainer (Sausage with cheddar in the center), Bratwurst (broiled hotdogs), Soup in a Bread Bowl, Pretzels, Kaiserschmarrn, Waffeln (waffles), Lebkuchen (gingerbread), Gebrannte Mandeln (toasted almonds), Bratkartoffel (prepared potatoes), Heisse Bauernkrapfen (hot agriculturist’s doughnuts), Krapfen (filled doughnuts), Glühwein (thought about wine) and Punsch (or Kinder Punsch without liquor).

Mugs as Souvenirs

Glühwein, Punsch and alternate heavenly beverages at the Christmas Markets come in charming mugs. After you are done with your drink, you can either keep the mug as a souvenir or return it and recover your store. (Ordinarily around €2-4) Each market has its own extraordinary mug, and they are diverse every year.

Visit as much as you can.

Make the rounds and visit the greatest number of markets as you can. I recorded a couple of the greater, more well-known Christmas Markets in Vienna above, yet there are innumerable others that I have not recorded. Investigate the city, and you are certain to discover adorable little markets around each corner.

Dress Warmly

The Christmas Markets are primarily outside, and it can get sharply cold in Vienna in December. Wear loads of layers, including warm base layers, caps, scarves and gloves on the off chance that you need to remain out more than a couple of minutes. On the off chance that and when you do get cool, warm up with some hot Glühwein or punch!

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visit vienna christmas markets

visit vienna christmas markets

Visit the 2024 Vienna Christmas Markets: Tips + Map

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Disclaimer: Real-life human experiences. Written by a human. Created for humans. (Travels at Missy does not use AI for our articles. All posts and information are 1st hand experience. AI data-scrapping tools are expressly forbidden from using Travels with Missy content for AI Training).

The Vienna Christmas Markets 2023 are officially operational ! One of the earliest starting Christmas Markets in Europe , you’ll find them kicking off at the beginning of November. I’ve been so excited to tick these off my European Christmas Markets for the longest time and let me tell you they did not disappoint.

visit vienna christmas markets

The Christmas Markets in Vienna are spread out across the city, you’ll have your choice of a Christmas Market set in the shadow of 2 castles, a remarkable city hall, and the modern Museum Quartier, as well as a handful of other picturesque areas. In terms of settings and backdrops, I think the Vienna Christmas Markets win hands down.

visit vienna christmas markets

Visiting the Vienna Christmas Markets in 2023 was my first time to the city and to the country of Austria, and although my stay was incredibly brief (just around 32 hours), I managed to tick off all the Christmas Markets in Vienna, took a guided walking tour, visited the stunning National Library and toured Schönbrunn Palace. Phew. It was a lot, but I’m definitely going to return to Vienna again, it’s a fantastic city, and made a great first impression.

Top Vienna Christmas Market Tours 2023

One of the highlights of the Vienna Christmas Markets is visiting the stunningly beautiful Schönbrunn Palace . Not only is the palace gorgeous, but you can enjoy the stunning Christmas Markets on the grounds and an incredible orchestral Christmas concert with the Schönbrunn Palace Orchestra . Don’t miss out on the incredible Christmas concert that takes place in the UNESCO Heritage Schönbrunn Orangerie .

Vienna Christmas market map

To view a list of each pinned location, click the icon at the top-left corner. For an expanded view, click the button located at the top-right. To save to your personal Google Maps account, simply click the star icon . Once saved, access the map by opening Google Maps on your device, clicking the ‘Saved’ button, selecting the “Maps” icon on the bottom of the screen, and then choosing you’ll find this map listed.

Tips for the Vienna Christmas Markets

  • ATMs are available at all of the Vienna Christmas Markets and that’s because cash is king. Most of the stalls that served food and drink displayed signs of ‘cash only’.
  • Bring wet wipes. Mulled wine and all the delicious food can get sticky pretty quickly.
  • Dress appropriately. Hats, scarves, and gloves are a must. And a good warm jacket is essential.
  • Getting around Vienna is really easy with lots of trams, trains, and buses that will take you between places. It’s also incredibly walkable. I covered 28,000 steps in a single day – with a number of transport added in too.

Viennese Traditional Mug

With lots of places to choose from to drink your mulled wine, or punsch as it’s known in Vienna.

These adorably Vienna Christmas Market-themed mugs are a great souvenir to collect from each of the markets you visit around Europe. Each market you visit in Vienna has their own variation. I’m a big fan of the shoe-shaped mug that you’ll find in a few of the Christmas Markets in Vienna.

visit vienna christmas markets

When you purchase a drink, you’ll also pay a €5 deposit fee . This is called a pfond . Most of the pfond for the decorative mugs were either €4 or €5. When you’ve finished your drinks and you want to return your mug, just bring it back to the cashier at the drink stall and they’ll give you your money in cash.

And if you want to keep your cute little mug, well you’ve paid the deposit of €5 so now its yours to keep! A cute little souvenir from the Vienna Christmas Markets.

Below you’ll find examples of the types of Viennese traditional mugs from this years Vienna Christmas Markets.

visit vienna christmas markets

Rathausplatz christmas Markets

Whilst doing my research, time and time again, Rathausplatz was described as the best of the Vienna Christmas Markets . The setting against the dramatic city hall, the Rathausplatz Christmas Markets are the largest in Vienna , with an ice-staking rink and lots of adorable chalets selling food, drinks, and crafts.

visit vienna christmas markets

Above the Wiener Christkindlmarkt entrance is an enormous archway that welcomes you to beautiful Rathausplatz, and it’s not just for tourists, but also for the two million Viennise that live in the city and from around the country.

In the center of Rathausplatz is a stunningly beautiful two-floor carousel that is breathtaking to watch, especially against the contrast of the ornate Rathausplatz building. I was quite envious of anyone who had the excuse of going on it, it would have felt a bit odd going on it by myself.

visit vienna christmas markets

Ice Skating at Rathausplatz Christmas Markets

The ice-skating rink adjoins the side of the Rathausplatz Christmas Market and the prices were as follows:

Adult Ticket – €10

Child Ticket – €7

Ice Skates (unless you have your own with you) – €5.50 – €9 depending on your shoe size.

Admission is free for the ice-skating rink in Rathausplatz Christmas Markets after 9.30 pm , but you’ll have a limited time on the ice. Skates are discounted too after 9.30 pm.

The ice-skating rink is around until February at Rathausplatz if you are visiting after the Vienna Christmas Markets have finished in 2023.

visit vienna christmas markets

You’ll also find the beautiful ‘Tree of Hearts’ which is decorated with dozens of illuminated hearts. Occasionally you’ll see a gigantic heart whizz across the night sky, and its beating heart flickers the hearts brighter and brighter.

visit vienna christmas markets

Best Time to Visit the Rathausplatz Christmas Markets

I visited during the week an hour before closing in mid-November and found the Rathausplatz Christmas Market to be quite quiet. They were still busy, but I didn’t feel like I was being pushed from stall to stall and could take my time exploring.

The best time is of course in the evening when the Christmas Markets in Vienna are illuminated. You don’t have to wait long in the months of November and December with sunset usually just after 4 pm and darkness shortly after.

Dates: The Rathausplatz Christmas Market starts on November 10th, 2023 until December 26th , 2023 .

Opening Times: Open daily from 10 am until 10 pm.

Schönbrunn Palace

It’s impossible not to be wowed by Schönbrunn Palace. The former imperial palace of the royal family of the Austrian Empire, the Habsburgs, made Schönbrunn Palace their stunning home just outside the city limits of Vienna.

visit vienna christmas markets

In front of Schönbrunn Palace, you’ll find a good selection of Christmas Market stalls, and the best local artisan stalls selling handmade Christmas ornaments, notebooks, Christmas wreaths and so much more.

The Christmas Markets of Schönbrunn Palace are in my opinion the best. The selection of food stalls was perhaps the most varied, with everything from wursts, and bretzels twice the size of your head, and lots of punsch stalls.

visit vienna christmas markets

The market stalls were the best in terms of local artisan-produced goods, there were so many stalls in the Schönbrunn Palace that I wanted to buy from. From beautiful ornate Christmas figurines, wreaths, and beautiful ceramic flowers. Come prepared to add a few more pounds to your suitcase.

Head to Schönbrunn Palace in the early afternoon and spend the time visiting the incredible gardens of Schönbrunn Palace before heading indoors and taking a tour of the palace. And just as the sun starts to set, spend the next couple of hours eating and drinking your way around the Schönbrunn Palace Christmas Market as they start to illuminate.

visit vienna christmas markets

At 8 pm attend the Schönbrunn Palace Orangery , where Mozart once played, and listen to the Schönbrunn Palace Orchestra perform a superb Christmas concert.

