Dating as far back as the 1400s, European Christmas Markets have been providing locals and foreigners with Christmas light shows, concerts, apple cider, gluhwein, and Christmas Trees that put Rockefeller Center's spruce to shame! The thing with Christmas Markets in Europe is that there are many; most throughout Central Europe... There are many ways to experience European Christmas Markets, two of which are Christmas Market Tours and Christmas Market River Cruises.
What's The Difference?
The difference between a Christmas Market Tour and a Christmas Market River Cruise is that you only have to unpack once for one of them. Rivers used to be the highways of Europe back in the day, and unlike today where you have to travel far and wide to reach major city centers, city centers were right off the river. Take Prague for example... For the past ten centuries, Prague has been filling the Vltava River, which is home to over 1 million people. Escorted tours of Europe that include Prague, normally include Vienna and Budapest. That said, the distance between Vienna and Prague is about 200 miles. Tours of Prague Vienna and Budapest normally have a stop in Bratislava or Moravia, which eases the bus ride between the two destinations. On a Prague Vienna and Budapest river cruise, you'll be floating on the river seeing all the castles and sites as you sail through. Like escorted Europe Tours, European River Cruises offer options such as bicycling through a bike trail near the river as the vessel floats beside you.
What Makes Europe Christmas Markets Special
- During the four Sundays preceding Christmas (Advent), Christkindlmarkts fill the streets of many cities and villages bringing Christmas to life.
- Getting to see and experience a Christmas Market in Europe by itself is most definitely a bucket list item.
- Having the chance to purchase unusual holiday ornaments not easily found in the states is also a treat.
- Experiencing warm Gluhwein while wandering through Central Europe Christmas Market during a cold winter's night is a highlight.
- Iceskating in Rockefeller Center is a wonderful experience; however, iceskating in the middle of a five hundred year old Christmas Market is entirely something else.
- Discovering hot chimney cakes, Spatzle, and Lebkuchen can transform your experience into something amazing!
But where to begin when trying to figure out the best European Christmas Markets?
Which are the best Christmas Markets in Europe?
That's easy... They're all wonderful! It all depends if you prefer taking a 2018 European Christmas Markets Tour in the big cities, or if you prefer a more quaint river cruise... In that case, we would recommend any of our 2018 German Christmas Market Tours, which takes you to Christmas Markets in Rothenburg, Düsseldorf, or Erfurt.
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