During the holiday season, many international visitors journey far and wide to participate in merry-making in Cologne, Germany, famed for its numerous Christmas markets full of cheer and beautifully decorated scenery. Join Rudolph in the season’s festivities along with beautifully adorned angels complete with thick feathered wings at the Cathedral Christmas Market where the gothic cathedral commands an ethereal atmosphere. Stroll along the Rhine to enjoy the maritime-themed festivities complete with a tall ship and tents with hardwood floors and snow-white coverings resembling sails of ships. During your holiday-inspired visit, make certain to check out the following Christmas Markets in Cologne, Germany, so you can spend time appreciating the markets that best suit your seasonal interests.
1. Christmas market in Cologne's Old Town
Visitors to Cologne’s Christmas paradise will be in wonder of the sparkling lights throughout the market place. Wander through the Futtergasse (Feeding Alley) to indulge in international and national cuisines before browsing through the many shops featuring toys, handmade Christmas-themed products, and colorful gingerbread houses. Stroll through nostalgic Santa Claus’ quarter with your children to experience the overall joy of viewing the numerous toy stands and watching talent puppeteers put on performances suitable for the entire family.
The Christmas Market in Cologne's Old Town
Address: Alter Markt 47, 50667 Köln, Germany
Opening hours: Nov 25 - Dec 23: 11am - 10pm
2. Angels' Market
As you wander the alleys packed full of charming shops filled with holiday cheer and gifts, don’t be surprised if you see one of the real-life angels with huge feathered wings, white robes, and glittery make-up strolling alongside you. Enjoy taking in the stunning trees throughout the market, illuminated by 750 lights. Stop by one of the charming shops to purchase decorative plates, toys, and treats synonymous with the holidays, including egg nog and mulled wine. Make certain to meet the winter queen mounted on her mystical unicorn steed before strolling over to the theatre to watch a live puppet show.
Address: Neumarkt 1, 50667 Köln, Germany
Website: Angels’ Market
Opening hours: Nov 25 - Dec 23: Sun - Thu: 11am - 9pm; Fri & Sat: 11am - 10pm
3. Cologne Cathedral Christmas Market
While strolling past the impressive centuries-old gothic cathedral, stop by to enjoy Christmas classics performed on the stunning illuminated stage by local performers. Get into the holiday spirit by sipping on mulled wine in one of the holiday mugs from one of the nearby red-roofed pavillions. Browse through the numerous wooden pavilions featuring festive decorations, stuffed and wooden toys, Christmas decorated memorabilia, and many other gift ideas. As you stroll along the illuminated alleyways, enjoy watching local artisans at work along with many visiting international guests before departing to take selfies under Germany’s largest Christmas tree.
Cologne Cathedral Christmas Market
Address: Domkloster 4 | Cologne Cathedral, 50667 Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Website: Cologne Cathedral Christmas Market
Opening hours: Nov 25 - Dec 23: Mon - Wed: 11am - 9pm; Thu & Fri: 11am - 10pm; Sat: 10am - 10pm
4. Harbour Christmas Market
Stroll along the harborfront situated on the Rhine River near the Chocolate Museum to browse through the pagoda tents resembling white ship sails with hardwood floors. Get into the festive spirit by sampling international-themed food and drinks before walking over to admire the impressive ship with its massive sails harbored on the illuminated Rhine. Don’t miss out on the live performances including sea shanties to classic Christmas carols and pirates telling tales about life at sea, which surely will captivate your family’s imagination. Before walking across the harbor swing bridge, make time to stop by one of the tents to purchase holiday-themed crafts.
Harbour Christmas Market
Address: Schokoladenmuseum, Rheinauhafen Köln
Website: Harbour Christmas Market
Opening hours: Nov 22 - Dec 23: Sun - Thu: 11am - 9pm; Fri & Sat: 11am - 10pm
5. The Christmas market in Stadtgarten
Visitors can be certain to encounter a heavenly angel dressed enrobed in a bright white dress and giant feathered wings while visiting the unique market. While strolling along the avenue lined with glowing evergreens decorated with blinding white stars, make time to listen or sing along to the live holiday jingles performed by the local band. Search through the beautifully illuminated huts to check out the art, snowglobes, toys, clothing, and much more. After indulging in holiday delicacies, head over to the stage with your family and watch as your little one’s eyes light up in amazement as they experience puppet shows or listen to the recounting of fairy tales.
