Image Credit: Chris Cooper
Surround yourself with the wonders and festivities of the season in Great Britain. The Christmas season is one of the most magical times to visit. Tour their many Christmas markets, including celebrations and merriment in Bath, Manchester, and London. Below we have highlighted five of our favorites that are encompass plenty of shopping and twinkles of destination discovery.
Celebrate the 20th installment of the Manchester Christmas Markets. The Market will take place over locations across the city from November 8th-December 21st. Note that the Albert Square stalls will be open until December 22nd. Browse through more than 300 stalls and chalets. The epicenter of the market is found in Albert Square. Purchase a variety of toys, jewelry, homeware, and fun quirky gifts. Highlights include a French market, German Market, and World Christmas Market.
Be wowed by the amazing array of food and drink. Manchester’s Christmas Markets are famous for traditional bratwurst. You can also find Hungarian goulash, Spanish paella, or a good old-fashioned hog roast. Plenty of vegetarian options are also available. Those with a sweet tooth will be pleasantly surprised too!
South Bank Winter Festival
The popular Winter Market returns to London’s Southbank Centre until January 5, 2020. Family shows and festive fun come together for nearly two months on the banks of the River Thames. Discover strings of decorations and illuminated wooden cabins selling Christmas gifts, from the quirky to the traditional. Along with shopping, enjoy mince pies, spiced cider and steaming mugs of mulled wine and hot chocolate. Global cuisines are available too. Be sure to snap a photo by the huge Christmas tree!
Pair your experience with the Christmas concerts and choir performances. For children, there is a retelling of Black Beauty (December 14th-January 5, 2020) and circus entertainment with Circus 1903 (December 19-January 5, 2020).
Spanning for eighteen days from November 28th-December 15th, the Bath Christmas Market is spread across the city’s picturesque Georgian streets. Support Bath’s local small businesses while discovering many artisan gifts for your loved ones. Easily check everything off of your Christmas place. Over 150 chalets or shops await visitors. These include everything from bath, beauty, and jewelry to food, drink, and homeware. There will also be many opportunities for purchasing personalized gifts. The Market opens at 10am daily.
Tip: bring your reusable cup to receive a discount on warming festive drinks from all the Market’s caterers.
Edinburgh’s Christmas market is a six-week program of entertainment in the city center lasting until January 4, 2020. While it’s not open on Christmas Day, it is open until 8pm on Christmas Eve. Bring plenty of bags to fill up with goodies such as arts and crafts, foodie treats and traditional or bespoke Christmas products. The Market takes place in East Princes Street Gardens. Pair the experience with gorgeous views of Edinburgh Castle in the background and easy access to some of the city’s major attractions.
If you love literature, check out the adaption of Charles Dickens classic An Edinburgh Christmas Carol at the Lyceum from November 28-January 4, 2020.
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland
A true festive paradise in the heart of the city. The Market is home to the world’s tallest transportable observation wheel, a Magical Ice Kingdom, Britain’s largest open air ice rink, and an array of comedic acts at its own Comedy Club. This all in addition to plenty of bars and food stalls making it the place to be for everyone. The Market spans from November 21-January 5, 2020. Enjoy circus acts and the arrival of Paddington on Ice.
Tip: check out the festive window displays at Hamleys, Selfridge’s and Harrods. Plus the capital’s festive lights around the shopping hubs of Regent’s Street and Oxford Street are quite spectacular.
This article is in partnership with Visit Britain.