Five of the best Christmas Markets

To prepare for the festive season, now is the time to buy gifts and stock up for the Christmas feast. Caroline Rhodes picks her five best UK Christmas markets to be held over the coming weeks.

27th November 2009
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1. Winchester Christmas Fair
This fantastic fair is set at the foot of the Cathedral in Winchester’s stunning historic centre, and runs from 27 November until 20 December. With pretty decorated stalls, a festive food court and a Christmas Grotto, there is even an open air ice-rink and Alpine Café full of warming treats. 
 
2. Bath Christmas Market, Somerset
Clustered along the streets of beautiful Georgian Bath, this festive market sells everything from fine foods to artisan jewellery. Wrap up and indulge in hot mulled wine and vanilla sugar crepes as you wander the traditional wooden stalls to the merry sound of carols; visit from 26 November to 6 December. 

3. The Old Hop Farm Christmas Extravaganza, Kent
At the enchanting winter wonderland here at Hop Farm the kids can meet Santa whilst parents wander the many stalls and drink in the yuletide atmosphere. There is an ice-rink, ‘build a bear workshop’ and plenty of festive food. Free to enter, it is open from now until Christmas Eve. 

4.Caerphilly Castle Christmas Market, South Wales
Caerphilly Castle provides the magnificent backdrop to this bustling medieval Christmas fair which is the largest in the region. With a fine farmers market, unusual stalls and many free festive activities for kids, this seasonal delight is held from 12-13 December. There is also a medieval Jester for entertainment!

5. Grassington Dickensian Festival, North Yorks.
If you are seeking local flavour this season then the Dickensian Christmas festival in the quaint village of Grassington provides an authentic Victorian experience. With period dress, various stalls, music and carols, it provides a dose of Christmas spirit and goodwill to all!

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