Advertiser Content; Christmas Markets
If you are missing those hot summer nights and see the prospect of winter as something to be endured, then slough off those sulks and embrace the season. It may be cold outside but there’s still plenty of steamy enjoyment to be had in the winter cities of Europe. And if you are bah humbug about Christmas, checking out one of these Christmas markets is sure to convert even the most cynical Scrooge out there. Hit one of these destinations for a memorable Winter weekend. Sort some cheap flights, get some travel insurance, find yourself an LGBT friendly little hotel or Airbnb and away you go.
Holland was the first country in the world to legalise same sex marriage and Amsterdam could well be the most gay-friendly city in the world. Famous for its Red-Light District and Cannabis Coffee shops, it also has great museums and beautiful canals. Christmas markets take place between 16thNovember and 2ndFebruary and the main ones are at the Rembrandtplein and Museumplein. Glug your mulled wine, munch on far too many tasty treats and enjoy the stalls, ice rinks, light shows and art installations. You’ll find gay bars, clubs, shops and saunas all over the city but especially around Kerkstraat, Reguliersdwarsstraat, Warmoestraat and the Red-Light district. Pink Point is the city’s official gay and lesbian information kiosk.
Prague in Winter is breathtakingly cold and breathtakingly beautiful. It doesn’t get much more Christmassy than the Christmas markets which run in the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square from about the end of November until the 6thJanuary. Crowds of wooden huts sell good things to eat and drink against a backdrop of gorgeous gothic architecture. Prague is internationally famous for its LGBTQ+ nightlife and its relaxed attitude toward the gay community. Most of the action is centred around the Vinohrady district, where you’ll find hipster cocktail bars, boho cafes, underground drag clubs and all-night gay dance events. There’s plenty of gay friendly accommodation and you’ll find that your money will go a long way.
Vienna is a beautiful city of culture, music and coffee houses and its exquisite Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The grand architecture of this unique destination is especially beautiful in Winter. Christmas markets pop up all over the city, running from mid-November until the 23rdDecember. The squares of the city transform themselves into fairy tale Christmas villages with all the usual array of mouth-watering treats, mulled wine and hand-crafted goods. There are twelve main markets, located in the Old Town or along the Ringstrasse but the most spectacular of them is at the Rathaus or City Hall. There’s no shortage of gay bars around the vast open-air food market, the Naschmarkt, and Wienzeile Street is hub for some of the best gay nightlife in the world. Vienna is expensive but it’s a beautiful place just to walk around and that costs you nothing.