The Paris Christmas markets have their origins in Alsace where the tradition is very strong and part of the local culture. France’s first and largest market is found in Strasbourg, which is easily accessible by TGV from Paris-Gare de l’Est.
The presence of Christmas markets in Paris is relatively new. Since the mid-2000s, the French capital and other cities elsewhere in France have multiplied the market traditions. In Paris only, they are more than 13 different sites, some of them featuring over a hundred of wood chalets (Champs-Élysées, Trocadéro, La Défense).
Visiting a Christmas market is an ideal outing with kids who will love savouring Holiday treats such as gingerbread, bredeles and other sweet delicacies. Adults will enjoy mulled wine, sausages and specialties from almost all the regions of France and particularly from Alsace. Here is a list of some of Paris’ Christmas markets situated next to the capital’s iconic sites and landmarks.
Christmas Market of Champs-Élysées (8th arrt)
In 2016, the Christmas market strikes back on the Champs-Élysées with more chalets and events: 160 stalls typical of the Vosges offer to their visitors hand crafted items perfect for original gifts, mulled wine, waffles, crêpes and other Alsatian delicacies, and many rides and activities for children.
The Champs-Elysées Christmas market borders both sides of the avenue between the Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées and the Place de la Concorde. Enjoy the vista of the market from the Rond-Point, reaching the iconic Obelisk of the Place de la Concorde and the enchanting Ferris Wheel – la Grande Roue de Paris.
One of the most beautiful views of Paris at Christmas a spectacular view of the whole district, get on the big wheel on Place de la Concorde: it is ideally located in the centre of the Historical Axis and offers a great view of the Eiffel Tower and River Seine. Make sure you embark at night time on the dot of the hour so you can enjoy the Eiffel Tower sparkling… just so romantic!
- Open from 11 November 2016 to 8 January 2017.
- Metro station: Concorde (lines 1, 8 and 12), Champs-Élysées-Clemenceau (lines 1 and 13)
Find out more about Christmas on the Champs-Élysées.
Christmas Market at the Eiffel Tower (7th arrt)
In the vicinity of the Eiffel Tower are two small Christmas markets: one is in the Champ-de-Mars (Avenue Anatole France) and another in Quai Branly by River Seine, both offering a wide range of decorative objects and local produce. In past years, the gardens of Trocadéro were transformed into a winter-wonderland (“Trocadéro on Ice”) which included a snowshoe and cross-country trail. and an open-air skating rink. Due to undergoing work on the site of Palais de Chaillot, the event will not take place in 2014.
- Open from 15 December 2016 to 3 January 2017.
- Metro station: Bir Hakeim (lines 6), Trocadéro (lines 6 and 9). RER station: Champ-de-Mars Tour Eiffel (RER C).
Christmas Market of La Défense (Hauts-de-Seine)
The Christmas market of La Défense is arguably the largest in the Paris region. The cluster of its white chalets at the centre of the Esplanade seems at odds with the futurist environment made up of tall skyscrapers. This is definitely the country’s most surprising Christmas market…
- Open from 17 November to 27 December 2016.
- Metro and RER stations: La Défense Grande Arche (métro line 1, RER A, Tram 2)
Find out more about Christmas at La Défense.
Christmas Markets in the 6th Arrondissement
The 6th arrondissement holds two Christmas markets: around the churches of Saint-Germain-des-Prés and Saint-Sulpice.
Christmas Market of Saint-Germain-des-Prés (6th arrt)
Also called “Santa’s village”, Paris’ smallest Christmas market is situated around the ancient church of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. About 30 chalets nicely decorated offer a selection of traditional items.
- Open from 1 to 31 December 2016
- Metro stations: Saint-Germain-des-Prés (line 4), Mabillon (line 10)
Christmas Market of Saint-Sulpice (6th arrt)
Not far from Saint-Germain-des-Prés, this Christmas market is located on the square of St Sulpice Church. Around the monumental fountain, 40 chalets welcome visitors and offer artisan craftwork and Christmas decorations.
- Open in December 2016 dates TBC
- Metro station: Saint Sulpice (line 4)
Christmas Market of Montparnasse (15th arrt)
40 chalets are located on Place Raoul Dautry next to the railway station and at the foot of the Montparnasse Tower.
- Open from 10 December to 31 December 2016.
- Metro station: Montparnasse-Bienvenüe (lines 4, 6, 13 and 12)
Christmas Markets of Montmartre (18th arrt)
The hill of Montmartre holds two Christmas markets:
Parvis of Sacré-Cœur / Place du Tertre
Last year the parvis of the Sacré-Cœur basilica on the Hill of Montmartre host 60 chalets which added a festive atmosphere to what was Paris’s highest Christmas Market. The market extended to the streets of Rue Azaïs and Rue du Cardinal Guibert.
- Just one weekend to discover this little Christmas market on the forecourt of the Sacré-Cœur: from the 2 to 4 December 2016.
- Metro station: Anvers (line 2)
Place des Abbesses
- Open from 27 November 2016 to 3 January 2017
- Metro station: Abbesses (line 12)
Christmas Market of Gare Saint-Lazare (9th arrt)
This little Christmas market is located next to the railway station in the Cour de Rome. The 2015 edition with its 20 stalls will be the first “pop-up mall éphémère” themed on ‘Made in France’.
- 2016 TBC.
- Metro station: Saint-Lazare (lines 3, 12, 13 and 14)
Alsatian Christmas Market of Gare de l’Est (10th arrt)
A Christmas market located on the parvis of the railway station featuring Alsatian confectionary, Christmas ornaments and typical regional food.
- Open from 1 December to 16 December 2016.
- Metro station: Gare de l’Est (lines 4, 5 and 7)
Christmas Market of Gare de Lyon (12th arrt)
A Christmas market located on the forecourt of the railway station dominated by its beautiful bell tower, featuring macarons and other local confectionary.
- 2016 dates TBC
- Metro station: Gare de Lyon (RER lines A and D, métro lines 1 and 14)
Christmas Market of Place de la République
It is a recently addition to the list of Christmas markets hold in Paris and it takes place for a whole week in the recently renovated square. More than 50 artists and food stalls transform the majestic square into an enchanting Christmassy place!
- Not sure this market will be taken place in 2016 – TBC
- Metro station: République (lines 3, 5, 8, 9, and 11)
Christmas Markets in the suburbs of Paris
More Christmas markets can be visited outside Paris, particularly in Neuilly, Boulogne and Vincennes:
Christmas Market of Boulogne-Billancourt (Hauts-de-Seine)
The Christmas market and its 45 chalets are found on the Grand Place.
- Open from 4 to 24 December 2016.
- Metro station: Boulogne Jean Jaurès (line 10)
Christmas Market of Vincennes (Val-de-Marne)
The Christmas market is held in Rue Raymond-du-Temple and Rue du Midi. An open-air ice-skating rink is found on the esplanade of the City-Hall along with a merry-go-round and other rides.
- Open from 2 December 2016 to 8 January 2017.
- Metro station: Château de Vincennes (line 1)