Winter Season is a series of Christmas and winter events that include the Leuven Christmas Market. The season includes Christmas concerts, the Light Festival and the Food Truck Festival. In this guide, you’ll find the latest event dates, locations and what to expect while you’re in Leuven.
Leuven has a compact city centre that is inclusive and accessible for all. The Christmas activities are spread around the Grote Markt, where you’ll find the stunning Town Hall and Oude Markt, a bustling long square lined with trees, bars and restaurants.
Leuven Christmas Market 2022
The fairytale Winter Garden on Grote Markt is just part of the festive experience. You’ll also find specialty stores and food trucks along Ladeuzeplein and Hooverplein, a short walk from Grote Markt and the Town Hall.
Leuven Christmas Market dates: 7th December 2022 to 7th January 2023.
Location: Grote Markt, Monseigneur Ladeuzeplein and Oude Markt.
Reason to visit: The location in front of the 15th-century Historical Leuven Town hall.
Specialities: Glühwein bars, knitwear booths and local food trucks.
Where to stay: Stay directly on Grote Markt at The Fourth.
Hotels near Leuven Christmas Market
Leuven is a compact, walkable city where most of the city’s sights are centred around Grote Markt, Oude Markt, Saint Peter’s Church and Monseigneur Ladeuzeplein (another large square). This central district is around 1km from the main train station along Bondgenotenlaan.
I suggest staying at The Fourth as it’s located directly on Grote Markt, it’s a 3-minute walk to Oude Markt and 5 minutes to Monseigneur Ladeuzeplein.
Alternatively, my guide to hotels near Leuven Christmas Market lists several well-located hotels covering all budgets.
Location of Leuven Christmas Market
Leuven Christmas Market Specialties
No matter where you travel in Belgium, you can find incredibly delicious local food and specialties that help make your visit a memorable one.
- Belgian waffles – Choose Brussels waffles with sweet toppings or Liege waffles coated in icing sugar.
- Belgium chocolate from local artisans. Pick a variety to try or grab a box for a Christmas gift.
- The best fries in the world, typically served in a cone and topped with the sauce of your choice.
- Cougnou is a sweet Christmas bread common in Belgium and northern France.
- Jenever – A juniper-flavoured gin-type spirit made famous by Belgium.
- Christmas beer specifically produced for the season as well as all the wonderful locally brewed beer from the region.
Plan your Christmas holiday with my Belgium Christmas markets guide. Discover where to go, things to do and the best ways to experience Belgium food, history and culture.
Visit Flanders is an excellent resource for visiting Leuven and the entire region of Flanders.
Sustainable Travel Tips
The choices we make have an environmental and social impact on the places we visit. When visiting the Christmas markets, keeping sustainability in mind is important. Implement some or all of these responsible travel measures during your visit.
- Shop mindfully. Only purchase what you really need.
- Walk, cycle and use public transport to get around.
- Stay in a sustainable hotel powered by renewable energy.
- Stay in hotels. Short-stay apartment accommodation can lead to a lack of affordable housing for locals.
- Avoid using plastic or buying items made or packaged with plastic.
- Try to eat locally sourced organic food where possible.
- Limit your consumption of meat and dairy.
- Be open to diverse cultures and experiences.
- Explore more than just the main tourist areas.
- Support the arts and attend local events.
- Visit fewer places but stay longer at each destination.
The Christmas market and festivities in Leuven start 7th December 2022 to 7th January 2023.
Leuven is an easy day trip from Brussels as it’s only 40 minutes on the train from Brussels Central.
Leuven is a beautiful small city near Brussels that is worth visiting to experience the incredible architecture, excellent museums, urban nature, gabled mansions and the longest bar in Europe.
If you have visited Leuven in winter or would like to leave a review of the Christmas market, feel free to comment below. This helps others who are interested in visiting and are trying to plan their holiday.
Recommendations are independently chosen based on personal travel experiences and extensive research. This post contains affiliate links to hotels and tours in Leuven, Belgium. This means I get a small commission from any bookings at no extra cost to you.