DON’T MISS THE BEST CHRISTMAS MARKETS IN SPAIN
We are fast approaching a most special time of the year. The days surrounding Christmas are days to share with our families, to meet up with those we care about, to celebrate and why deny it? to eat and drink in copious amounts.
The streets are adorned, filled with lights, Christmas carols, laughter, the smell of roasted chestnuts and of ginger and cinnamon. People are taken over by the festive atmosphere in the street which expounds hope and joy and good will to all men… And what better way to do so than to visit the legendary Christmas markets, which are traditionally found throughout Spain in this festive season.
Here at Boutique Hotels Spain we are going to recommend a selection of the best Christmas Markets Spain has to offer. So, go on take advantage, you are sure to find that special gift that you are still looking for. If you’re passing through any of these cities, you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to visit the following street markets:
1. MADRID. Plaza Mayor Market
At this time of year the Plaza Mayor is filled with hundreds of stalls offering traditional Christmas products creating a wonderful atmosphere that can be enjoyed until 31st December. It originated in the 19th century as a market for turkeys, as well as nougat and other delicacies. It is very common to find joke items for sale to celebrate the Spanish equivalent of April Fool’s Day the “Día de los Santos Inocentes “. During these days there is also a Christmas Fair with handcrafted products, ceramics, jewellery and toys, goldsmiths… Open until January 5th, it attracts a lot of tourists.
2. SEVILLE. Plaza Nueva Market
In Seville we can find several markets, but the one that is most popular in the city is the traditional Christmas Craft Market located in Plaza Nueva, next to the town hall. This a market where visitors will appreciate the quality of the items on sale which include: leather goods, silver jewellery, hats, wood, cosmetics, glass, pottery, dried flowers, ceramic or engraved goods among others, on sale in 80 stalls that can be visited until 5th January. This year is also the 20th Anniversary of the Nativity Scene Fair, one of the most important nationally, where you can buy a wide selection of Nativity scene figures and Christmas decorations.
3. BARCELONA. Santa Lucía Fair
This is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most traditional markets that have been held in Spain originating in 1786. Located in the Gothic quarter, in the Plaza Nova, it can be visited until 23rd December. It is made up of more than 300 stalls, where you can find products ranging from the most traditional to the most modern, including crib figurines, toys, handcrafted goods, etc. and of course, the famous figure of the “caganer” a symbol of prosperity and good luck.
4. VALENCIA. Central Market Market
In Valencia Christmas is celebrated in the street with one of the most traditional Christmas markets, located in the area surrounding the Central Market of Valencia. Among the hundred stalls you can find products such as roasted chestnuts, trees, cribs, figurines, toys and Christmas sweets. Very close to this, in the Plaza de la Reina, we can find the Feria de Artesanía de Arteval, where you can find unique gifts. This square hosts a life-size nativity scene, donated by the Gremio of Fallas Artists of Valencia, which gives the square a magical look. And finally, something that cannot be missed on the night of January 5th, is the Market of Kings in the Cabanyal, which with more than 250 stalls is very popular on the eve of King’s Day when in Spain people traditionally exchange gifts.
5. SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA. Market Da Quintana
Now in its fifth edition and located in the Plaza de La Quintana, its dozens of stalls can be visited until 5th January. You can find traditional gastronomic produce, craft pieces, decorations, cribs, toys and puppets, sweets… This market also hosts the so-called “Creative Space“, a place with workshops aimed at old and young, which are designed to be entertaining, educational and fun. In the afternoon, there are also musical performances.
6. MALLORCA. Christmas Market of Puerto Portals
This market, with its typical wooden stalls, has become an international meeting point. Both residents and tourists in love with the island come together to enjoy the atmosphere, numerous activities on offer as well as to purchase special and unusual gifts. Its location in the port, creates a pleasant contrast with the moored boats with the lights, music and the sea in the background. Here until 6th January, you can enjoy a wide variety of gastronomy, traditional Christmas dishes both national and international: Christmas desserts from all over the world, typical Spanish specialities, German, Italian or Asian produce, among others. And, for the youngest visitors the main attraction has to be the ice rink.