Once again, 'tis the season for admiring twinkly coloured lights and drinking excessive amounts of glühwein in one of Germany’s many famed Christmas markets. If you’re looking for an out-of-the-ordinary holiday market experience, however, Berlin is the place to be. With over 70 different Christmas markets to choose from, the merriment has nearly endless possibilities. Here we’ve gathered the best and most unusual Christmas markets that the capital has to offer:
Gendarmenmarkt Historical Christmas market
Nestled between the impressive German and French domes, Gendarmenmarkt is famous for hosting one of Berlin’s most beautiful and elegant traditional Christmas markets, and it lives up to its reputation. Artisans from all over the world set up shop with their original craftwork, choirs and street performers entertain the crowds in front of elaborate sets, and amusement rides thrill children and adults alike. Traditional snacks as well as gourmet foods are freshly prepared to satisfy any craving. Entry costs €1, with part of the proceeds going to charity.
St. George’s Church Christmas market
All the merriment of an English Christmas right in the heart of Berlin: celebrate the holidays the British way at St. George’s Church, with vendors dressed in traditional Dickens-era costumes serving popular British treats such as mince pies and Christmas pudding, with a children’s choir singing English carols to add to the festive cheer. Entrance is free of charge.
Preussenallee 17, Charlottenburg
Adventsökomarkt (Advent Eco Market) at Kollwitzplatz
Going green this Christmas doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the festive fun. The eco-friendly Christmas market at Kollwitzplatz hosts high-quality sustainable and fair-trade vendors offering ecological gifts, organic glühwein, and local goods. Traditional holiday snacks are made with fresh ingredients provided by local farms. Admission is free of charge.
Kollwitzstrasse, Prenzlauer Berg
Lucia Christmas Market at Kulturbrauerei
Named after the Nordic goddess of light, this Scandinavian Christmas market is held at a former 19th century brewery and offers traditional Scandinavian crafts, food, drinks and entertainment. Warm yourself in the mobile sauna or get toasty with the open-air jacket heater over a wood-fire stove. Drink a glass of Swedish Glögg and nibble on a Kanelbullar, a sweet cinnamon pastry. Other Scandinavian delicacies available include moose goulash and reindeer salami—just don’t tell the kids what happened to Rudolph! Admission is free of charge.
Schönhauser Allee 36, Prenzlauer Berg
Fairytale Christmas Market at Grunewald Hunting Lodge
On the second weekend of advent, Berlin’s oldest palace in Grunewald is transformed into a fairytale wonderland. Recognizable costumed figures from your child’s favourite fairytale mingle with craftsmen and artisans at the historical hunting lodge at Grunewaldsee. Storytellers will entertain children with classic fairytales, adding to the magical atmosphere. Entrance is €3.
Hüttenweg 100, Wilmersdorf
Holy Shit Christmas Market
Perhaps Berlin’s coolest Christmas market, the pop-up art and design market at Arena Berlin in Treptow hosts over 340 artists and designers selling everything from fashion, jewellery, and art, to records and comic books. A DJ plays electronic beats while marketgoers browse the latest trends in art and design. Entrance is €5.
Eichenstrasse 4, Treptow
Christmas Rodeo Design Market (Weihnachtsrodeo)
In Kühlhaus near Gleisdreieck, you can get your hands on unusual design products such as eclectic tree decorations, works of art, fashion, and home décor from 150 designers and artists. Electronic music and street food make this Christmas market an edgy alternative to more traditional festivities.
Luckenwalder Strasse 3, Kreuzberg
The famous rooftop bar and nightclub hosts Berlin’s “highest” Christmas market during the holidays, with festive stalls offering unique gifts and goodies. DJs and bands keep the party going, as merriment-makers enjoy stunning views and a Christmasy brunch on weekends. Entrance ranges between €1-5 depending on time of day.
Karl-Marx-Strasse 66, Neukölln
From the eccentric to the magical, there is a Christmas market for everyone to enjoy in Berlin.