Looking for the best Christmas markets in Paris to visit? From big and famous to small but cute ones, this article will give you all the must-visits.
Christmas in Paris is a truly magical experience, thanks to the epic Christmas light displays that make the entire city sparkle, charming Christmas window displays at the famous Paris department stores, and Christmas markets with chalets that sell unique gift items and holiday-themed decorations.
A Christmas tradition that initially began in Germany, today, Paris hosts a number of Christmas markets to fully bring out the festive spirit in everyone.
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With everything from illumination shows to festive-filled activities, France-made gifts, decorated streets radiating holiday charm, and tasty holiday specialties, there is so much to see, do, and eat at these Christmas markets in Paris.
So, if you’re looking for fun ways to spend your Christmas time in the French capital, be sure to stroll around these Paris Christmas markets to either taste Vin Chaud (mulled wine), pick out some French Christmas ornaments, or artisanal Christmas delicacies.
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Best Christmas Markets in Paris
As someone who lives in this city, I’ve visited many Christmas markets in Paris and I am here to show you which ones are worth visiting!
Whether you’re all about tasting mulled wine (Vin chaud), regional delicacies, and admiring the festive lights, you will no doubt get into the holiday mood and ignite the joy of Christmas instantly!
1. Eiffel Tower Christmas market
Enter a breathtaking Christmas wonderland where holiday enchantment awaits you at every turn with beautifully decorated chalets selling unique souvenirs, and spectacular views of the Parisian icon at the Eiffel Tower Christmas market.
This Paris Christmas market is hosted in front of the Eiffel Tower along Pont d’Iena, the bridge that connects Trocadero to the Eiffel Tower.
While this market isn’t as big as other Paris Christmas markets with a few chalets selling goodies, it has a dedicated food area where you can taste some of France’s famous foods or traditional French food with a Vin Chaud in hand!
And when night falls, you’ll be able to take in the beauty of the Tower’s illumination for 5 minutes at every top of the hour. The picturesque light display is a visual treat!
When: This market is typically open from early December till early January.
Related Post: Best things to do in Paris in December
2. Hotel de Ville Christmas market
Arguably the most charming Christmas market in Paris, the Hotel de Ville Christmas Market brings a unique elegance to the holiday season with its heavily decorated forest of Christmas trees, distinctive Christmas displays, and abundant entertainment options.
Located in front of Hotel de Ville, grab a cup of hot mulled wine, stroll through the chalets of this rather smaller market, and discover delectable Christmas specialties and “made in Paris” holiday gifts.
The epicenter of holiday fun, kids will appreciate the various fun activities like the carousel, rock climbing wall, tubing luge, and a Christmas visit from Santa Claus.
However, the complete festive package comes at nighttime when the front facade of the town hall turns into a vibrant blue color crowned with sparkling lights and falling snowflakes.
And since it’s just next to Le BHV Marais, a Paris department store that goes out when it comes to decorating for Christmas, you can combine both these places into one visit.
This market may be small compared to other Christmas markets in Paris but it’s definitely one not to miss.
When: This small market is typically open from early December to early January.
Related Post: Best things to do in Paris in winter
3. La Défense Christmas market
Though technically not in Paris, La Défense Christmas Market is the biggest Christmas market in the region and the best spot to purchase unique and diverse Christmas gifts.
Located along Esplanade de la Défense, you can enjoy tasty Alsatian specialties, regional cuisines, and fine baked goods, admire beautiful festive decorations, and shop for Paris souvenirs and nativity figures, from the hundreds of chalets, surrounded by commercial buildings La Défense is known for.
If you can, stay till dark to watch the surrounding skyscrapers illuminate at nighttime adding an extra topping to this festive atmosphere.
When: La Défense Christmas market typically opens from Late November to late December.
Related Post: What to wear in Paris in winter
4. Tuileries Christmas market
Located in Jardin des Tuileries and dubbed La Magie de Noël (the magic of Christmas), the Tuileries Christmas market is no doubt the most famous Christmas market in Paris.
This Christmas market also doubles as a holiday carnival creating a Christmas market and funfair combo.
Bring the entire family along and take in the sights, sounds, and scents of this Parisian Christmas market rich in dining, drinking, shopping, and entertainment options.
With over 100 chalets selling French foods and artisan items, a champagne bar, an ice skating rink, various carnival rides, and the absolute jaw-dropper, the gigantic Ferris wheel which offers stunning views of Paris, it’s not surprising that this is also the most crowded Paris Xmas market.
Another unique thing that makes Tuileries Christmas market one of the best Christmas markets in Paris is the real-life Santa riding a sleigh with reindeer in space across the market. It’s a magical thing to watch that makes Christmas feel even more magical.
When: It is typically open from mid-November to late December.
5. Saint-Germain-des-Prés Christmas Market
For several years now, Saint-Germain-des-Prés Christmas Market has been a holiday destination for luxury lovers.
Hosted at Place Saint-Germain-des-prés, this small market has a little over 20 stalls selling exclusive gifts, jewelry, Christmas decor, tasty seasonal French cuisines, a fantastic selection of wines, and many more!
