New York: For shopping
If you fancy taking a trip to somewhere big this year then the ‘Big Apple’ will be the perfect place for you. Shopping is a big thing in New York. Not only do you have the massive department stores but there are also plenty of craft markets and gift shops for you to choose from too.
With America being so much cheaper than the UK, going Christmas shopping in New York will bring you the perfect opportunity to get all the latest gadgets, designer clothes and many more for less. Take a shop around America’s biggest department’s stores, Macys, Bloomingdales and Barneys where you can find these amazing discounts as there is certainly plenty to choose from. Each shop also offers personal shoppers to help you with those gift shopping woes. Also, while you are at it, take at look at the shops windows, especially Macys, as New York is famous for the over the top window displays.
Not only that, but New York also has plenty of markets to chose from to find those handmade gifts.
The most popular market to go to is Grand Central Terminal’s market which is open from November 18th through till Christmas Eve. The market holds over 76 stall holders with a selection of gifts for everybody including, jewellery, clothes, toys, bath and body items, home decorations and even gifts for pets. What makes this market even better is that it is held inside so there is no worry of freezing.
If you’re more looking for a day out whilst doing shopping then take a trip to the winter village at Bryant Park. Here you will find over 125 boutique style shops selling a range of different gifts for both adults and children. The centrepiece of the village is the 170″ times 100″ ice rink, where you can go ice skating for a free admission with skate rentals. Or if you don’t fancy taking to the ice yourself, there are frequent special events and skating shows for you to watch.
Germany: For Christmas markets
NUREMBURG CHRISTMAS MARKET- 29th november till 24th december
Taking a trip to Nuremburg in Germany means you get to experience one of the biggest and best Christmas market in the world.
Held in the city which is known for its speciality of spiced gingerbread, Christkindlemarkt, the market takes place in Hauptmarkt Square and opens from November 30th till December 23rd.
The market has a distinctive medieval feel and it also includes its own special children’s market with nativity-themed activities. With over 180 stalls to choose from of the traditional fruit loaves, sweets, toys, candles, tree ornaments and craft products, you will not go short on Christmas gifts for your friends and family. This market attracts over two million visitors every year.
COLOGNE CHRISTMAS MARKETS- 25th november till 23rd december
Travel to Cologne where you can experience the largest Christmas markets in the world. And there isn’t just one to chose from but seven so you will be spoilt for choice. If you are looking for somewhere with sparkle, the market next to the cathedral is the place for you as you get a spectacular backdrop of the cathedral. And with hundreds of stalls full of food, arts and crafts and unusual gifts you won’t leave empty handed. Or if you are looking for somewhere with a bit of history visit the Alter Markt. With narrow-gabled houses and half-timbered stalls, the market conveys a peaceful, picturesque, romantic feeling.
Lille: For a quick trip
LILLE CHRISTMAS MARKET- 20TH NOVEMBER TILL 30TH DECEMBER
Lille is the perfect place to shop for those who don’t have the time to spend ages abroad to do their Christmas shopping. Due to how close it is to the Eurostar border you could even do the trip in a day.
Every Christmas Lille turns into a winter wonderland with its month long Christmas market which has 80 wooden chalets full of decorations, gifts and arts and crafts. Lille also has the Eurolille shopping centre which offers 140 different stores or you can go to the Wazemmes Market in the town centre where you can find old book stores, unusual boutiques and shops selling retro French designs for those friends or family who love their retro gifts. Not only that, but everything is at a good price as many places are cheaper than the UK. For a spectacular view of the city take a trip on the 50ft Grand wheel which is placed in the Grand Palace.