Europe’s Most Affordable Christmas Markets Revealed

Whether you’re on the hunt for Christmas presents, looking forward to sipping on mulled wine, wish to marvel at the decorations or take to the ice, Christmas markets are a winter essential in the lead up to the winter festivities.

Taking place across the UK and Europe from November until the beginning of January, visiting some of the oldest and most popular markets needn’t break the bank.

Whether it’s a trip to Germany for the traditionalists, an opportunity to explore a new European city for the jet-setters or a chance to visit London’s Winter Wonderland for families, we’ve researched 56 of the best Christmas markets suitable for every budget.

We at Sambla measured a variety of different factors including; the average cost of 3* and 4* hotels, the average daily food costs and the cost of taking a spin on the ice rink, to see which European and UK destinations rank highest for their affordability.

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Europe’s Most Affordable Christmas Markets

Top 20 Start Date 3* Hotels 4* Hotels Food costs Ice skating Score/10
Poznań, Poland 18th November £66 £89 £7.84 £2.53 9.8
Gdańsk, Poland 24th November £73.5 £109.5 £16 £2.34 9.5
Zagreb, Croatia 2nd December £107 £132 £14 £1.73 9.3
Kraków, Poland 24th November £97 £117.5 £10 £4.87 9.2
Warsaw, Poland 25th November £84.5 £128 £21 £2.17 9.2
Zakopane, Poland 8th December £62 £233.5 £10 £3.90 9.1
Montpellier, France 2nd December £81.5 £142.5 £27 £4.34 8.7
Riga, Latvia 3rd December £55 £93 £28 £6.97 8.7
Reims, France 24th November £76 £150 £35 £4.34 8.4
Bratislava, Slovakia 21st November £93 £136 £39 £3.49 8.3
Tallinn, Estonia 1st December £72.5 £121.5 £31 £7.83 8.3
Prague, Czech Republic 2nd December £103.5 £334 £21 £3.53 8.2
Heidelberg, Germany 27th November £134 £130 £32 £5.21 8.2
Frankfurt, Germany 27th November £140 £107.5 £36 £5.21 8.1
Porto, Portugal 1st December £109 £155 £31 £6.96 8.0
Stuttgart, Germany 29th November £172.5 £132 £32 £5.21 7.9
Hamburg, Germany 27th November £155 £192 £30 £5.21 7.9
Munich, Germany 27th November £146.5 £304.5 £24 £4.34 7.9
Stockholm, Sweden 24th November £148.5 £150 £29 £7.44 7.9
Graz, Austria 18th November £85.5 £138 £28 £12.60 7.7


1. Poznań, Poland

Ranking number one as the most affordable Christmas market is the Polish city Poznań with an impressive overall score of 9.85/10. The market is located in the Old Town amongst its Renaissance-style buildings. Eating out for a whole day could cost less than £10, while accommodation is priced between £66-£89 a night. Ice skating will set you back £2.53. The  International Ice Sculpture Festival is a must see where artists from around the world pick up hammers, chainsaws, and even irons to turn blocks of ice into works of art in front of the audience.

2. Gdańsk, Poland

In second place and consecutive listing for Poland, is the Gdańsk Christmas Fair, situated on the Baltic coast of the country. Hosting 155 stalls with unique gifts, decorations and treats, a weekend visit could cost from £73.50 to £109.50 a night and food costs can be as little as £16 a day. Running from the 24th of November until the 23rd of December, it’s the perfect time to explore this destination.

3. Zagreb, Croatia

Croatia’s capital ranks in third with a score of 9.35/10. A trip to see the Zagreb Advent can vary from £107 to £132 a night, while ice skating costs less than £2. From the 2nd of December to the 7th of January, the city is adorned with thousands of lights and visitors can dine on Paprenjaci – peppery gingerbread cookies and stuffed turkey.

UK’s Most Affordable Christmas Markets

If your calendar is booked up until the New Year or if catching flights aren’t your thing, the UK has a wealth of Christmas markets to choose from, from the famous Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park to the Rambles in York, we’ve ranked each city from least expensive to most expensive.