Christmas Market in Stadtgarten
Address: Venloer Str. 40, Cologne, Germany 50672
Opening hours: Nov 21 - Dec 23: Mon - Fri: 4pm - 9:30pm; Sat & Sun: 12pm - 9:30pm
6. Christmas market on the Rudolfplatz
Enjoy walking through the charming village filled with Bavarian-style buildings illuminated with icy white lights dangling from the rooftops. Indulge your senses by tasting delicious specialties throughout the village while shopping for holiday-inspired items to take home with you. Take part in the arts and crafts alongside talented artisans in the Nicholas House creating paper mache figurines and canvas paintings. Make certain to stop by the chapel of St. Nicholas to admire the awe-inspiring stained-glass windows.
Christmas Market on the Rudolfplatz
Address: Rudolfplatz., 50674 Köln, Germany
Website: Christmas Market on the Rudolfplatz
Opening hours: Nov 23 - Dec 25: Mon - Thu: 11am - 9pm; Fri: 11am - 10pm; Sat 10am - 10pm; Sun: 10am - 9pm
7. Heavenue Cologne
Wander through the market, stopping in at the colorful pop art designed booths to check out the culinary delicacies and craftsmanship of the souvenirs on sale. Admire the stunning garlands and Christmas wreaths while walking by a row of Nutcracker inspired tin soldiers in beige uniforms with golden buttons. Appreciate the special effects, strings of lights, and brilliant LED lighting that creates a magical sea of color putting all market attendees in a merry mood each evening. Performances, featuring holiday-themed songs, are performed each evening by charismatic, talented entertainers, on the main stage accented with a rainbow of glowing lights.
Address: Mauritiuswall 102, 50676 Köln, Germany
Website: Heavenue Cologne
Opening hours: Nov 25 - Dec 23: 12pm - 10pm
8. Frankfurt Christmas Market
Hop on one of the intricately decorated horses on an illuminated carousel located in the middle of the market before exploring the seasonal pavillions. The origins of the market, which can be traced back to 1393, traditionally consisted of scriptural themed plays, but now it is a thriving center of commercialism and revelry during the holidays. Enjoy strolling through the avenue of pavilions decorated with sparkling white lights and filled with holiday-inspired treasures crafted by talented artists to commemorate the season. Make certain to try out some of the delicious heart-shaped gingerbread and mulled wine along with other local delicacies while church bells toll and carols are sung by joyous carolers.
Frankfurt Christmas Market
Address: Romerberg, 60329 Frankfurt, Hesse, Germany
Website: Frankfurt Christmas Market
Opening hours: Nov 25 - Dec 22: Mon - Sat: 10am - 9pm; Sun: 11am - 9pm
9. Rüdesheim's Christmas Market
Walk along the market avenues with a mug filled with spiced eggnog to keep you warm as you browse through the vendor pavilions filled with goods from around the world. Celebrate the Rhine traditional seasonal customs while walking under archways accented by an array of string lights to create a festive atmosphere. Listen to seasonal tunes being played throughout the market along with locals and visitors from all over the world. Sample local culinary favorites while admiring the crystal snowflake ornaments dangling from the trees in the sea of evergreens.
Rüdesheim's Christmas Market
Address: Marktstraße, 65385 Rüdesheim am Rhein, Germany
Website: Rüdesheim’s Christmas Market
Opening hours: Nov 21 - Dec 23: Mon - Thu: 11am - 8pm; Fri & Sat: 11am - 9pm
Indulge in Cologne's holiday festivities
Traveling to a different country to share in the unique customs and shared experience during the Christmas season, has become increasingly popular and it is greatly noticed in Cologne, Germany. The beautiful lights, festive music, glistening snowflakes adorning evergreens, and a filial atmosphere promote a sense of shared culture amongst locals and visitors. If you weren’t able to attend all the holiday-themed markets to experience the holiday spirit sprinkled throughout Cologne, don’t hesitate to start making your plans for a return in the near future.
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