Heading to Germany for the holidays? Then you can't miss the amazing Munich Christmas Markets! From the traditional Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt to an old-timey Medieval Market, plus the many funky neighborhood Weihnachtsmärkte in between, you're sure to fall in love with these magical holiday markets!
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Christmas in Germany is truly magical! I was lucky enough to travel across the country during last year's festive season, and it was more enchanting than I ever could have imagined.
If you're visiting Munich during late November or in December, then you can't miss the amazing Christmas markets. These holiday fairs, which are also called Christkindlmarkt or Weihnachtsmarkt, date back to 14th century medieval times, when they were called St. Nicholas Markets (or Nikolaimarkt).
Today, you'll find many different Christmas Markets in Munich! They take place in Munich's Old Town and throughout the city (there's even one at the airport). You'll find a wide variety of themes too, ranging from the traditional Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt to a Medieval Market, Castle Markets, Nativity Scene Market, Pink Christmas LGBTQ Market, and more ... so there's truly something for everyone!
Ready to start planning your trip? I've rounded up all the best Munich Christmas Markets below, plus tons of helpful tips, a map, and more! Keep reading for all the details.
Best Munich Christmas Markets
Munich has tons of Christmas Markets, and each one is unique! I visited a bunch during my trip, and I can't wait to share all of these magical markets with you.
There's a lot of info here! Use the links below to navigate this article, or just keep scrolling to read everything.
Tips for Planning a Magical Trip
Keeping these helpful in mind will make your Christmas trip to Munich extra magical (and stress free):
- Make a game plan. If you'd like to visit a few markets over the course of a day / trip, rather than wandering around aimlessly, make a plan so you'll know where your day will start and end. You can use my map to easily get around! It also helps to make a list of gifts you'd like to buy ... that way, you won't forget anyone or blow your budget!
- Bring cash. Germans prefer cash. This is true everywhere in the country, but especially at the markets. Before you head out for the day, make sure to hit an ATM.
- Pack a tote bag. Once you start shopping at the markets, it's hard to stop! Bring a tote bag with you to carry your purchases. It's better for the environment, and you won't have to struggle with lots of little bags. I love these packable totes ... they last forever and fold up into a small square (perfect for travelers)!
- Book a centrally located hotel. If you want to visit as many markets as possible, the best place to stay is in Munich's Alstadt (Old Town), near the Marienplatz. You'll be able to walk between the central city markets, and it's get easy transportation to the further flung locations. Plus, you can head back to your hotel to drop off your purchases or if you need to take a break. Check out my hotel recommendations below!
- Don't wait ... if you see something you like, buy it. Each market is unique, and many crafts and gifts are handmade and / or unique to a particular market. If you see something you love, buy it right away. While visiting the Viktualienmarkt, I made the mistake of assuming I'd see similar ornaments and decorations at all the markets, and I definitely regretted it when the things I loved weren't available elsewhere.
- Warm up with a hot drink. One of the best ways to stay toasty is sipping a hot drink, like Glühwein (German mulled wine). It's available at every market and comes in a cute mug (which you can keep or return). Other options include Feuerzangenbowle (Fire Tongs Punch / flaming mulled cider), Eierpunsch (an egg punch that's similar to Eggnog), Glühgin (hot gin), Orangenpunsch (orange punch), and more. Not a drinker or traveling with kids? Not to worry, sip on Kinderpunsch (Children's Tea, a tea / mulled cider drink) or Kakao / Heiße Schokolade (hot chocolate) instead. Tip: Pace yourself with the Glühwein, it goes down easy, but all that sugar and wine will catch up with you eventually!
- Enjoy delicious food while you shop. You'll find find numerous stalls selling tempting German treats to eat, too! Perhaps most ubiquitous are the huts selling different types of sausage, including Bavaria's famous white Weißwurst, brats, Currywurst, and more. Or maybe you'd prefer Kartoffellanzen (spiral potatoes on a stick), Gebrannte Mandeln (candied almonds), Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes), sweet and savory crepes, Maroni (roasted chestnuts), or Lebkuchen (gingerbread) ... just a few of the tasty bites we spotted!
