If you want to enjoy a Christmas market in Europe that’s like no other, then the Berlin Christmas markets are for you.

That’s because the German capital transforms into a wonderland of festive twinkling lights, and a unique blend of tradition and modern flair.

With more than 100 markets scattered throughout its historic districts, this really is a festive trip with a difference.

Berlin is a vibrant capital city that is renowned for its rich history, diverse architecture and a lively arts and culture scene.

But as the year winds down and the festive season begins, the city transforms into a winter wonderland, with its Christmas markets among its many attractions.

Here, the Christmas.co.uk team will help guide you through everything you need to know about visiting the Christmas markets in Berlin.

When are the Berlin Christmas markets on in 2024?

The biggest and most impressive Christmas markets in Berlin will be held in 2024 on these dates:

  • Alexanderplatz: TBC
  • Alt-Rixdorf: TBC
  • Berlin City Hall: TBC
  • Breitscheidplatz: November 24, 2024 – January 05, 2025
  • Charlottenburg Palace: TBC
  • Kulturbrauerei: TBC
  • Gendarmenmarkt (now Bebelplatz): November 25 – December 31, 2024
  • Landsberger Allee: TBC
  • Potsdamer Platz: November 01, 2024 to January 01, 2025
  • RAW Compound: November 14 to December 22, 2024
  • Spandau: November 25 to December 22, 2024

Why visit Berlin for its festive markets?

Beyond the ubiquitous (and delicious) glühwein (mulled wine), Berlin’s Christmas markets offer a treasure trove of experiences:

Variety: With more than 100 markets, Berlin offers the most diverse Christmas market experience in Europe. From traditional to alternative, there’s a market to suit every taste.

Cultural fusion: Berlin’s unique blend of history and modern life is reflected in its Christmas markets. Find traditional nativity scenes alongside stalls selling quirky handmade crafts.

  • Handcrafted delights: Browse stalls overflowing with hand-blown ornaments, intricate wooden toys, and unique knitwear, perfect for one-of-a-kind gifts.
  • Culinary journey: Sample delectable treats from across Germany: gingerbread houses, roasted chestnuts, potato pancakes (reiberdatschen), and an array of sausages.
  • Festive entertainment: Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere with carollers, ice skating rinks, and dazzling light shows. Some markets even have Ferris wheels and small carousels for a touch of nostalgic fun.
  • Themed markets: Explore unique markets like the Lucia Weihnachtsmarkt at Kulturforum for a Scandinavian Christmas experience, or the WeihnachtsZauber am Gendarmenmarkt for a picturesque setting amidst historic buildings.

Let’s not forget too that Berlin also offers visitors at Christmas these attractions:

  • Historical charm: Soak up the city’s rich history at iconic landmarks like Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag building, even more captivating when adorned with festive lights.
  • Multicultural flair: Berlin’s youthful energy and artistic spirit infuse the markets, creating a vibrant and welcoming atmosphere.
  • Great value: Compared to other Western European destinations, Berlin offers a relatively affordable Christmas market experience.



This video from Probably Lost highlights just how impressive the Christmas markets in Berlin are.

The American duo visit five of the markets and they say that just anything you want from a festive market can be found in Berlin.

They start their travels at the Spandau old town market.

This was the largest market in the city, and it still delivers a traditional market with a great atmosphere.

They also highlight that visiting the markets during the week, and early in the season, will avoid the crowds.

They also paid a (small) entrance fee into the offshoot market at Spandau’s Citadel (a Renaissance fortress) and enjoyed its historic atmosphere and street performers.

The presenters also make use of public transport to show how easy travelling between the various markets is – though most German cities do have excellent transport links too.

The Scandinavian market looks like good food and the event is geared to Norse folklore.

Most of the markets also have wood fuelled stacks to keep passers-by warm and one of the presenters tries on a heated jacket that visitors can use to warm up with.

Charlottenburg Palace also has a regal background and a stylish market.

Their final market is the Weihnachtszauber which also has an entrance fee (of 1 euro per adult).

They highlight that this is the best in Berlin – the name translates as ‘Christmas magic’.



The tradition of Christmas markets in Berlin

The tradition of Berlin’s Christmas markets dates from the 16th century, with the first documented market opening in Alt-Berlin in 1530.

These markets were originally a place for people to stock up on provisions for the winter, but over time, they evolved into festive gatherings known for their twinkling lights and joyful atmosphere.

