The Best Christmas Market in the World **

By Abi King | Germany

Nov 29

Last year, during the Iron Route, I wrote a round up of the Best Christmas Markets in the World. This year, on Travel Europe High & Low, I bring you THE best Christmas Market of all time. As in, all the time I’ve spent in Christmas Markets this year (to be fair, all ye non believers I have developed something of a specialty in this area. This ain’t my first rodeo and this ain’t my first Christmas Market of 2013.)

Munich Christmas Market Hearts


Munich – The Best Christmas Market in the World **

No, it’s the second so far it won’t be the last. It’s the Munich Christmas Market – or Christkindlmarkt – and it’s rumoured to be the biggest in the world. Normally “big” puts me off when it comes to outdoor crowds. It makes me think more queues, more jostling and more blindness since my rather, ahem, petite stature leaves me nose to coat lapels more often than not. And in gigantic Germany, I start to get dangerously close to waist level.

Luckily, in Munich’s case, “big” meant big spaces between stalls with plenty of elbow room and jostling space for the sub-gigantic among us.

It also meant live Christmas carols from the balcony of the Rathaus, or Town Hall, whose carved stone tower twinkled in the light reflected from the 100 foot high Christmas tree. It meant sweet scented gluhwein served in ceramic boot-shaped mugs. Hansel & Gretel cookie houses and iced gingerbread hearts. Bratwurst and grated potato, creamy crepes and candy floss. Sturdy tankards of beer and intricate wooden candlesticks.

Above all, it meant a great excuse for me to share these photos with you and to update my Best Christmas Market list.

I’m not sure how long Munich can hold on to the top spot, though. I’m due in Strasbourg any day now and I gather the gluhwein’s already mulling.

I’ll keep you posted.

Munich Christmas Market Biowurst


Munich Christmas Market Pretzel Seller

Young couple at Munich Christmas Market

Munich Christmas Market Dom

Munich Christmas Market Candles

People at Munich Christmas Market

Handicrafts at the Munich Christmas Market

I love you - Munich Christmas Market

Stars at the Munich Christmas Market

Veg stall at the Munich Christmas Market

Apple at the Christmas Market

Munich Christmas Market Sign

Disclosure: This trip to Munich forms part of my Travel Europe High & Low trip. Find all about that right over here…

** In case you skipped merrily down here without reading the article, Munich’s Christmas Market is the best in the world…in my opinion. That’s all. For a list of more great Christmas Markets, head here.

What do you think is the best Christmas Market in the world?


About the Author

Abigail King is a writer and photographer who swapped a career as a doctor for a life on the road. Now published by Lonely Planet, the BBC, CNN, National Geographic Traveler & more, she feels most at home experimenting here: covering unusual journeys, thoughtful travel and luxury on

A Montrealer Abroad December 1, 2012

this made me soooo excited! i’m headed there next week! :-)

    Abi King December 6, 2012


Audrey December 2, 2012

I love Christmas markets! I haven’t been to the one in Munich, or any in Europe for that matter, but Toronto has a pretty cool one in the distillery district every year. :)

    Abi King December 6, 2012

    I bet it does. The Distillery District is so atmospheric.

Tasha December 2, 2012

I love Christmas markets ! They have a certain charm and romantic feel to them . Have you been to any in Barcelona ? I’m here for the festive period ?

    Abi King December 6, 2012

    Ah…No, I haven’t unfortunately. La Boqueria is the covered, interesting “normal” market but I’m not sure about festivities. Look out for the festive cagana though. It’s quite a sight to behold!

JoAnna December 6, 2012

I’ve always wanted to go to a Christmas market, and every year when people start posting these pictures, I get antsy.

    Abi King December 6, 2012

    We’re really spoilt on this side of the pond, aren’t we. Christmas cheer everywhere!

Pau December 11, 2012

Hi! I love this article!

Christmas season just makes me be in a good mod!

I’ve never been to a Christmas market, but I would love to!

This are all great shoots! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas

Greetings from Mexico.

    Abi King December 11, 2012

    Festive greetings to you too!

Kevin December 11, 2012

I’ve been to the Munich Christmas Market and it was a truly amazing experience. Its been a few year since I was there but the memories still feel like they are fresh. It is one of my favorite places to visit during the Christmas season.

    Abi King December 12, 2012

    Yep. Having sampled a fair few, I still think Munich’s is one of the best!

Shing December 17, 2012

Mmmm I bet you can find the best Bratwurst sausages in Munich’s Christmas Market!

Warsaw’s Christmas Market really pulls everything out of the bag. Each year I make a little quest to find the best mulled wine, and this year I found it there. It was hot to handle, and had just the right amount of cinnamon and orange in!

    Abi King January 11, 2013

    Sounds wonderful. Central Warsaw is beautiful – though I only made it there in late winter and so missed the Christmas look. Next time as they say…

World in Words December 18, 2012

Can’t imagine the fruit market gets much trade when there’s all that Gluhwein and bratwurst to be had… Mmm!

    Abi King January 11, 2013

    Mwahahah! Yes, you are right. I felt a little sorry for them…but not enough to forgo the mulled wine in chocolate in place of an apple ;-)

Richard Crest December 20, 2012

I use to go in Christmas market to find quality and affordable goods perfect for gift giving. Thanks for sharing how was Christmas markets there in Europe.

    Abi King January 11, 2013

    Oh, if I didn’t have to carry everything so far I’d have gone crazy! I think my family were a little overwhelmed with the number of Christmas Market-type gifts they received as it was!

Suzzane from Travel Universally December 21, 2012

Wow, the Munich has so many things for the Christmas buyers like us. I was wondering about the pastries and cakes being sold over there. :-P

    Abi King January 11, 2013

    There are loads of cakes, pastries, sweets, toffee apples, gingerbread hearts and things I don’t even know where to start describing. Luckily my fearless taste for research means that I will keep on trying in the name of professionalism…;-)

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