Dates: The Schönbrunn Palace Christmas Markets start on 18th November 2023 to the January 4th, 2024.

Opening Times: Open daily from 10 am to 9 pm.

Schönbrunn Palace is open from 10 am until 5 pm daily.

Maria-Theresien-Platz

There was something about the Chrismas Village at Maria-Theresien Square that I just loved. It was one of my favorite Christmas Markets in Vienna.

I think what I loved about it was that it focused heavily on food and drink. There are a number of stalls selling handicrafts too, but the emphasis here seemed to be catching up with friends, and definitely a more local feel.

visit vienna christmas markets

And I think that’s something about the Vienna Christmas Markets isn’t that they’re just for tourists, far from it. The markets in Vienna have been created for the people of the city, and have welcomed people from around Austria and far beyond to their beautiful Christmas Markets.

visit vienna christmas markets

The Maria-Theresien-Platz Christmas Markets are sandwiched between the Natural History Museum and the fine arts museum, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien. This is one of the coziest of Christmas Markets in Vienna and a great place to have a couple of drinks and bites to eat at. I loved it!

visit vienna christmas markets

Dates: The Maria-Theresien-Platz Christmas Markets are open from the 15th of November 2023 until the 31st of December.

Opening Times: Open from 11 am until 9 pm daily . On the weekends they extend their opening hour until 10 pm. After December 25th, the times change slightly and close at 7 pm.

Belvedere Palace Christmas Market

Belvedere Palace is where I honestly expected to bump into a real-life princess. The setting of the Belvedere Palace Christmas Market is beautiful. These Vienna Christmas Markets are set in the very romantic gardens of Belvedere Palace which is now an incredible art museum with artworks from Klimt & van Gogh on display.

visit vienna christmas markets

Spend an early afternoon exploring the museum, before heading out to the stunning grounds and wait for the light to start fading before enjoying the Christmas Markets in Belvedere Palace.

The grounds of Belvedere Palace are outstanding. I felt like I was in a mini-Versailles as I walked around, expecting to bump into some ladies in hoop dresses from the 18th century.

visit vienna christmas markets

The Christmas Markets in Belvedere Palace are enchanting and I think the setting really adds to them. I went during the day, and like most of the Christmas Markets in Vienna, they’re best visited during the evening when they’re lit up in all their glory.

With a number of stalls selling warm apple punch and different types of food, the Belvedere Palace Christmas Markets are gorgeous and I would imagine even more stunning in the evening.

Dates: The Christmas Village at Belvedere Palace starts on the 17th of November 2023 until the 26th of December 2023 . The Belvedere Palace Christmas Village will then turn into the New Year’s Eve Village and run until the 31st of December 2023 , finishing at 6 pm.

Opening Times: The Belvedere Christmas Market is open from 11 am until 9 pm each day. They do open an hour earlier on the weekends at 10 am. If you’re planning on visiting

visit vienna christmas markets

St Stephen’s Square Christmas Village

Set beneath the soaring St Stephen’s Church you’ll find a small city-center Christmas Market. This Christmas market weaves around the base of the Gothic church and is perfectly situated in the heart of the city of Vienna. Nearby the streets are decorated so beautifully with enormous baubles on one of the main shopping streets of Vienna, Graben.

visit vienna christmas markets

You’ll find a lot more stalls to grab a mulled wine at than to eat at. The St Stephen’s Square Christmas Market gives off the impression that it’s nice to stay at for a drink, but then you move on elsewhere. Cute, but there are better Christmas Markets in Vienna to visit.

Spittelberg Christmas Markets

So, I thought I had found the Spittelberg Christmas Markets but apparently whilst writing this post, I most definitely hadn’t. My Google Maps took me close, but not close enough.

The Spittelberg Christmas Markets are apparently some of the coziest markets in Vienna set along a restored alleyway that dates back to Medieval times. Linger along the street, sipping on a hot drink and browse the stalls. And let me know how they are.

What I did find were the nearby MuseumQuartier Christmas Markets which were just drink stalls, an art installation and a curling game. There was a great vibe here and it was fun to watch the curling game and find one of the more unusual Viennese traditional mugs.

visit vienna christmas markets

More Christmas Markets in Vienna

There are a smaller amount of Christmas Markets in Vienna that are more spread out, or have later opening dates.

  • Am Hof Christmas Market
  • Prater has a small Christmas Market set up, which if you’re planning on visiting is a bonus.
  • University Campus Christmas Markets

Vienna christmas market food

One of the best things about any of the European Christmas Markets is the food! And the Vienna Christmas Markets are no exception. You’ll find a huge number of things to nibble on as you make your way from market to market.

Lángos – A Hungarian fried dough that can be served with a number of toppings. Sour cream and grated cheese seemed to be a popular option.

Maroni – Roasted chestnuts.

Sausages/Hot-Dogs – Different variations and fillings.

visit vienna christmas markets

Überbackene Brote – Toasted open-face sandwiches with a variety of toppings. Cheese/Ham/Leek & Black sausage/onions.

Bread Soup Bowls – various flavors of soups presented in a bread bowl.

Ofenkartoffel – Baked potatoes with different toppings.

Käseraclettebrot – Raclette cheese melted onto bread, toppings can be added like bacon or truffle.

where to stay in Vienna for christmas markets

Vienna seems like a really accessible city to get around. There are plenty of options of hopping on a tram, bus or train to your destination, and the city is quite flat.

I stayed a 10-minute tram ride from Rathausplatz , and you can easily walk around the city, often times Google Maps was telling me it was faster to walk than get local transport.

A ring road, or boulevard runs around the perimeter of the older part of the city and the newer part.

visit vienna christmas markets

Stadtaffe Chic Hostel Vi e – I stayed in Stadtaffe Chic Hostel Vie during my trip as I was in Vienna for such a short period of time and wasn’t planning on spending any time relaxing as I had a lot to tick off my list. The hostel was fantastic and actually restored my faith in what a good hostel can look like and be. Clean, modern, and has a great location.

Flemings Selection Hotel Wien-City – A mid-range hotel a 5-minute walk from the beautiful Rathausplatz and line U2 – the location is superb.

Ritz-Carlton, Vienna – Complete your perfect Vienna Christmas Market in the most perfect and dreamy luxurious hotel in Vienna. Chic, modern and with splashes of glamour throughout, this is a bucket-list hotel if ever there was one.

visit vienna christmas markets

Meet Missy…

Missy spent the first 2 decades of her life living in her native Dublin, Ireland. Before a life living overseas called to her, and she spent the next decade living in China, Laos & Belgium. She now splits her time in Antwerp, Belgium, and wherever the sun is currently shining. You can follow Missy’s real-time travels on her Instagram .

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10 Best Vienna Christmas Markets

visit vienna christmas markets

If you’re planning to visit Vienna in either late November or December, chances are you’ll end up stumbling upon at least one major Christmas Market. 

This post provides useful details about the best and most festive markets in this city, including information about when they open and what you can expect to find at each location.

With over 1 million tours given, the guides of Free Tours By Foot have a lot of experience traveling and visiting some of the most historic and beautiful cities in the world, including Vienna.

Whenever possible, we ask for their opinions when compiling these articles, as they usually know which markets are best.

1. Christkindlmarkt

This is arguably the biggest and most well-known Christmas market in Vienna.

As you wander past the hundreds of booths selling all kinds of festive goods, you’ll likely spot the Tree of Hearts in the nearby Rathaus Park.

Located at the Rathausplatz in front of Town Hall, it’s relatively easy to find this massive holiday marketplace.

  • Dates: November 16th - December 26th, 2024
  • Hours: 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Christkindlmarkt closes early at 6:30 pm on December 24th

Visitors can enjoy ice skating during opening hours, and the skating rink actually remains open much longer than the Christmas market itself, closing on January 7th, 2025.

The nearby Rathaus Park is also home to the Tree of Hearts, a Ferris wheel, and a carousel.

The park itself typically features a lighting display for the holidays, giving you plenty of reason to at least take a quick walk through the area either before or after visiting Christkindlmarkt.

What do they sell?

Christkindlmarkt is mostly known for its food stalls, including traditional holiday favorites such as roasted chestnuts, Fladenbrot, chocolate-covered strawberries, and Christmas punch.

There are also some arts and crafts booths, novelty toys, and various other trinkets and baubles.

How to Get Here

There are a variety of ways to get here, especially by public transport. Here are the easiest methods:

  • Bus Lines: 1a and 48a
  • Subway Lines: U2 and U3
  • Tram Lines: 2, 37, 38, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 46, and 49

2. Schönbrunn Palace

This one should be easy to find if you’re planning to tour the city, as it’s located right in front of Schönbrunn Palace, which is often included on many free Vienna walking tours.

