Madrid: calendar of Christmas markets
From late November, the capital begins to turn on the Christmas lights that announce the arrival of its traditional street markets and their irresistible offer of holiday products.
1 Mercadillo Plaza Mayor
This is the epicentre of Madrid’s Christmas market scene. Dozens of stalls offer visitors a wide variety of figures for nativity scenes, joke gifts and home decorations.
Where: Plaza Mayor
When: 24/11 to 31/12
What: a star to top the Christmas tree
2 Mercado de artesanía de la Comunidad de Madrid
The largest fair promoting regional crafts is holding its 31st edition in the Plaza de España. The nearly 2,000 workshops participating over the years offer an alternative for Christmas gifts for those who prefer handcrafted items.
Where: Plaza de España
When: 8/12 a 5/1 (dates to be confirmed)
What: a wooden jewellery box
3 Mercadillo del Gato
This central street market offers two Christmas editions featuring 120 to 150 exhibitors. Their stands will tempt visitors with an irresistible offer of cosmetics, accessories, children’s clothing and even items for home decoration.
Where: Antiguo Casino Militar (Gran Via, 13) and Hotel Palace (Plaza de la Cortes, 7)
When: from 14/12 to 15/01 in the Gran Vía and from 1/12 to 9/12 in the Hotel Palace
What: a hand-painted silk handkerchief
4 La Navideña Feria Internacional de las Culturas
Matadero Madrid adorns itself with the colours of diversity with its Feria Internacional de las Culturas with the participation of embassies and cultural institutes from more than 60 countries including Japan, China and India. It’s the perfect opportunity to discover how Christmas is celebrated in other latitudes.
Where: Plaza de Legazpi, 8
When: 14/12 to 23/12
What: fair trade chocolate
5 Nómada Market
This fair showcasing independent design offers an alternative to those who are looking to give offbeat Christmas gifts. The stands feature jewellery, stationery, furniture and lighting by independent local designers.
Where: Mercado de la Cebada
When: 14/12 to 16/12
What: a neon sign
6 Feria de Almoneda
The ideal place for collectors, it stands out for its immense exhibition of curiosities and antiques priced for all budgets. There is an open house on Thursday, 13 December.
Where: IFEMA (Pavilion 1 of the Feria de Madrid)
When: 12/12 to 16/12
What: an original centrepiece for Christmas dinner