Rank Start Date 3* Hotels 4* Hotels Food costs Ice skating Score/10
Nottingham 7th November £79.5 £146 £36 £12.50 7.4
Glasgow 18th November1 £86 £129.5 £45 £13.50 7.0
Birmingham 2nd November £139 £150 £38 £13.00 6.9
Belfast 18th November £187.5 £266.5 £51 £8.00 6.4
Cardiff 9th November £117 £155.5 £44 £16.00 5.9
York 16th November £219.5 £246.5 £32 £14.50 6.2
Edinburgh 17th November £216 £271 £39 £13.00 6.1
Bath 23rd November £112.5 £425 £43 £14.50 5.8
Manchester 10th November £125 £256.5 £55 £16.50 5.6
London 17th November £311 £400 £35 £15.00 5.0

1. Nottingham

Home to Robin Hood and figure skating champions, Torvill and Dean, Nottingham’s Winter Wonderland is the most affordable Christmas Market in the UK. Accommodation ranges from £79.50 to £146 a night while food costs can set you back an average of £36. With an ice bar, sur la piste and sky skate ice path, there’s plenty of festive activities to tick off.

2. Glasgow

Glasgow ranks in second place for our affordable UK markets with an overall score of 7/10. Starting on the 18th of November accommodation in the Scottish city varies from £86 to £129.50 a night. With two fairs to choose from, festive goers can visit George Square and St Enoch Square to purchase their Christmas gifts and delight in the festive atmosphere.

3. Birmingham

Taking inspiration from Frankfurt’s Christmas markets, Birmingham achieved a score of 6.9/10. With average food costs totalling £38 per day, you can feast on turkey and stuffing sandwiches, pretzels and gluhwein and take to the ice for £13.

Europe’s Most Affordable Ice Skating Spots

Our favourite winter sport is a key element of the festive season. Whether you’re taking the little ones for their first spin or wish to impress a romantic partner, our study has revealed the most affordable rinks.


Rank Location Ice skating price
1 Zagreb £1.73
2 Geneva £1.81
3 Warsaw £2.17
4 Gdańsk £2.34
5 Poznań £2.53
6 Berlin £2.87
7 Bratislava £3.49
8 Prague £3.53
9 Zakopane £3.90
10 Dresden £3.91


1. Zagreb, Croatia

Costing less than £2, Zagreb is the most affordable location to ice skate. The Ice Park at King Tomislav Square, features a beautiful skating rink set in front of Zagreb’s oldest and most famous art gallery, the Zagreb Art Pavilion.

2. Geneva, Switzerland

Located in the heart of the city, Geneva’s Parc des Bastions has an ice rink that is perfect for couples, children and families alike. What’s more is the rink is free with skate hire costing as little as £1.81.

3. Warsaw, Poland

The Polish capital ranks in third for the most affordable spot to ice skate. Among the colourful buildings of the Old Town Square, you can skate for £2.17 an hour.

Europe’s Most Expensive Christmas Markets

While our study shares the most affordable Christmas markets this year, we wished to also highlight those markets that cost a little more than the average.


City Start Date 3* Hotels 4* Hotels Food costs Ice skating Score/10
Paris 18th November 469 555 36 8.69 4.4
London 17th November 311 400 35 15.00 5.0
Dublin 8th December 227 226.5 43 18.00 5.5
Manchester 10th November 125 256.5 55 16.50 5.6
Bath 23rd November 112.5 425 43 14.50 5.8


1. Paris

High accommodation costs make the city of love the most expensive Christmas market to attend in 2023. With hotels costing on average between £469 and £555 a night, if you wish to visit the 15-20 Paris Christmas markets that appear across the city, it’s worth being aware of the extra cost.

2. London

Second is the UK capital London, with an average score 5/10, accommodation costs can take a large chunk from the budget. Varying from £311 to £400 a night, your daily budget can increase when also considering the average food costs. However, the Winter Wonderland features a huge selection of festive entertainment and activities, from ice skating and circus shows to live music, you won’t be short of activities to do during your visit.

3. Dublin

Dublin has ranked third for the most expensive Christmas market with an average score of 5.5/10. Hosting various markets across the city, you can enjoy the novelty of drinking Guinness while you shop for presents in the Irish capital, however high accommodation, food costs and ice skating could swallow a large amount of your budget.


We collected a comprehensive list of all 65 Christmas markets in Europe according to Christmas Markets in Europe and were able to source data for 56 of these, on a number of factors to find out the best Christmas market in Europe.

  • Number of Days On For – Sourced from Christmas Markets in Europe and European Best Destinations.
  • The average price of a 3 and 4-star hotel for a night in the city is sourced from which uses an average of prices of hotel rooms in December listed on the site.
  • The average food costs were sourced from Budget your Trip
  • Ice skating prices were found manually from Google.
  • Each market was given a weighted score out of 10 for each of the above factors, considering their ranking as most to least affordable, before an average of these four scores was taken for the overall Christmas Market score out of 10.

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