Like Christkindlmarkt, you’ll also find a giant Christmas tree at this market as well.

Although there aren’t typically as many stalls here, you can still expect dozens of vendors to choose from.

  • Dates: TBD for 2024. Last year dates: November 18th - January 4th
  • Hours: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • This market closes at 4 pm on December 24th
  • Hours change to 10:00 am - 6:00 pm on December 25th
  • This Christmas market transforms into a Neujahrsmarkt (New Year’s market) on December 27th.

There is usually an open-air stage near the Christmas tree where you can expect to see a choir singing Christmas carols and other festive favorites.

You’ll likely also spot a large Nativity scene nearby.

If you’re looking for Christmas decorations or unique gifts, this is one of the best Christmas markets in the city.

You’ll find dozens of stalls offering a variety of arts and crafts, candlemakers, potters, wood carvers, and other artists producing one-of-a-kind items.

You can also expect to find plenty of vendors selling food, including a festive favorite known as kaiserschmarren.

You’ll also find warming foods such as soup, dumplings, and more.

Since this market is just outside one of the top tourist destinations in the city, there are plenty of ways to get here using public transportation or even a hop-on hop-off bus tour . Here are the closest stops:

  • Bus Lines: 10A, 56A, 56B, 58A, 58B
  • Subway Lines: U4
  • Tram Lines: 10, 60

3. Belvedere Palace

This is yet another Christmas market you’re likely to stumble upon simply by taking a free Vienna walking tour, as it’s right next to the Belvedere Palace.

Compared to some of the other options on this list, you’ll find that this market is a bit smaller than others, with around 15-20 stalls selling a variety of goods.

  • Dates: 2024 dates TBD. Last year dates: November 17th - December 31st
  • Weekday Hours: 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Weekend Hours: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Closes at 4 pm on December 24th
  • Closes at 7 pm on December 25th, 26th
  • Turns into a New Year’s Market on December 27th

You’ll typically find a carousel and even a reindeer train nearby, giving the kids something to do while you’re shopping.

If you haven’t seen the Belvedere yet, they house an excellent collection of art that you might want to see as well.

This Christmas market offers a variety of options including both food and gifts.

Visitors can expect stalls selling jewelry, wooden toys, drinking horns, and other handcrafted items.

There are also vendors selling mulled wine, kaiserschmarren, and other traditional Austrian dishes.

Located near one of the major tourist attractions in Vienna, there are several different ways to get here using either public transportation or even hop-on hop-off bus tours .

Here are some of the closest stops:

  • Subway Lines: U1
  • Tram Lines: D, O, 18, 71

4. Spittelberg

If you’re looking for another fairly big Christmas market, Spittelberg is one of the better options in Vienna.

They typically have hundreds of vendors selling an interesting mix of both gifts and festive dishes.

One thing that sets this location apart from other markets is that it isn’t located in a public square, but rather you’ll find the booths lining the streets of the neighborhood.

  • Dates: November 16th, 2024 - December 23rd, 2024
  • Mon - Thur Hours: 2:00 pm - 9:00 pm
  • Friday Hours: 2:00 pm - 9:30 pm
  • Saturday Hours: 10:00 am - 9:30 pm
  • Sunday Hours: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm

Since the area of this market is more confined, you won’t find the same kind of attractions here that you will at other Christmas markets, and it’s probably a better spot for visitors shopping on their own.

You will find a lot of art galleries, bars, and other little shops lining the streets, and the buildings themselves date back hundreds of years, providing a unique atmosphere for the holidays.

Shoppers can expect to find a mix of arts and crafts, blown glass items, leather goods, and more.

You’ll find food booths as well, selling all kinds of interesting dishes including roasted almonds, pulled pork sandwiches, and arancini.

Perhaps the best thing about the Spittelberg Christmas market is that it has been certified as an environmentally-friendly event!

Although this market isn’t right next to a popular landmark, there are still quite a few public transport stops located nearby, including the following options:

  • Bus Lines: 2A and 48A
  • Subway Lines: U3
  • Tram Lines: 49

5. Karlsplatz

Also known as Art Advent, this Vienna Christmas market focuses mainly on artistic gifts and trinkets.

Like many other markets on our list, you’ll find this one in a large plaza that is often included on some free Vienna walking tours.

You can expect to find around 80 vendors selling various goods, and there will be plenty of food and drink for shoppers as well.

  • Dates: November 15th, 2024 - December 23rd, 2024
  • Hours: 12:00 pm - 8:00 pm daily

Although this Christmas market is located in a fairly large public square, there aren’t a whole lot of additional activities to enjoy beyond shopping.

Families will find arts and crafts activities and a carousel nearby.

As the name implies, Art Advent actually requires vendors to create the products they sell, ensuring a wide variety of unique and artistic gifts such as clothing, jewelry, and more.

The food stalls sell a few traditional dishes such as roasted chestnuts and mulled wine, but you can expect far more vendors to sell different foods such as potato goulash and raclette.

Since this is a public square, there are a lot of public transportation stops nearby, including the following:

  • Bus Lines: 4A
  • Subway Lines: U1, U4
  • Tram Lines: 1, 62, BB

6. Maria-Theresien-Platz

Located between the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Natural History Museum, this is one of the biggest Christmas markets in Vienna.

You can expect around 70-75 booths to be selling a variety of arts, crafts, and of course festive foods.

Like some other markets, this one turns into a New Year’s Market on December 27th.

  • Dates: November 13th, 2024 - December 31st, 2024
  • Sun - Thur Hours: 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Fri - Sat Hours: 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Closes at 7 pm from December 25th - 30th
  • Closes at 6 pm on December 31st

Since this market is between two museums, you can of course visit them and take in some excellent art and natural history.

There are also two fountains in this public square, but beyond that, there aren’t any particularly festive activities here.

The Maria-Theresien-Platz Christmas market features a variety of vendors, including candlemakers, wooden toys, and even snow globes. 

You’ll also find plenty of food stalls selling all kinds of local dishes such as sausage, pastries, mulled wine, and even chocolate-dipped fruits.

Thanks to its central location, you’ll find plenty of public transportation options. Here are the closest stops:

  • Bus Lines: 48A
  • Subway Lines: U2, U3
  • Tram Lines: D, 1, 2, 46, 49, 71

7. Stephansplatz

You’ll find this Christmas market right next to Stephansdom, also known as St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

Set amidst the beautiful Gothic architecture, you will find a giant Christmas tree and at least 40 stalls selling a variety of holiday gifts and festive foods.

Even better, there are frequent horse-drawn carriages offering service in the area, allowing you to easily travel from one end to the other while still feeling as though you’ve stepped back in time.

  • Dates: November 8th, 2024 - December 26th, 2024
  • Hours: 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Closes at 7 pm on December 25th and 26th

Aside from the Christmas tree and the carriage rides, there are also a lot of excellent shops in the area where you can continue shopping if you haven’t quite found what you’re looking for in the holiday marketplace.

There are also a lot of great Christmas light displays nearby, giving you something to enjoy on your walk back home.

The Stephansplatz Christmas market has some of the best variety of all the markets in Vienna, including gifts such as snow globes, homemade wool hats, handmade decorations, candles, and more.

When it comes to food, there’s a nice mix of holiday favorites like roasted almonds and local dishes like hot sausages, potato fritters, and even bread bowls with hot soup inside.

This is another market close to a major landmark, so it should be accessible in a variety of ways, including hop-on and hop-off bus tours.

  • Bus Lines: 1A, 2A, 3A
  • Subway Lines: U1, U3

8. Altes AKH

This is one of the better Christmas markets for families and visitors who just want to enjoy some great food in a festive marketplace.

They focus mostly on food and drink, but the locale is also perfect for kids.

In addition to all the food stalls, there are also a lot of great restaurants around here serving authentic Austrian meals, so you won’t have much trouble finding something good to eat!

  • Mon-Wed Hours: 2:00 pm - 10:00 pm
  • Thur - Fri Hours: 2:00 pm - 11:00 pm
  • Saturday Hours: 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
  • Sunday Hours: 11:00 am - 8:00 pm

One of the reasons this market is great for kids is that there is a playground nearby.

They also regularly have special holiday activities such as a Christmas train, pony rides, and more.

Best of all, Altes AKH doesn’t tend to be as crowded as other markets, so it’s usually safer for families.

When you’re done enjoying all the activities with your children, you can grab a bite to eat at one of the festive food stalls or a restaurant in the area.

While they don’t have a lot of traditional holiday booths, you will find a few selling things like clothing, jewelry, and other specialty items.

