21 best Christmas markets in and near the Netherlands [2022]

These markets have festive spirits all wrapped up ✨

Munching on delicious oliebollen, warming yourself with a steaming mug of glühwein (mulled wine) after a round on the ice rink, and dancing to Christmas music under twinkling fairy lights: Christmas markets in the Netherlands are amazing.

But the Netherlands has spectacular Christmas markets in almost all of their cities — and that’s not counting in the amazing fairs in Belgium, Germany, and France! Choosing the best one to visit can be as difficult as only eating one stroopwafel.

So here’s our cadeautje (present) to you: the ultimate list of the best Christmas markets happening in and around the Netherlands!

Looking for the perfect Christmas market? Just jump to it! 👇

1. Christmas Town Valkenburg: an enchanting market in a cave

This entirety of this quaint Dutch town in Limburg comes alive during the Christmas season, with Christmas Town Valkenburg.

Boasting the largest underground Christmas market in Europe, the Gemeentegrot (Municipal Cave), these centuries-old tunnels wind under the ruins of the castle of Valkenburg and are filled with over 50 festive market stalls for you to explore. 

If exploring the stalls has tired you out, be sure to stop off at Santa’s Village for some delicious oliebollen, waffles, crêpes, and churros — washed down with hot chocolate or mulled wine.

📅 Dates: November 18 – January 8
💰Entry price: prices vary from €5.60 to €8.50 depending on attractions
📍Location: Valkenburg

2. Ice*Village Amsterdam: the best market for ice-skating enthusiasts

If you’re fond of ice skating, and still have some Christmas shopping to tick off your list, then Ice*Village Amsterdam might be the perfect market for you. ⛸️

Over 50 wooden chalet-style stalls circle the huge ice-skating rink, set amongst the stunning backdrop of Museumplein. 

If all that skating makes you work up an appetite, there are warm waffles to enjoy whilst you warm up by a firepit. Mmm…cosy!

📅 Dates: December 14 – 26, from 11 AM to 8 PM
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Ice*Amsterdam, Museumplein, Amsterdam

3. Het Amsterdamse Winterparadijs: part market, part seasonal paradise

Grab yourself a mug of mulled wine and clear your agenda, because the fourth edition of Amsterdam Winter Paradise begins this December!

At this Dutch Christmas market, you can stroll down festive booths selling seasonal products and delicious goodies under garlands of twinkling fairy lights or even check out exclusive live musical performances by several Dutch artists.

And activity-hungry shoppers needn’t fret! Whether you’d rather visit the skating rink, take a ride on the Ferris wheel, or try your hand at skiing, this Christmas market features a winter wonderland unlike any other.

Note: all events taking place after 9 PM are 18+. The venue also enforces a strict “no sweatpants” dress code for late-night events.

📅 Dates: December 15 – January 1
💰Entry price: €54 for everyone over 13, €41 for children aged 4 to 12, and €27 for children aged 1 to 3
📍Location: Amsterdam RAI

4. Christmas Market Haarlem: the Spaarnestad puts on its winter finery

The centre of Haarlem will be transformed into an enchanting Christmas market this December, that’ll have you feeling merry long before the glühwein hits!

The market also offers the best selection of seasonal gifts, mouthwatering delicacies, and warm beverages for the absolute gezelligste experience.

Meanwhile if you fancy some carols, you’ll have your pick of several choirs and a moody “Dickens Orchestra”.

📅 Dates: December 9 – 11, from 10:30 AM to 8 PM on Friday and Saturday, and from 10:30 AM to 7 PM on Sunday
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Haarlem

5. Magical Maastricht: a true Limburgian Christmas market

We can almost smell the glühwein from here! 😋 Image: Depositphotos

This season, Maastricht’s Vrijthof Square will be transformed into the enchanting Magical Maastricht Christmas market.

Stalls will be filled with special regional products, delicious seasonal goodies, and cheery decorations.

And when you’ve skated your heart out at the ice rink and picked out some awesome gifts for your loved ones, you can pop into the toasty Almhütte chalet for some glühwein (mulled wine).

Visitors will also be treated to festive light routes, with Maastricht’s walking paths illuminated by thousands of shining lights. Gezellig!

📅 Dates: December 1-30
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Vrijthof, Maastricht

6. Castle Christmas Fair: a truly unique market experience

The fabulous Castle Christmas Fair promises over 130 stalls laden with sumptuous goodies — from homemade soap and local organic sausages to antique Christmas decorations and so much more!

A little over a half an hour from Haarlem, Velsen’s palatial country estate Beeckestijn is a stunning setting that’ll definitely help get you in festive spirits.

