Christmas is approaching at the speed of stampeding reindeer hooves across a brilliant night sky. This means that the traditional Norwegian Christmas fairs are returning for another season of unique Christmas gifts, exciting artisan foods, and cosily lit winter streets.
In the weeks leading up to Christmas Eve, there are plenty of fairs popping up all around the country. Here are five of the best Norwegian Christmas markets.
One of the capital’s Christmas fairs lasts for well over a month by Spikersuppa on the main street Karl Johans gate, a mere stone’s throw away from the Royal Palace. Winter Wonderland combines delicious food and delicacies, high-quality craft, a Ferris wheel, and lots of additional fun for the whole family. During the winter season, Spikersuppa is Norway’s most popular public ice skating rink. Entrance is free, so bring your skates and practice your pirouettes.
Open: 17 November–23 December (Tuesdays and Wednesdays closed)
In Bergen city centre, the Christmas spirit is refilled every single day from the end of November to 22 December. Every day, twelve new exhibitors will offer a variety of products, from locally produced delicacies and clothes to interior, beauty products, and art. There are also attractions for the kids, amongst them a Ferris wheel and a horse carousel. For that optimal Christmas spirit, visit the impressive Gingerbread town – the world’s largest of its kind.
Open: 29 November–22 December
At the Christmas market in Trondheim you’ll come in close contact with farmers and craftspeople eager to tell the stories behind their wares, whether you’re showing interest in a ceramic bowl at the wooden stalls or some exotic jam in the tent that is home to the Farmer’s market. Five large lavvo tents will be built to serve as both café and indoor stage, featuring fireside troubadours, local food, and a theatrical performance for children. And lastly, at the Torvscenen stage, you’ll find a constant stream of talented artists and bands putting on concerts for the benefit of the Salvation Army’s charity work.
Open: 7–19 December
You’ll get a happy dose of Christmas spirit when visiting the Rådhusplassen square in Haugesund. There you’ll find one of Norway’s largest Christmas fairs with thousands of visitors each year. From the market stalls, you can purchase homemade items such as glass, knitwear, Christmas cakes, cured meats, Christmas ornaments, and other handicrafts. Local bands and choirs contribute to a jolly good start to your Yuletide shopping. There is plenty of fun for kids at the fair, with the traditional Santa Claus parade as one of the highlights. Also, be sure not to miss the gingerbread town at Gamle Slakthuset, which is only a minute away from the Christmas market.
Open: 29 November–2 December, 8–9 December, 15–16 December
Northern Norway is about much more than the midnight sun – especially as the Christmas spirit is lurking around the corner. And few places in Norway conveys the mood of this holiday like Henningsvær bathed in Northern Lights. With tall mountains and deep fjords as a picturesque frame you can buy local glass crafts and ceramic (or make your own!), dive into regional delicacies such as the Lofot caviar and paté, or borrow a kicksled for cruising the wintry streets.
Open: 2 November–23 December
New this year is the Christmas market in Tromsø’s main street Storgata. Here, two lavvo tents will provide seasonal spirit for eleven December days. Inside the tents, ten exhibitors will showcase lovely food and high-level craft every day. Outside there will be hay bales, campfires and parades, and the arrangers hint that there may be a chance of running into both reindeers and Santa himself at the market.
Open: 6–16 December
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