- Pay attention to market dates. Holiday markets typically open in late November and end on Christmas Eve. This year, the main Münchner Christkindlmarkt in the Marienplatz opens on November 27 and closes on December 24. Dates and times for the other markets vary, and with a few exceptions, they close on or around Christmas Eve (or sooner).
- Check out the special activities. Many of these holiday fairs also have special events tied to them—everything from children's crafting to Krampus runs, caroling, and more—so make sure to visit the event websites for more info before your visit. Most of the websites are in German, however you can use Google translate to interpret them as needed.
- Learn a few helpful German words. While many Germans speak English, not everyone does, plus it's polite to at least try to speak the local language when traveling. We found that people warmed up to us faster the more German we spoke ... even if it was rather poor! A few words to learn are: hallo (hello), guten Morgen (good morning), guten Tag (good afternoon), guten Abend (good evening), bitte (please), danke / danke schön (thanks / thanks very much), tschüss / auf Wiedersehen (bye), and Entschuldigen Sie bitte (excuse me please). Tip: Practice with Duolingo or Rosetta Stone before your trip!
- Dress warmly. While the atmosphere at the markets is cozy, the winter temperatures are sure to be chill inducing! Bundle up, and and maybe even wear a thermal base layer if you're wimpy like me. If you do find yourself needing to defrost, head inside a store to shop for a bit, visit a cultural attraction (like a church or museum), or grab a meal (or snack) in nearby a restaurant. You can see what I wore in the photo below!
Hotels Near the Markets
To make the most of your trip, the best place to stay is Munich's Old Town (or nearby). All the Old Town Christmas markets will be within walking distance of each other, and public transportation is readily available to more distant markets. Plus, you can make a quick trip back to your hotel for a break or to drop off purchases, if needed!
Here are a few hotels to consider:
- BEYOND by Geisel - Looking for a hotel in the heart of Old Town with unbeatable views of the city's central square? Then, BEYOND by Geisel is for you! This boutique hotel has 18 luxurious rooms with windows overlooking the Marienplatz and Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall), perfect for viewing the Christkindlmarkt from above and watching as the historic glockenspiel comes to life twice a day!
- Hotel am Markt - If you're looking for a more budget-friendly hotel, Hotel am Markt is a great option! We stayed here for part of our trip, and the rooms are basic, but stylish and cozy. The location is excellent, too ... just steps from the Viktualienmarkt and within easy walking distance of everything in Old Town.
- Platzl Hotel - The Platzl is another hotel with a wonderful location, close to the Marienplatz and steps from the famous Hofbräuhaus! You'll appreciate the Bavarian hospitality, close proximity to markets and other sights, and the convenience of two onsite restaurants.
- 25hrs Hotel The Royal Bavarian - Want to stay somewhere truly unique? Then, you'll love The Royal Bavarian arty ambiance! It's located in the revamped Imperial Post and Telegraph Office, right next door to the Munich's Central Station (making getting around the city a snap). Once you're settled into your trendy room, check out the Ice Magic at Karlsplatz-Stachus for ice skating, the continue on to the Marienplatz (about a 15 minute walk away).
- LOUIS Hotel - Another hotel for design lovers (this time warm and streamlined), is the LOUIS Hotel, which overlooks the Viktualienmarkt. The hotel features a variety of Christmas events, and the location is super convenient. Make sure to book a room overlooking the market for the most holiday cheer!
Old Town Markets
Munich's Old Town Markets are located in the heart of the city. They're all fairly close together, and you can easily walk between them over the course of a day. Perfect for first time visitors!
Marienplatz Christmas Market (Münchner Christkindlmarkt)
November 27 to December 24, 2023
Munich's oldest market, the Münchner Christkindlmarkt, is located on the Marienplatz (the city's central square). This historic, traditional market has roots dating back to the 14th century! You'll love the gorgeous setting with a huge, sparkling Christmas tree (perfect for photos!) in front of the towering Neo-Gothic Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall). Charming wooden stalls fill the square and the neighboring streets.
As the city's main (and most popular) market, it's also the most crowded and feels a little touristy. If you're not a fan of crowds, visit earlier in the day ... but do make sure stop back in the evening to see all the lights! And don't miss the holiday events, including children's workshops, carols, puppet show, Krampus run, and more. There's even a Parcel Bus (located at the corner of Augustinerstraße and Kaufingerstraße) to hold your purchases!
