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10 Alternative Christmas Fairs

10 Alternative Christmas Fairs

It’s that time of year again! Christmas trees are starting to appear in town squares and shopping centres, lights hanging in High Streets and shops assembling Christmassy displays. It only makes sense then to visit a Christmas Market!
Here, we present to you 8 alternative Christmas Markets from around the country to get you in the Christmas spirit. Ranging from medieval castles to picturesque seaside towns, we’re sure you’ll find something you’ll fancy – so hop in your campervan and take a Christmas tour of the UK!

© Paul Englefield. Birmingham German Christmas Market, CC BY 2.0
© Paul Englefield. Birmingham German Christmas Market, CC BY 2.0

1) Wrexham Victorian Christmas Market

Location: Church Street, Wrexham

Dates: 10th December

Details: 12pm-8pm

Wrexham Victorian Christmas Market is one not to be missed. Only on for one day a year, the Market is one of the most anticipated events of the town’s social calendar, with over 70 stalls occupying Church Street, St Gile’s churchyard and even spilling over into the church. Music and Christmas carols add a festive ambience whilst the visitors indulge in the many treats that the market has to offer, including local cheeses, meats, cakes and drinks as well as hot festive food such as Bratwurst, mince pies and your traditional mulled wine and chestnuts to savour whilst you shop. With free entry and extremely accessible by the city’s parking and transport links, this is one Christmas Market to visit.

Find out more here.

2) Brixham Christmas Market

Location: Scala Hall (Market) and The Quay (Illuminations), Brixham, Devon

Dates: 28th November

Details: Free entry; lanterns £1.

Brixham Christmas Market and Illuminations, quite literally, lights up the town around Christmas time. The Market itself, housed within Scala Hall, offers a lovely opportunity to stock up on Christmas gifts for your friends and family, selling local arts and crafts and cards and brilliant way to occupy your early afternoon before the Illuminations. The Illuminations themselves are most certainly the highlight of the day; a procession of lanterns will walk the streets of Brixham from 5pm onwards and finish at the Quay with a fireworks display that marks the climax of the festive day. Brixham Christmas Market is your perfect quintessential English Market with a spark!

You can find full information here.

3) Salisbury Christmas Market

Location: Guildhall Square, Salisbury

Dates: 26th November – 20 December

Details: Free entry, £5 for a lantern

Set in the middle of the historic city of Salisbury, the Christmas Market combines the feel of a traditional European Market with traditional German chalets whilst celebrating Great British arts and crafts. Hand-picked, Salisbury prides themselves on choosing only the best food and craft stalls, ensuring your visit to be both aesthetically and financially pleasing. Celebrate the beginning of the Market with the Launch Event from 5pm-8pm with musical and entertainment acts, and then make sure to see the Lantern Parade with the chance to participate and create your very own lantern. A fun, family-friendly event, this Market never fails to please.

For more information, visit this page.

4) Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market and Ice Rink

© Colin Smith. Ice Rink at Winchester Christmas Market. CC-BY-SA-2.0
© Colin Smith, Wikicommons. Ice Rink at Winchester Christmas Market. CC-BY-SA-2.0 

Location: The Close, Winchester

Dates: 19th November – 22nd December

Details: Free entry to the Market, £8.50 (Adult), £5 (Child 4-7), £7 (Child 8-18)

Hailed as one of the best Christmas Markets in the country and claims to be the Christmas Capital of England, Winchester Cathedral Christmas Market is certainly a Market not to be missed. The Market boasts an incredible 100 wooden chalets, filled with exclusively picked vendors of food and drink, British arts and crafts, and hand-crafted decorations. Take a break from the shopping by taking advantage of the Market’s Ice Rink that offsets the medieval backdrop. It’s certainly a Market that begs to be photographed!

For full information and to book ice rink tickets, visit this website.

5) Victorian Christmas Market at Kelham Island Museum

Location, Kelham Island Museum, Sheffield

Dates: 5th– 6th December

Details: £5.50 adult, under 16s free.

Another Victorian Market to look forward to, Kelham Island Museum’s version raises the bar. With over 120 stalls to explore in categories such as ‘Sheffield, Made’ to ‘End of Island Emporium’, there are certainly a few Christmas presents to be found here. The kids will love the interactive Santa workshops where they are given the chance to write to Santa or help his elves decorate the tree, even meeting his very own reindeer. Dickensian Living History characters will be present at the Market, too, to give the Market an authentic feel, with an array of musical acts spreading the festive cheer throughout the weekend. Despite the entry fee for adults, this children-oriented market will create some lasting memories.

For more information, visit Kelham Island Museum’s website.

6) Skipton Christmas Market

Location: High Street, Skipton

Dates: Sunday 6th and Sunday 13th December

Details: Free entry

Skipton Christmas Market embodies the classic British Christmas Market; Skipton High Street lines itself with stalls from local charity and gift shops, as well as their already plentiful array of independent and high street brand shops. Should you run out of stalls, feel the Christmas atmosphere in front of the arena where a number of festive acts will take place throughout the day. To round off the Market, 4pm marks the beginning of a procession up to the Holy Trinity Church grounds where visitors will be met with a Carol Service. If you’re wanting a traditional British Christmas Market, look no further than Skipton.

Visit their website for more information: http://welcometoskipton.com/item/Yuletide-Festival-and-Christmas–Market

7) Leeds Christkindelmarkt

© Georgio. Leeds German Christmas Market, CC BY 2.0
© Georgio. Leeds German Christmas Market, CC BY 2.0

Location: Millennium Square, Leeds

Dates: 13th November – 20th December

Details: Free entry

Find a slice of Germany in North England in Leeds’ Christkindelmarkt. With over 40 traditional chalets filled with goods ranging from handcrafted toys, food and drink, and decorations, there’s something for everyone’s stocking here. Then, after a ride of their traditional carousel, rest up in the Alp Chalet Bavarian eatery to sample some traditional German food and drink. Sunday mornings are the perfect time to come with the kids as the Frankfurter Scheune that transforms itself into a place of face painting, balloon modelling as well as a musical sing-alongs. The perfect combination of Germany meet England, this Market can do no wrong!

Find more information here.

8) AWBS Christmas Craft and Gift Fayre

Location: Founders Hall, Royal Holloway, Egham

Dates: 5th December

Details: £5 adults, free on-site parking, all proceeds to charity.

Indulge in this cosy Christmas Craft and Gift Fayre hosted by the American Woman of Berkshire and Surrey. Dozens of stalls will be selling a variety of items from not only Britain but Europe and further, the perfect place to pick out a special Christmas present, and an on-site café with fresh baked goods that will round off the lovely tone of the day. Not forgetting the children, the Fayre even has children’s activities and even an opportunity to meet Santa! With all proceeds going to charity, you can shop and be rest assured that your money has both bought Christmas cheer and gone to a good cause.

For more information, visit this website.

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