With winter's chill well and truly settling in, that can only mean one thing. Canada's Christmas Markets will be lighting up the country once again, creating magical places filled with endless rows of twinkling Christmas lights and the sweet aroma of maple taffy.
From the traditional and historic markets in Quebec City to the trendy and artisanal markets in Toronto, we've rounded up the best Christmas Markets in Canada so you can have the most memorable festive season in the Great White North.
7 of the Best Christmas Markets in Canada
If you dream of heading to a place where the air is filled with freshly baked gingerbread and the merry sound of carolers, look no further than the Slingo lifestyle blog. These 8 Canadian Christmas markets offer magical experiences and a chance to immerse yourself in the holiday spirit.
1. Distillery Winter Village, Toronto
The Distillery Winter Village, formerly known as the Toronto Christmas Market, is set in the heart of the historic Distillery District, an area filled with cobblestone streets, Victorian-era buildings, and old-world charm. The enchanting backdrop is enough reason to go, but the Winter Village offers much more!
The first thing you might notice is the market's famous light display. The entire district is awash with twinkling lights that are sure to get you into the festive spirit.
Once you've been suitably dazzled by the decorations, why not do some holiday shopping? The market has stalls full of artisanal vendors. You can find unique, handcrafted gifts, holiday decorations, and tasty treats. It's an excellent place to check off your shopping list with something special.
Dates: November 16, 2023 - January 7, 2024
Location: 51 Gristmill Lane, Toronto, ON M5A 3R6, Canada
Highlights: Live entertainment, local vendors, centrepiece Christmas tree, Christmas carol sing-alongs, tree lighting ceremony and a skating rink.
2. Banff Christmas Market
Experience true holiday cheer at Banff Christmas Market! You can't ask for a better setting for a Christmas market. Banff is nestled in the heart of the Canadian Rockies and offers a backdrop of snow-capped mountains and wintry beauty, creating a one-of-a-kind setting for festive events.
Unlike some of the larger Christmas markets on this list, the Banff market embraces its small-town charm. It's a place to enjoy a more intimate and relaxed Christmas shopping experience.
Don't worry about being unable to find delicious food or the perfect holiday gifts, though. Banff Christmas Market still has an impressive 100 vendors full of local artists, German food, and handmade gifts.
Dates: November 17-19, November 24-26, December 1-3, 2023
Location: 100 Sundance Road - Warner Stables, Banff, AB
Highlights: Live music, Santa's house & reindeer stables, outdoor fire lounge and 100+ artisanal vendors.
3. Montreal Christmas Village
Montreal Christmas Village, or, as the locals might call it, "Le Village de Noël de Montréal," is a European-style Christmas village set against the backdrop of Montreal's historic Old Port.
Expect the whole place to be aglow with festive lights and the wooden stalls to be brimming with unique gifts and treats from numerous local or regional artisans that make holiday shopping a joy.
What truly sets Montreal's Christmas Village apart is its blend of old-world holiday traditions and the vibrant energy of a dynamic, multicultural city. This market has everything, whether you're after the perfect presents, mouthwatering holiday goodies, or just that warm and fuzzy festive feeling. It's the kind of place where you can't help but get caught up in the holiday spirit.
If you want a break from snacking at the stalls, why not check out our comprehensive guide on the most expensive restaurants in Montreal?
Dates: November 30 - December 24, 2023
Location: Place du Marché Atwater, Saint Ambroise St, Montreal, Quebec H4C 3L8, Canada
Highlights: Santa's workshop, sugar shack, "Kingdom of the Elves" yurts, 5 gourmet stations offering poutine, churros, mulled wine, waffles and more.
4. Vancouver Christmas Market
It doesn't get much cozier than the Vancouver Christmas Market, which captures the festive season's spirit perfectly, featuring twinkling lights, festive music, and charming wooden stalls packed with bratwurst, glühwein and other German-inspired treats.
But it's not just about the food - there's an abundance of unique, handcrafted gifts from local makers. From beautifully crafted ornaments to soft knitwear and scented soaps, you'll find one-of-a-kind treasures to put under the tree (or gift to yourself!).
The market also features live music and performances to really get you excited for the big day.
