The popular Nuremberg Christmas market (Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt) is one of the best and most famous traditional Weihnachtsmärkte to visit in Germany — in 2023, the market is open daily from December 1 to 24, 2023.
The annual Christmas market (Weihnachtsmarkt) in Nuremberg, Bavaria is one of the most popular Advent markets in Germany. The Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt is not the oldest or the biggest Weihnachtsmarkt in Germany but with well over two million visitors it is one of the most popular and internationally most famous Christmas markets in Germany.
Traveling to Nuremberg is easy from all parts of Germany and Europe. Trains to Nürnberg are frequent and flights to Nuremberg Airport (NUE) are convenient with easy transfers via European capitals for intercontinental travelers. Flying via Munich Airport (MUC) is also a good option. Hotels in Nürnberg come at a premium during the Christmas market season – save by arriving on a Sunday, or on weekends book hotels aimed at business travelers located slightly further away from the old town center of Nuremberg. (Public transportation is easy and fast.)
In 2023, the market is open from December 1 to 24, 2023. For visitors planning ahead, the market is due to open on November 29 in 2024 and November 28 in 2025.
The Nuremberg Christmas Market (Nürnberger Weihnachtsmarkt)
The Nuremberg Christmas market is held each year during the Advent month preceding Christmas. The main market is on the huge Hauptmarkt (main market square) in the heart of the old town of Nuremberg.
The Christmas market in Nuremberg is not the oldest in Germany – that honor is claimed by Dresden with the first market held in 1434. The Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt is also not the largest in Germany – Frankfurt am Main generally claims that honor (although widely disputed by other cities). However, the Weihnachtsmarkt in Nuremberg is one of the most popular in Germany and may well be the most famous internationally too.
The oldest proof of a Christmas market in Nuremberg is for the date 1628 but Advent markets were probably already held in Nuremberg almost a century earlier. In 1737, 140 persons were permitted to offer wares at the Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt – a number surprisingly close to the around 180 stalls that sell wares at the current market.
Entertainment at the Nuremberg Christmas Market in Germany
Wares for sale at the Nuremberg Christmas market are generally of high quality and often closer to art than mere decorations. Wooden items are particularly praised and cheap imported plastics are not appreciated. Food and drink are the main reasons for many visitors to visit a Christmas market. The famous small Nürnberger sausages are very popular.
A huge cultural program entertains visitors to Nuremberg during the Advent period. Music is played in many churches and other cultural venues including open-air music performances near the market itself. Special workshops are arranged for children.
Top Museums and Sights to See in Nuremberg in Franken
Nürnberg is an interesting city to visit and offers visitors much more than just the Christmas market. Apart from being a beautiful city with the old town almost completely enclosed by its historic defensive town walls, Nuremberg has several excellent museums. The cultural tour de force is the Germanic National Museum (Germanisches Nationalmuseum) with the world’s largest cultural-historical collection of items related to the German-speaking world. The Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle) towering over much of the old town center is also worth a visit.
Other fine museums in Nuremberg include the German Railways Museum (DB Deutsche Bahn), Toy Museum (Spielzeugmuseum), the Albrecht Dürer Haus, and the Neue Museum (modern design). Also worth seeing are the three main Gothic churches (Frauen, St Sebald, St Lorenz) and the Handwerkershof near the station where medieval Nürnberg comes to live. It is also worth the short tram ride to see the Reichsparteitagsgelände where the Nazi Party staged the famous party rallies while the Nuremberg Trials Memorial and Court Room 600 is only a five-minute U-Bahn train ride from the main station. (Note that the main Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteigelände is closed until at least 2025 but the terrain and a small temporary exhibition are open.)
Nürnberg City Card: Save on Sightseeing in Nuremberg
Two discount deals are worth considering to save on sightseeing when visiting Nuremberg (Nürnberg):
A day ticket valid for admission to all Nuremberg city municipal museums is €10.50 and gives admission to the Albrecht-Dürer-Haus, Museum Tucherschloss und Hirsvogelsaal, Stadtmuseum Fembo-Haus, Spielzeugmuseum (Toys), Museum Industriekultur, Nuremberg Trial Memorial, and the Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteigelände. It is available from all participating museums.
The Nürnberg City Card is around €33 and covers all public transportation in Nuremberg and Fürth for 48 hours. It gives free admission to the Imperial Castle Nuremberg (Kaiserburg), Deutsches Museum Nuremberg, Germanisches Nationalmuseum, Albrecht Dürer House, Neues Museum, Toy Museum, Documentation Center Nazi Party Rally Grounds Interim Exhibit (main exhibition closed until 2025), Memorium Nuremberg Trials, DB Museum (German Railways Museum), Museum for Communication, Museum of Industrial Culture with the School Museum, City Museum at Fembo House Permanent Exhibit: A Crown – Power – History, Museum Tucher Mansion, Bavarian Bible Museum, Museum of Natural History, towerofthesenses, Kunsthalle Nuremberg, Kunstvilla Nuremberg, Kunsthaus Nuremberg, Museum Executioner’s House, Zoo Nuremberg, Children’s Museum, Red Cross Museum, Motor Museum Merk, Faber-Castell Stately Home with the Museum “Alte Mine”, Bratwurst Museum, Jewish Museum Franconia, Fürth, City Museum Fürth, and Ludwig Erhard Center Fürth. It also gives savings on guided tours and further events.
More on Traveling to Nürnberg:
- Buy a Nürnberg City Card to save on sightseeing and transportation.
- Top Sights to See in Nuremberg:
- Visit the Nuremberg Trials Memorial (Courtroom 600)
- Reichsparteitagsgelände (Nazi Party Rally Grounds)
- Visit the Germanisches Nationalmuseum — the largest cultural history museum in Germany.
- Visit the Kaiserburg — Imperial Castle in Nuremberg
- Visit the Albrecht-Dürer-Haus Museum where the artist lived and worked for two decades.
- Visit the DB German Railways Museum
- Visit the Nuremberg Christmas Market (Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt)
- Transportation to Nuremberg in Bavaria
- Traveling by Train to Nuremberg – German Railways Timetables to Nuremberg
- Book Flights on Lufthansa, KLM, Eurowings or Air France.
- Cheap Flights to Nuremberg Airport (NUE)
- Transportation to Nuremberg Airport (NUE)
- Transportation from Munich Airport (MUC) to Nuremberg
- Nuremberg hotels are generally less pricey than those in Frankfurt or Munich.
- Adidas Factory Outlet Stores — half an hour north of Nuremberg but a very popular stop en route to Bamberg.
- Suntransfers give online quotations without requiring flight and personal details.