There are a lot of traditions associated with the festive period, from hanging a stocking by the fire and leaving out a mince pie, carrot and glass of sherry on Christmas Eve to lighting candles for each Sunday in advent and getting the whole family together around the table for Christmas dinner.
While these traditions essentially define the festive period, others such as Christmas markets are the kind that get us truly in the mood for the season, letting us get outside into the crisp, winter air to breathe in the smell of roasting chestnuts and mulled wine while walking around the various stalls filled with handmade items and local produce. The only difficult part is reaching a decision which market to visit with several cities, like London in particular, hosting different events on several nights throughout November and December as you can see from this guide from wow247.co.uk.
Other cities around the UK have plenty of their own markets, many of which span for several weeks giving people as much time as possible to get around their local events and then to potentially travel over to see how others differ. Some of the largest in the UK that are definitely worth visiting include:
Celebrating its 15th year, the Manchester Christmas markets take over nine different locations right around the city centre including Albert Square with the huge food and drink court located outside the town hall, King Street, Exchange Square, and – new for 2013 – Corporation Street, giving visitors the chance to take in as much of the Mancunian Christmas spirit as possible. The markets are open from 10am every day from 15th November right through until the 22nd December.
If it’s a traditional festival you’re looking for, then you need to visit one of the most traditional cities in the UK. York has two separate festivals – the St Nicholas Festive Fayre (28th November until 1st December) and the York Festive Fayre (4th until 22nd December), with all of the traditions and magic expected from such a historic location.
Set around the grounds of the Cathedral and castle, the Lincoln Christmas market (pictured) runs between the 5th and 8th December with visitors able to visit more than 250 stalls in the perfect backdrop for any Christmas celebrations thanks to the medieval cobbled squares.
This article was written by Amanda Walters, an experienced freelance writer and regular contributor to Huffington Post. Follow her here: @Amanda_W84