You can escape the crowds here by popping into the Neues Rathaus courtyard. (Enter through the large archway below the Glockenspiel or from Weinstraße, the street to the left of the building). This lovely courtyard is much quieter than the square, and it has an gorgeous, enchanting atmosphere with a smaller tree, the city's Nativity crêche, and a few booths.
You'll also find a special post office in the courtyard's passageway, where you can get mail postmarked "Christkindl" and delivered all over the world! A unique Münchner Christkindlmarkt stamp is also available here.
Tip: For an breathtaking birds-eye view of the market and city, climb the tower at the nearby Peterskirche (St. Peter's Church)
Learn more about the Christkindlmarkt at the Marienplatz.
Nativity Market (Kripperlmarkt)
November 27 to December 24, 2023
Munich's Nativity Market (or Kripperlmarkt), which dates back to 1757, is one of the largest Nativity scene markets in Germany. It's technically part of the Marienplatz market, and you'll find it located just steps away near Peterskirche (St. Peter's Church).
This is a smaller market with just 10 stalls, but you'll find everything you need to create an authentic Nativity scene, including stables, figurines, angels, lighting, and accessories, plus natural materials, such as moss and straw. Many of these items are handmade, and you won't find them anywhere else.
Find out more about the Kripperlmarkt.
Star Space at Rindermarkt (Sternenplatzl am Rindermarkt)
November 27 to December 24, 2023
Looking for someplace to enjoy a drink with a magical atmosphere? Then head to the Sternenplatzl am Rindermarkt! This charming market is also part of Munich's main market, but it feels more like a hidden gem than a touristy spectacle.
This beautiful, small square is located on Rindermarkt, one of Munich's oldest streets. You won't be able to miss the giant, functioning Christmas pyramid (Weihnachtspyramide), where you can grab a drink or bite to eat. At night, stars light up the trees, adding to the festive vibes.
You'll also find a large manger and a number of super cozy booths serving glühwein, fuerzangenbowle, and other drinks and snacks here. My husband and I joked that these "huts" were actually nicer that some of our bars back home!
Tip: While you're there, keep an eye out for the Ruffinihaus, a group of three houses with beautifully decorated facades, and the Lion's Tower (Löwenturm Rindermarkt) a Medieval tower that's dates back the 12th century.
Winter Magic at the Viktualienmarkt (Winterzauber auf dem Viktualienmarkt)
November 22, 2023 to January 5, 2024
Calling all foodies! Be sure to check out Winter Magic at the Viktualienmarkt, Munich's historic food market. This charming square was bustling with activity during our visit. You'll love exploring the booths featuring everything from fresh produce to food gifts, along all things Xmas, including hanging decorations and ornaments, pine wreaths, and other greenery.
You can enjoy Germany's famous mulled cider here, plus more unique drinks, like glühgin (hot gin). Grab a coffee in the cafe, enjoy a bite in one of the restaurants, or hang out in the beer garden with its seasonal Nativity scene. There's also a massive, beautifully festooned Maypole with scenes of village life.
I found some of my favorite Christmas decorations at the Viktualienmarkt. It was hard to decide what to buy (there were too many cute options!), and I was upset when I returned later in the evening and my favorite booths were closed. Don't make the same mistake!
Learn more about the Viktualienmarkt.
Ice Magic at Karlsplatz-Stachus (Münchner Eiszauber am Stachus)
November 24, 2023 to January 15, 2024
Whether you're a skater or not, you have to check out Ice Magic at Karlsplatz-Stachus (Münchner Eiszauber am Stachus), Bavaria's largest mobile ice rink! Even if you don't plan to skate, this is a great place to take a break with hot drink and a snack.
We had a blast watching the skaters, and I even convinced my husband to lace up his skates. He was seriously struggling until a young girl came to his rescue and offered him a cute skate trainer (lol)!
You'll love the ice rink's charming setting, too. It's located just outside the historic Karlsplatz Tor on Stachus square, which was built in the 14th century and is one of three remaining gates in Munich’s walls. The gate's name has a fun history, too: Karl Theodor (an unpopular elector) renamed the historic gate after himself in the 1700s, but locals rebelled and named the tower's square after the nearby "Stachus” tavern!
