A voice for newcomers in Sweden

#SwedishChristmas: Stepping back in time with Swedish Christmas markets

The historic Christmas market at Gamla Stan. Photo: Henrik Montgomery / TT

Published: 15.Dec.2018 06:59 hrs

Every day until Christmas Eve, The Local explains the unique history behind Swedish Christmas traditions in our own Advent calendar.

This article is available to Members of The Local. Read more articles for Members here.

For centuries, Swedish Christmas markets have brought warmth and light to the darkest time of the year. Visiting a Swedish Christmas market (julmarknad) isn’t just a great way of becoming truly immersed in Sweden’s Christmas traditions, it may also be one of the best ways, short of a time machine, to experience what life was like in the past.

The history of the festive markets goes back to 14th century Germany, and Sweden appears to have adopted the Christmas market not long afterward. Much like today, the earliest Christmas markets were typically held in town squares throughout the month of December, and featured small stalls where merchants and craftspeople could sell their wares.

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