Celebrate the Holidays at Chicago's Annual Christkindlmarket
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Celebrate the Holidays at Chicago’s Annual Christkindlmarket


Celebrate the Holidays at Chicago’s Annual Christkindlmarket

Running from November 16 through December 24 is the annual Christkindlmarket, Chicago’s largest outdoor holiday festival and a German American-inspired tradition that features various specialty gift, food, and beverage vendors.

Operating during the holidays in Daley Plaza since 1997, this event has become one of the most popular of the year, attracting both locals and tourists. It’s the perfect setting to bring family and friends, grab a warm beverage, and take in the holiday spirit and cheer.


Photo Credit: Christkindlmarket Facebook

The Merch:

  • Clothing
  • Jewelry
  • Hand-blown ornaments
  • Beer Steins
  • Wooden handicrafts (such as toys, cuckoo clocks & nutcrackers)

The Flavors: 

  • Gluhwein (hot spiced wine mentioned above)
  • Schnitzel
  • Pretzels
  • Baked cheeses
  • Baked apples
  • Imported chocolate & candy
  • Sweet cakes & potato pancakes
  • Roasted nuts

The Heart-Shaped Mugs:

It may seem trivial to some, but these specialty mugs are kind of a big deal…

Inspired by the open-air Christmas markets of Germany, the Christkindlmarket brings back the cherished tradition of shaping the mug like a heart to get an authentic experience right here in the city.

Special programming is arranged throughout the duration of the market, including pop-up booths on select days. There will also be live performances on select days, such as a Barefoot Hawaiian Dance Performance on December 14 from 1 pm – 2 pm. For anyone looking to kick things off early, a private preview party called ‘Twas the Night Before Christkindlmarket, will be held on November 15 from 5 pm – 8 pm. General admission attendees will love the entrees, desserts, and beverage coupons, while VIP attendees can enjoy a private three-course meal, an open bar, and special gifts. A limited number of tickets are still available and they can be purchased here.

Catered experiences are also available. The Stammtisch is a cabin-like den area that serves as a place to enjoy the market without waiting in lines. It comes with a table that seats eight, souvenir mugs, and varied food and drink packages. For more information and to reserve a table, click here.


Christkindlmarket Chicago

Sunday – Thursday: 11 am – 8 pm
Friday – Saturday: 11 am – 9 pm
Thanksgiving, November 24: 11 am – 4 pm
Christmas Eve, December 24: 11 am – 4 pm

Christkindlmarket Naperville

Thursday: 11 am – 7 pm
Friday – Saturday: 11 am – 9 pm
Sunday: 11am – 6 pm
Monday, December 18 – Thursday, December 21: 11 am – 8 pm
Christmas Eve, December 24: 11 am – 4 pm


Reserve Easy Parking for Christkindlmarket Now


Featured Image Credit: Christkindlmarket Facebook


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After graduating from the U of I with a Bachelor’s in English, Courtney hit the ground running. A lifelong passion for writing (oddly foreshadowed by a tendency to live on streets named after dead British authors) is what drives her professional endeavors. When she’s not at her desk with headphones in, cranking out articles on Chicago’s music, dining, and nightlife scenes, you can usually find her at concerts around the city, watching horror movies, psyching herself into going to the gym, or obsessing over scented candles.


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