The Christmas market is the reason why Edinburgh is also fairly well visited in December. Apparently not every small town in Scotland has its own Christmas market, so many people come to the capital to experience the pre-Christmas season. Thanks to beautiful Edinburgh Christmas Market it didn’t feel like off-season. The sights were well visited and our day trip to the surrounding area was fully booked.
Like every major city, Edinburgh has several Christmas markets to offer. The Christmas Markets are spread throughout the city and open from November 18 to January 7.
The European Christmas Market
Probably the most beautiful Christmas market is in the heart of Edinburgh: the European Market is located in the East Princess Street Gardens. In addition to the usual food stalls, there are many unusual art and gift items on different levels. The 20-year-old Christmas market is often referred to as the German Market, and at some booths you will actually discover a German bratwurst or a German BBQ. The European Market is not only a Christmas market, it is also a fair and is home to numerous rides such as a ferris wheel or various carousels. So if you haven’t been able to get anything out of the German Christmas markets, you might get your money’s worth in Edinburgh.
The Street of Light
At the west end of George Street is the Street of Light . During the day, the scaffold-like structure made of over 60,000 light bulbs is not very spectacular. Only in the evening does the real meaning and purpose of this structure become clear: Scottish music sounds on time every evening at 6 PM and 8 PM, and the installation lights up in sync with the music like a light organ. It’s best to stand in the middle of it to get the full program. The spectacle is always well attended; So it is worth coming early enough to get a good seat.
Scottish Market is at the west end of George Street . This small Christmas market consists of just a few stalls and presents the best products in Scotland. You will find typical Scottish products such as craft beer, gin, Scottish accessories and decorative items there. Funnily enough, there is even a stand from the German discounter Lidl.
St Andrew Square Ice Ring
St Andrew Square is home to the St Andrew Square skating ring that runs around the Melville Monument. Here you can rent ice skates and do your rounds against an impressive backdrop.
Edinburgh Santa Fun Run and Walk
The Santa Fun Run also takes place once a year. On a Sunday in December, numerous people gather in West Princess Street Gardens to collect money for a good cause disguised as Santa. Coincidentally, the donation run took place exactly on the weekend of our visit. Of course, we couldn’t miss out on a bunch of disguised Santa Clauses. However, I would never have thought that so many people would participate: whole families ran, the children also dressed as Santa Clauses or elves. The very little ones were pushed in the stroller and even dogs took part in this funny event – of course also wrapped in Christmas clothes.