One of our favourite things to do throughout the month of December is visit some of the wonderful Christmas markets that the island of Ireland has to offer.
The novelty of Christmas markets has become increasingly popular over the past number of years, and so it can sometimes feel difficult to pick out which markets you would most like to visit, or which ones are closest to you.
However, not to worry, as we’re here to help! We have picked out our top 5 favourite Christmas markets that are running this year. Our list contains a wide scope from around Ireland, so hopefully, there is a market on this list near you.
Whether you want to visit with your best friends, your family, your partner, or even just on your own for a self-care date, these markets guarantee to deliver a wonderfully festive day out. Check out our picks below:
Waterford Winterval Christmas Markets (Running until December 23)
For its eleventh year, Waterford is offering up its Winterval carnival! Located in the heart of Waterford City centre, those in attendance are treated to a whole host of incredible – and fun – activities to take part in. As well as the eclectic Christmas markets, the Winterval also offers the city’s very own Waterford Eye (guaranteeing breathtaking views from 32 metres high), an ice skating rink, and a vast funfair, complete with the Winterval Train for little ones to enjoy.
Glow Cork Christmas Markets (Running until January 7)
One of the longest running Christmas markets in Ireland, Glow Cork will be delighting visitors right up until January! The festival is hosted at Cork City’s Grand Parade and Bishop Lucey Park. As well as some marvellous Christmas decor, the city also offers an incredible Christmas market display and a Ferris wheel for those who wish to take to the skies.
Belfast Christmas Markets (Running until December 22)
Northern Ireland’s biggest Christmas market has returned for another year! Belfast’s City Hall grounds are playing host to a huge range of market stalls from all over Europe. Whether you’re after some delicious street food, sweet treats or crafty bits, Belfast has it all. The markets also include a helter skelter for the little ones to slide down, making it the perfect family day out.
Galway Christmas Markets (Running until December 22)
Galway holds the record for hosting the longest running Christmas markets in Ireland, with this year being its 14th year! This festive season in Eyre Square, market goers can expect to be greeted with a marvellous display of markets for everyone to enjoy. There is also a beer tent for those of us who wish to celebrate Christmas with a pint, a ferris wheel for anyone who loves birds-eye view, and lots more!
Yulefest Kilkenny Christmas Markets (Running until December 23)
Framed by the magnificent nearby Kilkenny Castle, these markets on The Parade are jam-packed with marvellous delights! Each market hut is filled with everything from tasty treats to that perfect, last-minute Christmas gift. There is also a great mix of live music to be heard on the Yulefest Bandstand for everyone to enjoy.