Breathe in the crisp winter air that unites the delectable concoction of sweet aromas that waft among European Christmas markets. As you weave between wooden stalls that are laden with flickering fairy lights, jovial sounds and delicious scents entice you into the festive spirit. Explosions of colours from handmade gifts and decorations catch the eyes of passers by. The atmosphere of the Christmas markets is truly electrifying.
At Great Rail Journeys we have a wonderful selection of train holidays that guide you to enigmatic destinations, allowing you to sample the culture and authentic flavours. The advantage of a rail holiday is that you not only see fabulous cities and towns, you also get to witness the spectacular scenery which envelops them. Journey among snow-dusted mountains, frozen lakes and fairytale fortresses that make you feel like you have stepped into a real winter wonderland.
Rest assured that our rail journeys are as exhilarating as the Christmas markets themselves, and the sociable environment makes our holidays perfect for single travellers. We ensure that each passenger feels that they are part of a group, making mealtimes a sociable occasion. Great Rail Journeys will make all of the travel arrangements for you and a professional Tour Manager is on hand throughout your holiday.
During a Christmas markets holiday there will be ample leisure time incorporated into the tour so you have the freedom to explore at your own pace. Perhaps shop for gifts for family back home or simply watch the world go buy in a chic café. Let us treat you this season on an unforgettable break at a Christmas market of your choice. Browse through our selection of tours and begin planning your perfect festive adventure.
Discover the beautiful West Country in the run-up to Christmas on this exciting break. We visit the Christmas Markets of bustling Bristol and glorious Bath and enjoy a steam railway and charming Lacock Abbey.
Based in the spa town of Harrogate, experience the Christmas Market in York, enjoy a vintage steam rail journey with a festive theme and visit the historic house of Castle Howard in its full Christmas glory.
Explore two of Belgium's most popular cities - beautifully preserved Bruges and dynamic Brussels - on this atmospheric festive tour. Be sure to discover the gifts, crafts and mulled wine at their charming Christmas Markets.
On this Christmas Market holiday, we stay in Luxembourg whilst enjoying the best of the festive season with visits to the Christmas Markets of medieval Trier and nearby Metz.
Cologne has five incredible bustling Christmas Markets to choose from. Sample local bratwurst, beers and mulled wine in Europe's Christmas Market capital, before we take a journey on Wuppertal's Kaiser's carriage.
Discover some of Germany's best-loved 'fairytale' cities as they are illuminated for advent. Colourful guided tours uncover the Brothers Grimm fairytales and fascinating histories along with the fabulous Christmas Markets.
Sample the sights and smells of three Bavarian Christmas markets by train. Regensburg, Rothenburg and arguably Germany's most famous Christmas Market, Nuremberg.
With its idyllic location and romantic castle, Heidelberg has long been one of Germany's most popular destinations. Discover the city and its Christmas Market, before visiting Frankfurt's world-famous markets.
The Christmas Markets of former East Germany await on this wonderful tour. Take in historic Berlin with its sixty separate Christmas Markets, all with their own theme, and beautiful Dresden boasting Germany's oldest Christmas Market.
Ancient half-timbered houses with timeless charm clamour for attention in the beautiful Alsatian towns of Colmar and Strasbourg, which come alive with Christmas atmosphere during their annual 'Marchés de Noël'.
Christmas Markets guided rail tours
The 6th December is St Nikolaus Eve, when German children leave polished shoes outside their bedroom door in the hope that Weihnachtsmann will have filled them with treats come morning. In Luxembourg children wait for Klees'chen but in parts of France it is Saint Nicolas who fills the shoes with sweets and small toys. This region of the world has some of the best Christmas markets by rail and starting from late November children step incredibly cautiously around their parents. Not for fear that they won't receive their presents but if they misbehave then Black Peter or Père Fouettard will take them away on Christmas Eve.