While Copenhagen and Aarhus always light up a classic Christmas, this year, why not step outside the big cities to experience a different kind of Danish cheer.
Photographs: Erin Gustafson
Text: Erin Gustafson
Denmark, oh Denmark. You happy little hyggeligt country you. World leaders in design, fashion, bike-riding, sustainable city-planning, and annual happiness rankings, Denmark is stylish and cosy even come dark December. Get ready to fire up your calendar candle, it is definitely Jul (Christmas) time. Grab a julebryg (Christmas beer) or a glass of gløgg (spiced wine) and warm your inner Christmas spirit at any of these off the beaten track Julemarked (Christmas markets) around the country. From modern Danish design to old school Jul like Vikings used to do, find something new to add to your winter wanderlist this season.
Enjoy traditional holiday fare and find fun gifts at the Christmas market next door.
Kolding School of Design Christmas Bazaar
As a breeding ground for some of Denmark’s best new designers, Kolding School of Design offers opportunities to get your hands on cutting edge Christmas gifts. Over 125 current and former students will be on hand to offer creative gifts and goods. The annual Julebazaar conveniently falls on the same weekend as the Kolding Festival of Light with Installations and illuminations all around town, sure to brighten the dark Danish nights.
Dates: Friday 6 December - 14:00-20:00; Saturday 7 December - 10:00-18:00
Address: Kolding Design School, Ågade 10, 6000 Kolding
Magisk Jul (Magic Christmas)
On the wild west coast of Denmark sits the summertime town of Blokhus, well known for its wide swaths of windswept sand, tall grass-covered dunes, and white beach huts come warmer weather. But when December descends, the sand here soon mingles with the twinkly white lights of a Danish Christmas. Make your way to the northwest coast of Jutland for Magisk Jul (Magic Christmas) and wander the illuminated lanes of the town’s sand sculpture park. Boasting Denmark’s largest holiday light and sound display - you are sure to experience a unique sense of the season. Enjoy traditional holiday fare and find fun gifts at the Christmas market next door.
Dates: 1 November - 22 December; Tuesday - Sunday 11:00-21:00
Weekend Entrance: Adults 100DKK, Children (3-12) 50DKK.
Weekday Entrance: Adults 90DKK, Children (3-12) 45DKK.
Address: Skulpturparken Blokhus, Vesterhavsvej 6, 9492 Blokhus
Kronborg Castle Medieval Christmas Market
Walk the halls of Hamlet’s castle as Christmas history comes alive at this beautiful Julemarked at Kronborg in Helsingnør. Your ticket gives you entrance inside where local artisans will be selling unique crafts, design goods, toys, and clothes. Don’t miss the elegant ballroom with the grand Christmas tree and festive decorations.
Dates: Sunday 1 December - 10:00-17:00; Friday 6 December - 11:00-19:00; Saturday, Sunday 7-8 December - 10:00-17:00
Entrance: 75DKK, Children under 4 are free
Address: Kronborg 2 C, 3000 Helsingør
The Lab Christmas Market
While many of Copenhagen’s independent design markets might have happened last month, you can still nab some unique and creative gifts at The Lab Christmas the second Sunday of December. Lots of local artists and designers will be on hand, so you can look for one of a kind ceramics, textile art, photography, graphic design, and more. The adjacent Lab Kitchen will offer warm drinks and good food. Occupy the littles with activities geared just for them.
Dates: Sunday 8 December - 10:00-16:00
Address: The Lab x Lab Kitchen, Vermundsgade 40A, 2100 Copenhagen
Engestofte Gods Christmas Market
On Lolland-Falster, along the southeastern side of Denmark, you’ll find the largest regional holiday happenings at the scenically situated estate known as Engestofte Gods. A classic Danish Christmas with live music, aebleskivers, and other holiday treats to enjoy while you peruse the wares. Don’t miss the Julemanden (Santa Claus) on hand to listen to your kids’ wishes. Or witness the wonder of traditional Saint Lucia procession.
Dates: Saturday, Sunday 7-8 December - 10:00-16:00
Entrance: Adults 40DKK., Children up to 12 years 10DKK
Address: Søvej 10, 4930 Maribo
Trelleborg Viking Museum winter market
Get a feel for how Danish Vikings celebrated the season with a special Vintermarked (Winter Market) at the Trelleborg Ring Fortress and Museum in Slagelse. Wander through the Viking village stalls selling traditional crafts. Step inside the reconstructed longhouse decorated distinctly for Jul, a truly historic and Scandinavian way to celebrate mid-winter. Listen to costumed storytellers recite tales, then taste the mead and sample festive Viking fare. Crafts and games will keep your little Scandi villagers entertained.
Dates: Sunday 8 December 10:00-16:00
Address: Trelleborg - Museum of the Viking Age, Trelleborg Alle 4, 4200 Slagelse