Now that we’re used to seeing mince pies in the supermarkets from September and having to battle icy cold weather from then too, sometimes the Christmas period can feel a little… drawn out. A cheeky trip to a Christmas market, however, never fails to get us in the proper Christmas spirit!
In Yorkshire there are quite a few seasonal events that not only get you in the festive mood but offer up all the very best locally produced Christmas foods! We’re seasoned pros in sampling the best Christmas events in these parts, so here’s an early present from us: a neatly wrapped list of the top five Christmas markets to get down to this year. You’re welcome!
1) Harrogate Christmas Market
This festive fair takes over the beautiful Montpelier Quarter in Harrogate offering up a host of Christmas shopping options and a humongous amount of local produce, too. There’ll be close to 200 stalls lighting up the town this year with everything from locally sourced food and drink to gifts, crafts and decorations. You’ll be sure to bag a few uniquely Yorkshire bits and pieces and sample some of the finest winter foods, too!
Thursday 14th – Sunday 17th November
(Opening Hours: Thu-Fri 10am-8pm / Sat 9.30am to 8pm / Sun 9.30am to 5.30pm)
Prices: Free to attend!
2) The Hepworth Christmas Fair, Wakefield
The Christmas at The Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield has quickly become a festive must-do for folks in Yorkshire. It’s the place to be for anyone looking to find some unique gift inspiration or grab some top-quality decorations. The market houses some of the UK’s most talented artists selling their wares and there’s also a programme of free festive entertainment and family activities, too. If you need even further proof that this one is too good to miss, The Guardian labelled The Hepworth Christmas Fair as ‘one of the best Christmas markets’ there is… We agree!
Fri 22 – Sun 24 Nov
Fri 29 Nov – Sun 1 Dec 2019
(10am – 5pm)
Prices: £2 entry
FREE for Members and Under 16s
3) Leeds Christkindelmarket
Each year Leeds’ Millennium Square (located in the heart of the city) is transformed into a Germanic Yuletide village. This year the event will see over 40 chalet-styled stalls serving up incredible Christmas street food and drink, with local makers of toys, decorations and all things Christmas on offer, too. There’s even Christmas carousel rides for the little’uns to enjoy. As one of the UK’s longest established German markets, a visit to the Leeds Christkindelmarket is a sure-fire way to get into the festive spirit!
Friday 8th November – Saturday 21 December
(Open daily from 10.30am to 9.30pm Monday to Saturday and 10.30am to 7.30pm on Sundays from Fri 8 November)
4) Grassington Dickensian Christmas Festival
For something a little bit different, head to the picturesque village of Grassington, which sits slap bang in the middle of the Yorkshire Dales. Every year this quaint little village travels back to the Victorian era for two weekends of 19th Century Christmas fun! Shopkeepers, the locals and visitors alike all get involved by ditching their modern garments and donning the wears of the Dickens’ era to immerse the town into the world of the iconic festive tale, ‘A Christmas Carol’. There’ll be a traditional Christmas Market, Victorian street entertainers, live music, and plenty of traditional scran to enjoy, too. It’ll be a festive weekend to remember!
Saturday 30th November and Sunday 1st December,
Saturday 7th December and Sunday 8th December
Prices: Free to attend!
5) The Piece Hall, Halifax
The Piece Hall in Halifax is an unforgettable spot to be getting into the Christmas spirit this winter. The renovated Grade I listed building plays host to plenty of top-notch Yorkshire events throughout the year and the Christmas market is certainly no different. The stunning courtyard will showcase some of the best independent craft producers and artisan makers in the region. There’ll be pop up food stalls and the usual warming tipple to enjoy as well as live music and entertainment. Definitely one to add to the list!
29th November – 1st December (10am – 6pm)