Tip: While you can get basic food and warm drinks here, it's more of an ice skating rink than an actual market. You'll find plenty of booths and shopping nearby though, especially if you walk toward the Marienplatz.
Check the hours, schedule, and daily events for the Münchner Eiszauber am Stachus.
Advent Spectacle and Medieval Christmas Fair (Adventsspektakel und Mittelalterlicher Weihnachtsmarkt)
November 27 to December 23, 2023
If these markets are sounding a little too modern, then you need to check out the Advent Spectacle and Medieval Christmas Fair, also known as the Adventsspektakel und Mittelalterlicher Weihnachtsmark ... just try to say that 10 times fast, ha!
As you can probably guess from the name, this fair has a Medieval theme, which extends from the gifts to the costumes, even the food and drinks. The atmosphere here is festive and authentic, meant to reflect what Munich's Christmas market may have looked like in Medieval Times. You'll find several historical nods, including the cups used for spiced wine or Drachenglut (dragon's embers), which are embossed with an ancient Munich city from the 1300s, a wood statue of an important Middle Ages mayor, and more!
This fair is truly one-of-a-kind, and in my opinion, a must see. We found lots of unique gifts here, enjoyed the people watching (many folks were wearing costumes), and loved sipping glühwein out of the Medieval-inspired mugs, which also make a lovely souvenir.
Read more about the Medieval Christmas Fair.
Christmas Village at the Residenz Kaiserhof (Weihnachtsdorf im Kaiserhof der Residenz)
November 23 to December 22, 2023
The Christmas Village at the Residenz Kaiserhof (Weihnachtsdorf im Kaiserhof der Residenz) is another must see market! For this magical holiday event, the castle's largest courtyard (which was once used only for major ceremonial occasions) has been transformed into a Bavarian village!
As you walk in, a beautiful, life-size Christmas pyramid (Weihnachtspyramide) will immediately catch your eye. Grab a hot drink here to stay warm as you sample different foods and shop for gifts created by village's talented traders and artisans.
You can also watch goldsmiths, fur tanners, and glassblowers as they work. And the children in your group will be enchanted by the fairytale forest, a group of booths featuring animatronic storybook figures, such as Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel and Gretel!
Tip: For the full royal experience, tour the Residenz before visiting the Christmas Village! The opulent interior of this Bavarian palace is a must see on any trip to Munich. You can take a self-guided tour (buy tickets at the museum) or book a private tour in advance.
Learn more about the Christmas Village at the Residenz.
Christmas Market at the Sendlinger Gate (Christkindlmarkt am Sendlinger Tor)
November 27 to December 22, 2023
Another historic fair you'll want to visit is the Christmas Market at the Sendlinger Gate (Christkindlmarkt am Sendlinger Tor). The Sendlinger Tor is one of city's three remaining gates. It was built in the 15th century, and it's believed that a holiday market took place here as early as 1886!
This Christkindlmarkt is on the smaller side, but the charming setting (with booths both inside and outside of the gate) is lovely. You'll find gifts from all over the world, and it's a great place to grab a bite or drink, too! My husband snacked on some currywurst here, and we spotted everything from chocolate covered fruits to roasted nuts, lebkuchen, and more.
Read more about the Sendlinger Tor Christkindlmarkt.
Feuerzangenbowle at the Isartor (Münchner Feuerzangenbowle am Isartor)
November 27, 2023 to January 7, 2024
As the temperature start to dip, and day turns to night, head to the Feuerzangenbowle at the Isartor ... the perfect place to wrap up your Old Town Christmas Market tour! The Müncher Feuerzangenbowle isn't so much a market (there are just a few booths) as it is an excuse to drink the famous fire tongs punch in a super cool and historic setting!
Fuerzangenbowle is a type of mulled wine that's prepared with a flaming, rum soaked cone of sugar over drink. As the sugar heats, it caramelizes and slowly drips into the drink, adding a delicious flavor. The punch served here is made in a giant, custom made cauldron that is quite eye-catching.
