Holiday Fairs At Various Venues You Don’t Want To Miss
Come and explore our favourite Christmas Markets in Budapest from the most popular ones to smaller, more idyllic festive fairs.
The Hungarian capital was voted the most affordable Christmas Market destination in Europe more than a decade ago by the British Daily Mail!
This “award” may not be still valid in 2023 but you should still visit at least the two biggest Xmas fairs for their unique and charming atmosphere and quality, handcrafted products.
Vörösmarty Square – Deák Ferenc Street (Fashion Str.) – TIP: Guided Christmas Market Tour – Gozsdu Court – St. Stephen’s Basilica – Erzsébet Square – Winter Festival In City Hall Park (Városháza Park) – Corvin Hütte (Corvin Plaza) – Winter Wonderland (Rooftop Terrrace WestEnd Shopping Centre) – Whale (Bálna) – Várkert Bazaar – City Park – Allee Shopping Centre – Advent in Óbuda – Which One To Visit?
Apart from the best-known festive fair on Vörösmarty Square, the city has some other fabulous markets with
- Unique craft products,
- Tasty local food and drinks as well as
- Great programs
Admission is free to all events.
I love strolling in the Budapest with our 2 boys during the Advent period when the streets and squares take on festive decor and lighting and we try to drop by each major Xmas fair.
Here’s our list of must-visit Christmas markets in Budapest.
Christmas Market Tour With Basilica Visit, Mulled Wine & Chimney Cake
TIP: Visit two of the city’s largest holiday markets on a 2.5-hour guided tour that includes a visit to the St. Stephen’s Basilica and Holy Right Hand Chapel.
Price: from 65 EUR
You will also learn about local Christmas traditions and experience the holiday atmosphere along Andrássy Avenue and other at other popular Budapest attractions.
The tour ends at the Christmas Fair at Vörösmarty Square where you can warm up with a glass of spicy hot wine (included in the price).
You’ll also get a sweet treat: chimney cake (aka funnel cake), all included in the price.
Date & Opening Hours 2023
- 17. November – 01. January 2024.
- Monday – Thursday: 11.00 – 21.00
- Friday – saturday: 11.00 – 22.00
- Sunday: 11.00 – 21.00
- 24. December: 10.00 – 14.00
- 25 – 26. December: 10.00 – 18.00
- 31. December/NYE: 11.00 – 05.00
- 01. January 2024: 11.00 – 17.00
Location – Getting There:
- Vörösmarty tér, district V.,
- M1 underground (yellow line), M1, M2, M3 metro lines: Deák tér station or tram 2 Széchenyi tér stop: a couple of minutes walk from both stops
This is the most popular holiday fair in Budapest with a central location on a plaza in front of the Gerbeaud Coffee House.
Around 100 stalls are set up around the slender Christmas tree that is decorated with different colours of ornaments each year.
Concerts, craft and play house for children, the visit of Santa Claus on 6. December, delicious food:
- Stuffed cabbage,
- Grilled meats and sausages,
- Flat bread (lepény) baked in clay oven,
- Sekler cake, beigli, flódni and other sweets,
- Fragrant winter beverages (mulled wine, krampampuli, grog, tea) are the best features of this holiday bazaar.
A varied program, folk, jazz, world music, soul, blues, crossover concerts offer entertainment on the centre stage between 17.00-20.00 on weekdays and between 16.00 – 20.00 on weekends.
TIP: Check out our list of hotels located within walking distance to Vörösmarty Square.Find out more details about Budapest’s most popular Christmas Market, at Vörösmarty Square.
See our photos taken on the Xmas Market.
Christmas Eve & Day Cruise With Festive Dinner
Christmas Cruise with Buffet Dinner + Unlimited: wine/beer/soft drinks
Cruise Starts: 19.00
Duration: 180 min. – Price: From €125
Christmas Market In Fashion Street/Deák Ferenc Street
- Deák Ferenc utca/Fashion Street (See On Map)
You can do two markets in one visit because Fashion Street (Deák Ferenc utca) that cuts through Vörösmarty Square also hosts one: with a Christmas tree installation in front of the Hotel Kempinski Corvinus.
All sorts of
- Food and drink offers,
- Sekler Cake (kürtöskalács) and other pastries,
- Oven-baked flat bread with delicious toppings and of course
- Pottery, ceramics,
- Embroidered folk textiles to tempt you to open your wallet.
And right after a walk along Fashion Street you can head to the Basilica on St. Stephen Square…
Best Programs To Experience Budapest In The Advent Period
Here some highly recommended tours to quickly absorb Budapest’s many attractions, history and culture. A river cruise with dinner is an excellent way to see the city all lit up for the night.
