If you’re going to be visiting Amsterdam during the festive season, then you’re probably wondering if they have any Christmas markets and where they are! While Amsterdam isn’t the most Christmassy destination ever there are some Christmas markets worth visiting. Most of Amsterdam’s Christmas markets only take place on one day or weekend in December so you will need to time your visit to see them, but there are a couple that stay open for a few weeks so that you can visit them whenever you happen to be in the city.
I’ve made it a mission over the last two years to visit all the Christmas markets Amsterdam has to offer so that I can finally share this guide! Read on to find out when and where you can find Amsterdam Christmas markets in 2023.
The Sustainable Christmas Market
In Amsterdam Noord, there’s a unique sustainable urban workplace and café in a former shipyard that also hosts a very cool sustainable Christmas market over two weekends in December.
De Ceuvel is a really funky ‘office park’ where creative workspaces, a cultural venue, a sustainable café, spaces to rent, and a floating bed & breakfast can be found. Coming here at any time would be a cool experience, but when the Sustainable Christmas market is on you can explore the space as well as do some Christmas shopping, have something to eat or drink, listen to live music and even enjoy a waterside sauna!
The market itself is quite tiny, but it has a really local vibe with lots of people arriving on bikes from nearby and, of course, everything on offer is sustainable – from fabric wrapping paper to locally sourced organic food. We were even lucky enough to visit on a rare sunny day in December, so it just felt lovely to see the small, local, sustainable artisans selling lovely items, with tasty treats to enjoy at the cafe, and a fun selection of boats on land that have been converted into creative spaces, many with cool street art murals on the exterior.
When: The Sustainable Christmas Market will be held on Saturday the 10th/Sunday the 11th and Saturday the 16th/Sunday the 17th of December for 2023, from 1pm until 8pm.
Where: It’s held at De Ceuvel in Amsterdam Noord, which can be reached by getting the metro to Noorderpark, then catching a bus to Amsterdam, Mosplein and a short walk from the bus station.
Ice*Village is the name of the little market and ice-skating rink that’s held on Museumplein out the front of the Rijksmuseum every year.
Said ice-skating rink is perhaps the most famous Christmas image of Amsterdam, and it’s definitely a cool sight to see lots of people skating in front of the gorgeous Rijksmuseum building. There’s a café on one side where you can rent skates (and chairs) if you want to skate, plus there’s a little bridge over the top so you can get those iconic photos!
On the other side of the ice rink is the official Ice*Village Christmas market, which is small but cosy. You can find several cute stalls selling some lovely Amsterdam-themed gifts, along with food and drink stalls and a little chalet to sit inside. I was particularly intrigued on my last visit to see a Bailey’s stall for boozy hot chocolate, as well as one selling Glühwein and another with Glüh Rum!
Note: There is no ice-skating rink for 2023 but hopefully it will return next year!
When: The Ice*Village will be open from Wednesday the 13th of December until Tuesday the 26th of December for 2023, from midday until 9pm.
Where: It’s located on Museumplein in front of the Rijksmuseum. You can catch trams to Museumplein from both Amsterdam Centraal and Amsterdam-Zuid.
Amsterdam Winter Paradise
Amsterdam Winter Paradise is a huge indoor and outdoor event which isn’t really a Christmas market, although there are some places to buy gifts. Mostly this is a Christmas event, with funfair-type rides, food and drink stalls, ice-skating, ice-curling, live music, a silent disco, Christmas cinema and lots of other fun things to see and do!
This is very popular with families as there are many things that children will enjoy, including an indoor ice slide, indoor toboggans and a fake snow area to play in. But it’s also enjoyable for adults, with some very fancy food and drink stalls along with a kind of indoor beer garden (with additional wooden chalets) to watch live entertainment. You can read a whole post about experiencing Amsterdam Winter Paradise here!
When: Amsterdam Winter Paradise takes place from the 14th of December until the 30th of December for 2023, from 9am (from midday on the first day) until 11pm or midnight.
Where: It’s held at the RAI convention centre, which you can reach easily by catching the metro or a tram to Europaplein.
Funky Xmas Market
The Funky Xmas Market is the December edition of the monthly Funky Market, which is held in the hip Westergasfabriek area every first Sunday of the month. They add in an extra date for December and the market receives a bit of a festive makeover, with decorations, food and stalls catering more to Christmas shopping/entertainment.
As the name suggests, there are some very unique and funky things to buy here, as well as live performances of music and theatre (I even saw some Circus-type performers when I went) plus some quirky food trucks. While the market is held outside, there’s also plenty to see and do within the Westergasfabriek proper if you want to warm up a little!
When: The Funky Xmas Market will take place on Sunday the 17th of December for 2023, from midday until 6pm.
Where: It’s held in the grounds of the Westergasfabriek, which is a former gasworks surrounded by a park in the (not surprisingly) western part of Amsterdam. You can get there by catching bus 21 from Amsterdam Centraal to the Amsterdam, Van Hallstraat stop.
Like the Funky Xmas Market, Pure Wintermarkt is the special festive edition of the monthly Pure Markt, which largely focuses on artisanal food as well as gift items. The monthly market ‘travels’ and is held at different locations in Amsterdam during the year, but takes place in Park Frankendael in Watergrafsmeer in December for the Winter version.
This market is ideal if you’re looking for edible gifts, or just want a yummy lunch, as 70% of the stalls focus on food! That includes a mix of things being cooked to eat at the market, like crepes, gyros, Japanese street food, burgers and grilled chicken – as well as things you might like to take home or gift someone at Christmas. There are also stalls selling nice Christmas gifts, like the recycled candles in the photo below and it’s also a great destination for spotting lots of cute dogs!
When: The Pure Wintermarkt will take place on Sunday the 17th of December for 2023, from 11am until 5pm.
Where: It takes place at Park Frankendael in Watergrafsmeer. The closest train and metro station is Amsterdam Amstel and there is also a tram stop near the entrance to the park for tram 19.
Bonus: Haarlem Christmas Market
Look, the Christmas markets in Amsterdam may leave you wanting more, especially if you’ve ever experienced the magic of a German Christmas market. If you want to experience something a bit more traditional but still Dutch, you could catch the 15-20 minute train from Amsterdam to Haarlem for the Haarlem Christmas market instead.
The old city centre of Haarlem is very atmospheric with the gorgeous St. Bavokerk, a giant Christmas tree and plenty of yummy food stalls. There are market stalls selling delightful gifts winding all over the city, along with different stages for Christmas music and, of course, lots of shops as well. It’s only held over one weekend but you will have three whole days to check it out if you’re looking for something a little bit more “Christmassy” than what Amsterdam currently offers.
When: Haarlem Christmas Market will take place from the 8th of December until the 10th of December for 2023, from 10:30am until 8pm on Friday and Saturday, and until 7pm on Sunday.
Where: The market is spread out throughout the city centre of Haarlem. Catch a train from Amsterdam Centraal to Haarlem station and then walk down Kruisweg until you can see the Bavokerk!
Have you visited any Christmas markets in Amsterdam? Tell me which was your favourite (or let me know if I’ve missed any!) in the comments or pin one of these if you’re planning to visit them in the future!