Every November, cities across the US start gearing up to get into the Christmas spirit. What better way to do it than having a good old fashioned Christmas market. These Christmas markets often sell Christmas décor and ornaments from crafters and artisans from around the country and world! Most also have food vendors selling delicious sweets and treats, hot cocoa, holiday wines, and more!
Most of these Christmas markets are rooted in European tradition. The first known Christmas market appeared in Dresden, Germany in 1434! As such, most of the Christmas markets in the USA that are held today are located in cities or regions that are strong with German, Dutch, and Belgian heritage.
We have been to a few of these markets in a couple cities around the USA. We will highlight those along with several other standouts from around the country. Read ahead and find one you want to travel to check out these great Christmas markets in the USA!
Texas Christmas Markets
Tomball German Fest and Christmas Market– Tomball, TX
Most Christmas Markets are up and running for weeks leading up to Christmas. However, the Tomball Christmas Market is part of a 3 day German heritage festival. But don’t let that deter you. The Tomball German Fest and Market is consistently ranked as one of the best Christmas markets in the nation!
Located in the Old Town section of Tomball, TX (approximately 30 minutes northwest of Houston), this festival really showcases Tomball’s German heritage. The opening day ceremonies feature an authentic German keg tapping to kick off the event. Guests will find German inspired food and beverages in addition to the usual festival fare.
But is the market good? You betcha! Featuring over 200 booths, you will find Christmas decorations, ornaments, collectibles, and gifts! Many of the vendors create authentic hand crafted artisan creations. You are sure to find what you are looking for!
Tomball German Fest also has 4 stages of live music, a petting zoo, a carnival area, games, a beer garden and more. The 2022 festival runs from December 9-11, 2022. Not only does it have one of the best Christmas markets in the nation, but it is wrapped up in an amazing German heritage festival as well. Come check it out!
Search for Tomball area hotels HERE.
Texas Christkindl Market– Arlington, TX
Located at the North Plaza of Globe Life Field (home of Major League Baseball’s Texas Rangers), the Texas Christkindl Market sets out to recreate an authentic European Christmas market right here in Texas!
The city of Arlington works closely with its sister city of Bad Konigshofen and its Christmas partner city Rothenburg ob der Tauber to create the authentic look and feel of a German Christmas market! We have been to the market multiple years and can vouch for this!
The Texas Christkindl Market has dozens of authentic looking vendor stalls selling hand crafted artisan Christmas goods and decor. Food vendors will be selling roasted almonds, gingerbread, sauerbraten, gluhwein (a German spiced mulled wine) and many, many more tasty treats!
There are musical performances, dancers, and more. This year they will be featuring the famous Swiss Long Horns to bring an authentic Bavarian sound to the market! The festive sounds will be all around!
This year’s Texas Christkindl Market will run from November 25th through December 23rd. While you are there, be sure to check out the Texas Live! entertainment district with many restaurants and shops.
Search for Arlington hotels HERE.
Illinois Christmas Markets
Christkindl Market– Chicago, IL
Running from November 18th through December 24th, the Chicago Christkindl Market has grown to be one of the largest in the country. The original Chicago Christkindl Market has been operating in Chicago’s Daley Plaza since 1996. Due to its popularity, it has since expanded to a location in Wrigleyville and Aurora (southwestern suburb).
Chicago models its Christkindl Market after the original in Nuremberg, Germany. It holds itself to the high standards in both appearance and quality of vendors. We have been to the Chicago Christkindl market once and can confirm…it looks and feels authentic and festive!
This year’s Chicago Daley Plaza location has 55 vendor booths. Vendors range from authentic German foods, holiday gifts, ornaments, strudels, clothing, and other European gifts.
This outdoor market is 100% free to attend. It is an outdoor market, however there are several heated tents and cabins to warm up from those cold Chicago days and nights. Of course the Christkindl market is family friendly and each location will have many special activities throughout the holiday season. Some examples of family entertainment are Alpine brass bands and ballet performances.
Check out Chicago hotels HERE.
Michigan Christmas Markets
Kerstmarkt– Holland, MI
In case you haven’t noticed, most Christmas markets so far have had German inspiration or themes. There’s no better place to break that trend than in Holland, MI, a city that celebrates its Dutch heritage throughout the year. But at Christmas-time, they go all-in and host this amazing Dutch-inspired Christmas market for all to enjoy!
Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, patrons can come visit the Holland Kerstmarkt on Fridays and Saturdays from November 19th through December 10th. Sharing space with the Holland Farmers Market, 18 booths are set up in typical European style. They often attract vendors from as far as Texas!
In addition to the vendor booths, there are other special events such as handbell concerts, dogsled demos, and a Sinterklaas (Dutch for Santa Claus) procession with photos after. The market and special events are all great for making family memories!
Search Holland, MI hotels HERE.
California Christmas Markets
Solvang Julefest– Solvang, CA
Once again proving that Christmas markets are JUST German-inspired, the Solvang Julefest draws its inspiration from Solvang’s Danish heritage. In fact, Solvang states they are the Danish capital of America.
As opposed to other US Christmas markets that set up temporary Christmas “villages”, Solvang looks like an old Danish village all year. The entire village of Solvang was built to look like a village in Denmark. During the Christmas season, the entire village is decorated to look like a traditional Danish village during Christmas…only this is located in the southern California wine country!
Running from November 26th through January 6th, there are plenty of activities for the whole family. Some examples are candlelight walks, nightly music and light shows, a parade, roaming village carolers, nativity pageants, Danish dancers and much more. The culmination of this 6 week event is the annual burning of the town Christmas tree in the Mission parking lot on January 6th!
Search Solvang area hotels HERE.
Maryland Christmas Markets
Christmas Village in Baltimore– Baltimore, MD
Located in Baltimore’s beautiful Inner Harbor area, this Christmas market is a return to the Nuremberg, Germany inspired variety. In 2022, the Christmas Village will be open from November 24th through December 24th. They do have random closures, so be sure to check their schedule.
Baltimore’s Christmas Village has plenty to do and see! The highlight and heart of the village is the “Pyramid” or Christmas tower that are popular in German Christmas markets. Baltimore’s Christmas Village Pyramid stands 30 feet tall, is covered in 3000 lights, and can be seen throughout the Inner Harbor.
Surrounding the Pyramid are over 50 vendors in traditional wooden cabins selling their crafts, decor, food, clothing, jewelry, and beverages. There is a 65’ tall ferris wheel, Christmas themed carousel, entertainment stage, and Santa hut for extra family activities!
The food and beverage options at the Christmas Village are amazing. Authentic schnitzels, soft pretzels, raclette (melted Alpine cheese on toasted baguette), bratwursts. Gluhwein, craft beers, and various hot chocolates. I already want to go!!!
This Christmas market is definitely on our short-list of ones to visit! Check out Baltimore hotels HERE.
Wisconsin Christmas Markets
Old World Christmas Market– Elkhart Lake, WI
Ranked #1 by USA Today, this traditional Christmas is back for its 24th year. Held at the luxurious Osthoff Resort, this year’s Old World Christmas Market will be held December 2-11, 2022.
Held under a huge heated tent, Christmas revelers enjoy walking the aisles…soaking in all the sights, smells, sounds, and tastes that signify Christmas-time in traditional European ways. It is truly an international experience with artisans selling their holiday themed from Turkey, Russia, Czechia, Germany, Estonia, and more!
The Old World Food Tent is a culinary lover’s delight! Food options are predominantly German, with Gluhwein, dumplings, schnitzels, sausages, cheeses, cabbages, strudels, and more! And since this is Wisconsin, you know there will be an amazing selection of beers to try!
Since this market is held at a resort, you can make your visit to the Old World Christmas Market a full experience. Stay at the resort and enjoy amenities such as a spa, sleigh rides, fine dining, indoor pools and whirlpools!
Want to visit the Old World Christmas Market but don’t want to stay at the resort? Check out other hotel options HERE!
Which Christmas Markets in the USA Will You Visit?
Obviously you should start planning where you want to go to visit some of the best authentic European style Christmas Markets in the USA! We got excited researching some topics for this article, as we didn’t even know many of these existed!
If you know of other Christmas markets in the USA that you feel we should add to our list, let us know about them in the “Contact Us” section and we can get it added!