Christmas is the most beloved time of the year in the West, and we all love to celebrate it with our families and friends.
If you happen to be in Berlin during the Advent time, you cannot miss a visit at the Christmas markets! In Germany it is indeed a very popular tradition and you can find at least one of them in each one of the 12 districts in Berlin.
Don’t hesitate and make the most out of your time in Berlin! Here’s 3 of the best markets you can find around the city!
Tips & Recommendations for Berlin
Taste some mulled wine and shop by the Charlottenburg Palace!
The first Christmas market I recommend is held by the beautiful palace in Charlottenburg. This baroque castle was originally Frederick I and Sophie Charlotte’s residence in the 18th century and nowadays one of the main symbols of Berlin.
What makes this market very special in fact is the location: it takes place in the area right in front of the palace.
It’s very nice to visit it late in the afternoon or at dinner time, so you can enjoy the atmosphere given by the historical monuments brightened up with Christmas lights. With the dark there’s also a very nice light show on the castle. The market has no entrance fee and it is open from 2.00 pm to 10.00 pm on weekdays and 12.00 pm to 10.00 pm in the weekends.
A big bright sign on top of the entrance gate will welcome you to the market. With its incredible number of stands and little wooden houses, it will leave you astonished. The atmosphere is here is magic: the colorful lights, the smell of roasted chestnuts and the suggestive location make this place very special and relaxing and will make you forget about everything else.
Take a walk around the different stands and have a look at the merchandise! If you still need to buy some presents for your friends and families, here you will find any kind of Christmas souvenirs, wooden or ceramic items, tallow candles and all kinds of handcrafted items.
Food and drinks are obviously a big part of the market: you will find chocolates, candies, crepes and all the German typical dishes as hot sausages, goulash, mushrooms and so on.
Walking to the very back of the market, close to the castle, you will see a big stage where different entertaining events take place, usually starting around 5.00 pm. You can listen to Christmas choirs, folkloric bands or trombone recitals.
It could be nice to sip on some Glühwein, the typical german mulled wine, while enjoying the concerts! It will warm you up and make you feel Christmassy!
Have a romantic walk through Gendarmenmarkt!
When you’re looking for a romantic and cosy atmosphere, you can’t miss the Christmas market am Gendarmenmarkt. This area is located in Berlin Mitte, really close to Friedrichstraße and many of the touristic attractions: you will find the TV Tower, the Brandenburger Tor, the Parliament and the famous street Unter Den Linden at a walking distance from you.
What is special about this market is once again the location. This square is actually considered one of the most beautiful of Berlin for its monuments, and the market is set in between the German and the French cathedral. Right behind the famous statue of Schiller, there is a huge Christmas tree that brightens up the square.
I suggest to visit the market during the weekdays and to avoid weekend, when the market is really packed and it could be more difficult to enjoy it. To get in you have to pay a small entrance fee of 1 EUR (1.1 USD).
Gendarmenmarkt has much to offer: there are stands selling an incredible variety of items. Here you can find handcrafted Christmas decorations, lights, little toys, wool clothes, handmade bags, nice jewelry and much more.
There is also a big stage right underneath Berlin’s Konzerthaus, where singers and musicians perform daily.
You will be surprised by the number of stands you can find at this market. Take a walk around it and don’t miss the chance to try the Christstollen, which is one of the most popular Christmas specialties. It is a formed cake filled up with nuts, raisins or seeds and covered in powdered sugar. There are many different kinds of them and at the stands you will be able to sample them and choose the best one!
There are also many restaurants where it is possibile to sit inside and enjoy a nice meal without worrying about the cold. That always sounds like the best choice for the warmth lovers!
Enjoy the Christmas specialties in an ancient décor
If you’re having a walk in Berlin Mitte, you have to check out this Christmas market. Coming from Alexanderplatz, you will see a big panorama-wheel and many wooden houses surrounding it: the market by the red hall, in German “Rotes Rathaus” is definitely worth a visit.
The square is one of the most popular sightseeing places of Berlin and during this time of the year it brightens up with Christmas lights and its atmosphere is magic.
The market is free, it is really big and you can find any kind of food here. If you have already tried the Currywurst, the main specialty of Berlin, then you will find here other kinds of sausages like the thuringian sausage, Blutwurst, Wießwurst and many more. There are entire stands selling typical products from Germany, France, Belgium or Italy. Be careful with the prices! They usually tend to raise up prices at the markets.
If you want to delight yourself with a sweet snack, you can find here crêpes, caramelized nuts or chocolate-dipped fruit you can share with a friend. The market is big and it offers an incredibly varied and broad choice of items.
In the middle of the market you will see the Neptune Fountain, one of the oldest sculptures in the city. The facades of the small houses remind of the twentieth century.
In these old-Berlin styled market lanes, around the big Christmas tree, a part of the old Berlin comes back to life.
Feel the Christmas atmosphere in Berlin!
Walking around with a couple of friends drinking some hot mulled wine seems a good way to enjoy the Advent!
Berlin offers indeed a great variety of Christmas markets that are a must-see if you’re visiting the city. It could be a really nice way to jump into the typical Christmas atmosphere and to taste some specialties of the winter time!
Don’t miss the chance! Most of them are open everyday until the last days of December.