For the most part, this Christmas market is all about the food, and there’s plenty to choose from.

In addition to traditional fare such as sausages, you can also expect to find festive drinks such as Christmas punch, roasted chestnuts, mulled wine, and more.

This is a bit further from the city center, but it’s still quite easy to get here using public transportation.

  • Bus Lines: 13A
  • Subway Lines: U2, U6
  • Tram Lines: 5, 33, 43, 44

9. Hirschstetten Botanical Garden

If you’re looking for a more unique setting, this Christmas market is actually located in a botanical garden.

While you’re enjoying the wonderful flora on display, you’ll also have the opportunity to do a little holiday shopping!

There are roughly 50 stands available at this holiday market, ensuring you’ll have plenty to choose from.

  • Dates: TBD for 2024. Last year dates: November 23rd - December 23rd
  • Thur - Sun Hours: 10:00 am - 8:00 pm

This event usually has a theme related to the holidays, and they often hold festive musical performances at 5 p.m. every day.

There are also usually at least a few small rides, making this an excellent option for kids.

The botanical garden is decorated for the holidays, giving visitors a beautiful visual feast while they enjoy some Christmas shopping.

There is a good mix of market stalls here, including both festive foods and unique handmade gifts.

Visitors can also expect a variety of decorations and knitted clothing items, making for the perfect memento.

When it comes to food, all the traditional fare is available such as Christmas punch, roasted chestnuts, holiday biscuits, and more.

You can also of course expect popular Austrian dishes like sausages and baked potatoes.

While there aren’t a lot of easy ways to get here, there are at least two decent public transportation options to consider.

  • Tram Lines: 26

10. Wintermarkt am Riesenradplatz

Although this isn’t the biggest Christmas market in Vienna, it is a popular option thanks to the fact that it’s located next to the giant Ferris Wheel.

This is an excellent spot for families but be warned that there aren’t a lot of market stalls despite the noteworthy location.

In total, you can expect about 20 stands to be available, mostly offering festive food and drink.

  • Dates: November 16th, 2024 - January 6th, 2025
  • Weekday Hours: 12:00 pm - 10:00 pm
  • Weekend Hours: 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Closes at 5 pm on December 24th
  • Open from 11 am - 2 am on New Year’s Eve

The main attraction here is of course the Ferris wheel, and you can expect it to be quite busy.

In addition to that, you can also expect plenty of musical performances throughout the season from 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. from Wednesday to Sunday each week.

Madame Tussauds is nearby, but most people will probably stick to the other amusement rides that are typically set up in the area.

If you’re looking for the perfect gift, this might not be the best Christmas market in Vienna.

However, if you’re in the mood for family fun and good food, this is one of the best options in the city.

You can expect a variety of festive favorites including hot chocolate, Christmas punch, and chocolate-covered fruit.

They also have Austrian standards like sausage, goulash soup, and more.

Since Prater and the giant Ferris Wheel are popular destinations, there are plenty of easy ways to get here by public transportation.

  • Bus Lines: 5B and 80A
  • Subway Lines: U1 and U2
  • Tram Lines: 5 and O
  • City Trains: S1, S2, S3, S4, S7

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visit vienna christmas markets

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Kasia who Travels – Travel Blog

Guide to Vienna Christmas Markets 2024 (Free Map)

Guide to Vienna Christmas Markets 2024 (Free Map)

Table of Contents

Free Travel Map of All Christmas Markets

After many years of living in Vienna, Christmas market openings are still my favorite time in the city! That is why I’ve prepared a map for you with the complete Guide to Vienna Christmas Markets:

Things to know before going to Christmas Markets

  • Dress for a cold weather
  • Make sure to take cash with you! Vienna has this special thing about paying with a card – what is so special about it is that it’s rarely happening (haha), but Christmas markets are no different – usually, you will be asked to pay with cash.
  • Punch is not as expensive as it seems – usually, you will be asked to pay for the punch (3,5-5,5 euro) + for the mug (plus 5euro). You can take a mug with you as a souvenir, especially because each Christmas Market has their own design! But when you give a mug back – you will also receive your money back.
  • Be prepared to stand a lot – Christmas markets areas usually provide very few sitting spots
@kasia.in.austria ❓Why go to just one Christmas Market when you can go to four? 🎄 🎅🏻on the video one of my top locations: 1️⃣ Schönbrunn Christmas Market 2️⃣ Altes AKH / Vienna University Campus Christmas Market 3️⃣Rathausplatz Christmas Market 4️⃣ Maria-Theresien-Platz Christmas Market ℹ️PRO TIP: take lots of cash with you 👏 there are some ATMs but most payments is cash only and it goes fast!💨 follow @kasiawhotravels for exciting content about Vienna, Austria and Travels around the world 📍🌍 I saw this awesome transition made by @siranda_manchez and I knew I have to make mine but with Vienna Christmas Markets and their cute mugs 🥹❤️ 👏Thanks to my hubby @worldofpk because this transition required 2 people and lots of walking in a cold 🥶 ❤️ QUESTION FOR YOU ❓Do you like video transitions like this one? 😀 Vienna Christmas Markets | Wiedeń Jarmarki Świąteczne | Wiedeń w Grudniu | Austria in December | Austria Christmas Markets | Best Vienna Christmas Markets | what to do in Vienna | Vienna Travel Guide | Vienna content creator | Christkindlmärkt Wien | weihnachtsmärkte Wien #wien #christmastime #Christmasmarket #viennanow #wienjetzt @vienna_austria @viennatouristboard @insta.vienna @1000thingsinvienna @wieninfo @viennacityofficial #wienstagram #christkindlmarkt #weihnachten #weihnachtsmarkt #wienliebe #wien_love #wien🇦🇹 #wienmalanders #discoveraustria #discovervienna @Visit Austria @ViennaNow @austria_official #viennacity #visitvienna🇦🇹 @wienliebe @Stadt Wien ♬ Sleigh Ride (Sped Up) – The Ronettes

My Top 4 Christmas Markets

All the Christmas markets have their special magic and vibe. After living in Vienna for (almost) four years – those 4 are the ones I always look forward to. Those are the ones I visit more than once and make sure to bring my guests to:

  • This traditional Viennese Christmas fair is situated in one of the most beautiful squares in the heart of Vienna, the Freyung. It features a mixture of exquisite craftwork, special treats typical for Christmas time in Vienna, and a varied cultural program – in a somewhat quieter and less touristic atmosphere.
  • Christmas Market in front of the Palace door? Sign me in. This Christmas market tends to be less crowded than the other central ones – especially if you come here during the week – and additionally, you can grab your Glühwein and walk around the park. Additionally – this place has a strong focus on high-quality arts and crafts.
  • I adore the Karlsplatz area – any time of the year. With the Christmas market, it just gains an additional 100 points from me. You will not regret going there. Also, this is a place where every booth must make its own goods and pass a jury test.
  • The most tourist one, yes, but also the most spectacular one! With lights, crowds of happy people, Christmas music all around, lights, smells, and an ice-skating ring – it truly feels like traveling to the Santas Village.

visit vienna christmas markets

New Christmas Attractions around Vienna

From 2021 Vienna is offering a few new spots. Here are the details about the new attractions:

Illumina, the magical garden of lights in Laxenburg Palace

This attraction is entirely new, but I have already seen it all over social media – looks spectacular and is worth checking out (I know I will). Laxenburg is situated about 15 km south of Vienna. The magical garden of lights in Laxenburg Palace Park is prepared to delight you with its fascinating play of lights, water shows, and sound projections.

On the approximately 2 km long circular path around the park, sparkles with more than a million lights in the evening, you immerse yourself in a fascinating world full of light and music. Atmospheric light installations, spectacular water shows, laser projections, and inspiring sound projections accompany you on your walk through the Laxenburg Palace Park, one of the most important historical landscape gardens in Europe. – Illumina Website

Open: November 2023 – January 2024 Tickets: You need to book tickets in advance. For adults €15. Book them here Opening times:  daily from 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. More about it: https://www.lichtergarten.at/

How to get to Illumina by public transport from Vienna?

You need to know that Laxenburg Palace is outside of Vienna – but there is a way to get there by public transport if you do not have a car. ÖBB or Wiener Linien

  • U1, 18, D, O, 13A, 69A to Vienna Central Station
  • Bus line 200 from Vienna Central Station (N)
  • Laxenburg Franz-Josephs Platz driving time approx. 30 minutes
  • from Laxenburg Franz-Josephs-Platz 3 minutes walk to the entrance to the Schlossplatz gate (P1)

Fun fact: After her grand wedding with Emperor Franz Joseph, Empress Sisi spent her honeymoon here in Laxenburg.

