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Our Favourite Christmas Markets in Budapest and nearby

The smell of cinnamon and apple, festive lights, traditional sweets and mulled wine, all of these are the ingredients of the beloved Christmas Markets in Budapest that offer you and your family several nice programs such as live music concerts, puppet shows and 3D light shows. Ever since the first open air Christmas Market that was held 21 years ago, thousands of people visit the growing number of fairs every year from all around the world. Below, you can find a list of our favourite Christmas Markets you can visit during your holidays in Budapest.

The Christmas Market on Vörösmarty Square is the oldest and probably the most popular one among tourists during the festivity season. Here, the atmosphere will make you go back in time and enjoy traditional things such as handmade Hungarian crafts. In addition you can enjoy more than 160 free programs such as concerts with folk, jazz and world music and treat yourself with the delicious Hungarian food such as grilled sausages, cabbage and langos – deep fried dough sprinkled with sour cream and garlic or sweets like chimney cake and other delicacies. During the 7 weeks opening of the market every week there are different gastronomic themes, they started with stuffed cabbage and wines from the Somló Region in late November and continued with fish week in early December. Make sure you check out what’s coming next week.

From Vörösmarty Square you can stroll to the Christmas Fair at the Basilica and enjoy the main attraction, the 3D light painting show screened onto the facade of this emblematic building, one of the biggest churches in the country. You can see the projection every 30 minutes from 4.30 pm to 10 pm at St Stephen Square. After spending time at the fair and watching the light show you can warm yourself up with a shot of traditional Palinka or something special like the hot dark beer with rum composition at the Pub of St. Nicholas, a stall at the fair. They also have a small ice rink located on the square, where you can try ice skating.

Another lively Christmas Market in the centre is at Városháza Park, close to Deák Square. This one is an independent Advent Fair with family programs, ideal for families with younger children. The little ones can enjoy a joyful time watching the puppets show, listening to concerts for kids and participating in handcraft workshops. Moreover, you can support their charity events and taste some of the gastronomic delights.

The magnificent City Park, home of the famous Széchenyi Spa and Vajdahunyad Castle, also holds its own Xmas Fair, where you can enjoy colourful family programs, workshops, and interactive games with your little ones. As a bonus, here you can find a heated hut, where you can warm up in case you spent a lot of time walking around the market in the cold. In case you don’t have any program for the new year, the City Park may be a good spot for you to say goodbye to 2019 as it offers a fabulous rock’n’roll street party on New Year’s Eve.

If you are on the Buda side you may visit the Advent at Óbuda at the Main Square. Although it is a bit out of the centre, it has a special ambiance with lots of programs for children, such as an animal petting area and the ice rink. There is a wide selection of traditional Hungarian dishes like fisherman’s soup, stuffed cabbage, roasted goose and of course sausages. If you go at the weekend do not forget to visit the Design Picnic Xmas Special Edition at Esernyős Culture Hub right at the Main Square of Óbuda. You can find Hungarian design products specially made for Xmas, you might find an excellent present for your loved ones.

If you would like to spend a day outside Budapest we can recommend you to visit the nearby Szentendre. The city can be reached easily in 45 minutes by train (Hév) from Batthyány Square, Buda side. You can have a full day, discovering the narrow alleys, little baroque squares, the Marzipan Museum and of course the Advent Market. You will find traditional wood and glass Christmas decoration here. Furthermore, you can join to some wine tasting, Christmas concerts or simply enjoy hot drinks and Hungarian delicacies.

Photo: Pexels

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