You'll also love the beautiful, intimate setting at the Isartor, one of Munich's three remaining gates. Make sure to walk outside the gate itself during your visit to check out the fresco, which depicts the return of Emperor Louis after his victory in the 1322 Battle of Mühldorf!
Tip: If you fall in love with this cozy drink, you can purchase bottle to go here. And Fuerzangenbowle is open through January 7 ... making it the perfect place to celebrate New Year's Eve!
Find out more about the Feuerzangenbowle at the Isartor.
Other Holiday Markets
If you're spending Christmas in Munich and have extra time, you'll find plenty of other Christmas Markets to explore beyond Old Town. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to visit all of these markets, but that just means more for next time!
Each of these markets is easily accessed via public transportation, and in some cases, they're located within walking distance of the historic city center. Many of them also have a unique character that you won't find anywhere else!
Munich Airport Christmas and Winter Market (Weihnachts und Wintermarkt)
November 18 to December 31, 2023
If you're flying into or out of Munich, don't miss the Airport Christmas and Winter Market (Weihnachts und Wintermarkt). We stumbled across this holiday market, which is located in a covered space between terminals, and it definitely made a stressful morning feel much more festive!
The market here features a surprisingly large number of booths, and they're nestled in a decorated fir forest. So pretty! There's also a large ice rink for skating and curling, lots of food options, and special events, like Advent wreath tying, live music, Santa, and visits from the Munich Red Bulls.
Tip: The Munich Airport is located quite a ways from the city, so I wouldn't make a special trip to this market unless you have lots of time, live locally, or are flying out of / into the airport ... it would be the perfect way to kill time during a long layover!
Learn more about the Munich Airport Christmas Market.
Tollwood Winter Festival
November 23 to December 31, 2023 (Market is open until December 23)
The Tollwood Winter Festival is one of the largest and best Christmas Markets in Munich! This popular festival, which blends its market with one-of-a-kind cultural activities, is located at Theresienwiese, the official grounds for Munich's world-famous Octoberfest.
Tollwood's holiday fair has a creative and eco-conscious twist. You can find the perfect Christmas gift for everyone on your list at the Market of Ideas, visit the Food Plaza to grab a bite or a drink, and enjoy a wide range of events (most of which are free), including performances, theater, children's activities, and more.
The market here wraps up on December 23, but the events continue through the end of the month, ending with a New Year's Eve party featuring live music and DJs.
Read more about the Tollwood Winter Festival.
November 27 to December 23, 2023
Celebrate the holiday season with pride at Pink Christmas, Munich's Queer Christmas market! This small, but mighty market is located in the heart of the lively Glockenbachviertel neighborhood. You'll love the festive atmosphere here, which has something for everyone, including the LGBTQ+ community, neighbors, families, and friends.
Pink Christmas is also Munich's first climate-neutral Christmas market! This one-of-a-kind market features a fun twist on the traditional holiday fair with glowing pink lights. Shop for unique gifts, while enjoying mulled wine and treats, listening to live music and DJs, and enjoying the colorful crowd. You can also support the community by visiting local non-profit organizations' booths at the event.
Learn more about Pink Christmas.
Christmas Market at Rotkreuzplatz in Neuhausen (Weihnachtsmarkt am Rotkreuzplatz im Neuhausen)
November 27 to December 23, 2023
The Christmas Market at Rotkreuzplatz has dazzling visitors for over 35 years! Located in Neuhausen (near the Nymphenburg Palace), you'll love the relaxed atmosphere as you stroll amongst the many booths.
As you explore the charming huts at the Weihnachtsmarkt am Rotkreuzplatz, you'll find everything from ornaments to Nativity figures, felt stars, jewelry, candles, and more. Indulge in treats, such as homemade crêpes, spaetzle, and roasted almonds, and sip on Feuerzangenbowle, mulled wine, and bombardino (Italian egg nog). And don't miss the special holiday events, including a Punch and Judy puppet show, Christmas goose raffle, and lively music.
Learn more about the Christmas Market at Rotkreuzplatz in Neuhausen.
Blutenburg Castle Christmas Market (Weihnachtsmarkt in Schloss Blutenburg)
December 7 to 10, 2023
For an atmosphere like no other, head to the Blutenburg Castle Weihnachtsmarkt, which has been called one of the 10 most beautiful Christmas markets in Munich! You'll love the magical location in the courtyard of Blutenburg Castle, which was built was built as a hunting lodge for the Duke of Bavaria between 1438 and 1439.
