Christmas markets

Get in the mood for Yuletide with a fabulous Christmas market break
A short holiday away somewhere magical in the run-up to Christmas will not only enable you to pick up some presents, but also get you in a festive frame of mind ready for the big day.

Citalia offers the chance to take in some of the best Christmas markets in Italy – such as Rome’s Christmas and Epiphany Market in Piazza Navona, where you’ll find sweets, chocolate and gifts, street artists and a traditional carousel. A three-night B&B break at the four-star Starhotels Metropole, departing 29 November, starts at £289 per person, including return flights from Gatwick with Easyjet. There are also breaks in Florence and Venice.

0843-770 4443,

The Fred.\ Christmas Markets and Winter Breaks brochure features a short break in ‘off the beaten track’ Ludwigsburg, Germany. Each year, the 18th century town presents a unique Christmas Get in the mood for Yuletide with a fabulous Christmas market break market experience, with ‘King Friedrich I’ visiting in his robe every Saturday. A two-night B&B break between 25 November and 23 December, including ˆflights to Stuttgart and accommodation at the three-star Best Western Hotel Favorit, costs from £329 per person.

0808-250 7755,

Travel-Nov14-02-590Left: decorations in Salzberg. Right: Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen

, Denmark’s picturesque capital city, has a Christmas market at the world-famous Tivoli Gardens, with traditional handicrafts, festive food and drink such as apple dumplings and mulled wine, and a spectacular light show. WEXAS Travel offers a five-night stay at 71 Nyhavn Hotel from £485 per person, including B&B, ˆflights and a Christmas at Tivoli Gardens tour, from 14 November to 30 December.

020-7838 5892,

Brussels’ Christmas Market, from 28 November to 4 January 2015, offers around 250 stalls and lots of festive fun, and you can visit it on a three-night break with Kirker Holidays, from £499 per person. Accommodation is at the five-star Hotel Amigo, close to the Grand Place and City Hall, and the price includes Eurostar tickets, private transfers, breakfast, Kirker Guide Notes and the Kirker Concierge Service.

020-7593 2283,

Travel-Nov14-03-590Christmas market by Vienna's City Hall

For an alternative Christmas shopping escape, P&O Cruises has a four-night cruise to Amsterdam and Bruges – offering fabulous Christmas markets – on Oceana, from £329 per person. Departing 13 December, the cruise is a round trip from Southampton, so there are no restrictions on luggage and you can bring back enough gifts to fill Santa’s sack.

0843-373 0111,

Finally, how about Trafalgar’s eight-day Christmas Markets of Austria, Germany and Switzerland trip, which takes in a whole smorgasbord of Christmassy delights in Vienna, Salzburg, Munich, Innsbruck and Lucerne, among other places? Available from 23 November to 11 December, it starts from £1,399 per person, including B&B, VIP door-to-door airport transfers and ˆflights.

0800-533 5616,

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