Christmas is a special time of year, but without the communal Christmas Market with it's crackling spitfires roasting flame grilling sausages and warm cups of mulled wine to keep our digits from freezing over, Christmas would be like a gift with no wrapping.
Christmas Markets go back centuries across Europe and there's a united sense of charity and wellbeing across countries during the run up to December 25th. From the cobbled streets of Innsbruck in the Alps, to the gothic architecture of Prague, Christmas Markets offer a slice of the local culture sprinkled with caster sugar.
Where could be more magical than the home of Santa himself. Just a few miles south of the Arctic Circle, Rovaniemi is a bitterly cold and unabashedly beautiful slice of Lapland that carries the magic of Christmas in every snowflake.
Santa Claus Village is in essence a year round Christmas Market with traditional Finnish cuisine and the most festive forms of transport, a magical ride in a reindeer sleigh! Zip through the 'forest of the elves' and take your family on a true Christmas adventure.
Usually between November and the beginning of January. Each market has it's own dates and can vary slightly year to year so check the details before arranging your trip.
That depends entirely on which one you attend. In Lapland you can expect frosty conditions and reindeer rides, in Edinburgh you can expect an oval ice rink and a light show at the Hogmany. The one ubiquitious element to Christmas markets, are fantastic presents, warm mulled wines and delicious food.
Technically, £0. The charm of a Christmas market cannot be purchased. It's in the decorations, the trees and lights, the hopeful glint in the eyes of the children. Of course it's fun to purchase gifts for people but it's not necessary to have a great time!