The best Advent Christmas markets to visit in Austria in 2023 are the Christkindlmärkte in Vienna (Wien), Mozart city Salzburg, Innsbruck in Tyrol, Graz in Steiermark, and Linz on the Danube. In 2023, most Christmas markets in Austria will be open and return to the normal schedules.
Austrian Christmas markets are a popular advent tradition throughout Austria. The largest Christmas markets in Austria are in Vienna (Wien), Salzburg, Innsbruck, Graz, and Linz while virtually every town and tourist ski area will have its own market on some weekends and days leading up to Christmas. In Austria, as in Bavaria, Christmas markets are usually referred to as a Christkindlmarkt rather than the standard High German Weihnachtsmarkt – both terms are readily understood everywhere in the German-speaking world.
In 2023, most large Christmas markets in Austrian cities are likely to operate from mid-November with most closing shortly before Christmas but in cities and a few ski resorts, some may continue until early January 2024. On December 24, markets will close early afternoon, if they open at all.
Vienna’s Christkindlmarkt – the Largest Christmas Market in Austria
The Christkindlmarkt in Vienna (Wien) is by far the largest in Austria. The main market is held in front of the neo-Gothic Rathaus (Town Hall) but several further Christmas markets are scattered throughout the picturesque, romantic capital of Austria.
Further noteworthy Christmas markets in Vienna are held at Schloss Schönbrunn Palace, the Baroque Belvedere Palace, and on Karlsplatz Square in front of the Karlskirche (Charles’ Church). An increasing number of Christmas markets remain open after Christmas Day as New Year’s markets with some operating the first week of January as well.
- See Also: Best Christmas Markets in Vienna, Austria for dates of the top Wiener Weihnachtsmärkte.
Salzburg – Christmas Markets in the Mozart City
Salzburg, the famous birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, is one of the most beautiful cities in Austria. Salzburg is worth visiting at any time of the year but is especially magical during the Advent period preceding Christmas.
During Advent, the old town of Salzburg is beautifully lit in the evenings and Christmas markets and stalls are set up throughout the old town. Snow is often an added bonus but the endless arches and covered walkways allow visitors to remain dry if preferred.
Some of the best Christmas markets in Salzburg, including the main market in front of the Dom (Cathedral), continue a few days after Christmas and some are even functioning on Christmas Day itself.
In 2023, the Christkindlmarkt am Dom- und Residenzplatz in Salzburg is open from 23 November 2022 to 1 January 2024. (From 27 December it is a Silvester market.) An added bonus in Salzburg is the ice skating rink on Mozartplatz from late November to end January.
Innsbruck – Christmas Markets in the Tyrolean Alps
Innsbruck has a small but beautiful old town center with the Alps constantly present as a backdrop to remind visitors that they are in the heart of Austrian Tyrol. Several Christkindlmärkte are spread throughout the old town, including in Maria-Theresien-Straße and in front of the famous Goldenes Dachl (Golden Roof).
The Christkindlmarkt in the old town of Innsbruck is usually active until a few days before Christmas while the one in Maria-Theresien-Straße continues until Three Kings Day (January 6) and is even open for a few hours on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve.
In 2023, the main markets in Innsbruck will be open from 15 November to 23 December while the market in Maria-Theresien-Street will continue until 6 January 2024.
Graz — Christmas Markets in Styria
Graz is generally far less touristy than the other main cities of Austria and the Christmas markets in the capital of Steiermark similarly have a welcoming, less commercial feel. Local arts and crafts, for which Styria is famous, are sold at many of the markets and dedicated stalls.
The main Christkindlmarkt is at Hauptplatz but seemingly every square in the city center has a Christmas market, which makes it easy to visit a market while doing shopping. The stalls on Färberplatz and Mehlplatz are particularly known for the selection of local crafts.
The Schlossbergbahn funicular from the old town is a good option to reach the interesting and romantic Christmas market in the castmates of the castle — open Friday to Sunday only.
The Christmas markets in Graz are mostly open from 10 or 11 am to 8 pm (10 pm for food stalls) from 18 November to 23 December 2023 but a Christmas Paradise is open until end January 2024.
Linz – Christmas Markets in Oberösterreich
Linz has much to offer visitors but being located on the Danube River in between Salzburg and Vienna is often overlooked by tourists visiting Austria. The two main Christmas markets in Linz are the Christkindlmarkt centered on the large oblong Linzer Hauptplatz (Main Square) and the Weihnachtsmarkt in the Volksgarten (People’s Park).
In 2023, both markets in Linz will be open from 18 November to noon on 24 December 2023.
Austrian Christmas markets usually run the full Advent period and sometimes even continue a few days after Christmas (and occasionally up to January 6). In stark contrast to German Christmas markets, Austrian Christmas markets often function on December 24 and even Christmas Day itself. However, expect markets to close early on Christmas Eve and to have shorter hours on Christmas Day too.