Still not convinced? With over 50 live performances from bands and Christmas choirs scheduled, we bet you’ll be singing an enthusiastic rendition of Jingle Bells before you know it!

Tip: If you still have tickets for the 2020/2021 edition of this event, they’re still valid for the 2022 edition.

📅 Dates: November 17-20, from 11 AM to 11 PM from Thursday to Saturday, and 11 AM to 6 PM on Sunday
💰Entry price: €15.75 for those over 14, €7.50 for children aged 7 to 14, and free for children under the age of 7
📍Location: Buitenplaats Beeckestijn, Velsen-Zuid

7. Winter Barbeque and Christmas market: Tilburg

Wander the wonderful Christmas Market in Tilburg, and admire how the city lights up. Image: MerktTilburg/Supplied

In Tilburg, not only can you explore the market in delightful, festive cheer, but you can also enjoy the annual serving of BBQ dishes. Grab a cup of warm mulled wine at The Cat’s Back, and shop for those last-minute Christmas gifts.

Christmas market not enough? You’re in luck, because Tilburg has so many wintery activities on offer. An ice rink, a live nativity, a vintage carousel and even a wonderful winter garden; Tilburg has so much to offer this winter!

📅 Dates: December 11
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Paleisring 21, 5038 WD Tilburg

8. WinterWonderWeken Leiden: floating festivities in the City of Discoveries

Stroll down the stunning Hooglandse Kerkgracht with a warm mug of glühwein (mulled wine) in hand and explore Leiden’s WinterWonderWeken!

This nostalgic Christmas market boasts stalls packed full of seasonal cheer — and, best of all, a floating ice rink! Twirl, pirouette, and dance over one of the most picturesque canals in the heart of the city.

Even better, f you plan on shopping in Leiden, you’ll be pleased to know that shops are also extending their opening hours during the Christmas season.

📅 Dates: December 15-18
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Hooglandse Kerkgracht, Leiden

9. Winter Fair in Ahoy: Rotterdam’s seasonal market chock-full of goods

Rotterdam’s family-friendly Winter Fair boasts over 200 stalls selling all you’ll ever need to get you into that holly, jolly Christmas spirit.

With stalls and events spread out over the Rotterdam Ahoy convention centre’s Halls 3, 5, AND 6, we sure aren’t kidding when we say this market is a must-see on anyone’s Dutch Christmas market bucket list.

And if the prospect of shopping all day doesn’t thrill you to the core, you can also check out the Fair’s daily musical performances, fashion shows, workshops and more.

📅 Dates: December 14-18
💰Entry price: €7.50
📍Location: Rotterdam Ahoy, Rotterdam

10. Country & Christmas Fair: Utrecht’s royally festive market in a castle

Kasteel de Haar (Castle de Haar) once again comes alive with holiday spirit this season, as it hosts its annual Country & Christmas Fair.

Tour stalls loaded with festive goods as you’re serenaded with Christmas music, then marvel at a dazzling light display with a flagon of glühwein in hand as the sun slowly begins to dip below the horizon.

Hungry? Don’t miss trying some of the delicious poffertjes or waffles that will be available onsite!

Tip: Buying your tickets online instead of at the castle will nab you a fabulous korting (discount).

📅 Dates: November 22-27, from 10 AM to 10 PM Tuesday to Saturday, and from 10 AM to 6 PM on Sunday
💰Entry price: ticket prices vary depending on whether you’re touring the castle or not
📍Location: Kasteel de Haar, Utrecht

11. Winter Market Molen de Ster: Utrecht’s cosiest winter market

Dutch Christmas markets are a masterclass in gezelligheid! Image: Depositphotos

Fancy a Christmas market in the courtyard of a gorgeous windmill? Then you need to check out the Winter Market at Molen de Ster!

You can stroll through stalls full of unique handmade goods from Utrecht’s artists and designers, let your children frolic in the mill playground — and perhaps pat an adorable goat or two.

Visitors are also offered a free tour of the windmill, and there will be hot chocolate and warm snert (pea soup) for sale. Lekker hé?

📅 Dates: December 11, from 11 AM to 5 PM
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Molen de Ster, Utrecht

12. Royal Christmas Fair: a festive market in The Hague’s historic centre

With over 100 stalls and a diverse cultural programme to celebrate the season, the Royal Christmas Fair in The Hague is a definite must-see!

Still got time on your hands after picking out some truly amazing gifts from the market’s stallholders? Be sure to stick around for the spectacular light shows, and take a magical walk amongst the ice sculptures.