Evening Cruise with Folk Show and Hungarian Dinner
Departure: 19:00 / Duration: 120 min. – From €55
Cruise with 3 Course Dinner & Live Piano or Folk & Operetta BEST VALUE!
Departure: 19:30 / Duration: 180 min. – From €65
TIP: See also our post on the best-value dinner cruises in Budapest, tired and tested by locals!
Erzsébet Square – Christmas Market
- Erzsébet tér, Budapest (View On Map)
You will find another no too big holiday market along the Western side of the downtown square, Erzsébet tér.
- Chimney cake (kürtős kalács),
- Beigli and other local cakes, pastries, Christmas specialties,
- Street food by Montenegro Gourmand (pljeskavica, cevap),
- Mulled wine, tea and coffee our the main offer here.
Besides food, you can buy fur hats, scarfs, postcards and other nick nacks here.
TIP: A bit touristy, but it’s right in the centre. Walking along Fashion Street/Deák Street from the direction of Vörösmarty Square you’ll end up at Erzsébet tér.
So you can visit 3 holiday fairs of Budapest at one go!
- 17. November 2023 – 01. January 2024.
- Mon – Thurs: 11:00 – 21:00,
- Fri – Sat: 11:00 – 23:00,
- Sun: 11.00 -21.00
- December 24.: 11:00 – 15:00,
- Dec 25. and Dec 26.: 10.00 – 20.00
- December 31.: craft vendors:11:00 – 22:00, food & drinks: 11.00 – 03.00 am
- 01. January, 2024: 11.00 – 18.00
The spacious Szt. István Square in front of the Basilica gives home to an Advent Festival and Christmas Market from 18. November till the beginning of the New Year, 01. January 2024.
No other venue can be more fitting to a festive Christmas fair than the St. Stephen’s Basilica in downtown Budapest.
The four and half week long event offers plenty of entertainment besides special artisan gifts for your loved ones.
Our sons especially love the 200 sqrm ice skating rink that is free for children. Another plus is that you can rent skates.
- Handmade chocolate bonbons,
- Leather gloves,
- Design jewelry,
- Strawberry wine,
- Pálinka – the local’s favourite distilate
- Csabai salami and
- more to see, buy and taste on the market.
The fair will be bigger than previous years: Budapest’s best street food vendors will offer delicacies in Zrínyi utca from Sas utca to Széchenyi tér.
You can have:
- Lángos – locals’ staple snack – deep fried pastry with cheese and sour cream or other toppings
- Gourmet burgers by Zing Burger,
- Kürtöskalács (funnel/chimney cake)
- BBQ specialties
- Fried cheese burgers by Paneer,
- Burgers, grilled sausages by KIOSK (a popular downtown restuarant on Március 15. tér)
See also our photos taken on the Advent Fair at Budapest Basilica .
Programs Of The Christmas Market At The Basilica
You can visit the following programs and events:
- Opening Ceremony of the Market – 02. December at 16.00: the first light on the Advent Wreath next to the Christmas tree will be lighted and the occasion is also the official opening of the holiday fair.
- Light Painting this year in 3D- spectacular light show and animation with festive themes every day from 16.30 till 22.00. Put on 3D glasses available at the market (or you can use your own) and enjoy the visual show!
- Folk Dance – Performance by the Göncöl Folk Ensemble – Hungarian Dances Flash Mob performance in front of the Basilica
- Awaiting Santa Claus – 06 December (at 12.00 – 16.00 and 17.00 – 18.00): well-known local people will dress up and play Santa with story telling and singing.
Visit also the official site of the event for more details.
Winter Festival In Városháza/City Hall Park, Nov 24 – jan 07
- November 24 2023 – January 07, 2024
Location, Getting There:
- Városháza Park & Deák Ferenc tér, city centre (View On Map)
- M1, M2, M3 underground lines – Deák Ferenc metro station and tram termini, a 2-min walk from there, trams 47, 49
Free to programs except for the ice rink which costs 1 950 HUF.
The Winter & Christmas Festival in Budapest’s City Hall park is another centrally located holiday extravaganza that kicks of at the end of November.
Craft fair, food and drinks and an ice rink plus concerts on the weekends make this fair another must-visit when you come to Budapest.
Moreover, this is the longest of all the Xmas thmed fairs, welcoming visitors till January 07, 2024.
Corvin Hütte Christmas Fair, Nov 23 – Dec 24, 2023
- November 23 – December 24, 2023
Location, Getting There:
- Corvin sétány Bp 1082, bheind Corvin Plaza Shopping Mall
- Trams 4 and 6, M3 metro (blue line), Corvin-negyed stop
Corvin Promenade, behind the Corvin Plaza is acommunity hub full of cafes, pubs and restaurants. The scent of cinnamon punch, mulled wine, and hot chocolate will surely lure to the venue of the Christma sMarket held here in December.