Enjoy the colorful lighting illuminating the Gothic, moated castle as you wander the small craft stalls while sipping on mulled wine and fire-tong punch. You'll also find a festive schedule of events, including children's readings, carols, and live music.
Find out more about Blutenburg Christmas Market.
Pasing Christmas Market (Pasinger Christkindlmarkt)
November 25 to December 24, 2023 (Saturdays and Sundays only)
For a cozy atmosphere, head to the Pasinger Christkindlmarkt. This traditional market features a variety of gifts, from Nativity scenes to candles, honey, jewelry, and more, many of which are handmade and unique.
The family friendly atmosphere at this festive market is relaxed and local. While you shop, snack and crêpes, chestnuts, and Greek favorites, or stop by the mulled wine bar to warm up with a hot drink.
Read more about the Pasing Christmas Market.
Fairytale Bazaar at Olympic Park (Märchen Bazar im Olympiapark)
November 23 to December 29, 2023
If it's a one-of-a-kind experience you're craving, don't miss the Märchen Bazar in Olympia Park, home of the 1972 Summer Games! At this colorful market, you'll find an enchanting atmosphere with colorful circus tents and a cultural program that will appeal to both you and your kids.
As you explore the Fairytale Bazaar, shop for clothing, jewelry, and wooden artworks. You'll also want to sample delicious food and drinks from Bavaria and beyond, and enjoy fun events, such as candle making, puppet shows, story time, and live music. If you're looking for a unique way to ring in the new year, then head back to the Bazaar for the Wannda Circus New Year's Eve Open Air on December 31!
Read more about the Fairytale Bazaar at Olympic Park.
Christmas Market at the Chinese Tower (Weihnachtsmarkt am Chinesische Turm)
November 24 to December 23, 2023
The Chinese Tower in the English Garden is one of Munich's most iconic sights, so it's no surprise that the Christmas Market here is extra special! You'll love wandering the artisan stalls surrounding the beautiful tower at this traditional market near Old Town.
As you soak in the lovely atmosphere at the Weihnachtsgasse am Chinesische Turm, browse local crafts and sample delicious food, while sipping mulled wine and punch. You'll also find a historic carousel here, along with a beautiful Nativity scene, and of course, Santa Claus. There's even a curling rink!
Read more about Christmas Alley at the Chinese Tower.
Schwabing Christmas Market (Schwabinger Weihnachtsmarkt)
December 1 to 24, 2023
The Schwabinger Weihnachtsmarkt has been enchanting visitors for over 40 years. This unique market is known for its artistic flair, diverse food offerings, and 100% handmade products ... which means you're sure to find some unique for everyone on your list!
As you shop for treasures made by over 80 artists from all over Germany, indulge in hot chestnuts, sweet cakes, sausage, and more. There's even a vegan soup stand! During your visit, you'll also enjoy a busy schedule of children's programs and live music during.
Find out more about the Schwabing Christmas Market.
Haidhausen Christmas Market (Haidhauser Weihnachtsmarkt)
November 28 to December 24, 2023
For one of the most beautiful holiday scenes, head to to Christmas Market in Haidhausen, a charming city neighborhood with a village-like feel! This cozy market (which was started over 40 years ago) surrounds a fountain in the Weißenburger Platz and is known for it's relaxed atmosphere.
As you stroll amongst the charming booths, stop to enjoy delicious bites like tarte flambée, washed down with a refreshing beer, mead, or mulled wine. There's also live music, a South Tyrolean Nativity scene featuring hand-carved figures, and a traditional Kasperl puppet show for the kids.
Read more about the Haidhausen Christmas Market.
Winter Wonder at the Werksviertel (WinterWunderWERK im Werksviertel-Mitte)
November 16 to December 26, 2023
For an urban twist on the holiday market, check Winter Wonder at the Werksviertel-Mitte! Formerly an industrial area and nightlife area, this area has been transformed into a life / work district, and at Christmas-time you can enjoy its festive WinterWunderWERK Market.