Weihnacht im Wald (Christmas in Forest near Prater)

A Christmas Village in the woods, not far from the Prater amusement park. It advertises itself as a less commercial fair – which would be a fresh point on the map of Vienna. 

Quaint, cozy winter magic? 
Christmas in the forest is the perfect experience at Christmas time for young and old. A must for cozy hearts and those who are looking for the magic of childhood away from the commercial madness around Christmas.  In our forest, there are things to be found that are not or only rarely to be found in other markets. – In small wooden huts in the forest, exhibitors present selected food and decorative items.  If you have the time, you can even marvel at St. Nicholas.  – Weihnacht im Wald Website

Open: December 2023 Tickets: You need to book tickets in advance. For adults €4.60. Children below 6 = for free Book them here Opening times: Thursday – Sunday 16:00-22:00 (except 11th,25th & 26th December) More about it: https://www.weihnachtimwald.com/

Advent market in the Palais Liechtenstein

From mid-November until Christmas, an Advent market will take place around the Liechtenstein Garden Palace for the first time. It is said that the garden palace of the princely family offers a special Christmas magic. Thus, the courtyard in front of the garden palace and part of the park behind it is transformed into a magical Christmas land. To enter the contemplative Advent market, go via the entrance gate at Fürstengasse 1.

Open: End of November 2023 Opening times: Monday to Thursday: 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. More about it: https://www.adventimgartenpalais.at/

visit vienna christmas markets

The Viennese Christmas markets deserve their outstanding reputation. Submerge yourself in the atmosphere and enjoy Vienna’s sights, sounds, scents, and tastes. I can tell for sure it’s the best time of year to be here!

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Great post with all the needed information and I love the kind of wikipedia travel guide formatting, its easy to follow. I wish I could joing the Xmas markets in Vienna this year, I remember they all have a magic spark!

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Enjoyed reading, I will make sure to check out the Liechtenstein advent market

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I think the mayor of Vienna himself should thank you for making this post happen – specially the map!

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Haha thank you a lof Gica, I guess I should email him soon 😀

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Absolutely love it! All the details I’m looking for when planning the trip ❤️ Maybe Vienna next year… 🥰

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The map is really cool and easy to follow, haven’t seen anything similar yet. I’m coming with my family from Wroclaw for a weekend in December, and this map is kinda the only thing we need for our trip. Thanks for sharing!

I am so happy to hear that Pavel 😀 I hope your family will enjoy the Winter Magic of Vienna 🙂

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5 Tips for Visiting Vienna's Famous Christmas Markets

Summer Hull

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here .

The bright lights, festive foods, over-the-top, decorations, joyful music, thoughtful gifts, fun traditions and a jolly spirit are just a few of the many things my extended family loves about the holidays. You might even say we are a tad obsessed with the whole Christmas season, perhaps a bit like Buddy the Elf mixed with a touch of Clark W. Griswold.

Given our holiday season obsession, we regularly take part in the NYC holiday festivities , have trekked to the ICE! Experience at the Gaylord Texan and watched Cinderella Castle be lit up with ice at Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party . But, until this year, a big holiday must-do was missing from our holiday resume. We had never visited one of Europe's famed Christmas markets.

So, for Christmas 2017, I gave my mom a trip for the two of us to explore the holiday markets in Vienna together this season — and, boy, am I glad that we did because they are magical.

visit vienna christmas markets

In case you have a similar travel wish list, here are five tips for visiting the Christmas markets of Vienna.

visit vienna christmas markets

Stay at the Park Hyatt Vienna (on points)

I'm a sucker for a luxury hotel, especially one in a five-star location that's a good value on points. The Park Hyatt Vienna checks all of those marks and more.

visit vienna christmas markets

This property opened in 2014 and is a Category 6 Hyatt that costs 25,000 World of Hyatt points per night. You can work on boosting your World of Hyatt account with The World Of Hyatt Credit Card (currently offering up to 60,000 points after $6,000 total spend in the first six months), or transfers at a 1:1 ratio from Chase Ultimate Rewards and cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. The Park Hyatt Vienna is literally directly across the street from the Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof Market, which features a great selection of arts and crafts, along with food, drinks and even a Champagne bar.

visit vienna christmas markets

Just another block or so down the street is the Old Viennese Christmas Market Freyung, which dates back to 1772 and excels at glass, ceramics, traditional mangers and other high-quality goods.

visit vienna christmas markets

While there are several other points-friendly properties in Vienna, such as the InterContinental Vienna (35,000 IHG points) or Ritz-Carlton Vienna (50,000 Marriott Rewards points), the Park Hyatt Vienna proved to be a premier lodging choice for exploring the holiday markets. There were at least a half-dozen markets within a few minutes' walking distance from the hotel.

visit vienna christmas markets

As a Hyatt Globalist , the included room service breakfast to start each morning (or really more like brunch thanks to jet lag) helped keep our costs down and bellies full. Stay tuned for a full review of the property.

visit vienna christmas markets

Allow a Couple of Days to Explore Vienna

If you are hoping around Europe exploring various Christmas markets, I would allow at least a few days in Vienna because there are so many different markets in the city, many with their own unique personalities and specialties.

visit vienna christmas markets

At a minimum, I would allow two nights in Vienna but we were there for three, which helped us to mix in a few other activities to our holiday market itinerary. Our visit to the Spanish Riding School to see the famed horses practice was a standout moment of the trip.

visit vienna christmas markets

Come Thirsty 

The Christmas markets in Vienna are not just about shopping, and they certainly aren't about the frenetic Black Friday style of shopping you see in the United States. Instead, they are about taking a moment or two to enjoy a warm beverage with friends while browsing holiday goods.

visit vienna christmas markets

Each market we visited in Vienna had its own themed mug that was utilized when you ordered warm punch, hot chocolate, mulled wine or a variety of other festive drinks.

The mug costs a few euros worth of a deposit, and you can either keep it when you are finished and forfeit the deposit or return it to get a little cash back. Some of the mugs were pretty plain and not worth keeping, but some were a treat worth taking home.

visit vienna christmas markets

My favorite mug, shown above, was actually from my least favorite market (Christmas Village Maria-Theresien Platz, as it was a bit light on the unique local goods), but the mug made it worth the trek for a fun souvenir to take home. While drinking a warm beverage or two, make sure you save some room in your belly for baked goods since those are plentiful in the markets.

visit vienna christmas markets

On your trip to Vienna, bring a card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, or one of the many others that don't charge foreign transaction fees , but know that not all of the vendors take credit cards at the Vienna Christmas markets. In fact, many stalls we visited were cash-only, so pack some euros or be ready to visit a local ATM before unleashing your inner holiday shopper.

visit vienna christmas markets

German Not Required

If you have visited Vienna before, you probably already know this, but don't worry about being able to communicate if English is all you have to offer the conversation . While German is the official language in Austria, you will do just fine shopping the Vienna holiday markets armed only with euros and English.

visit vienna christmas markets

The majority of the vendors we encountered at the markets speak English, or at least enough English to easily complete a basic transaction. That said, learning and using at a few basic words in German is fun and encouraged . Having a translation app at the ready in case you venture off the beaten path into areas with fewer bilingual menus and signs is also a good idea.

Baby, It's Cold Outside

Vienna's Christmas markets operate beginning from mid- to late-November and run until between Christmas and New Year's, during which time the average temperatures are usually in the 30s. In other words, it's cold outside — and you will be outside, a lot. Bring your truly warm weather gear and pick up a solid set of winter boots if you don't already own a pair (ice skates are optional).

visit vienna christmas markets

You don't want your shopping cut short by frostbite, frozen noses or wet feet since both rain and snow are possible that time of year.