Whether you want to unwind after work with
- A delicious dinner,
- Taste exquisite hot chocolate with your child, or
- Sip mulled wine snuggled up with your partner, you’ll surely find what you’re looking for here.
Moreover, if you drop by on the weekend you can browse among the stalls of a craft fair tailored to a different theme on each occasion.
Winter Wonderland, Rooftop Terrace, WestEnd Mall, Till December 31
The popular shopping centre, WestEnd, next to Nyugati Square hosts a festive holiday fair on its rooftop terrace all through December.
Street food, hot wine, tea, coffee and other drinks concerts, ice skating a a vintage carousel guarantee a wonderful time for the whole family.
Location, Getting There:
- WestEnd Shopping Mall: Váci út1-3, Budapest 1062 (View On Map)
- Getting There: M3 metro (blue): Nyugati tér sttaion, trams 4 and 6 Nyugati tér stop
Ice Skating Fee:
- Free for children under 10 and for those with a valid address card from the VI. or XIII. district.
- For those over 10 years old, the entry is 1 500 HUF, and in return, you’ll receive a 1,500 HUF Westend gift card. The full amount can be redeemed on the card until the date indicated on the card in stores accepting the Westend gift voucher, the list of which can be found here.
- Rental fee for ice skates on-site: 1 200 HUF
- Mon – Fri: 12.00 – 22.00
- Sat – Sun: 10.00 22.00
- CLOSED: December 24, 25 and 26
- December 31: 10.00 – 17.00
Date Of The Christmas Fair:
- December 05, 12, 2023
Address – Getting There:
- Fővám tér 11-12, Budapest 1093, (near the Great Market Hall), See on Google Maps
- M4 metro (green line), Fővám tér station, Tram 2, 2B Fővám tér stop
The steel and glass entertainment and shopping centre called Bálna/Whale on the Pest side of the river is is an ideal place for a Christmas-themed event.
The popular WAMP design and craft fair awaits visitors on two occasions in December 2023.
The terrace of the Whale building offers amazing views of the Danube and the Buda side that you can enjoy while sipping ahot drink or refreshing cocktail..
A 450 sqm Ice Rink awaits with amazing panorama which is free for everyone. Skate rental is available for 1 000 HUF/3 hours.
Opening Hours Of The Ice Rink
- Mon – Thurs: 10.00 – 14.00, 15.00 – 22.00,
- Fri-Sat: 10.00 – 14.00, 15.00 – 24.00
- Sun: 10.00 – 14.00, 15.00 – 22.00
Christmas-New Year Opening Hours
- 24. December: 10.00 – 14.00
- 25 -26. December: Closed
- 31. December: 10.00 – 14.00, 15.00 – 18.00
- 01. January: Closed
Free ice rink with Disco from 18.00 every day.
St. Nicholas Day (Mikulás in Hungarian) on 6th December is one of the most awaited days of the year by children in Hungary because Mikulás (the local equivalent of Santa Claus) brings them small gifts, mostly sweets and fruits in a red packet.
If you have children you can await Santa at the Whale on on 03. and 04, December with programs starting from 15.00.
TIP: Find out about some other great Christmas and New Year’s Eve/Day Programs in Budapest: festive concerts with dance performances, boat party and many more.
- Sundays in December 2023
Location – Address:
- Ybl Miklós tér 2-6., district I., between Elizabeth Bridge and the Chain Bridge (View On Map)
The Castle Garden Bazaar at the Buda side of the Danube will host Advent programs on Sundays in December with
- Folk craft fair,
- Food trucks,
- A small ice rink
- Free children programs each Sunday.
This is another scenic Christmas fair in the city, at the foot of the Castle Hill overlooking the Danube and the Pest side.
After looking around the craft market you sure will be tempted to try the tasty street food offered by the trucks: from local specialties (Kobe Sausages) to international favourites (burgers, piadina, waffels, pancakes) and hot drinks, the choice is ample.
- Városliget/City Park (next to Heroes’ Sqr.)
- Every day: 09 – 21.00 , including 24-25-26 December and 01. January
Budapest’s popular leisure park, the Városliget will be decked out for the seasonal holidays and welcomes everyone with
- craft market,
- food and drinks,
- exciting family programs,
- and special surprises for the little ones (free to attend).
You can says farewell to 2023 and toast to 2024 on a fantastic rock’n’roll street party on New Year’s Eve.
