This guide from Expedia looks ahead to the Christmas holidays and invites you to visit the most beautiful Christmas markets in France! The phrase "French Christmas markets" is usually synonymous with the north eastern region. However, other regions of France also have some nice surprises in store. Here's our guide to the most beautiful Christmas markets in France.

1- Strasbourg: Europe's largest Christmas market

March%C3%A9_de_Noel_Strasbourg_CC0.jpg?1543331870Photo credit: Claude Truong Ngoc under license CC BY-SA 4.0

Take the opportunity to stay in Strasbourg and discover the largest Christmas market in Europe, established in 1570. Strasbourg continues to amaze young and old alike in the Alsatian tradition, with lights and entertainment spread throughout the city. An unmissable Christmas market!

2- Colmar: a fairy tale Christmas market

March%C3%A9_de_No%C3%ABl_Colmar_questa_ta_CC_BY_2.0.jpg?1543331947Photo credit: questa_ta under license CC BY 2.0

Continue your tour of the north eastern Christmas markets in Colmar, less than an hour by car from Strasbourg. The city's medieval architecture gives the Christmas market a very special atmosphere. It's timeless, as if set in a fairy tale. From Christmas cellars to ice rinks, stroll along the canal banks to the sound of children singing Christmas carols from boats. Christmas magic guaranteed!

3- Metz: Christmas markets by day and by night


Metz is one of the 10 best Christmas markets in Europe as reported in the European Best Destinations ranking, along with Strasbourg and Colmar. Christmas markets take place day and night, so book a hotel in Metz. Enjoy the flavours of Christmas in the unmissable Gourmet Village!

4- Reims: Christmas market by the cathedral

March%C3%A9_de_Noel_g%C3%A9n%C3%A9rique_CC0.jpg?1543333200Illustrative image

Stay in a hotel in Reims to rediscover the city surrounded by Christmas lights! The city's Christmas market takes place in the square in front of the exceptional Notre-Dame de Reims Cathedral and in the lanes nearby. Don't forget to visit the Children's Kingdom and the Craft Market in the courtyard of the Palais de Tau, whose activities are very popular with visitors.

5- Lyon: Christmas markets for creative types

March%C3%A9_de_Noel_de_Lyon.jpg?1543333361Photo credit: Florian Pépellin under license CC BY SA 4.0

The original Christmas market in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region offers a good excuse to plan a getaway to Lyon! In addition to the classic chalets and gourmet Christmas delights, the city also features crafts and the artisan Christmas market, for original gift ideas. Not forgetting, of course, that Father Christmas comes to listen in person to the wish lists of good children in the famous Place Carnot.

6- Amiens: two kilometres of Christmas enchantment


Every year, the capital of Picardy welcomes one of the most beautiful Christmas markets in France, spread over a 2 km pedestrian zone. The decorations around the largest cathedral in France rival those of Reims in beauty! All the traditional elements of Christmas markets can be found in a magical Christmas in the North. Remember to book a hotel in the centre of Amiens to be near the Christmas activities!

7- Avignon: A Provençal Christmas market

March%C3%A9_de_Noel_Avignon.jpg?1543333836Photo credit: Jean-louis Zimmermann under license CC BY 2.0

Christmas does not necessarily mean snow! Book a flight to Avignon for an unique Christmas market, where the traditional delicacies of the winter festival are transformed into local specialities. The Provençal nativity display with 500 figurines, known as santons, is unmissable!

8- Nantes: a Christmas market in the West

March%C3%A9_de_Noel_de_Nantes.jpg?1543333950Photo credit: Géraldine Pasquier under license CC BY SA 4.0

Brittany also has a Christmas market! Less well known than its eastern neighbours, the Nantes Christmas market combines all the essentials to plunge headlong into the magic of Christmas time. Add a little winter enchantment to your stay in Nantes with Father Christmas' chalet, roasted chestnuts, mulled wine and gift ideas.