York is a city that celebrates Christmas in style, with its historic streets and buildings adorned with lights, wreaths and garlands. But the highlight of the festive season is the York Christmas market, also known as the St Nicholas Fair, which attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year.

Here, the Christmas.co.uk team look at the attractions and the reasons why people visit York Christmas market from far and wide.

What is the York Christmas market?

Pic of stalls at York Christmas market The York Christmas market is a six-week event that runs from mid-November until 22 December in 2023. It features more than 75 wooden chalets that fill the city’s pedestrianised streets, offering a range of locally crafted treasures, artisan gifts, seasonal food and drinks, and local produce.

The market is divided into several sections, each with its own theme and atmosphere. For example, you can find traditional crafts and decorations at the Made in Yorkshire area, or sample delicious treats at the Taste of Yorkshire area. You can also enjoy live entertainment, carol singers and street performers throughout the market.


York Christmas Market – 2022

This is a great high-resolution video from TrottingMoose. It starts at dusk and shows the variety of cabins on offer in the historic city.

These include a cabin selling Viking drinking horns – a nod to York’s famous Viking heritage – and lots of fudge and great food outlets.

The video also shows off some of the architecture, busy streets and attractions.


Why is York’s Christmas market so popular?

Pic of visitors to York Christmas market York’s Christmas market is one of the biggest and most popular free-to-enter Christmas markets in Yorkshire and among the best in the UK. It has won several awards, such as the Best Large Speciality Market in 2019 and 2020, and the Best Christmas Market in 2018.

There are many reasons why people love the York Christmas Market, such as:

The market showcases the best of York’s local businesses, traders and makers, who offer unique and quality products that you won’t find anywhere else. You can support the local economy and find some great gifts for your loved ones.

York’s festive market creates a magical and festive atmosphere in the city, with its twinkling lights, cheerful carols and the delightful aroma of mulled wine, roasted chestnuts and mince pies. You can feel the warmth and joy of the season as you stroll through the market.

The market is located in the heart of York, surrounded by its stunning medieval architecture, ancient walls and iconic landmarks. You can explore the rich history and culture of the city, as well as its many attractions, such as the York Minster, the Shambles, and the York Castle Museum.

There’s also a variety of experiences for all ages and tastes, from Santa’s grotto and ice skating to festive afternoon teas and ghost tours. You can also enjoy the many events and activities that take place in York during the Christmas season, such as the York Christmas Festival, the York Advent Calendar, and the York Chocolate Story.

How long has the York Christmas market been running?

York Christmas market has been running since 1997, when it was first launched as a small event with 12 stalls. Since then, it has grown and evolved into a major attraction that draws over a million visitors every year.

The market is named after St Nicholas, the patron saint of children, sailors and merchants, who is also associated with Christmas and gift-giving.

The market coincides with the feast day of St Nicholas, which is celebrated on December 6th.


BEST Christmas Market in the UK – York Christmas Market 2022 Plus the Shambles at Christmas!

Here’s another great video showing York’s Christmas market at its best – plus a bonus trip to the world-famous street called Shambles.

It’s from Everyday I’m Eating who highlights that York’s festive market is one of the best rated in the country.

There’s a good range of stalls among the scenic streets, with a great range of food.


What makes the York Christmas market so special?

Pic of two ladies enjoying mulled wine at York Christmas market The York Christmas market is not just a place to shop, eat and drink, but also a place to experience the spirit and traditions of Christmas in York. The market reflects the city’s heritage, diversity and creativity, and offers something for everyone to enjoy.

Some of the things that make the York Christmas market so special are:

The market has a strong focus on sustainability and environmental responsibility, with measures such as using biodegradable packaging, recycling waste, and promoting local and organic products.

It also supports various charities and causes, such as the York Food Bank, York Mind, and York Pride.

The market has an exclusive offer for York residents, who can enjoy a 10% discount on all the market stalls by presenting their valid York Card or identity card with proof of a York address. This is a way of thanking the residents for their support and loyalty and encouraging them to shop local.

The market has a virtual version, which allows people to experience the magic of the market from the comfort of their home. The virtual market features a selection of online stalls, where you can browse and buy products from the market traders, as well as watch videos and listen to podcasts about the market and the city.

Visiting York’s Christmas market

York’s Christmas market is a festive tradition that has been running for more than 20 years and has become one of the UK’s most popular and acclaimed Christmas markets.

It is a great way to celebrate Christmas and to discover the city’s local businesses, attractions and events.

Whether you visit in person or online, you will find something to delight and inspire you at the York Christmas Market.