Those with kids will also have a chance to meet Santa Claus (in his sleigh!) and visit the special Childrens’ Christmas Fair.

📅 Dates: December 8 – 23, from 11 AM to 6 PM every Monday to Friday and 10 AM to 6 PM every Saturday and Sunday
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Lange Voorhout, Den Haag

13. Gouda by Candelight: a Christmas market with old world charm

Gouda’s stunning Christmas market, Gouda by Candlelight, is here once again, with a dash of history amidst the seasonal cheer.

Shop for delightful seasonal products illuminated under the romantic glow of over a thousand candles, then watch the lighting of a Christmas tree that represents a long tradition of friendship between Gouda and the Norwegian city of Kongsberg.

But, wait — the celebrations don’t stop there!

The city centre also plays host to a dazzling light festival, complete with singing, theatre productions, and more.

📅 Dates: December 16, from 2 PM until around 10 PM
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Gouda

14. Dickens’ Festival: Deventer’s festive trip back in time

Please Sir, can I have some more…of these fabulous Christmas festivities? ✨ Image: Aisha Brown/Supplied

Deventer’s gorgeous Lebuinuskerk will once again play host to the city’s cheery Christmas market, featuring around 75 stalls full of exquisitely artistic and handmade goods.

Not enough? We gotcha. Fans of Charles Dickens can’t miss the Dickens’ Festival, where 950 of his beloved characters come to life and take to the streets!

There will also be a special performance of the play Alles is Dickens, and a Dickens Walk around Deventer featuring an accompanying radio play.

📅 Dates: December 10 and 11, from 11 AM to 5 PM
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Deventer

15. Archeon Midwinter Fair: the ultimate winter market for renaissance fans

Want a less typical Dutch Christmas market? The 18th edition of Archeon Museum’s Midwinter Fair in Alphen aan den Rijn celebrates the Yule tradition, an ancient winter celebration observed by Germanic people.

Between a Masked Ball, retelling of Midwinter stories, and a live game of Dungeons and Dragons, there is an abundance of things to see and do!

Tip: Museum card-holders are offered discounted rates, so be sure to bring your card along if you have one.

Visitors can also try several activities at Archeon’s spellbinding theme park, such as archery, swordfighting, and a cosplay workshop.

📅 Dates: December 10 and 11
💰Entry price: €27.50 for Saturday and €32.50 for Sunday for adults (€54.50 for both days), and €19.50 for children aged 4 to 12
📍Location: Archeon Museum Park, Alphen aan den Rijn

16. Winter Heerlijckheid: Christmas magic set in a castle

Heading outside to “chill”? Grab some mulled wine! Image: Depositphotos

Set in the gorgeous estate and castle of Warmelo in Twente, this outdoor Christmas market features over 100 booths selling a range of seasonal products that’ll have you buzzing with festive cheer!

Whether you’re dying to pick up the perfect winter scarf or a fancy bottle of wine, you’re sure to find something to get you into a festive mood.

📅 Dates: November 11 to 13, from 11 AM to 8 PM on Friday and Saturday, and 11 AM to 6 PM on Sunday
💰Entry price: €12.50 for adults, €5 for children aged 6 to 12, and free for children under 6
📍Location: Kasteel Warmelo, Diepenheim

Christmas markets beyond the Netherlands

If you’re looking for choices further afield or want to make a weekend getaway of it — great idea!

Here are some fabulous Christmas markets in Belgium, Germany, and France for an extra helping of festive cheer. 🎄

17. Winterland Hasselt: an alpine winter experience in the heart of Belgium

Winterland Hasselt will soon be here, to treat you to a uniquely alpine experience with over 50 market stalls and drinks in a traditional Austrian mountain chalet!

Are you looking for fun activities whilst you shop? This Christmas market’s got it all, whether you’re more into Ferris wheels, indoor skating, or exploring unique attractions like Santa’s Ghost Villa.

And if you’re also interested in entering the new year in style, be sure to book your ticket for Winterland Hasselt’s New Year’s Eve party.

📅 Dates: November 18 – January 8
💰Entry price: between €8 and €15, depending on the package selected
📍Location: Kolonel Dusartplein, Hasselt, Belgium

18. Winter Wonders: Brussels celebrates Christmas in style

It’s fun for the whole family, so you don’t want to give this one a miss! Image: Press Photos

The 22nd edition of Brussels’ Winter Wonders offers visitors a spectacular sound and light show at the Grand Place.

Dubbed one of the best Christmas markets in Europe, it features many fun cultural activities in the heart of this stunning city.

