Top 7 Christmas markets in Italy

Christmas markets in Italy light up the festive season. Each has its own character and style, and you can expect a hint of Germany in northern ones. Here's our pick of best Italian markets for Christmas 2021.
Bolzano Christmas market, Italy. Photo: dolomite-summits/Shutterstock
Bolzano Christmas market, Italy. Photo: dolomite-summits/Shutterstock

Christmas markets in Italy light up the festive season. Each has its own character and style and you can expect a hint of Germany in northern ones. Here's our pick of best Italian markets for Christmas 2021. 

1. Trento: top of the Alpine Christmas markets in Italy

Trento Christmas Market is the most festive in Trentino. It stretches from Piazza Fiera to Piazza Cesare Battisti and has a distinctly Alpine feel. Stalls look like mini-chalets and strudel's sold everywhere. Look for local crafts and regional specialties like canderli bread dumplings and while you're here, don't forget to try the Trentino wines. 

Open: 20 Nov 2021 – 6 Jan 2022 (closed 25 Dec)

Prefer to leave planning and booking to experts? Have a look at some Italy itineraries. All Tailor Made Trips can be modified together with your local expert, then booked for a stress-free holiday. Click 'Modify this itinerary' to contact a local Italy expert.

Angels at Trento, one of the most festive Christmas markets in Italy Photo: lorenza62/Shutterstock

2. Bolzano: Italy's biggest Christmas market

Bolzano Christmas market is an Alto Adige fairy tale on Piazza Walther in the medieval heart of the city. The arcaded streets are filled with festive scents and sounds and a miniature train and carousel thrill younger kids. Feasting on strudel and apple fritters is traditional here, as is making time to explore Bolzano and gaze up at the Rosengarten Dolomites.   

Open: 26 Nov 2021 – 6 Jan 2022 (closed 25 Dec)

If you're temped by the biggest Christmas market in Italy, stay at Parkhotel Laurin in Bolzano Old Town. 

Carousel at Bolzano Christmas Market, Italy. Photo: Stefano_Valeri/Shutterstock

3. Verona: home of Pandoro Christmas cake

Verona Christmas Market is in Piazza dei Signori. It's another market with traditional wooden stalls and if you want decorations or nativities, this is the place. Heat up with mulled wine and indulge in sweet stuff, Verona is the home of legendary Pandoro Christmas cake, but also does excellent stollen and lebkuchen cakes. 

Open: 15 Nov 2021 - 26 Dec 2021

If you want to explore Verona beyond the market, book Hotel Milano in the Old Town. 

Christmas market stall offering decorations in Verona, Italy. Photo: r.nagy/Shutterstock

4. Aosta: Italy's 'green' festive market

Visit Aosta for 'Marché Vert de Noël', the famous Alpine market in the city's Ancient Roman arena which is always filled with fir trees for Christmas. The market's wooden huts sell local crafts and it's a good place for ceramics and handmade candles, sweaters and pretty decorations. If you want try more Aosta produce, take a guided food tour with a local. 

Open: 20 Nov 2021 – 6 Jan 2022

Cosy Aosta Centre Apartments are perfectly placed for the Christmas market and exploring the city centre. 

5. Florence: the festive home of Weihnachtsmarkt

Weihnachtsmarkt is on Piazza Santa Croce and it's the largest Christmas market in Florence and unashamedly inspired by Heidelberg festive markets. Known for selling delightful decorations, it also specialises in seasonal Italian and German food. While you're here, take a tour of El Duomo and don't miss the Piazza del Duomo Nativity. 

Open:  20 Nov 2021 – 19 Dec 2021

For a prime spot in the heart of festive Florence at Christmas, stay at Hotel Maxim Axial close to El Duomo. 

Visit Florence for one of the most festive Christmas markets in Italy. Photo: GypsyGraphy/Shutterstock

6. Bologna: one of Italy's oldest Christmas markets

Bologna market began in 1796, so it's one of  Italy's oldest. Spread out around the city centre, you'll find Fiera di Natale at San Pietro Cathedral and Antica Fiera di Santa Lucia is on Santa Maria dei Servi. Gastronomy is key to Bologna markets so look out for delights like torrone (nougat) and marzipan fruit. 

For more of a taste of Bologna, take a guided food tour of the city. And don't leave without visiting the Nativity. It contains two figures unique to Bologna: ‘The Wonder’ is a woman awed by the sight of the infant Christ and the ‘Sleeper’ is a man dozing through the entire event. 

Open: 12 Nov 2021 – 26 Dec 2021

Bologna is a lovely city, make the most of it with a stay at I Portici Hotel in the historic centre. 

Christmas tree at night in the historic centre of Bologna. Photo: zolli/Shutterstock

7. Naples: a festive city year-round

Naples might be the only southern city in our guide, yet it deserves a mention not for festive markets, but for nativities. 

The city celebrates Christmas year-round through the crafting of unique nativity figurines at workshops on Via San Gregorio Armeno. Here, traditional nativity characters and caricatures are meticulously created by skilled craftspeople. Naturally, prices are high, but browsing costs nothing. 

Interested in more of Naples' curious traditions? Palazzo Marigliano in the historic centre is a great base for exploring. 

Ready to take a trip to Italy?

Our local experts can plan incredible trips to Italy for you. To get started, simply get in touch letting us know your ideas for the trip and when you want to travel. We will then create a personalised itinerary which you can amend to your own specifications. Browse existing itineraries for inspiration. All our itineraries can be fully tailored to suit your needs.