Berlin: 7 Christmas Markets You Shouldn’t Miss

Posted in: Berlin Shopping


Christmas market at Alexanderplatz
Take a spin at the Alexanderplatz Christmas market. Photo: Concentrated Passion

By C.H. Kwak in Berlin—

‘Tis the season… to shop and drink mulled wine, that is. Christmas markets in Berlin have been spreading faster than bedbugs in New York. Today there are over 60 markets in Berlin. You really don’t need me to tell you where to go, since you will stumble onto one at some point.

Still, if you’re a planner (like I am), you might want to mark these seven markets on your map:

1. TrendMafia
Brunnenviertel, Brunnenstr. 64, Mitte
U-Bahn: Bernauer Str
Web site

Out with the old, in with the hip! Berlin’s designers emerge from their workshops to show off their artisan goodies every weekend in December. A perfect place to find one-of-a-kind gifts for your special ones.

Gendarmenmarkt Christmas Market

Gendarmenmarkt. Photo: Abccool

2. Gendarmenmarkt Christmas market
Gendarmenmarkt 1, Mitte
November 22 – December 31, 2010
U-Bahn: Franzosische Strasse

Handicrafts, fine embroidery, hot wursts… The usual suspects of Christmas markets make up this opulent market surrounded by austere Prussian buildings. On every single day, there’s a performance of sorts. Whether you see a lone juggler or a full gospel choir is a matter of luck.

3. Lucia Christmas Market at Kulturbrauerei
Schönhauser Allee 36, Prenzlauer Berg
November 22 – December 22, 2010
Web site

At this factory complex turned venerable cultural institution in Prenzlauer Berg, traditions mash with trends. Log fires keep the visitors warm as they move from courtyard to courtyard.

4) Alexanderplatz Christmas market
November 22 – December 26, 2010
U-Bahn and S-Bahn: Alexanderplatz

With an ice rink and amusement rides, it’s more a carnival than a classic market. Sure, you can buy knick-knacks, but why pay when you can try to win them at a game booth? (Just remember, the odds are against you.)

5) Holy S*ht Shopping
Spandauer Str. 2 and Karl-Liebknecht Str. 9, 11, Mitte
December 11 and 12, 2010
U-Bahn and S-Bahn: Alexanderplatz
Web site

Designer cardboard furniture, ironic t-shirts, hand-knit pet couture… I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore. DJs spin electro music as beer bottles roll around the floor at this event on December 11 and 12.

6) Gedächtniskirche Christmas market
From November 22, 2010 to January 2, 2011
U-Bahn: Kurfurstendamm or Zoologischer Garten

Drama! This year’s ersatz Christmas tree at Gedächtniskirche, a giant blowup cone, had the local press and residents up in arms. All that outrage doesn’t seem to have deterred the hundreds of visitors who descend on this market day after day to nibble on roasted nuts and buy tchotchkes.

7) Spandau Christmas market
Altstadt Spandau
From November 24, 2010 to December 23, 2010
U-Bahn: Altstadt Spandau

With up to 400 stands, this suburban market happens to be the city’s largest–and also probably the most scenic (and kitschy). The cobblestone streets and brick buildings are perfect ingredients for that special Christmas feeling.

Looking for more suggestions? Check out our post last year on Berlin’s Christmas markets and other wintery treats.

Share your favorite market

Do you have a favorite Christmas market in Berlin? Tell us about it in the comments section.

About the author

C.H. Kwak is a translator in Berlin.

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