A university town, Oxford is one of the most famous and recognized academic cities in the world. Its prestigious university stands toe-to-toe with the iconic Cambridge University when it comes to academic excellence in England. This beautiful town, however, has more than just a bubbling student atmosphere to offer. The region has plenty of other tourist attractions to make for an exciting place to visit. It boasts of numerous gorgeous gardens, world-class museums, courtyards, and great shopping centers for you to visit, explore, and admire. Oxford’s several attractions, combined with its unique culture and friendly people, give you a beautiful ambiance to experience. As such, during the festive period, the town gets even more exciting and comes alive with fairs, concerts, and remarkable Christmas fairs. So if you are visiting, it’s best to book the best hotels near Oxford Railway Station for easy access to transportation during the holidays. Here are the top Christmas markets in and near Oxford, UK, that you should check out.
1. Oxford Christmas Market
The most popular place for holiday shopping in town is Oxford Christmas Market. Usually set up in the heart of the historic Broad Street, it is a place filled with all the festive sounds and sights of the season. Enjoy listening to the resonant tones of choirs singing Christmas carols as you stroll along and shop for your season’s supplies. The marketplace features beautifully decorated wooden stalls occupied by traders offering the most extraordinary handmade gifts and décor. With an inviting aroma of cinnamon and mulled wine in the air, this place offers you a truly magical experience.
Oxford Christmas Market
Address: Broad St, Oxford City Centre, Oxfordshire OX1 3AS, United Kingdom
Website: Oxford Christmas Market
Opening hours: Dec 5 - Dec 21: Thu - Sat: 10am - 8pm; Sun - Wed: 10am - 6:30pm
2. Holly Jolly Christmas Fair
With free entry for children under the age of 12, this Oxford Christmas fair is one you shouldn’t miss in town. Brimming with all the sounds, smells, and sights of the Christmas season, this fair also features a display of incredible handiwork of several talented artisans. See woodwork, knitted clothing items, handmade accessories, beautiful wreaths, glass art, paintings, and so much more. You don’t have to worry about getting hungry here as there are several food trucks offering sweets, chocolates, cakes, homemade bread, and even treats for your pet! With music shows and cooking shows to keep you entertained, you and your family are sure to have a memorable time.
Holly Jolly Christmas Fair
Address: St Peter & St Paul Church, West Wy, Oxford OX2 9JY, United Kingdom
Website: Holly Jolly Christmas Fair
Opening hours: Dec 7: 10am - 2pm
Nearby Christmas markets
1. Didcot Christmas Street Fair
Broadway Street in Didcot offers you a beautiful place to enjoy an entertaining evening of Christmas shopping and festivities. It hosts an annual Christmas street fair where locals and visitors in town can spend quality time, with side attractions including exhilarating rides, exciting parades, and captivating sideshows. The stalls here are occupied by traders, churches, schools, local businesses, and even charity organizations, and they are well-decorated with colorful lights and offer great gift ideas and other items. The fair also features superb food and drink stands, so you can enjoy a thoroughly satisfying experience.
Didcot Christmas Street Fair
Address: Broadway & Orchard Centre, Didcot, Oxfordshire OX11 7JN, United Kingdom
Website: Didcot Christmas Street Fair
Opening hours: Nov 28: 4pm - 9pm
2. Banbury Christmas Light Switch-On
The holiday season is kicked off with aplomb at the Banbury Christmas Light Switch-On festivities. This yearly event is very family-friendly as there is something for everyone, from adults to children. The Christmas Light Switch-On is held at the town’s center and offers visitors several exciting attractions to enjoy. From remarkable live stage music performances to street-dance spectator areas, brightly lit stalls selling beautiful gifts, and an exciting fairground, there is so much to experience in this event. And if you visit with the kids, they can see Santa in his grotto here too.
Banbury Christmas Light Switch-On
Address: Banbury Town Centre, Mill Ln, Banbury OX16 5, United Kingdom
Website: Banbury Christmas Light Switch-On
Opening hours: Nov 24: 1pm - 7pm
3. Abingdon Christmas Extravaganza
Abingdon Christmas Extravaganza starts with an exciting marching-band parade around the city center led by Santa, after which the real fun begins. A true extravaganza, this event features a variety of unusual activities to get involved in. With a lot of different stalls offering a wide range of Christmas products, a “Santa’s sleigh and reindeer” exhibition, food stands, street shows, live performances, and so much more, this event is the best place to revive your holiday spirit and get that unique Christmas gift. And to top it all off, this extravaganza ends with a stunning firework display you should not miss.
