Typically when you think of the best Christmas markets in Europe Belgrade never crosses your mind.
While it’s definitely not one of the best it’s clear to see that the city put a lot of effort towards adding some Christmas cheer across the entire town.
From streets lined with shining stars to most pedestrian areas being covered with lights, it’s hard to find a spot in Belgrade where the Christmas spirit isn’t present.
Knez Mihailova is the most popular pedestrian and shopping street and zone in the city.
The streets are lined with countless stores, bakeries, restaurants and other establishments. In the days leading up to Christmas the city employees are hard at work setting up thousands of lights, many different food stalls and vending stands, and the focal point of the entire market – the Christmas tree right in the center.
The entire area surrounding Knez Mihailova and Trg Republike turns into a Christmas market wonderland and all we’re missing now is a nice dusting of snow.
This is the fourth year that the Belgrade Christmas market has been operating and it goes by the name “Open Heart Square” or “Trg Otvorenog Srca”.
It runs from early December until mid January and is great for families, couples, or anyone looking to enjoy some holiday spirit.
The Belgrade Christmas Market isn’t as grand or elaborate as the markets in Vienna, Munich, or Paris but you can tell that the city is trying hard to make it fun for everyone.
The entire 1km length of Knez Mihailova is covered with these small wooden huts and the area is supposed to resemble Santa’s Village.
There are quite a few people dressed up as Santa so if you’re looking for a picture this is the spot to check out.
These wooden huts offer a ton of different food and drink options. The most popular one seems to be the one selling the Czech favorite of Trdelnik and it’s unlikely you’ll walk by and not see a long lineup. Many other huts are selling an incredible variety of candy and toys.
The candy huts are the most interesting since they offer close to 100 different kinds of candy from candy canes to cookies and everything in between.
Kids flock to these huts and you’ll definitely be waiting in line behind a whole bunch of children and stressed-out looking parents.
If you’re looking for actual food and drink you’re also in luck.
There are stands selling sausages on a bun and others selling strictly Serbian cuisine.
The huts selling drinks are my favorite. You can get mulled wine, rum tea, hot chocolate and a whole slew of alcoholic and non-alcoholic holiday related beverages.
As always there are still stands selling traditional souvenirs and art-related crafts and products. There are even people selling honey, soap, perfume and almost everything else you can imagine.
Roasted chestnuts also seem to be a specialty here and every so often you’ll see a man with a steel roaster and a whole bunch of chestnuts in front of him.
Nothing is better at a Christmas Market in Belgrade than some mulled wine and roasted chestnuts.
On weekends the area becomes even more popular as locals from the surrounding area and tourists pack the streets looking for something to eat or buy.
On weekends at 12PM there are different shows that are performed on the small stage opposite the Christmas tree.
This is a great time to come check out some Serbian Christmas folk music and dancing.
It’s highly entertaining for both children and adults and if you want a good spot you’ll need to come early as the small area fills up quickly. There are ballets, jugglers, magic shows, and many other different forms of entertainment that are all free of charge for you to enjoy.
If you’re looking to spend an afternoon enjoying all the holiday spirit then the Belgrade Christmas market is just what you’re looking for.
It’s not the best by any means but it has the makings of a truly unique and exciting market.
The pedestrian-only zone makes it perfect for taking a stroll through the stands and sitting by the fire while enjoying your mulled wine and candy canes.
It’s fun for people of all ages and it’s sure to bring back memories of all the amazing Christmas experiences you’ve had.