Vienna’s Christmas markets

Posted On October 24, 2006

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As the winter draws a grey cloak over Europe, Vienna comes alive to the glitter of thousands of festive lights, the sounds of carolling and traditional music and the scent of cinnamon, sweet biscuits and warm, spiced wine.

Vienna’s Christmas markets are among the world’s most famous and welcome visitors from the middle of November, right up to Christmas. Here is a guide to the top Viennese Christmas markets, what to expect, when to visit and how to get there.

One of the main winter attractions, going back over two decades, is the Magic of Advent with its imaginative theme world in and around Vienna’s City Hall, the Rathaus. This year, the traditional Christmas market boasts in the region of 140 booths to browse and purchase Christmas gifts. Meanwhile in Rathauspark, around the Christmas market, visitors can enjoy a romantic Advent stroll beneath the delightfully adorned trees, where the most popular rendezvous for lovers is the radiant “Heart Tree”. (Nov 18 – Dec 24, www.christkindlmarkt.at)

Just along the Ring Boulevard between the museums of fine arts and natural history, there is another new Christmas market this year. Some 50 booths on the magnificent Maria-Theresien-Platz will be inspiring visitors with original giftware and traditional handicrafts. Typical Austrian brass band music, gospel choirs and music groups will add to the seasonal atmosphere. (Nov 29 – Dec 24, www.weihnachtsdorf.at)

The main courtyard in front of Schönbrunn Palace, the former Habsburg residence, will also be putting on its Christmas mantle. Traditional handicrafts, hand-made jewelry and rustic Christmas tree decorations will be on offer against this majestic backdrop. (Nov 18 – Dec 26, www.weihnachtsmarkt.co.at)

The Christmas market at Spittelberg, a revitalized Biedermeier quarter with narrow streets, is likewise packed with stands offering handicrafts and ceramics, as well as silver, enamel and brass jewelry. Visitors can also drink hot punch or enjoy delicious culinary specialties. (Nov 17 – Dec 23, www.spittelberg.at)

And at the nearby MuseumsQuartier, an “ice palace” is being specially erected in the main courtyard for “Winter in MQ”. Variety is guaranteed with ice curling, MQ Hill Climbing, children’s activities, and winter sounds with DJs and video projections. (Nov 16 – Dec 23, www.mqw.at)

How to get there: Fly via Austrian Airlines (www.austrianairlines.com).

For more information about Vienna visit www.vienna.info

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One Response to “Vienna’s Christmas markets”

  1. Marina Job

    Dear Sir,

    I am with the Croatian National Television and am doing a footage about Advent in Vienna over this weekend.

    I beg of you not to send me a newsletter on this e-mail because it is for business only. Thank you for understanding!

    I would like to know if its approved to film some parts of the X-mas market?
    It will be presented on Good Morning, Croatia and in the late night show about showbizz called Shpitzza.

    Thank you and have a nice day,

    Marina Job

    + 385 91 553 5702