Take that Europe! The UK’s got some great Christmas markets too

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Posted by Sarah

There’s nothing that gets me more in the mood for Christmas than the smell of roast chestnuts. I just love buying a small bag of them and dividing them between my pockets: the warmth they give to your body is just as wonderful as the taste! Of course, there’s nowhere more festive to buy roast chestnuts than at a Christmas market – and, lucky for me, the growth of Christmas markets in the UK in recent years has meant that I don’t have to hop over the Channel for an authentic experience.

As if London wasn’t already overflowing with great things to do, its “Cologne Christmas Market” gives the culture-packed South Bank an added burst of colour and vibrancy over the festive period. What could be better than shopping for handmade German arts and crafts against the stunning backdrop of the London Eye?

If you’re really hoping to immerse yourself in the Christmas market vibe, you can’t miss Birmingham‘s extravaganza. I’ve never been myself but it’s supposed to be the biggest Christmas market outside Germany – so I really should make plans to visit soon if I’m going to remain an authority on this subject! Travel west to Cardiff or north to Manchester and Newcastle and you’ll find plenty more festive fun in the form of traditional German Christmas markets. There’s even a quaint Christmas market in York – which is really handy for people that work at our York office!

But my favourite Christmas market has to be the one in Edinburgh. It’s no secret that Edinburgh’s my favourite short break destination – I just can’t get enough of its breathtaking skyline and its mystery-filled Old Town. The Christmas market that takes over Princes Street Gardens – a city-centre park built on an old septic tank, for all your trivia buffs! – is just magical. It’s got a huge ice rink, a Ferris wheel and loads of children’s rides. Sipping mulled wine and listening to the buzzing Christmas sounds – it’s my idea of heaven!

So why trek over to Germany or Holland for a good dose of traditional Christmas spirit? There’s so much on our doorstep that you’d be a fool to miss out, as would I. So I’m off to book a train ticket to Birmingham!

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