Bonus Vienna Christmas Market Tips

A few other tips when visiting the Christmas markets in Vienna are to pack for your trip with purchases in mind so that you leave space in your luggage to get items home safely. If you anticipate fragile purchases, maybe even pack some wrapping materials for ornaments, mugs and ceramics. In a pinch, just use your socks, scarves and shirts to bundle up your breakables.

visit vienna christmas markets

Also, on the evening that you spend time at the Christkindlmarkt Rathausplatz, the largest and arguably most popular market in Vienna, allow time for ice skating at their very large and unique ice skating rink. It is not just a big circular rink, but rather a complex of different frozen areas. You can rent skates and lockers for your time on the ice.

visit vienna christmas markets

After some laps around the ice, seek out warmth across the street at the Cafe Landtmann, a Viennese coffee house that dates back to the 1800s.

visit vienna christmas markets

We gave very high marks to this cafe for its hot chocolate and French press coffee, which were both perfect after a chilly night shopping and skating. One note — don't go there in a hurry as things operate at a very relaxed and leisurely pace.

visit vienna christmas markets

If you brought the kids along for the trip (and think carefully before you do as they may get a bit bored browsing stall after stall of breakable items), there are carnival rides adjacent to the Rathausplatz Market that would appeal to the younger kiddos, especially those in the 2- to 8-year-old range.

visit vienna christmas markets

Bottom Line

Whether you love Christmas, Hanukkah, shopping, Europe, outdoor markets or all of the above, visiting the famed European Christmas markets was well worth the effort. The holiday markets of Vienna were every bit as enjoyable as we had hoped, so naturally, we are now plotting our next Christmas market destination .

visit vienna christmas markets

If you have visited Vienna's famed holiday markets, we'd love to hear your favorite spots and tips.

visit vienna christmas markets

Read on to plan a memorable trip to the Christmas markets of Vienna and beyond:

  • Austrian Business Class Flight Review: JFK - Vienna
  • 4 Things to Love About Vienna
  • World's Best Christmas Markets
  • Reader Success Story: Celebrating a Birthday in Vienna

The best river cruises for boutique European cruising

From wine tasting along the Douro to Italian feasts with top chefs in Venice, browse the most amazing river cruise itineraries

best river cruises

From the Douro to the Rhine , Europe has some of the world's most scenic rivers that are best experienced on a small ship, where you can sail from little towns to historic cities via relaxing long stretches of countryside.

We've rounded up the best river cruises for boutique sailing, selecting those that combine the most carefully put-together itineraries aboard the loveliest ships, including a super-luxe option to explore the Venetian Lagoon in autumn 2024.

River cruises are also the perfect introduction to cruise holidays for first-timers, while those who already know and love the joy of discovering destinations by small ship will enjoy exploring new itineraries accompanied by famous faces, such as chef James Martin and historian Lucy Worsley .

Here are Good Housekeeping's pick of the best river cruises for exploring Europe's wonderful rivers, plus a few options for those who want to travel further afield.

Sail the magical Venetian Lagoon and hear Russell Watson sing

best river cruises

Venice is a captivating city, almost frozen in time, where astoundingly beautiful buildings line a maze of canals — it's no wonder the sheer decadence of this place captures the hearts of so many. Part of the thrill of visiting Venice is getting swept up in its narrow streets, peering into windows displaying intricately painted masks and feasting on plates of risotto in piazzas. Join Good Housekeeping's fantastic music-themed Venice cruise with world-renowned tenor Russell Watson, which includes an exclusive intimate concert in this stunning and historic city and seven nights on board a luxury ship. You'll explore the lagoon's elegant waterways aboard S.S La Venezia. It's an incredible eight-day itinerary that takes you around the Venetian Lagoon to visit places such as Chioggia, Torcello, Mazzorbo and Burano.

S.S. La Venezia matches Venice's splendour in its opulent fittings, filled with accents that honour its location, including exquisite Venetian masks and Murano glass. Everything's included on this five-star cruise, from delicious food and wines to a choice of excursions around the islands.

When? October 2024

FIND OUT MORE

Taste Portuguese wines on a Douro River cruise

best river cruises

The gorgeous Douro Valley is an enchanting and peaceful pocket of Portugal, famed for its port wine and loved for its storybook-style beauty. Terraced vineyards rise steeply from the winding river and are dotted with whitewashed Quintas - the region's terracotta-roofed wine estates - making it a particularly scenic area for a relaxing river cruise.

Sit on the sundeck of a ship to watch the scenery pass by, and delight your palate with some of Portugal’s most sensational wines on an eight-day round-trip cruise on the Douro River. You'll be able to explore the area and learn more about its port production — with plenty of opportunities to sample it yourself on visits to rustic Quintas

After arriving in Porto to board the A-ROSA ALVA, you’ll sail to Régua, a pretty riverfront town that’s produced port since the 18th century. You'll follow the Douro, hopping from place to place to where Portugal borders Spain before turning back. A highlight is visiting a Quinta in Pinhão where, depending on the season, you might get to take part in the traditional grape harvest, picking and crushing the grapes underfoot .

When? June and September 2024

Visit Germany's famous Christmas markets along the Rhine

cologne germany christmas market, aerial drone view over cologne rhine river germany europe

There are so many enchanting cities and villages along the banks of the Rhine, and they really come into their own in December. Germany is famed for its atmospheric Christmas markets, and many of the best in the country can be found along the Rhine, making a Christmassy cruise a fabulous way to explore them.

There's Mainz, one of the oldest cities in Germany, where you can visit a historic Christmas market on the Domplatz, set against a backdrop of the illuminated Mainz Cathedral. You'll want to visit Koblenz too, a city considered to have one of the most beautiful Christmas markets in Germany, and one of the largest in the Rhineland.

Join Good Housekeeping for a festive voyage along the Rhine on the the beautiful ship A-ROSA Aqua and you'll visit Mainz and Koblenz as well as Frankfurt and Cologne, where the market takes place right in front of the famous Cologne Cathedral.

On board your ship you'll find a sauna, fitness area, and whirlpool to enjoy between your market trips, and ample breakfast, lunch and dinner buffets in the ship's lovely dining venues.

When? December 2024 FIND OUT MORE

Glide along the Danube and see the Lipizzaner horses in Vienna

best river cruises

The banks of the Danube have seen the rise and fall of empires and provided inspiration to some of Europe's greatest artists and composers. This grand river winds its way past mysterious hillside castles and ancient medieval towns and meanders through a range of culture-rich cities, including four European capitals . A river cruise is an unbeatable way to explore some of the cities straddling the Danube, allowing you to visit several towns, villages and cities on one trip, without having to organise local transport yourself.

One of the finest cities that the Danube flows through is Vienna, once the home of Mozart, where manicured gardens, chic coffee houses and baroque palaces will have you feeling like you've stepped back in time. It's also the home of the Royal Lipizzaner Stables at the Spanish Riding School, where grand Lipizzan horses perform a mesmerising type of equine ballet. On Good Housekeeping's Danube River cruise you can visit the Royal Lipizzaner Stables with historian Lucy Worsley. You'll enjoy an aperitif and a talk before watching the training of the young stallions in the imperial atmosphere of the Baroque winter riding school, as classical Viennese music plays.

When? September 2024

Sail further afield with a cruise through Vietnam and Cambodia

sunrise view of popular tourist attraction ancient temple complex angkor wat with reflected in lake siem reap, cambodia

While Europe has more than its fair share of enchanting rivers, you're also spoilt for choice if you fancy a river cruise further afield.

Asia has several waterways which provide ideal routes for discovering new countries and cultures. Flowing through Myanmar, China, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, the Mekong is one of the longest rivers in the world and home to an incredible range of wildlife.

It makes the ideal destination for a river cruise that combines culture, delicious cuisine and wildlife-spotting. You might spot species like the endangered Irrawaddy dolphin, giant freshwater stingray and giant catfish swimming alongside you.

Good Housekeeping is offering an immersive adventure along the Mekong through Cambodia and Vietnam. You'll sail in a Luxury Balcony suite aboard the Mekong Jewel, a luxurious and beautifully decorated ship, to visit unforgettable sights like the UNESCO-listed Angkor Wat temples and incredible cities like Phnom Penh and Hanoi.

There'll be ample opportunities to learn about the turbulent history of the region too, with visits to the infamous Killing Fields and a glimpse of the Viet Cong's network of tunnels dating back to the Vietnam War.

When? December 2024

Enjoy an Italian feast with James Martin in Venice

the best river cruises in europe, cruise in venice

One thing that's synonymous with Italy is good food, and that's exactly what you can enjoy on this eight-day sailing around Venice and the Veneto region.

Tick off Venice's spectacular sights, including the Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge and St Mark's Basilica, which you'll visit after dark on our Good Housekeeping cruise . As part of our GH trip, you'll also get VIP access to the Doge's Palace, the stunning Venetian Gothic palace that dates back to 1340.

Sailing on the luxurious S.S. La Venezia , which accommodates only 126 guests and has a wonderfully intimate feel, you'll also visit the colourful, charming islands of Burano (pictured above), Mazzorbo and Torcello, all situated in the Lagoon of Venice.

If all of that wasn't exciting enough, the cherry on top will be meeting acclaimed chef James Martin, who will join you on board for the day to give a talk and partake in a Q&A and book-signing session. In addition, the much-loved Saturday Morning host will cook a delectable gala dinner one evening, too.

Discover local traditions as you sail the Ganges in a luxury ship

a building with many windows

Another Asian adventure awaits on the Ganges, India's most sacred river. Sailing along this important body of water allows you a unique insight into life along its banks. It meanders 2,500km through the country from its starting point high in the Himalayas down through sprawling cities, tiny villages, and spectacular nature.