Abingdon Christmas Extravaganza
Address: Market St, Abingdon, Oxfordshire OX14, United Kingdom
Website: Abingdon Christmas Extravaganza
Opening hours: Nov 30: 10:45am - 6pm
4. The Henley NSPCC Christmas Fair
Well done to our Year 4 pupils who sang their carols so beautifully at the PhyllisCourtClub NSPCC Henley on Thames branch Christmas Fair yesterday!Posted by Rupert House School on Friday, 23 November 2018
Oxford is home to several unique Christmas markets and fairs, and The Henley NSPCC Christmas Fair is one of the most special ones. It is located on Phyllis Court and welcomes all members of the society. This market is run by the NSPCC Henley Charity Organization and offers a unique atmosphere to shop and be merry. With a wide range of selected products on display, it is an excellent place for you and your friends or family to shop for holiday supplies.
The Henley NSPCC Christmas Fair
Address: Phyllis Court Club, Phyllis Court Drive, Henley-on-Thames RG9 2HT, United Kingdom
Website: The Henley NSPCC Christmas Fair
Opening hours: Nov 26: 9am - 4pm
5. November Christmas Market at Waterperry
Get into the Christmas spirit at the beautiful Waterperry Gardens located in a quiet part of the city. Waterperry Gardens hosts a remarkable yuletide market every year to usher in the festive season. It boasts many stalls displaying arts and craft products for sale, gorgeous handmade gift ideas, and festive food and drinks for all the visitors in this market. There is a gallery for you to check out, and you can even buy a personal Waterperry-grown Christmas tree too. This fair is truly a great place to enjoy all the festivities the season brings.
November Christmas Market at Waterperry
Address: Waterperry Gardens near Wheatley, Oxfordshire OX33 1JZ, United Kingdom
Opening hours: Nov 23 - 24: 10am - 4pm
6. Cogges Manor Farm Christmas Market
Cogges Manor Farm Christmas Market is one of the most exciting annual holiday events in the city. The farm converts its wheat and barley barns into a festive space with over 30 stalls offering a variety of exceptional gift items, decorations, and crafts for you to purchase. The items on offer range from handmade products to clothes, wooden crafts, garlands, gift hampers, etc. On the grounds of this marketplace, you will also find a lot of homemade meal options and drinks to keep you satisfied. If you are with kids, Father Christmas is on hand to entertain them too.
Cogges Manor Farm Christmas Market
Address: Church Ln, Witney OX28 3LA, United Kingdom
Website: Cogges Manor Farm Christmas Market
Opening hours: Dec 7 - Dec 8: 10am - 4pm
Price: 1 - 3 USD
7. Henley Christmas Festival
Experience the feel of a peaceful and magical holiday at Henley Christmas Festival. This small and beautiful market is located in the heart of the town and offers visitors a delightful place to shop for yuletide wares. Here, you can enjoy shopping while carols are sung around a giant Christmas tree, and watch as the dazzling lights are switched on. The festival features vendors that sell handmade crafts, gifts, and several other items. If you are visiting with kids, make sure you don’t miss Santa’s grotto.
Henley Christmas Festival
Address: Town Hall, Market Place, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire RG9 2AQ, United Kingdom
Website: Henley Christmas Festival
Opening hours: Nov 29: 5pm - 9pm
8. The Akeley Wood School German Christmas Market
The tradition of Christmas markets is believed to have originated in Germany, and this market brings all the traditional style back to you. Feel the magic of the season as you and your family stroll along the extended shopping village converted into an amazing bazaar. Akeley Wood School German Christmas Market offers you classic German refreshments, a chance to witness a live band performance, exciting rides to go on and elf tractor rides for the kids, a grand raffle draw, and so much more.
