Warm your spirits with Christmas log and a glug of gløgg

Some of the best Xmas markets to embrace the Danish festive period

Visiting most Christmas markets isn’t really about the shopping, it’s about the experience. Treat yourself to a cup of gløgg (mulled wine), a round of æbleskiver and let the festive spirit envelop you for a moment.

True, at some of them the neon decorations can be a bit garish and the shopping choices a little predictable, but that overlooks the festiveness they collectively bring to the city. Without them, Christmas in Copenhagen would be a little dull.

Still, there are some good ones out there, and we’ve done our best to bring you ten of the best. So read on and embrace this country’s Christmas spirit and traditions!

The Royal Christmas Market at Kronborg Castle
Nov 28 & 29, Dec 5 & 6, open 10:00-17:00; Kronborg Castle, Helsingør; 50kr; kongeligeslotte.dk

Visiting elegantly decorated Kronborg Castle this year will be like stepping into a fairy-tale. Imagine you’re a king or queen just for the day and enjoy activities such horse-drawn carriage rides while enjoying the castle’s amazing view. Embrace the festive spirit by singing Danish Christmas songs at the castle chapel and watching the Fairy Tale Theatre in the great ballroom. The audience will be asked to dance around the Christmas tree after the show ends, and Santa Claus and his elves will also join in the fun. And of course, do some Christmas shopping. Choose from the 100 stalls selling homemade goodies and great quality arts and crafts. For some interesting facts about the castle, there are guided tours offered where you can learn about what King Christian IX got for Christmas and the games he used to play at the Renaissance Court, and there are also Christmas gift-making workshops. (LAB)

Festive fun at Christiansborg Palace
Dec 12-13 & 19-20, 10:00-17:00; Christianborg Castle, Cph V; free for kids, 50kr for adults; christiansborg.dk

The home of Parliament is opening up some of its ruins this December to offer an alternative festive vibe. Take part in a torchlight treasure hunt through dark, rocky, underground tunnels deep beneath the politicians at Christiansborg Palace. Explore the ruins of former buildings that have stood on the spot, including the remnants of a section from Bishop Absalon’s original 1167 castle. Discover the deep mysteries of the castle and get to know some fun facts. For children aged 5-12, Absalon needs your help to defend his castle from terrifying pirates. You will be instructed how to use swords and ways of shooting before the real battle begins. (LAB)

White Christmas at Nytorv
Nov 19-Dec 23, open during normal business hours; Nytorv, Gammeltorv, Cph K; nytorvsjul.com

Some of the friendliest Christmas celebrations in Copenhagen will be held in the heart of the city at Nytorv. Encounter a huge Christmas market filled with stalls selling traditional Danish food and drinks like mulled wine, hot chocolate and homemade donuts. Choose from a wide range of winter clothing, paper arts and wooden toys. Other delicacies from Spain, France and Germany are also available such as pastries, chocolates and Glühwein. Youngsters can meet Santa Claus between 14:00 and 18:00 (free of charge) and ride a carousel and ferris wheel. (LAB)

Dragør Christmas Market
Nov 29-Dec 20, open every weekend 11:00-16:00; Dragør Torv

Last year, the Dragør Christmas Market had so much fun with a ‘time travel’ theme they borrowed from ‘Tidsrejsen’, the DR1 julekalender TV program, that they have decided to do it again. So along with all the stalls selling Christmas hearts and woollen goods, join in on all the different activities to revisit the Danish Christmas of yesteryear. (AL)

Frederiksberg Christmas Market
Dec 19-21, open daily 11:00-17:00; Frederiksberg Runddel 3B, Frederiksberg; frederiks-jul.dk

This Christmas market specialises in local Christmas delicacies, old traditions with a modern twist, and entertaining workshops. A show performed by handicapped actors will perform on all the days the market is open. (AL)

Lyngby Christmas Market
Dec 18-23, open daily 11:00-21:00; Lyngby Torv, Lyngby

Who said Tivoli was the only themepark with a Christmas market?! Bakken, the oldest in the world (founded in 1583), is moving some of its Christmas stands to Lyngby. (AL)

Jægersborggade Christmas Market
Dec 1-2, open daily 11:00-16:00; Jægersborggade, Cph N; jaegersborggade.com

Nørrebro’s jewel is promising the most “Christmassy Christmas” ever. Expect fantastic offers, workshops and plenty of festive fare. Top tip: kids wearing Christmas hats will get special treats while adults need to look out for the real English apple cider. (AL)

HC Andersen Christmas Market
Nov 14-Dec 22, open daily 11:00-19:00; Kultorvet, Cph K; markedskalendaren.dk

After a successful opening year in 2014, the carousels are returning to the centre of Copenhagen. So jump onboard HC Andersen or Santa Claus – all kids’ ages are catered to. (AL)

Christmas Market in Haveselskabets Have
Nov 21-22, open 11:00-17:00; Haveselskabets Have, Frederiksberg Rundel; free adm

This gorgeous Christmas Market in Haveselskabets Garden is a lovely tradition that attracts thousands of people every year. It specialises in unique crafts, greenery from the garden and lots of materials to make your own decorations from! (AL)

International Christmas Market in Højbro Plads
Nov 13-Dec 23, open Mon-Thu 11:00-19:00, Fri 11:00-20:00, Sat-Sun 10:00-20:00; Højbro Plads 9, Cph K; julemarked.nu

Experience old-fashioned Christmas like in the good old days with decorated trees, 80,000 sparkling lights, elves, reindeer and Santa’s sleigh. Don’t miss out on the delicious German barbeque sausage and gløgg. (AL)

Nyhavn Christmas Market
Nov 15-Dec 22, open Mon-Fri 11:00-18:00, Sat-Sun 11:00-19:00; Nyhavn, Cph K; markedskalendaren.dk

Can you imagine a more beautiful place in Copenhagen for a Christmas market than Nyhavn? Swing by the charming harbour and taste local treats such as æbleskriver and gløgg whilst listening to traditional Danish Christmas hits. (AL)

Christmas Market in Tivoli
Nov 14-Jan 3, open Sun-Thu 11:00-22:00, Fri-Sat 11:00-23:00, closed Dec 24-25; Vesterbrogade 3, Cph K; entry: adults 99kr, under-8s free adm; tivoli.dk

The city’s biggest Christmas market will teleport you into a fairy-tale. Besides the obvious rides and games, try the appetising culinary delicacies and hot drinks, get inspired by great gift ideas or just simply walk around an astonishing place that is always surrounded by laughter. (AL)

Christiania Christmas Market
Dec 6-20, open Mon-Fri 14:00-20:00, Sat-Sun 12:00-20:00; Grey Hall, Refshalevej 2,Christiania; christiania.org

Every year during December, the Grey Hall in Christiania is transformed into Christmas market that offers untraditional experiences when you get tired of the crowded shopping malls. Instead, enjoy the cosy and warm atmosphere, gløgg with less familiar flavours and the pleasant smell of roasted almonds. (AL)


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