Dates: November 16 - December 24, 2023
Location: Jack Poole Plaza, 1055 Canada Pl, Vancouver, BC V6C 3G3, Canada
Highlights: Carousel rides, lantern parade, Christmas karaoke, artisan crafts, walk-in Christmas tree and a scavenger hunt.
5. German Christmas Market, Quebec City
Step into a winter fairytale on the cobblestone streets of old Quebec. The atmosphere at the Quebec City German Christmas Market is straight out of a storybook, with its German wooden chalets nestled among historic buildings and the aroma of European food filling the air.
You'll feel as though you've been transported to a German village, where they serve sausages, schnitzels, and warm and spicy mulled wine, which is perfect for sipping on a chilly evening.
And if you're looking for entertainment, the market has you covered. There's live music and performances that capture the spirit of the season, making your trip all the more memorable. Plus, you might even get a chance to meet Santa himself!
Dates: November 23 - December 23, 2023
Location: In 2023, the Québec City German Christmas Market has five sites in the heart of Old Québec, including The Bergdorf, The Jardins de l'Hôtel-de-Ville, Ste-Anne Street, Place d'Armes and the Dufferin terrace
Highlights: Light displays, indoor/outdoor musical and theatrical performances, alpine chalet, German food and drink, and 90+ wooden stalls.
6. Charlottetown Christmas Festival
If you prefer intimate atmospheres to giant markets, then the Charlottetown Christmas Festival could be for you. It features their famous Victorian Christmas Market and the brand-new Mistletoe Market, where you can enjoy a horse-and-wagon ride, hot cocoa by a crackling fire pit, and rustic baked goods to snack on or take home to loved ones.
The setting of Charlottetown itself is magical. The historic streets, the waterfront, and the welcoming charm of the city add an extra layer of yuletide joy. It's a picture-perfect postcard right before your eyes.
Dates: November 24, 2023 – January 2, 2024
Location: All over Charlottetown
Highlights: Victorian Christmas market, walking tours, Whoville-inspired village, light displays, and a magical mistletoe market.
7. Third + Bird Christmas Market, Winnipeg
The Third + Bird Christmas Market in Winnipeg is considered by many to be a must-visit Christmas market. What sets it apart is the emphasis on supporting local, independent artisans and makers, which means you'll find unique, handcrafted gifts you won't see anywhere else.
The atmosphere is electric, with a bustling yet cozy vibe that's perfect for getting into the holiday spirit. From jewellery and clothing to home decor and delicious treats, this market has it all, and it's all created with heart and soul.
If you're looking for a market that's all about celebrating creativity, supporting local talent, and offering a fantastic holiday experience, Third + Bird in Winnipeg is the place to be. It's a festive treasure trove of Manitoba's finest creations.
Dates: November 17 - 19, 2023
Location: Red River Exhibition Place, 3977 Portage Ave, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3K 2E8
Highlights: Celebrating small businesses, 170 makers, food trucks, cafes, a photo booth and a DJ.
Head to Your Dream Canadian Christmas Market with Help from Spin Genie
Whether you'd rather experience the well-kept Christmas secret that is Charlottetown's Christmas Festival or eat and drink by the mountains in Banff, you can't go wrong with our selection of the best Christmas markets in Canada.
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FAQs About the Best Canadian Christmas Markets
Which Canadian City Has the Biggest Christmas Market?
Toronto is home to one of Canada's largest and most popular Christmas markets. The Toronto Christmas Market attracts visitors from all over the world with its festive atmosphere.
It features beautiful light displays, artisanal vendors, seasonal treats, and a gigantic Christmas tree, creating a magical holiday experience in the heart of the city. This annual event has become a beloved tradition for locals and a major draw for tourists, making it the country's largest Christmas market.
Which City Has the Best Christmas in Canada?
Quebec City stands out for many when it comes to experiencing the best Christmas in Canada. The city transforms into a winter wonderland during the holiday season, with its Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, beautifully adorned with lights and decorations.
The German Christmas Market and the German-style Christmas market in the Petit-Champlain district add to the festive atmosphere. You can enjoy festive treats, holiday-themed performances, and a charming Christmas village.
What Are the Best Christmas Markets in Ontario?
Ontario has an abundance of charming Christmas markets to choose from, including Ottawa Christmas Market, Distillery Winter Village, and Christkindl Market. Read our dedicated guide to see a full list of the best Christmas markets in Ontario.
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