The Akeley Wood School German Christmas Market
Address: Akeley Wood Junior School and Nursery, Wicken Park Rd, Milton Keynes MK19 6DA, United Kingdom
Opening hours: Nov 23: 11am - 3pm
Price: 0 - 6 USD
9. Waddesdon Christmas Fair
We're welcoming a whole host of brand new exhibitors to our Christmas Fair today for weeks three and four. Come and...Posted by Waddesdon Manor on Wednesday, 30 November 2016
Featuring a 20-foot-tall (6-meter) Christmas tree, this fair offers you a relaxing place to enjoy the holidays in authentic UK style. The spectacular festival is held in front of a majestic manor and is home to several amazing wooden stalls. Walk around the market surrounded by twinkling lights. and take in all the sights, sounds, and smells of Christmas here. The stalls offer the very best handcrafted gifts, decorations, and artworks for you to buy, and there are several festive food stands too. With very affordable products on sale and friendly stall owners, this fair is a fun yet relaxed place to enjoy shopping.
Waddesdon Christmas Fair
Address: Waddesdon, Aylesbury HP18 0JH, United Kingdom
Website: Waddesdon Christmas Fair
Opening hours: Nov 16 - Dec 22: Wed - Sun: 11am - 6pm
Price: 6 - 12 USD
10. The Christmas Market at Blenheim Palace
With only 3 days left of our Christmas Market, don't miss out on picking up the perfect presents and fabulous food and...Posted by Blenheim Palace on Thursday, 13 December 2018
Escape all the hustle and bustle of the street and step into a luxurious seasonal market in the magnificent Blenheim Palace. This annual bazaar is held in the palace’s great court and hosts a lineup of superb attractions for you to experience. Featuring traditional wooden chalets displaying a variety of selected Christmas gifts, unique crafts, handmade designs, locally and internationally made Christmas products, home decorations, toys, jewelry, ceramics, stationery, bags, clothes, and so much more, this place offers something for everyone. The festive atmosphere here is complete with delicious food and great drinks available everywhere you turn.
The Christmas Market at Blenheim Palace
Address: Woodstock OX20 1PP, United Kingdom
Opening hours: Nov 22 - Dec 15: 10:30am - 8:30pm
11. Carterton Christmas Street Fair and Lights Switch On
Carterton comes alive every year with its Christmas Street Fair and Lights Switch-On event. This fantastic occasion starts with a beautiful lantern parade from the Community College to the venue of the main event, Market Square. After the show, this Christmas fair in Oxfordshire begins properly. This Christmas bazaar offers visitors and the town’s locals a series of stalls that include charity stands, Santa’s grotto, small shows and performances, and several other things to do. The church in the heart of the market offers hot food and drinks as well as exciting children’s activities.
Carterton Christmas Street Fair and Lights Switch On
Address:Carterton Alvescot Rd, Carterton, Oxfordshire OX18 3JL, United Kingdom
Opening hours: Nov 22: 6pm - 8:30pm
12. The Original Woodstock Christmas Market
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
Bringing life to the community during the holidays is The Original Woodstock Christmas Market. Carefully crafted products from the rest of Oxfordshire county are brought to this festive market, providing a unique shopping experience to locals and visitors. Fun activities like wreath making and cookery are also why this Christmas market has been a hit since its opening. When you find yourself on this side of Oxfordshire, check out the Original Woodstock Market near the historic Holt Hotel.
The Original Woodstock Christmas Market
Address: Hopcroft Holt, Steeple Aston, UK
13. Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market
The Christmas market at Winchester Cathedral is one of the most famous holiday markets in Europe. With the cathedral as your backdrop, it’s hard not to feel extra joyful this Christmas with the support of the entire community. Shops specializing in arts and crafts, accessories and clothing, home decors, and other festive items are only a few of your options when you visit the chalets. You can practice the gift of giving this Christmas by visiting the stalls set up by charities too. Of course, there’s no worry about being famished during your last-minute shopping, because gourmet shops are at your disposal at Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market!
Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market
Address: 9 The Close, Winchester SO23 9LS, United Kingdom
Opening period: 19 November to 22 December (Sun - Wed: 10am - 6:30pm; Thu - Sat: 10am - 8pm)
Get your Christmas festivities off to a beautiful start in Oxford
Oxford is a college town filled with great places to explore and things to do. However, during the Christmas season, the city combines its vibrant student atmosphere with its rich culture and transforms into a magical home of festivities. Experience Oxford at Christmas by visiting these markets, and get your holiday festivities off to a beautiful start.
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