The further north you travel, the more chance you’ll have of experiencing a white Christmas. If that’s what you’re looking for, the Stockholm Christmas market in Gamla Stan (Stockholm’s historic centre) is an ideal destination for a winter wonderland holiday. Swedish holiday traditions and seasonal delicacies are a great reason to visit Stockholm in December.
Although the market in Gamla Stan is the oldest and most traditional in Stockholm (and Sweden), there are many other Christmas markets around the city and in the surrounding areas. With a weekend in Stockholm, you could easily visit five different Christmas markets and still have time for sightseeing in Stockholm, visiting museums, eating Sweden specialties on a food tour and exploring the archipelago.
Stortorget Christmas Market is the most popular market in Stockholm and where you’ll most likely wish to spend your time when visiting the city. The market is open between 11am and 6pm so it’s not an evening market like you’ll commonly find in other cities. It’s a lovely place to experience with friends (or solo!), try Swedish food and meet the local vendors.
Stockholm Christmas Market 2021
Stockholm Christmas Market dates: 20th November to 23rd December 2021 (confirmed).
Location: Stortorget, Gamla Stan is the location of the main market in Stockholm but there are many others.
Reason to visit: Visit for a white Christmas, beautiful natural landscapes and Swedish food.
Specialties: Glögg, Christmas dinner buffet, reindeer sausages, Swedish handicrafts.
Travel tip: Stockholm is a spread out city. Take a city tour when you first arrive to get your bearings.
Where to stay: At Six or search our recommended Christmas hotels for a budget option.
Winter events: Christmas carols or build your own gingerbread house.
Stockholm weather in winter: Temperatures average 2°C / -1°C (high / low) in December.
Plan your trip: Resources to plan your Christmas holiday or winter break.
Christmas Food in Sweden
Swedish Christmas markets are very different to the classic German Christmas markets. It’s a nice chance to experience Scandinavian delicacies as well as specifically Swedish Christmas food and specialties.
- Meatballs – Of course you must try the most classic of all Swedish dishes, meatballs. These are nothing like what you might have tried in your home country. In Stockholm you can get vegetarian and vegan meatballs along with the traditional meat varieties. .
- Julbord – Look out for julbord, a classic Swedish buffet with Christmas food. Many restaurants offer a Christmas buffet for dinner during the Christmas holiday period.
- Hot glögg – Glögg is the Swedish version of mulled wine of gluhwein as they call it in Germany. An old fashioned glögg recipe typically includes, port, bourbon and white rum which is seasoned with cinnamon, cardamom and cloves plus the addition of dried orange peel, raisins and sugar.
- Swedish fika – Fika is not a Christmas tradition but it is a Swedish tradition definitely worth enjoying on a daily basis in my opinion! Fika basically means meeting with friends or family for an afternoon coffee and cake or pastry. You would typically have it at a bakery but you can have it at most cafes too. Swedish pastries are incredible and Stockholm has countless bakeries with the most amazing sweets you’ll ever see.
- Gingerbread – Like in Germany, Stockholm is famous for its gingerbread and you can find this in most Christmas markets in Stockholm.
- Sweets and candy – Stortorget, the main Christmas market in Stockholm, is famous for its sweets including caramel, marzipan, chocolate wheels, waffles, cotton candy as well as local honey.
Things to Do in Stockholm in Winter
Stockholm is busy with visitors in December as many of the sights and things to do and perfect for cold winter days.
- The Royal Palace – One of the largest palaces in Europe with more than 600 rooms. The palace is open to the public and has five museums inside.
- City Hall and Tower – Visit the tower of Stockholm’s City Hall to get stunning views of Stockholm’s islands and historic old town.
- Fotografiska – A brilliant photography museum with regular and temporary exhibitions. One of the highlights of a visit to Stockholm.
- ABBA Museum – Yes, ABBA has its own museum in Stockholm. If you have even the slightest interest in their music, this museum is worth visiting. It’s hugely popular.
- Drottningholm Palace – If you plan on taking a day trip from Stockholm, Drottningholm Palace is the permanent residence of the Swedish royal family and a World Heritage Site. The palace and gardens are open all year round.
- The Vasa Museum – The most visited museum in Scandinavia and home to Vasa, a perfectly preserved 17th-century ship including its art treasures.
For more things to do in Stockholm in December, go to Visit Stockholm, the official tourism site for Stockholm.
Map of Stockholm
If you have visited Stockholm in December or Christmas in Sweden and would like to share your experience, leave a comment below.
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