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Swiss Christmas Markets

Swiss Christmas Markets St. Nicholas poses with his donkey and sidekick. (In Switzerland, the saint--not to be confused with Santa Claus--makes his rounds on Dec. 6.)

In Switzerland, Christmas markets are as much a part of the holiday tradition as St. Nicholas pastries, holiday chocolates, butter cookies, and the Zürich "fairy tale tram" that hauls children up and down the Bahnhofstrasse with St. Nick on board.

Markets vary in scope from the month-long indoor Christkindli Markt in Zürich's main railroad station to weekend events in smaller towns. Yet all share the same basic themes: Christmas ornaments, gifts, tasty baked goods, hot refreshments like Bratwurst and spiced Glühwein, and plenty of traditional Swiss atmosphere.

Some of Switzerland's best-known Christmas markets are in Basel, Bern, Geneva, Montreux, and Zürich. Most run from late November until Christmas Eve, although a few (such as Montreux and Yverdon-des-Bains) don't begin until early or mid-December.

A number of Swiss Christmas markets have Web pages, and you'll find links to these (along with more information on the markets themselves) on pages 2 and 3. For links to other articles on Christmas markets here at Switzerland & Austria for Visitors and elsewhere, see page 4.

Next Page > Christmas-market links

Swiss Christmas Markets
Introduction Geneva, Zürich
Basel, Bern Christmas in Austria

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