Vienna Christmas Markets
The Christmas Market season starts as the Advent season descends upon Vienna once more. During Advent Vienna is a city of nostalgia and romance, concerts and nativity displays and traditional Christmas markets. Classics include the Christmas market in front of City Hall, the traditional Viennese Christmas market on Freyung, the markets at Spittelberg, Am Hof and in front of the church of St. Charles Borromeo (Karlskirche).
The aromas of candied fruits, cotton candy and other delicacies like Christmas punch and roasted chestnuts wafting around the small wooden market stalls still retain their magical power.The Magic of Advent in Vienna during November and December complements the market in front of City Hall. The adjoining Rathauspark is a place of seasonal inspiration with festively adorned trees, pony-riding, trips on the Christkindl Express and fairytale scenes portrayed in artistically-arranged displays.
- Daily from 10am until 9.30pm, on bank holidays and Saturdays until 10pm.
- On Christmas Eve the stalls are open from 10am until 6pm.
Christkindlmärkt – Christmas Market
Starting at the end of November lasting till Christmas Day you can find “Christkindlmärkt” on nearly every corner of the city. Small huts provide you with potentiall Christmas presents, food and most important hot punch and “Glühwein”, heated sweetened wine. The biggest ones are the Christkindlmärkt at the Vienna City Hall, at the Spittelberg and inside the University Campus.
Here’s a list of Vienna’s most traditional Christmas markets. Make sure to check them out, when you happen to be in Austria’s capital around Christmas time!
There are plenty of Christmas markets in Austria and lots in Vienna. And the biggest is on the Rathausplatz, the square in front of the town hall and opposite the Burgtheater.
There are those who’ll argue in favor of the smaller, more cultured markets in Schoenbrunn and Spittelberg. But the one that garners the most attention and crowds is the Rathausplatz version.
It’s the home of the Wiener Christkindlmärkt, a yuletide market whose roots go back to the late 18th century: it only moved to its present location in 1975. It’s impossible to say how many visitors it attracts, but estimates range as high as 3 million a year.
Enjoy a unique experience as you stroll among the elaborately decorated trees in the park, Viennese and visitors from all over the world can enjoy the wonderful Christmas atmosphere. The tree with seals, the “Kasperl tree”, the “Herzerlbaum” (Hearts tree) as well as the “Post office in the clouds” offer a perfect setting for a souvenir photo.
The festively illuminated Schoenbrunn Palace, the former summer residence of the Austrian Emperors, provides a spectacular backdrop for an idyllic Christmas village full of the scent of mulled wine and ginger bread. And almost every day, festive concerts spread Christmas mood!
The Schoenbrunn Christmas Market is probably one of the most popular markets in Vienna, offering a great opportunity for a visit to Schoenbrunn Palace. There are 70 exhibitors at this traditional and internationally renowned Christmas market offering visitors the opportunity to purchase crafted Austrian artefacts in a seasonal atmosphere. Products range from wooden Christmas tree decorations, felt, glass and stone, to handmade pottery, tin toys, clay products and hand-carved mangers. Visitors can also enjoy wines from all over Austria as well as punches and tea specialities, including non-alcoholic and sugar-free varieties.
Christmas music will be provided by choirs, brass bands and groups from all over the world on the stage in front of the Christmas tree. (every day, entry free).
There are also a lot of activities to keep the young amused which include confectionary decorating, traditional Christmas stories and “Hunt the Christmas Parcel”.
The market at Schoenbrunn opens again from December 28th until January 1st as a New Years Market.
Our personal tip for your Christmas shopping is the Christmas market at the Spittelberg. In this lovely historical quarter both traditional and original handicraft is sold on narrow granitstone paved alleyways, niches and courtyards. It’s Vienna’s most authentic Christmas market.
The other distinctive element to Spittelberg is the more sophisticated, cultural feel to the stalls. This is a grown-up market, home to an eclectic and extensive collection of arts and crafts, and with a charm unmatched anywhere in town.
Armed with sufficient Euros, you would have no trouble finding any number of suitable and unusual Xmas gifts here – from exotic wares from the far east to locally-produced beeswax candles. Not to mention various culinary delights to keep the winter chill at bay.
If you only have time to visit one Christmas market while in Vienna, then visit this one. You won’t be disappointed.