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Photo: Courtesy of Chicago Mayor's Office
Christkindlmarket at Daley Plaza is a top holiday market.
Chicago's largest open-air market is a favorite of locals and tourists alike. Inspired by a Nuremberg, Germany, market that was founded in 1545, this market features iconic German items like nutcrackers, cuckoo clocks and beer steins, as well as hand-blown ornaments and wooden handicrafts. Authentic food (sausages, sauerkraut, potato pancakes, waffles) and drink (beer and Glühwein, a traditional hot spiced wine) are also available, along with assorted sweets. 
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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.