This colorful market is the perfect place to shop for clever gifts, while enjoying tasty Christmas treats and warm drinks. There's also a schedule of fun events and music, plus ice skating in the Knödelplatz and curling in the Container Collective.
Learn more about the Magical Christmas Market at the Werksviertel.
Winter Rush in the Witch's House (Winterrausch im Hexenhaus)
November 23 to December 31, 2023 (Craft Market through December 23)
For a Christmas market with a unique twist, check out Winter Rush at the Witch's House! This cozy market takes place in and around the charming and quirky Hexenhaus, and the focus is on local and handmade goods.
As you shop the festive booths for special handicrafts, enjoy treats like mulled wine and Christmas cookies. There's also a fun schedule of events, including Christmas workshops, spectacular fire shows, colorful children's programs, and breathtaking aerial acrobatics!
Find out more about the Winter Rush in the Witch's House.
Mulled Wine Festival in the Bogenhausen Magical Christmas Forest (Glühwein-Festival im Bogenhauser Weihnachtszauberwald)
November 16, 2023 to January 7, 2024
Can't get enough mulled wine? Then you won't want to miss the Glühwein Festival in Munich's Bogenhausen district! Each year, the festival grounds here are transformed into a fairytale Christmas world complete with a glittering, magical forest.
As you shop for handcrafted gifts, stop to enjoy treats like gingerbread, waffles, and roasted almonds. And don't forget the highlight of the event: over 35 varieties of mulled wine and hot drinks just waiting for you to sample! You'll find lots of fun twists on Glühwein here, from the classics to more unique options, like Apple Dream to Goblin Potion.
And don't forget the kids! You'll also find plenty of activities to keep them busy, including a vintage carousel, children's train, Christmas wheel of fortune, kids crafts, and more.
Learn more about the Mulled Wine Festival.
Star Fleet on Alte Utting (Sternenflotte auf Alte Utting)
November 24 to December 23, 2023
Hop aboard the Alte Utting for the festive Star Fleet Christmas Market! This decommissioned passenger ship is located on a railroad crossing above a busy road, and it's home to one of the most unique markets in the city.
For the holidays, the boat is decked out with sparkling lights, warm fireplaces, and arts and craft stalls. Snack on tasty food and drink as you shop for candles, jewelry, and more. When you're finished, warm up by a firepit or in a cozy yurt, or or take a stab at curling.
Find out more about the Star Fleet on Alte Utting.
Moonlight Express Festival at Bahnwärter Thiel (Mondscheinexpress Winterfestival am Bahnwärter Thiel)
November 23 to December 23, 2023
If you're looking for a creative alternative to the classic markets, don't miss the Moonlight Express Festival at Bahnwärter Thiel. You'll love exploring the grounds here, which feature a hodgepodge of Munich tram and subway cars, and artistically painted shipping ... all transformed for the holidays into a colorful Christmas carnival!
Explore artist's workshops and studios for the perfect gift, then warm up by a fireplace or in a cozy tent while enjoyed mulled wine and a tasty bite to eat, or enjoy one of the daily concerts on the cabaret stage. In the evening, you can stick around for poetry slams, jam sessions, jazz evenings, live concerts, and more.
Read more about the Moonlight Express Festival at Bahnwärter Thiel.
Winter Magic at Gans am Wasser (Winterzauber im Gans am Wasser)
December 1 to 23, 2023
Experience the Winter Magic at Gans am Wasser, a whimsical cafe and beer garden located on a small lake in Munich's West Park! This smaller fair is the perfect place to escape the holiday hustle and bustle.
While there is no craft market at Gans am Wasser this year, you can warm up by the wood stove in a cozy yurt while sipping punch and mulled wine, and enjoy festive cultural programs on the weekend.
Learn more about Winter Magic at Gans am Wasser.
What to Buy at German Christmas Markets
The variety of gifts, food, and decorations at the Christmas Markets in Munich is truly astounding. Too keep from overspending, it helps to keep a list of things you want to buy in mind. But of course, you'll also want to make sure to leave room in your suitcase for unexpected treasures. And don't forget to bring cash!