A Ganges cruise is a wonderful way to see some of India's best attractions, with highlights including the Rajbari temple complex in Kalna, the artisan village of Matiari, and the neoclassical Hazarduari Palace in Murshidabad.

Join Good Houskeeping's once-in-a-lifetime tour of India , which includes seven-night cruising in luxury down the Ganges. After exploring India's Golden Triangle – including a trip to witness both sunset and sunrise over the iconic Taj Mahal – you'll board the opulent Ganges Voyager II, a spectacular ship adorned with hand-painted murals, to explore the culture and history on the river banks. Of course, another highlight of India holiday is the cuisine, and you'll be joined on board by Michelin-starred British-Indian chef Atul Kochhar, who will share his passion for Indian cooking in a live demonstration.

When? November 2024

Discover the wonders of Egypt and sail the Nile

karnak temple is considered one of the largest places to worship ever built in the world

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visit vienna christmas markets

Berlin Christmas Markets: Exploring One of Germany's Best Christmas Cities

W ith over 100 Christmas markets, Berlin STOLLENS the show in terms of Christmas markets. Or should we say it takes the FRUIT cake?  Oh, the puns! I’ll stop.

Caleb and I spent a few days exploring the markets in Berlin, and we loved so many of them! There were a few that we think you can skip due to being over-commercialized and not unique at all, but we found some ultra-magical and festive hidden gems that we can’t wait to share with you!

In this guide to Berlin’s Christmas markets, we’ll share 12 of the markets that we visited, along with our personal opinions on them and tips to have the best experience ever!

Here’s a video we made of some of the markets so you can start getting the vibe!

✔️ Quick Info:

📅 Opening Dates: The popular markets start November 25, 2024

⏰ Best time to go: late afternoon to just after sunset on weekdays.

🍴 Must eat: steak sandwich

🏨 Where to stay: We stayed at Maritim ProArte Hotel Berlin Mitte and loved it, and it’s proximity to markets

💴 Paying: card is accepted most places. Bring Euros just in case.

The Christmas Markets That We Visited

We couldn’t get to all 100 because we, unfortunately, are human, but these are the markets we visited and our opinions on them. I’ve listed them in the order that we visited them so you can follow along!

1. Bebelplatz  (Weihnachtszauber At Gendarmenmarket)

This is supposed to be the biggest and best Christmas market in Berlin, and it had an entrance fee of $2 each (lame.)  We were there on a Friday, and it was really busy, but it’s large and spread out, so that makes it a bit less insane to navigate. If you’re looking for things to buy , we really liked the arts and crafts tent as it had cool local artists…

…and it was warm. You’ll thank me for that later.

If you need a break from standing at tables eating sausages with randoms, there are also lots of little covered restaurants and bars around the perimeter. We had a bratwurst and tried the kase spetzel (German mac and cheese) with bacon, which was basically one big drool emoji. 

They also had a stage where there were some people singing Christmas carols, which we don’t usually see at markets, and made it unique!

Our opinion: one to visit for sure!

2. Winter market at schlossplatz Berlin mitte

This is one of the most beautiful and romantic Christmas markets! It almost seemed like an international market because we saw food like Nepalese, Indian, and Gyoza, along with the usual German fare. The square was dotted with wooden houses decked out with lights and projected stars on the surrounding building walls while the smell of cinnamony quark balls and mulled wine was in the air. Everyone was just having a great time, and it didn’t feel so commercialized.

We had the quark balls and fried apple donuts (krappelchen) and can confirm they pair NICE with 2 glasses of mulled wine. 😏

Our opinion:  do not miss it! This one feels cute and traditional.

3. Berliner Weihnachtszeit At Rotes Rathaus

This felt like one of THE most commercialized markets to us, like we had just gone to some state fair that Christmas threw up on. It was massive (and not in a good way), and there were so many fair rides and screaming children running around that we had a glass of gluhgin (a delicious Christmas market drink !) and hightailed it out of there.

Our opinion: skip, skip, skip! One of the worst Christmas markets for sure.

4. Christmas market at Alexanderplatz. 

We felt like this one felt like literally every Christmas market on the planet and even had almost all the same food and wares. The only unique thing here was these fried tortilla bowl things filled with sausages or chicken and veggies.

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Our opinion: the only reason to check this out is to order some veggies so you can feel better about those 4 mugs of gluhgin you drank. #logic.

5. Nostalgia weihnachtmarkt at Dorothea Schlegel Platz

Ahhhh, what a stupid cute, and romantic market! We loved that this market felt like a tiny little German town with half-timbered stalls, and it was SO quiet.  It’s really small, but there are some good mulled wine stands where you can order a drink and then hang out in one of the little half-timbered huts and just bask in the festive atmosphere. We went here both nights in Berlin because we loved the cozy vibe.

Our opinion: a must-go, even just for a drink.

6. RAW Gelande Medieval Market

This is one of the most unique markets in Berlin, but it’s outside of town, so we took the metro. It felt very local – nothing on the sign was written in English! All the vendors were wearing medieval costumes, and we saw a person doing a cool fire dance!

The stalls were these old-timey tents, and there were some really unique hand-carved goods here. I saw a lot less of the typical knick-knacks than in all other markets and way more unique items. The one felt like a total community vibe, and everyone was just drinking mulled beer and having a good time. The only downside is there is an entrance fee, but it is just  3 euros each. 

Our opinion: go if you want something unique! If you only want “christmas vibes,” then skip it.

Our day 2 markets:

7. kaiser wilhelm memorial church.

Obviously, it’s our favorite since we share the last name. Kidding. Honestly, this market was nothing special at all.  Everything seemed mass-produced, and the food was just meh.  It is pretty because it’s right in front of the church, and there’s a gorgeous, HUGE Christmas tree in front.

Our opinion: check it out if you want to visit the church, but don’t go out of your way for the market.

8. Potsdamer Platz

The only reason to visit this one is the man-made toboggan hill that costs $2.50 a person to ride. We did it once, and I LOVED it so much that I wanted to do it again. Just note that you have to walk up a lot of slippery, stilted stairs, so be careful.

Other than that, the food wasn’t that unique, although we did have this steak in a bun with fried onions that we still talk about to this day. It was one of our favorite foods at all the Christmas markets ! The wares were mass-produced, and the whole market seemed to cater to kiddos and families.

Our opinion:  Go toboggan, eat a steak bun, then leave.

9. Charlottenburg Palace

This is one of the bigger markets, and it’s really pretty right in front of the palace. It’s a bit outside the town, but we took the M45 bus from the city center, which was an easy ride. Because it’s outside the city, it feels a little less crowded, which is unusual for a market as big as it is!

We found the food at Berlin Christmas markets to be the standard fare, and this market is almost the same, except we first tried handbrot here and then became obsessed. Think fluffy bread filled with ham and cheese. HOW CAN IT GO WRONG? The answer is: it cannot.

You can also try Wild Liquor, which has tons of cool flavors. They actually got their start at Christmas markets!

Our opinion: I t’s definitely worth visiting, especially in the afternoons!

10. The Curling Market Behind Cafe Am Neuen See

This is technically not a traditional christmas market, but we stumbled upon it when we were walking, and it was one of our favorite stops in Berlin; it’s so cute! It’s a place to do “eisstock” (curling), and there are adorable wood fires everywhere, with little French-style bistro seats around while curling in one of the open lanes.

It had a small area to get hot apple juice with gin, mulled wine, soup, and baked goods. We had this cream cheese apple cake thing that was gooey and one of our favorite foods that we ate the whole trip – it was definitely hand-baked and NOT mass-produced!

Our opinion: go for a coffee and a kuchen and enjoy some ambiance! Just know there aren’t any souvenirs to buy or anything.

11. Spandauer (Altstadt/Old town)

This is my second favorite market (the first is Schossplatz!). It’s very far outside the city, and we took the 30-minute M45 bus to get to. Like most markets that are worth visiting , it’s crowded on the weekend, but it’s totally worth it!

There are lots of pretty colorful buildings with the usual food but also lots of international foods like  Turkish or Uzbekistan. The stall you have to go to is the Thuringer bratwurst stall, one of our favorite Christmas market sausages. You won’t miss it because the lines are LONG.

There was a quiet area that was a bit secluded, with just the wooden huts where adults were drinking mulled wine. We looooved this market because it made more of a traditional, small-city Germany vibe for being in a big city.

Our opinion: a must-visit!

12. Lucia Nordic Market 

This market is in an old-brewery-turned-event space called Kulturbrai, and we were so excited about this, but it sucked. Sorry to be so frank.

