Shopping, Markets and fairs Free
4 out of 5 stars
(6user reviews)
Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas

Time Out says

You haven't experienced the holidays in Chicago until you've stepped into this giant open-air market inspired by a similar seasonal tradition in Nuremberg, Germany. At Christkindlmarket, guests can shop handcrafted items like nutcrackers, cuckoo clocks, beer steins and glass ornaments. When hunger strikes, nibble on potato pancakes, hot pretzels, schnitzel, döner and chocolate-covered treats. And no trip to Christkindlmarket is complete without a steaming mug of Glühwein, a traditional hot spiced wine (there's also hot cocoa for the kids).

The holiday market boasts three locations in Daley Plaza, Gallagher Way and Milwaukee, but the outpost in the Loop is its most popular iteration. When the weather is decent, the market is generally packed in the evenings, so stop by in the afternoon for a more plesant (and less-crowded) shopping and/or dining experience.


Users say (6)

4 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:1
3 people listening

Definitely a must-do Chicago winter experience! You HAVE to get the hot wine in the signature boot-shaped mug or you haven't fully experienced this place! The knick-knacks are cute but overpriced. Last year I tried the potato pancakes - bring cash, you'll want to try it all!

Definitely have to add in the holiday tradition to do every year! Just being around the German food and cute knock knack and ornaments brings out the holiday spirit! I must say, however, the wares are very expensive. Another thing I wish they had is outdoor heaters for people who can't get seats inside the tents. 

Stupid hours on the website were straight up not accurate. Whole thing was shut down when we came in Christmas Eve - fair enough, enjoy time with your family - but why say you're open till 8 on the website? Sad


Everyone loves Christkindlmarket! Kids can get cider or "kinder-gluhwein" while the adults can enjoy a boot-shaped mug of hot mulled cider, a.k.a. gluhwein. Get some to-die-for potato pancakes and a side of apple sauce, then shop the vast array of German and Chicago-themed ornaments. There are lots of other gift ideas at Christkindlmarket at Daley Plaza too. And it all unfolds around the massive Picasso and in the midst of trees strewn in white lights. 

moderatorStaff Writer

This is one of the best holiday traditions to add to your Chicago Christmas bucket list. Sip on a boot of mulled wine while feasting on German snacks and shopping for one-of-a-kind gifts. Christkindlmarket is the best place to find Chicago-centric ornaments and other unique tree trimmings.