Once you have completed your holiday shopping, visit the nearby Église Saint-Germain and feast your eyes on its beauty.
When: It is open from late November to late December (sometimes until early January).
6. Abbesses Christmas Market
If you’re looking for something more laid-back without the huge crowds, then the Abbesses Christmas Market at Place des Abbesses is one to visit, especially if you’re already in the beautiful neighborhood of Montmartre.
Featuring about 15 to 20 stalls, this is one of the smallest Christmas markets in Paris. Here, you will find locally made items, a champagne bar, and stalls selling Paris honey, hot roasted chestnuts, mulled wine, and more.
Plus, if you visit with kids, they’ll be able to ride the perfectly decorated carousel and even have a chance to meet Santa.
When: Open from late November until the end of December.
7. Notre Dame Christmas market
Local crafters, designers, and artisans grace this family-friendly Christmas market to sell high-quality handcrafted products.
Located at Square René Viviani just across Notre Dame Cathedral, the small Notre-Dame Christmas Market offers a unique shopping and dining experience, selling everything from clothing, holiday and home decor, jewelry, ornaments, and other specialty items to gourmet food.
The market also sometimes receives musicians and performers using traditional instruments, adding another layer of charm to an already charming environment. And if you’re lucky, you might even spot Santa on your visit.
Plus, the center of the square is perfectly decorated with reindeer and lights to complete the charming look.
When: Typically open from early December till just after Christmas.
8. Gare de l’Est Christmas market
Hosted in front of the Gare de l’Est train station, this small Alsatian-themed Christmas Market has consistently served delicious Alsatian traditional food for decades.
Every year, about 15 to 20 Alsatian artisans gather at Gare de l’Est and serve Alsatian temptations accompanied by Alsatian wine selection.
If you’re not able to make a day trip from Paris to the Alsace region, Gare de l’Est Christmas market is the next best thing to see how their Christmas markets are usually.
You can taste the region’s specialties from Kougelhopf, Munster cheese, Alsatian pretzels, charcuterie, and brioche Männele, to several foods from Alsace including the famous wines from the region.
When: 2-3 weeks in December
9. Les Halles Christmas market (Closed)
A recent addition to Paris Christmas markets, Les Halles Christmas market, features about 30 chalets selling artisanal gifts, mulled wine, and regional foods.
While the chalets are charming, the highlight is seeing the gigantic heavily decorated Christmas tree that almost touches the roof in the middle of the Canopée des Halles shopping center.
Located at Forum des Halles, the Église Saint-Eustache church, a famous Parisian church is a stone’s throw away, so you can combine them into one visit.
When: This market typically holds from mid-November through late December though it’s been off for a couple of years, but hopefully it will return soon.
Please note: This Christmas market has not been running for the past few years, although I still recommend going there to see their giant Christmas tree! I visit every year and I am always blown away by the beauty of their Christmas tree! It is truly stunning! Plus, the mall itself is decorated so you still get a Christmas feel! In my opinion, it’s still worth visiting Forum des Halles even without the Christmas market!
10. Christmas Market Near Aquarium de Paris in Trocadero Gardens
This may not be your typical Christmas market but it’s such a charming to be during the Christmas season!
It’s located in the Trocadero Gardens just next to the Paris Aquarium and in my opinion, it’s very much worth visiting, especially right after visiting the Eiffel Tower Christmas market or even before.
The entire place is decorated with Christmas lights and instead of having chalets selling artisanal goodies and other unique finds, it solely focuses on food and drinks, from staple winter foods like Raclette to mulled wine
What I loved about this place is that they even create some kind of fire pits, so you can cozy up next to the fire with a drink in hand while listening to Christmas music and taking in all the festivities!
You can go there any time but I recommend visiting at night when the vibe is more electric! And come hungry as there are a lot of foods to try!
11. The Christmas market at the town hall of the 15th arrondissement
Hotel de Ville is not the only town hall that organizes a Christmas market in Paris. Though relatively smaller and less frequented, the town hall of the 15th arrondissement also organizes its own Christmas market.
Over 20 chalets selling the finest arts, holiday decorations, regional specialties, jewelry, and more will be present in the courtyard of the Mairie du 15e arrondissement.
Enjoy the small Christmas market featuring free pony rides, sleigh rides, and a carousel. Santa Claus will also be handing out Christmas gifts.
When: From mid-December right until after Christmas.
Final Thoughts on the Best Paris Christmas Market
There’s nothing you may want in a Christmas market that you won’t find at the above markets.
Whether it is twinkling lights, magical seasonal decor, holiday entertainment, or a wide variety of delectable treats, these Christmas markets in Paris are your best bet for a fantastic Christmas and a one-of-a-kind experience in the city of love.
But don’t take my word for it. Visit these Parisian Christmas markets, and you will discover why they always keep everyone in a merry spirit.
Do you have a favorite Christmas market in Paris? Do let me know in the comments below, and why it’s your favorite.
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Check out these posts to help you plan your trip to Paris
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- Best Museums in Paris
- Fun things to do in Paris on a Rainy day
- Tips for Visiting the Eiffel Tower
- How to spend One day In Paris
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