Taking place in the heart of downtown Chicago, the Christkindlmarket is the largest open-air festival celebrating Christmas! The 2013 festival runs from November 26th to December 24th in the Daley Plaza. The Mayor and Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events have put all their support into this event and over the years the Christkindlmarket has grown into one of the premier Chicago Christmas attractions! Bringing a unique mix of German culture, food and music, the Christkindlmarket has something for everyone!
Christmas Booths: With a booth style layout, there is a wide variety of German food & beverages available including schnitzels, strudels, bratwurst and baked apples. Once you have finished devouring a meal, you can take a closer look at the hundreds of booths featuring German arts and crafts, such as candles made from honey, authentic Bavarian ornaments, German pottery and so much more!
Tree Lighting Ceremony: The 99th edition of this annual event signifies the official start of the holiday season (26th November). Starting at 5 pm, musical performances and festive music will begin playing up until the lights are officially turned on at 6 pm!
Lantern Parade: The Annual Children’s Lantern Parade is a great family affair at Daley Plaza. All kids are welcome to assist in holding colorful lanterns and German & American Christmas carols will be sung in the backdrop! You may use your own lantern, or purchase one on the day for $13. The parade is on the 4th of December and runs from 5 pm -7 pm.
9th Annual Consumer Travel Show: With the German atmosphere buzzing, travel vendors specializing in Germany will be present with brochures, maps and information to plan your own trip to Germany! You will find them at the Christkindlmarket on the 7th of December, from 11 am to 2 pm.
The full Christkindlmarket schedule can be found here.
Christkindlmarket Chicago Hours
The festival (free to enter) is open seven days a week from 11 am – 8 pm (9 pm on Friday/Saturday & 4 pm on Thanksgiving & Christmas Eve). With the event in the heart of the city, it is only a half mile walk from Rudolph St. Metra Station. Other attractions nearby include The Arts Institute of Chicago, Chicago Cultural Center and Navy Pier.
A 2013 Christkindlmarket Hotel
The Chicago Lake Shore Hotel offers great value on the edge of downtown and is less than 20 minutes from Christkindlmarket! The hotel offers free parking, and there are a variety of ways to get downtown if driving is not for you. This includes a free shuttle which will drop you meters from Christkindlmarket! Complimentary Wi-Fi and the state of the art gym is also available for all our rooms and guests of the hotel.