How to plan a visit to Berlin Christmas markets

Before heading off to enjoy a great city hosting a wide range of markets, don’t forget these Christmas.co.uk tips:

  • Wrap up warm: Berlin winters can be (very!) chilly, so pack warm clothes like scarves, hats and thermal layers. You might decide to buy these items there but it’s always, we think, best to be prepared.
  • Cash is King: While many traders will accept debit and credit cards, it’s always handy to have cash, especially for smaller purchases so take plenty of Euros.
  • Brush up on German: You will find that lots of people and vendors will speak English to a high level but learning a few German terms like ‘Guten Tag’ (Good day/Hello), ‘Bitte’ (Please) and ‘Danke’ (Thank you) will help – though most Berliners have very good English skills. You might also find that saying ‘Frohe Weihnachten’ (Merry Christmas) will go down well, and you’ll probably be saying ‘Einen Glühwein, bitte’ (A mulled wine, please) quite a lot!
  • Embrace public transport: There’s an excellent public transport system in Berlin with buses, U-Bahn (underground trains), S-Bahn (commuter trains) and trams. It’s worth buying a Berlin WelcomeCard for discounted travel and free entry to many attractions. There are three levels of card from accessing public transport, to travel and cheap admission to attractions and a dearer card that covers the first two options and adds in a wider travel area.

Berlin’s festive stage will impress

Each market in Berlin has its unique charm, offering a variety of attractions – lots of them feel like you are stepping into a festive fairy tale.

But what sets Berlin’s markets apart is the diversity – from traditional German markets to Scandinavian and Japanese ones, there’s something for everyone.

It’s also worth noting that the markets in Berlin are known for their massive size – which is impressive considering there are more than 100 to enjoy!

We enjoyed the market at Alexanderplatz which is famous for its huge 50-metre Ferris wheel.

The Gendarmenmarkt offers quality decorations, food, and entertainment, while the market at Charlottenburg Palace provides a majestic backdrop.


The Best Berlin Christmas Market 2023

Here’s a video from Travels of Sarah Fay who shows many reasons for visiting the Christmas markets in Berlin for solo travellers.

She stays in a hostel and gets cash to spend at the markets – a tip she has been given by previous visitors.

Again, she praises how easy it is to reach the markets and most of them have impressive surroundings.

Sarah indulges with fresh chestnuts and mistakenly eats the shell – with the stall holder saying she shouldn’t do that.

It doesn’t help that she has travelled from Florida and is feeling the chill. She warms up with great food and hot drinks at the first market.

She then enjoys ‘noodles’ (pasta) and cheese and highlights some great desserts.

Other Christmas markets get a visit and there’s obviously a lot to do – and more great food stalls.

Sarah does find that the prices are reasonable and some of the festive ornament stalls grab her attention because they offer some excellent handiwork.

Another market sees the presenter being cold but enjoying the atmosphere and finds cash machines for those who forget to take cash.

She also enjoys walking around an indoor market to get warm.

The video shows a broad view of what visitors can expect, what to eat and drink and the prices that visitors will be paying.

Along with the great atmosphere, Sarah also finds that the people are ‘super-friendly’.

She also explains that she wanted to visit the Charlottenburg Palace market, but the travel arrangements and time didn’t make that possible.

Another good tip is that she booked a hotel next to the main train station to help save travelling for a pre-booked train.


How to get to Berlin for Christmas

From the UK, the best and easiest way to visit Berlin for the Christmas markets is to fly.

Flying from the UK to Berlin

You can fly directly to Berlin from several UK airports during the Christmas season. Thankfully, it is a hugely popular destination that is just over two hours of flying time, and here are some of the airports that offer direct flights:

  • Manchester Airport: Direct flights to Berlin are available from easyJet, Ryanair and Eurowings, among others. Both easyJet and Ryanair offer seasonal flights from Birmingham, Edinburgh and Glasgow to Berlin. From London’s airports, the travel time to Berlin is less than two hours and there are regular flights from Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton with a choice of flights from easyJet, British Airways, Eurowings and Ryanair. According to Kayak, the prices for economy vary from £148 with easyJet, to £178 for British Airways.

Driving: If you’re feeling adventurous, consider a road trip. The drive from Calais takes approximately 10 hours but be sure to factor in ferry or Eurotunnel costs.