- December 06 – 24. , 2023
Location – Getting There:
- Gozsdu Udvar, Király utca 13.-Dob utca 16., district VII.
- M1, M2, M3 metros Deák tér station, a short walk from there
- Weekdays: 12.00 – 19.00,
- Sat – Sun: 10.00 – 19.00
- 24. December/Tuesday: 10.00 – 17.00
The party hot spot of the city hosts the weekly Designer & Antique Market: a place to get some nice, quality antique, vintage, retro, and design products.
In December the place turns into a festive market where you sure can pick up some unique gifts for your loved ones.
See more on their website.
- December 01 – 24, 2023.
- Every day: 10.00 – 20.00
The small pedestrian street next to the Allee Shopping Mall also hosts a Christmas fair each year.
You will find nothing surprising at the vendors: clothes, accessories, gifts and knick-knacks, and the usual fair-staples: honey, jams, pálinka, mulled wine, flat bread/bread pizza.
- December 01 – 23, 2023
Christmas Market Gastro Promenade Opening Hours:
- Mon – Thurs: 14.00 – 21.00, Fri – Sun: 10.00 – 22.00
Although Óbuda (Old Buda), district III. of Budapest, is a bit out of the city centre, it is worth going to to the festive Advent fair that is starting on 01. December.
The event is held on the district’s charming Main Square with a tall Christmas tree standing in the centre but programs are also held on Szentlélek tér, a square at 2-minute walk from Main Sqr.
Genuine handmade artifacts, fragrant Christmas drinks (mulled wine, tea, krampampuli), street food (flat bread baked in clay oven), traditional Hungarian dishes (fishermen’s soup, catfish paprikash, stuffed cabbage, veal paprikash, roasted goose, grilled meats, sausages and a wide choice of programs (concerts, folk music and dance, children activities) welcome everyone.
- A nativity scene,
- animal petting area,
- an antique merry-go-round,
- lots of activities for children (ice skating, Santa Adventure Park on 05. December/Saturday)
- concerts every weekend are the other allures of the event.
The ice rink (free entry) is open from the last weekend of November till end of February, every day between 08.00 – 20.00.
Which Christmas Market Should You Visit While In Budapest?
Naturally you won’t have time to visit each holiday fair especially if you stay in Budapest only for 1-2 days and you would get sick of Xmas markets and the whole holiday anyway if you tried to do so.
To help you plan your visit we recommend three Xmas fairs we love the best:
1. The Christmas Market at Vörösmarty Square is a must (though it tends to be crowded especially in the afternoons and evenings) – it’s easily accessible (the Deák tér metro hub is close by, but the M1 Underground/yellow line has a stop at the square) and is the official Xmas market of Budapest and everybody raves about it.
2. The Advent Fair at St. Stephen’s Basilica – we felt the festive atmosphere the best at this event, might be due to the presence of the Basilica commanding the square.
3. Christmas Fair in Óbuda – you can kill two birds with one stone: explore this slightly hidden neighbourhood of Budapest and enjoy a great programs and food.
4. The Open-Air Winter Festival at the Palace of Arts is highly recommended too if you aren’t after buying something just have a good time. Ideal for families with kids!
TIP: Take a ride on the special Christmas Trams – 6 lines in 2023 – that are decorated in festive lighting and run between the beginning of December usually till 07. January 2024. Tram 2 along the riverbank in Pest is the most accessible for tourists in the city centre.
FAQ – Christmas Markets In Budapest
Q: Which Christmas Market is best for families with kids?
A: Each festive market offers some activites for children. The one in Vörösmarty Square has a little railway that takes the kids around. Other fairs have ice rink: Basilica Advent fair, Winter Wonderland on the rooftop of WestEnd, Christmas Fetsival in City Hall Park.
I like the Advent festival in Óbuda the best – it’s less touristy and it too has an ice rink.
Q: What are the food and drink prices at the Christmas Markets in Budapest?
A: Prices for food and drinks have gone up considerably at the two largest holiday fairs: in Vörösmarty tér (payment is with bank card only) and by the Basilica (here you can pay both with card and cash).
Examples: goulash in plastic bowl: 4 500 HUF, stuffed cabbage: 7 000 HUF, lángos with osur cream and cheese: 3 900 HUF, chimney cake: 2 500 – 3 500 HUF, meat skewer: 5 000 HUF, hot wine: 1 350 HUf, tea: 1 000 HUF, hot chocolate: 2 200 HUF, strudel: 1 800 HUF
Q: What can I pay with at the markets (card or cash)?
A: At the Christmas fair in Vörösmarty Square you can pay only with bank/credit card. Vendors at St. Stephen’s Basilica accept both card and cash. The rest of the holiday markets also accept both cash and card.