Between going ice skating, exploring 250 stalls full of Christmas goodies, and checking out entertaining shows for both adults and children, there’s loads to see and do!

📅 Dates: November 25 – January 1
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium

19. Köln Cathedral Christmas Market: traditional winter cheer

Christmas festivities in one of the most beautiful cities in Europe! Image: Depositphotos

A Christmas market in the grounds of an UNESCO World Heritage Site — what could be merrier?!

This Christmas market has over 130 stalls selling handicrafts, gifts, and seasonal food. You can pick up glassblown items, festive ceramics, childrens’ toys, or even personalised embroidered items.

As for entertainment, there are over 100 (free!) events on the central stage.

Tip: If you’re heading to a Christmas market in Köln, be sure to also check out the NS’s travel advice.

📅 Dates: November 17 – December 23, from 11 AM to 9 PM Sunday to Wednesday, from 11 AM to 10 PM on Thursday and Friday, and from 10 AM to 10 PM on Saturday
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Köln Cathedral, Köln, Germany

20. Mosel Wein Nachts Markt: the ideal market for wine lovers

Escape the cold weather outside at the Mosel Wein Nachts Markt!

This quaint German town’s underground wine and Chrismas market is set in a 16th century wine cellar, where twinkling fairy lights and cheery music are sure to get you into a festive mood.

There’s much to discover, including artisan food products, jewellery, antiques — and, of course, wine. 🍷

Tip: We suggest driving there and making an overnight stay. If you don’t have a car of your own, why not try car-sharing or renting a car?

📅 Dates: November 18 – January 1
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: An d. Mosel 25, Traben Trarbach, Germany

21. Metz Christmas Market: seasonal cheer in one of France’s most beautiful cities

Pick up a trinket or two — and a large helping of Chritmas cheer! Image: Depositphotos

Step aside Paris, there’s another French city brimming with seasonal cheer!

The Metz Christmas Market promises a shopping experience full of festive gifts, fabulous festivities, and wine tastings.

And if you need to chill after you’ve shopped yourself giddy, pop on a pair of skates and have a twirl at the city square’s giant ice rink.

Tip: For a truly breathtaking view of the city, you need to check out the Place d’Armes, where a giant Ferris wheel will lift you high above all the festivities.

📅 Dates: November 18 – December 24
💰Entry price: free
📍Location: Metz, Lorraine, France

What can I expect at a Dutch Christmas market?

Visiting a Christmas market is the best bucket list item if you’re staying in the Netherlands over the winter!

City centres up and down this cheese-obsessed country blossom with cheery market stalls, selling homemade goods, festive decorations, and — best of all — delicious seasonal food.

Eating delicious food, having fun on the ice, AND shopping? Sign us up! 🙋🏻‍♀️ Image: Depositphotos

As you wander through these stalls, you’ll also be treated to the scent of glühwein and oliebollen (a scrumptious deep-fried ball of dough). Lean into temptation and give these a try!

More activity-hungry visitors are also in for a treat, as Dutch Christmas markets generally offer a range of fun activities. Whether you’re a lover of ice skating, going on fairground rides, or just swaying to some live music, you’re guaranteed to have a fabulous time.

What to eat and drink at a Dutch Christmas market

In addition to fan favourites oliebollen and glühwein, there are many other delicious things to try!

  • Appelbeignets and appelflappen are deep-fried apple pastries, which go very nicely with hot chocolate 🍎
  • If you’re in the mood for something more savoury, then try some bitterballen (deep-fried and breaded meatballs) or their longer cousins kroketten (a deep-fried and breaded cylinder of ragout)
  • Every Dutch Christmas market will serve glühwein, a type of spiced wine that is served hot and will warm your belly🍷
  • You can also pick up bags of kruidnoten — hard round cookies made of speculaas 🍪

Ready to experience the Dutch winter wonderland at these incredible Christmas markets in the Netherlands and beyond? Pop on your gloves, grab your warmest winter coat and hit the streets — the gluhwein is calling your name!

Which Dutch Christmas markets are you going to visit this winter? Tell us all about them in the comments below!

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Liana Pereira
Liana Pereira
Primarily fuelled by cheese and lots (LOTS!) of coffee, Liana is a Burgher from sunny Sri Lanka that’s in the midst of wrapping up her linguistics degree. While writing will *always* have her heart, she also likes travelling, dogs, and heavy metal. As an observer of all things weirdly and wonderfully Dutch since 2018, she’s thrilled to have the ‘write’ opportunity to help others feel more at home here.

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