Staying in Berlin

Berlin offers a wide range of options for accommodation, from luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels. Because the city can get busy, think about staying near a central market such as Alexanderplatz or Gendarmenmarkt for access to the festive fun. We found that Booking.com offered a good budget choice, from a bunk bed in a mixed dorm for £83 for four nights close to the city centre, and a Radisson hotel for £270 for one adult staying four nights. There are also hostels offering single beds for £58 in a dorm and a B&B in Berlin for £249. We also found that there’s a great selection of Airbnb options – again, for a variety of prices depending on what you want to enjoy.

Other attractions in Berlin

While the Christmas markets in Berlin are certainly worth a visit, the city is a vibrant one that has a rich history and plenty of exciting things to explore. It’s a busy place all year round for good reason – we have never been bored in Berlin! Here are some of the top attractions and activities you can consider during your visit:

  • Berlin Wall Memorial: Discover Germany’s divided past at the Berlin Wall memorial which is an iconic structure that once separated East and West Berlin.
  • Reichstag Building: We’d recommend taking a guided tour of the Reichstag Building, which is home to the German parliament. The are panoramic views from its glass dome of the city.
  • Brandenburg Gate: Here is a photo-worthy neoclassical monument that symbolises unity and freedom. We’d recommend visiting at sunset – on a clear night, you’ll have IG images to post!
  • Walking tours: A great way to explore Berlin is a walking tour, but because this city has so much to offer you choose anything from historical walks to culinary tours.
  • Craft beer: Visit a craft brewery, sample some brews and learn more about the city’s beer history.
  • Museums: There are lots of great museums to visit dedicated to art and history. Delve into Berlin’s rich history at the Pergamon Museum, housing ancient artefacts, or the Gemäldegalerie, showcasing European masterpieces.
  • Art: Explore the vibrant street art scene in districts like Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, or visit contemporary art galleries like KW Institute for Contemporary Art.
  • Nightlife: Don’t forget too that Berlin’s nightlife scene is legendary. Whether you’re into clubs, bars, or live music, there’s no shortage of options.
  • River cruise: Enjoy a river cruise with a knowledgeable guide – a relaxing and interesting journey.
  • Potsdam: If you have time, consider a day trip to Potsdam and enjoy a walking tour. There are stunning gardens and palaces to enjoy.

There’s no doubt that Berlin has so much to offer visitors and since it’s worth considering something different away from the ever-popular Christmas markets.

The Berlin WelcomeCard mentioned above offers cheap admission to a great range of attractions, such as the spy museum, sight-seeing trips, the tall TV tower and the incredible Air Service Berlin Weltballon – take to the skies to see Berlin from above in a balloon. Yes, really!

If you love Berlin’s Christmas markets, you could consider visiting Munich for its offering – it’s a real winter wonderland with lots of stalls and lights, and Vienna is another capital worth making the effort to visit with the main market in front of the town hall really impressing.

Budgeting for your Berlin Christmas market trip

Here’s a rough guide to budgeting for your trip to the Christmas markets in Berlin in 2024:

  • Drinks and food: Budget around £25 to £35 per person per day, which should be enough for food and drinks. The excellent glühwein, bratwurst and beer cost between £3 to £6. If want to visit the Gendarmenmarkt (now Bebelplatz) Christmas market, then expect to pay between £25-£50 per person and spoil yourself at one of the luxury tent (and warm!) restaurants. Think that’s too expensive? Here’s a traveller quickly explaining how you can easily spend that budget:

  • Accommodation: If it’s your first time in Berlin and you want to stay somewhere close to most of the city’s tourist attractions and Christmas markets, we would recommend staying in the Mitte district. This would put you close to many of the markets including the Alexanderplatz Christmas market, the Rotes Rathaus Xmas market, the Lucia Christmas market and Christmas Magic at the Gendarmenmarkt.
  • Transport: Most of the Christmas markets are accessible by public transport, so set aside money for that. We recommend the Berlin Welcome card which costs €26. That covers the cost of public transport and offers a 50% discount on lots of attractions (including the famous TV tower).
  • Souvenirs and gifts: Depending on your plans, you might also want to set aside some budget for Christmas shopping at the markets.

Berlin’s Christmas markets – worth the effort to visit and enjoy!

Out of all the potential Christmas markets to enjoy in Germany, we think Berlin offers an enchanting experience that mixes the traditional with a rich history and vibrant culture.

By doing so, Berlin offers a unique and unforgettable Christmas experience for visitors.

While there are other great Christmas markets to visit in Germany, notably Munich and Nuremberg, Berlin manages to stand out.

So, pack your bags, grab your warm coat, and get ready to experience a city that knows how to do Christmas markets properly.