Inside has walls, so you’re filing through this tight space with thousands of other people, and it is like shuffling down the hallway to your assembly in elementary school, making it super tight and uncomfortable. They had some unique Nordic foods like elk bratwurst, and it would have been a cool atmosphere with the brick buildings and fires and tents everywhere!

Our opinion: we say skip it. But, if you want to check it out since it is unique,  go during the day and during the week.

These are not all the markets! There are also so many markets that open on specific weekends throughout December. 

Tips for Visiting:

Do a christmas market tour.

Berlin has a lot of markets and it can be really overwhelming planning how to hit the best ones and make sure you eat the good food – especially if you only have a very short time! Why not save yourself the stress and time planning by doing an organized Christmas market food tour? We LOVE food tours!

>> Click here to check prices, reviews and availability <<

Download the BVG App

A nice local man told us this after asking if we needed help when we looked lost going the wrong direction on the train (thank you random stranger!) This app will help you navigate Berlin by public transport.

Download it here

Christmas markets aren’t cheap. Expect to spend around $3 for the cup deposits, around $8 for mulled wine (depending on if you add a shot), and anywhere from $10-$20 on food, depending on what you get.

Book in Advance

We fly by the seat of our pants and never book trips in advance. This bit us in the booty this time when we booked a hotel last minute, walked 1 hour (no joke) in a blizzard with our massive backpacks only to get there, and they told us there was some error with booking.com, and they were full. 

Don’t be us. It gets busy, so book in advance.

We stayed in Maritim ProArte Hotel Berlin Mitte and LOVED it. The rooms were big, clean and nice with comfy beds and the location was central to all the biggest markets. We would 100/10 recommend it!

>> Click here to check prices, review, photos and availability <<

Make a plan

Berlin is, as Donald Trump would say, HYOOGE. So, you want to do some research on the markets you want to visit and then map them out before visiting. You don’t want to waste precious time sitting on a train, backtracking back and forth.

Moment of silence for all the mulled wines you could have used that time to drink.

You may also want to skip the markets outside of town that we mentioned if you’re short on time

READ NEXT:  OUR BEST CHRISTMAS MARKET TIPS

You might pay deposits for dishes, not just mugs.

This was one of the only Christmas markets where I had to pay a deposit (pfand) for the bowl my oh-so-worth-the-calories German mac and cheese came in. I thought I was getting ripped off, but it’s just them ensuring you bring back their pretty glassware.

Why they are serving cheesy noodles in fancy dishes is a conundrum to us.

And why are they serving it to people who are a few mulled wines in? It’s even more of a mystery. But here we are.

Trust your “market gut.”

Since there are SO MANY markets, really trust your gut when you get to one and don’t feel like you “should” stay. There were some markets we left within 10 minutes and we were so glad because it gave us more time at ones we really loved, or more time to just relax in a cute hot over a glass of mulled wine.

The Next Step After Planning Your Market Itinerary:

Now that you have an idea of what markets to visit with a few tips, you need to make sure you know what to eat!  We’ve put together an ultimate guide to the best German Christmas market food to help you!

Or, if you need help planning your trip, check out our helpful, step-by-step guide on planning a trip to Europe’s Christmas markets!

So, which markets will you visit?

Other helpful Christmas market tips

The Ultimate Guide to What To Wear At Christmas Markets

Going to Berlin at Christmas? Our ultimate guide is a must read. We'll cover details about each market, navigating them, what to eat and our best tips!

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COMMENTS

  1. Christmas markets in Vienna 2024

    Hosted by the Ottakringer brewery in the 16th district, the Weihnachtszauber Christmas world includes bonus weekend markets in the adjoining event hall. These extra markets included the likes of the Vinyl & Music X-Mas Market last time out and others selling design and delicatessen goods. More info….

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    Allowing for a complete and unique experience than most Christmas markets in Vienna. Furthermore, the market is known for its variety of sausages and ham, along with hot baked potatoes, waffles, and gingerbread. Weihnachtsmarkt Am Hof Opening times. From 19 November to 23 December. Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM.

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    Christkindlmarkt am Rathausplatz is known to be one of the largest Christmas markets in the world. The oldest and most renowned Christmas Market in Vienna, it attracts over four million visitors each year, thanks to its 100+ stalls that sell everything from handmade crafts to Viennese delicacies, including gluhwein (mulled wine) and bauernkrapfen (doughnut-like fried pastries).

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    The Christmas market on Spittelberg thrills visitors with its historic lanes and the charm of the Biedermeier period. With the Christmas markets guide, ivie has a whole bunch of inspiration for a totally atmospheric Advent. We hope you have loads of fun strolling through Vienna's Christmas markets. In ivie, you'll find many more exciting Walks ...

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    Why Visit Vienna Christmas Markets. Christmas markets in Vienna are a tradition going back hundreds of years. The city was first given the "privilege" of hosting a December market in 1298 by Albert I. Each year the city takes great pride in its Christmas decorations, and its schedule of performances and live events, leading up to the city ...

  9. Vienna Christmas Market Guide (Map + Dates 2024)

    Vienna Christmas market dates 2024. From 16 November to 23 December 2024Every day from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM24 and 25 December - Weihnachtsmärkte at Rathaus, Stephansplatz, Belvedere Palace, Maria-Theresien Platz, Schönbrunn Palace, Prater Between 26 and 31 December - Schönbrunn Palace and Prater Between New Year's Eve and 4 January ...

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    Judenplatz, the hub of Jewish Vienna, is even closer, and houses Rachel Whiteread's moving, impressive Memorial to Victims of the Holocaust. The Stephansdom, Graben and the eternal queues outside Café Central are all within a five-minute radius of the square. 4. Karlsplatz Christmas Market.

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    Turns into a NYE wintermarket - Open Nov 18, 2023-Jan 7, 2023. Riesenradplatz, Prater, 1020 Vienna. This Winter Market in the Prater - branded "The Prater Rocks" - offers lots of fun for all the family with a kids' winter train ride, the giddy heights of the chain carousel, and live music from pop to soul.

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    There is no escaping the Christmas atmosphere with festively decorated market stalls and a vast array of culinary delights. Where: Maria Theresien Platz. When: 15 November - 23 December 2023. Opening times: Sunday - Thursday 11 am - 9 pm; Friday & Saturday 11 am - 10 pm; 24 December 11 am - 4 pm; 25 - 30 December 11 am - 7 pm.

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    Here are some quick must-knows for Vienna's Christmas Market scene this year …. Dates: Exact dates depend on the market, but there are markets scheduled from Nov 8, 2024, to Jan 6, 2025. See our list of Austrian Christmas Market Opening Dates for each market's exact opening dates. Official website: Find more info here.

  14. Ultimate Christmas Market Guide in Vienna

    Allowing for a complete and unique experience than most Christmas markets in Vienna. Furthermore, the market is known for its variety of sausages and ham, along with hot baked potatoes, waffles, and gingerbread. The market is open from 17th November, until 23rd December, and is located at Am Hof.

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    Visiting the Vienna Christmas Markets in 2023 was my first time to the city and to the country of Austria, and although my stay was incredibly brief (just around 32 hours), I managed to tick off all the Christmas Markets in Vienna, took a guided walking tour, visited the stunning National Library and toured Schönbrunn Palace. Phew.

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    Subway Lines: U1, U4. Tram Lines: 1, 62, BB. 6. Maria-Theresien-Platz. Located between the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Natural History Museum, this is one of the biggest Christmas markets in Vienna. You can expect around 70-75 booths to be selling a variety of arts, crafts, and of course festive foods.

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    New Christmas Attractions around Vienna. This year (after unfortunate 2020, when the Christmas Markets mainly were canceled) - Vienna is offering a few new spots. Here are the details about the new attractions: Illumina, the magical garden of lights in Laxenburg Palace

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    Christmas Market on Stephansplatz - Dates and Opening Times 2023. The Christmas Market on Stephansplatz will open from the 10th of November 2023 to 23rd December 2023. The opening times are the following: daily 10 am to 21 pm. 24. 12. 2021: from 11 am - 16 pm. 25.

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    The Park Hyatt Vienna checks all of those marks and more. Park Hyatt Vienna with a Christmas market directly in front of the property. This property opened in 2014 and is a Category 6 Hyatt that costs 25,000 World of Hyatt points per night. You can work on boosting your World of Hyatt account with The World Of Hyatt Credit Card (currently ...

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  21. Berlin Christmas Markets: Exploring One of Germany's Best ...

    Download it here. Christmas markets aren't cheap. Expect to spend around $3 for the cup deposits, around $8 for mulled wine (depending on if you add a shot), and anywhere from $10-$20 on food ...