philadelphia christmas market

Have a Holly Jolly Time in Philadelphia’s Christmas Village Market

With Coronavirus continuing to march on around the globe, this holiday season will no doubt be much different than years past. Most Americans have come to a standstill on how to celebrate this year and whether or not they will have large gatherings. With big changes like Santa zoom calls in malls and holiday resort bubbles, there are different times ahead. However, just because the holidays have changed doesn’t mean they are cancelled. Philadelphia has an absolutely adorable Christmas Village straight from Nuremberg perfect to get in the holiday spirit this year. Whether you’re looking to sip some mulled wine, do some Christmas shopping or just get some holly jolly cheer, Philadelphia’s Christmas Village has you covered. Here’s all you need to know about visiting Philly’s 2020 Christmas Village Market

philadelphia christmas market

Your Guide to Philly’s Christmas Village in 2020

When & Where

The Christmas Village will take place daily from November 26 – December 24, 2020. So from Thanksgiving Day to Christmas Eve, you can partake in all the holiday revelry going on in The City of Brotherly Love. The market will be held in the heart of Philly on N. 15th Street and Arch Street in Love Park. 

Sun – Thu: 11:00 am – 7:00 pm

Fri – Sat: 11:00 am – 8:00 pm

Thanksgiving Day: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

Christmas Eve: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

Get directions here. 

philadelphia christmas market

What Exactly is the Christmas Village

Each year the centre of Philadelphia lights up for its annual Christmas Village in name of the iconic German tradition. Modelled after an authentic Bavarian-style Christmas market, you’re sure to be showered in yuletide cheer at every corner. More than 60 vendors set up shop in the square in authentic wooden booths full of European goods, sweet treats, drinks and other various trinkets. Whether you’re looking for a modest gift, small holiday decoration or simple mistletoe, there’s tons to be explored. Wandering the lanes of stalls is like stepping into a Bavarian fairytale full of fragrant spruce, warm mulled wine and spiced gingerbread. 

Must-Have Experiences at the Christmas Village

Get Your Fill of German Treats

At Philly’s Christmas market you’ll find all your favourite German foods. Load up on a schnitzel with potato salad then dig into some leberkäse (German meatloaf). Afterwards, grab a big helping of bratwurst with sauerkraut and berlin’s famous currywurst. Don’t forget to polish it all off with some traditional gingerbread and piping hot glühwein or German beer. 

Take in the Non-Stall Attractions

The market is equipped with the famous Philly Holiday Tree and a holiday carousel that just screams “December!” Also, be sure to check out the Beer Garden and Käthe Wohlfahrt goodies.  Nearby you’ll also find the Rothman Orthopaedics Ice Rink perfect for a winter afternoon with the family. 

Purchase Some Classic Holiday Goods

Fancy a hand-carved and painted nutcracker? No problem. How about fresh mistletoe? Done. Grab some hand-strung garland and delicate ornaments while you’re at it. You’ll also find a variety of traditional German holiday goods such as sheepskin slippers and porcelain Christmas villages. 

History of the Famous Christmas Market

The origins of German Christmas markets can be traced all the way back to the late Middle Ages. The oldest and arguably most famous ones are held annually in Nuremberg and have been held for more than 500 years in the Medieval Bavarian city. The Christmas Village aims to bring that same holiday cheer to Philadelphia with their market, which has a huge emphasis on German-style goods and food. 

philadelphia christmas market

Covid Safety Measures

Due to this year’s pandemic, Philadelphia’s Christmas market authorities have implemented additional safety measures. They’ve completely readjusted the layout to allow for socially distanced shopping. Additionally, the amount of vendors has been reduced by 50% to ensure a lower density. Food and goods booths are also separate from each other. There is a fenced-off crowd controlled food court with properly distanced tables for enjoying treats in a safe space. Every last vendor, in addition to the Käthe Wohlfahrt and Beer Garden, will have enforced socially distanced waiting lines. Lastly, ‘Social Distancing Ambassadors’ will be on-site to ensure optimal safety for all visitors. 

Guests can expect the heads of the Christmas Market to make every effort for safety this holiday season. However, there are a few things you can do to make your visit even safer. 

Visit on a weekday when there are fewer crowds. 

Sanitise frequently – there will be several sanitisation stands throughout the market. 

Avoid busy vendors – if you see a stall with more than ten people waiting, come back later. 

Lastly, the market is operating under a strict no mask, no service rule. All guests are required to wear a mask to cover their nose and mouth. 

Melanie Hamilton

Melanie is an avid traveller with a passion for history and global foods. She is currently based in Tbilisi, Georgia where most of her time is occupied with qvevri wine and Soviet history. Having do-si-do'd her way across Europe and Latin America, she's enjoyed some of the world's most exciting places firsthand and can't wait to tell you about them.

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