Presepe

Christmas markets

Listed below (thanks to the Italian Tourist Board) are some of the most interesting Christmas markets in Italy. Naple’s San Gregorio Armeno is one of the best, and is open all year.

Via San Gregorio Armeno is an entire street of workshops where you’ll find hand-carved nativity scenes, known as presepe. The wood-carving has been a Neapolitan tradition for centuries, and these days you’ll find more up-to-date figures. This means that characters like Berlusconi, or Serie A footballers, can be included in your Christmas scene.

Many Christmas markets continue until 5th January, known as ‘Befana’. This is when the ‘Good Witch’ delivers presents to ‘well-behaved’ children, and pieces of coal for naughty ones.

Presepe

NAPLES

Via San Gregorio Armeno is famous for hand-carved nativity crib figurines, from traditional to the most sophisticated. This means that, at Christmas-time, it’s positively buzzing. Neapolitans choose replacement figurines, whether sacred or profane.
Via San Gregorio Armeno, all year round

Best of the rest:

ALTO ADIGE (South Tyrol/ Süd Tirol)

www.suedtirol.info

BOLZANO/BOZEN: ALPINE – MEDITERRANEAN CHRISTMAS

With the backdrop of the Rosengarten Dolomites, the streets of the medieval centre are a beautiful setting for this traditional market.
Piazza Walther/Waltherplatz, to 6 Jan 2016

MERANO

Traditional handicrafts and local food.
Passeggiata Lungo Passirio/Piazza della Rena/Piazza delle Terme, to 6 Jan 2016

BRESSANONE/BRIXEN

The Cathedral in the square has an 800 year-old Gothic cloister. Look out for the crib exhibition in the Episcopal Palace (Hofburg).
Piazza Duomo/Domplatz (Cathedral Square), to 6 Jan 2016

VIPITENO/STERZING

The 15th-century ‘Zwölfer-Turm’ presides over the Christmas market here. Besides that, the medieval town at 1,000 metres is hosting an exhibition related to the history of mining in nearby mountains.
Piazza città/Stadtplatz (Town Square), to 6 Jan 2016

BRUNICO/BRUNECK: HANDICRAFTS AND TRADITION

Traditional handicrafts are sold within the four gates of the medieval town walls.
Beside the Moat (Via Bastioni/Am Graben) and Town Hall Square (Nuovo Piazza Municipio/Neuer Rathausplatz), to 6 Jan 2016

TRENTINO

www.visittrentino.it

TRENTO

Stalls and mini-chalets offering foods, wines and crafts
Piazza Fiera and Piazza Cesare Battisti, to 6 Jan 2016, www.mercatinodinatale.tn.it

ROVERETO

There’s a mix of cultures here, with Neapolitan Christmas cribs on one side, and tree decorations from Salzburg on the other.
www.visitrovereto.it, 6 Jan 2016

ARCO, Lake Garda

Mulled wine, a Christmas bakery, local handicrafts and events, including camel rides. Besides that, there are craft workshops as well as a Santa parade, complete with reindeer.
To 3 January 2016

LEVICO TERME

A snow-covered landscape, Austrian traditions and folk concerts, as well as the usual handicrafts.
To 6 Jan 2016

VENETO

www.veneto.to

CORTINA D’AMPEZZO

Artisans and local producers exhibit their wares from small wooden huts.
To 5 Jan 2016

ASIAGO

Traditional decorations in glass, wood and ceramic, as well as typical patisserie and the famous Asiago cheese.
To 6 Jan 2016

AOSTA VALLEY

www.lovevda.it

AOSTA

An alpine village recreated in the heart of Aosta, as well as traditional handicrafts and accessories in wool, felt and leather.
To 6 Jan 2016.

ROME

Piazza Navona Christmas Market where you can find cribs, decorations and sweets. It reaches its zenith on the night of Befana, 5th January.
To 8 Jan 2016, www.turismoroma.it

VENICE

Christmas fairs take place in various piazzas, including Campo S.Bartolomeo, Campo San Salvador, Campo San Luca, Campo Manin, Strada Nuova.
To 26 Dec 2015

BOLOGNA

Traditional Fair dedicated to Christmas where there are stalls of decorations for the Xmas tree, the nativity crib, food and wine and other delicacies.
Portico of Chiesa dei Servi in Strada Maggiore, to 26 Dec 2015

MILAN

Christmas market with a skating rink.
Giardini Indro Montanelli, entry from Corso Venezia, to 11 Jan 2016

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