In case you fancy a little trip to European Christmas Markets, Stockholm in Sweden is not a bad option. Why is that? Because there are more than 10 different kinds of Christmas Markets in the city, and you can easily explore more than one Christmas Market in one short weekend.
Let’s have a closer look at 3 Christmas Markets in Stockholm that I have recently visited. Keep reading, as at the end of the post you’ll find a few extra tips for your Christmas shopping trip to the Swedish capital.
Christmas Market in Stockholm’s Old Town 2.–23.12.2017
Stortorgets Julmarknad a.k.a. Christmas Market in the main square of the old town of Stockholm is very traditional kind of Christmas Market. Even if there hasn’t been any snow in the past two years, the atmosphere on the narrow streets of the old town is very Christmassy – and busy with people.
If you truly want to take some time to explore the old town — Gamla Stan, as locals know it — a little bit better, I would highly recommend going there already after 9 am. The most boutiques, shops, cafés and bistros open at 10 am, and as soon as the clock turns to ten, the old town will be immediately jammed with people. The Christmas Market will open at the main square every day at 11 am.
As said, the Christmas market is quite a traditional one, at least from a Finnish point of view. You’ll find all sorts of Christmas treats and snacks, both sweet and sour, glögi/glögg/hotwein with Christmas cookies, Christmas decoration, handcraft… The list goes on and on.
Surrounded by the old, beautiful buildings, the atmosphere at the Christmas Market is truly authentic; only snow was missing. Two years in a row—what a shame! Let’s hope this year will be white.
The Christmas Market in the old town is open every day between 11–18 between the 2nd and 23rd of December. It means you’ve got plenty of time to enjoy the Christmassy feeling in the old town of Stockholm.
Christmas Market in Skansen is open on weekends
Christmas Market in Skansen is a bit different from the other markets in Stockholm. You might wonder why?
First of all, you need to know what Skansen is. It’s the world’s first open-air museum with plenty of things to see and do. The cutest attraction in Skansen is the animals; Skansen is also an outdoor zoo with lots of wild and tame animals.
Because of all this Skansen has an entrance fee, which is, during the Christmas Markets, a bit more than usual. Still very affordable and totally worth 160 Swedish crowns (16 euros).
However, paying for entrance isn’t the only thing you need to be prepared for when going to Skansen; There will be queues. Skansen gates open at 10 am. We got there at noon on Saturday, and we queued for about 40 minutes. Still totally worth it.
Skansen Christmas Market is open only on Saturdays and Sundays between 10 am and 4 pm from the 25th of November until the 17th of December. You can experience some Swedish Christmas traditions in Skansen also on Lucia’s Day celebration on the 13th of December.
If queueing, overcrowded places and being surrounded by kids don’t appeal to you, then don’t bother—or at least consider twice. In Skansen, all three will be there with you. However, there are several reasons why you shouldn’t skip Skansen.
The authenticity is something extremely special here. Besides the old, atmospheric buildings and the animals, in Skansen, there will be live music, lots of laughing and happy faces.
Compared to us Finns, there is something really funny about the Swedes. As soon as the band started playing on the outdoor stage, the dance floor was immediately packed with jumping and dancing Swedes going crazy. That’s something Finns wouldn’t do, at least not without alcohol.
Well, jumping like crazy is not a bad idea; even if there’s no snow, the weather in Stockholm in December IS cold, especially when spending the whole day outside. So make sure you are dressing up warmly. I didn’t, and I suffered. And I’m from Finland!
There are big outdoor fires spread all over the area, which offer you a sweet spot to warm up when your fingers and toes get frozen.
The market stands are spread out widely, which is nice, but the most of them can be found on the main square in the middle of Skansen. There is a wide selection of handicrafts, souvenirs, Christmas decorations and special snacks being sold on the stands.
We had some sort of elk meat and potato mash snack wrapped in a flatbread, served with creme fraiche and cloudberry jam – oh yummy, what a treat!
Has it ever occurred to you to mix creme fraiche and cloudberry jam!? Again, totally worth it!
Farmers Market in Södermalm goes Christmas!
Bondens egen Marknad is celebrating the harvest season with Farmers Market in Södermalm, the city district on the south side of the old town, on Saturdays between August and October each year. In December, the Farmers Market goes Christmas!
The stands are spread along the Katarina Bangata street, and they’re filled with sweet and salty Christmas treats, wines, Christmas decoration and other festive items, including handicrafts. On both ends of the market street, there are also a few flea market stands for real bargains.
In this Farmers Market Christmas Edition you can find from 10 to 20 market stands, so it’s not very big one, but in case you’re going to Södermalm anyway, there’s no reason to skip Bondens egen Marknad. This Christmas Market is open on Saturdays between the 25th of November and 16th of December from 10 am to 3 pm.
In 2017, Södermalm will host another 1-day Christmas Market. Långholmen Christmas Market will be organised on the 2nd of December from 11 am until 4 pm.
Other Christmas Markets in Stockholm
One of Stockholm’s Christmas classics is, of course, the Christmas Market in Drottningholm Palace. This year, the market takes place on the 9th and 10th of December. The handcraft-heavy market is open on Saturday between 10 am and 5 pm and on Sunday between 10 am and 4 pm. The palace itself is open to visitors on both days between 12–15.30.
Another Royal Christmas event in Stockholm is the Christmas Fair at the Royal Stables 1–3 December.
In Stockholm, Christmas Markets come and go. Every year there’s something new, just like the above-mentioned market in Söderholm’s Långholmen this year. I was so sorry to find out the Christmas Market in Sergels Torg in 2015 was only organised once. Last year, instead of breathtaking, blowing-your-mind-away kind of Christmas lights and cute little market stands, Sergels Torg was filled with protesters.
Instead of protesters, I would definitely prefer seeing Sergels Torg like this also in the future.
After my latest trip to Stockholm, I read that the Sergels Torg Christmas Market had been moved to Kungsträdgården, which was also referred as ‘Stockholm’s Christmas Village’. Funny enough, I found no further information nor dates for this mysterious ‘Christmas Village’, which made me miss it completely. In case you’re nearby, please let us all know in the comments what else can be found on Kungsträdgården before Christmas than an ice skating rink. [Map]
If you’re a fan of art and design, Stockholm has a lot to offer in December. Organised by the University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, Konstfack’s Christmas Market takes place on the 2.–3.12.2017. If you’re visiting Stockholm on the weekend of 9–10 December, you’re extremely lucky; There are art and design focused Christmas Markets in Färgfabriken, Beckmans Design School and Marabouparken.
In Djurgården you can experience real Christmas spirit also outside Skansen. Rosendal Gardens hosts a Christmas Market that is open from Tuesday to Sunday between 11 am and 4 pm until the 22nd of December. In Rosendal Christmas Market you can find flowers, of course, but also wreaths, seasonal food, bread and pastries. Yummy! [Map]
This article is now available as a mobile app. Go to GPSmyCity to download the app for GPS-assisted travel directions to the attractions featured in this article.
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