Four Christmas Markets You Can Fly To From Essex
Christmas isn’t Christmas until you’ve indulged in the full-on European festive market experience with handmade crafts, mulled drinks, iced gingerbreads and miles of illuminations.
Cobblestone lanes, courtyards, soaring spires and what some consider to be the best beer in the world, make Prague an attractive city break destination at any time of the year. However, from early December its celebrated Christmas markets, one centred around a huge Christmas tree is open daily in the Old Town Square and another in Wenceslas Square. This festive scene offers visitors a hefty dose of Christmas carols, with cute wooden huts filled with local food and drinks (naturally heavy on the sugar), to Christmas decorations, wooden toys, jewellery, glassware and a lot more. This year the Prague Christmas markets are open every day from 1 December 2018 to 6 January 2019, including Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.
Alpharooms (0114 407 0241) offers four nights in Prague at the four-star Metropolitan Old Town Hotel from £419pp B&B based on two adults sharing, including return flights from London Stansted on 8 December 2018.
Most Christmas markets are decades – even centuries – old but for the first time this winter Bastions Park in the city centre will become a Christmas village lined with market stalls peddling gifts, mulled wine and other festive treats. Warm up in the traditional Swiss wooden chalet with some local cheese fondue, raclette or a fancy lobster roll. The Geneva Tourism Christmas Market package from around £19 (CHF430) includes 50% off your hotel room, a Geneva Transport Card allowing free transport around the city and a free fondue at the market. The market is open from 6-31 December 2018.
Return fares on easyJet from London Southend to Geneva cost around £200 in December 2018. The three-star Hotel Suisse has two nights in a double room for approximately £380 (CHF490) B&B.
The famed historic amusement park, Tivoli Gardens in the heart of the city, will turn even the most Scrooge-like person into a Christmas fan when faced with the spectacle of 1,000s of fairy lights. Then there’s an ice rink, decorated wooden huts, snow-covered trees and reindeer as well as the true Nordic Christmas atmosphere. Just don’t drink too many cups of gløgg, a steaming hot mulled red wine laden with raisins, almonds, cinnamon sticks and cloves before you jump on the various rides. Open from 17 November until 31 December 2018.
Lastminute.com has two nights at the five-star Copenhagen Marriott Hotel for £315pp room only including return flights from London Stansted on 1 December 2018.
The city’s popular Christkindlmarkt in Rathausplatz in front of the Neo-Gothic town hall offers an ice-skating rink, workshops for children, carousel rides and lashings of glühwein. There’s also Christmas punch with plenty of apfelstrudel and gingerbread to soak it all up with. Also popular is the Christmas market in front of Schönbrunn Palace with traditional hand-made Christmas decorations and concerts. Open from 17 November until 26th December 2018.
Alpharooms (0114 407 0241) offers four nights in Vienna at the four-star Austria Trend Ananas from £446pp B&B based on two adults sharing including return flights from London Stansted on 8 December 2018.