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Discover Benelux |  Special Theme |  Christmas

The magical world of Belgian Christmas markets TEXT: HELEN CULLEN  |  PRESS PHOTOS

Winter could be the most special time of year to visit Belgium; Christmas market season transforms its cities into festive wonderlands. Brussels is not to be missed but Antwerp, Bruges and Liège all become spectacular destinations. Even Durbuy, famous for being the smallest town on the planet, offers a sensational market all of its own. Winter Wonders, Brussels Grand Place to Place Ste Catherine Until 6 January Brussels enchants thousands of merry visitors  every  year.  Over  240  traditional wooden  stalls  offer  hand-made  arts  and crafts  alongside  the  most  indulgent  gastronomical  delights.  It  is  a  food  lovers’ Christmas dream come true with a host of Belgian  specialties:  chocolates,  artisan sausages, waffles, gingerbread, escargots, beers,  mulled  wine  and  so  much  more. Tradition  and  modernity  blend  beautifully with  the  35  metres  toboggan  slope,  200 feet long skating rink and spectacular bigwheel that illuminates the sky with 18,000 twinkling lights. An authentic Swiss chalet offering  traditional  Helvetian  fare  will  also embellish the market this year. Lastly, don’t miss  the  breathtaking  sound  and  light

show  presented  in  the  Grand  Place;  an unforgettable experience.  The city of Liège's Christmas Village St Lambert square/ Marché de Liège square Until 30 December Since  1986,  Liège  has  established  its Christmas village as the ultimate festive destination. Over 1.5 million visitors flock annually  to  experience  the  unique  atmosphere  created  by  the  spirited  exhibitors: The largest and oldest of all theBelgian  markets,  this  village  has  a personality  all  of  its  own.  An  extravaganza  of  products  and  culinary  treats will be presented in over 200 chalets. Antwerp Christmas market Market Square 6 December - 4 January Set against the backdrop of Antwerp’s historic  buildings,  this  atmospheric  market will extend this year to form a trail through the  city  from  Steenplein  to  the  Market Square.  Steenplein  also  offers  a  unique opportunity  to  go  ice  skating  while  overlooking the Scheldt River. In addition to 90 stalls offering a myriad of Christmas wares, over  100  nativity  scenes  will  be  dotted throughout the market for visitors to enjoy. 

TOP RIGHT: Durbury Christmas market. Photo: RSI Durbuy. MIDDLE RIGHT: Bruge Christmas market. Photo: Jan D'Hondt. BOTTOM RIGHT: Brussels Christmas market. Photo: Eric Danhier. BELOW LEFT: Ice skating at the Brussels Christmas market. Photo: WBT

Bruges Christmas market Market Square Until 2 January Medieval Bruges hosts one of the most famous  Christmas  markets  in  Belgium; the  magnificent  architecture  becomes adorned with garlands of lights that infuse  the  canals  with  a  magical  glow. Transformed cobbled streets lead to the fairytale splendour of the Market Square: the  heart  of  the  spectacular  Bruges Christmas experience. 

Issue 12 |  December 2014 |  19

Profile for Scan Client Publishing

Discover Benelux | Issue 12 | December 2014  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.

Discover Benelux | Issue 12 | December 2014  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.