Wondering what to buy at German Christmas Markets? Here are a few things that you may want to take home with you:
- Ornaments - You'll find a huge variety of Christmas ornaments made from a variety of materials, including wood, glass, lace, ceramics, natural materials, and more. Perfect for decorating your tree back home!
- Weihnachtspyramide - These German candle pyramids make a lovely decorations that you'll enjoy pulling out year after year! You'll also find giant versions of Weihnachtspyramide in a few of the markets, and while you can't buy them, they make a fun photo opp.
- Nutcrackers - Wooden nutcrackers make a wonderful keepsakes that are definitely worth the space they'll take up in your suitcase.
- Nativity Scenes + Figurines - You can find everything you need for a custom crêche at the Munich Holiday Markets, from hay to figurines and more. And they're often handcrafted and one-of-a-kind.
- Other Christmas Decorations - Along with ornaments, candle pyramids, nutcrackers, and nativity scenes, you'll find tons of other holiday decorations. Keep an eye out for wreaths, candles and candle holders, paper stars, incense smokers (Räuchermann), and so much more.
- Glühwein Mugs - Each market has a different Glühwein mug, and you can easily start a small collection over the course of your trip. Here's how it works: when purchasing Glühwein (and other hot drinks), you’ll pay for the cost of the drink, plus a Pfand, which is a deposit for the mug. The deposit is often about €2, and some places will also give you a token. When you're done with the drink, you can return the mug (and token if you have one) to get your Pfand / deposit back, or you can just keep the mug (in which case, you'll lose the deposit). Try to keep only the mugs you really love, otherwise you'll end up with too many to take home! Tip: If you fill the mugs with small treats, they also make fun gifts for friends and family back home.
- Gingerbread Hearts - Adorable hanging gingerbread hearts decorated with cute sayings can be found at many markets. They may a cute (and affordable gift), although they look much better than they taste!
- Lebkuchen - Unlike the crisp gingerbread cookies found elsewhere, the lebkuchen in Germany is soft and oh so delicious. Make sure to try it, and don't be afraid to bring some home with you ... it travels really well!
- Toys - If you're looking for a children's gift that will last for generations, keep an eye out for traditional wooden toys. Of course, you'll find all sorts of other toys at the markets, too!
- Handmade Gifts - If you're looking for unique gifts that the recipients will cherish for years, seek out handmade items rather than mass-produced products. A number of the markets mentioned above specialize in handcrafted wares, and it's also pretty easy to tell what's factory-made after visiting a market or two. You'll find everything from clothing to jewelry, food gifts ranging from preserves to mustards to chocolates, Christmas cards, soaps and lotions, advent calendars, textiles, and so more.
Munich Christmas Markets Map
You can find each of the Christmas Markets in Munich on the map I've created just for you! Click here to view the map (or anywhere on the map image below).
My Personal Favorites
So which market was my favorite? While I can't choose just one, I loved Winter Magic at the Viktualienmarkt (so many cute Christmas ornaments / decorations + chill atmosphere), the Sternenplatzl at Rindermarkt (super charming and cozy), the Christmas Village at the Residenz Kaiserhof (magical setting), and the Advent Spectacle and Medieval Christmas Fair (so unique and different form the others) the most.
I also had a blast watching the skaters at the Ice Magic at Karlsplatz-Stachus (especially my husband!), and the Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt is a must see, of course. It was super crowded though (apart from the Neues Rathaus courtyard, which I loved), and felt more commercial than some of the others. I'd recommend going early in the day before it gets too crowded.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, the Munich Christmas Markets are 100% worth it! You'll find a huge variety of markets (many within walking distance from one another), crafts, and gifts, a lovely holiday ambiance, and tons of delicious food.
The Marienplatz Christmas Market will take place from Monday, November 27 to Sunday, December 24, 2023. Dates for the other Christmas Markets in Munich may vary.
The main Christmas Market is Munich is the Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt, which is located on Munich's main square in the Old Town. It has taken place here since the 14th century!
Munich is one of Germany's most expensive cities. While we didn't find it to be outrageously expensive, it's certainly not cheap, and you will pay more while visiting during peak times like Christmas. Munich Christmas Markets are free to visit, and I thought that the food / drink and crafts / gifts at the markets were moderately priced. You can save money by booking your trip well in advance and by making (and sticking to) a budget.