Christmas City Dortmund (formerly known as Dortmund Christmas Market) is known for having the world’s largest (natural) Christmas tree, weighing in at over 40,000kg… but there’s a lot more to this market than just a record-breaking Weihnachtsbaum.
We first visited this Christmas market in November 2018 and had a great time exploring all the different offerings, from delicious food stalls and a fun selection of rides to beautiful ornaments and gifts to bring home.
And while sadly, the tree was not yet lit during our visit, we still got a chance to admire its imposing size, and imagine just how much it costs to light that thing!
Anyways, are you looking to learn more about the Dortmund Christmas Market in North Rhine-Westphalia, or perhaps need some guidance on planning your own trip there?
In this post, we’ll be covering…
- Practical Info for Dortmund Christmas Market
- A Brief History of Dortmund Christmas Market
- Why Visit Dortmund Christmas Market?
- Christmas Markets in Dortmund to Visit
- More Photos of Dortmund Christmas Market
We hope you find it helpful and interesting!
Practical Info for Dortmund Christmas Market
Here are some quick must-knows for Dortmund Christmas Market this year:
- Dates: Nov 23 – Dec 30, 2023
- Official website: Click here
In need of a place to stay? Here are some quick hotel recommendations:
- Budget: Check prices and availability
- Mid-Range: Check prices and availability
- Luxury: Check prices and availability
A Brief History of Dortmund Christmas Market
For over 125 years, the Christmas market in Dortmund has been a beloved mainstay of the city’s holiday calendar.
While starting out as a simple one-day affair, with only 30-40 huts, the market grew in popularity and size over the years. In the 1960s, a carousel was installed in the Alter Markt, and stall numbers ballooned to 70-80, becoming 200 stalls by the mid-1980s.
It wasn’t until 1996 that Dortmund’s famous Christmas tree was erected for the first time, solidifying the city’s status as a must-visit holiday destination in Germany.
After a big rebranding initiative in 2019, the Dortmund Christmas Market is now known as “Christmas City Dortmund”, a change reflecting how festive activities can now be found all around the city center.
These days, over 2.5 million visitors come from around the world to admire Dortmund’s tree and markets, making it one of the most well-known Christmas markets to visit in Germany.
Why Visit Dortmund Christmas Market?
Wondering whether Dortmund Christmas Market is worth a trip? Here are some reasons to visit:
It has the largest (natural) Christmas tree in the world
We hope you’re not tired of us talking about this tree, because we’re going to bring it up again!
Standing at a height of 45m, Dortmund’s Christmas Tree is probably one of the main highlights and reasons to visit this market.
With 50,000 ornaments and lights used for decoration, it’s definitely a sight worth checking out.
There’s a lot of great food and drink options
We were very pleasantly surprised by the huge variety of food and drink options available at Dortmund’s Christmas market stalls.
From classic Christmas market foods like mulled wine and candied nuts to other comfort eats like pasta tossed in a wheel of Parmesan, we had a great time exploring the market with our taste buds.
There are other great markets close by
Lastly, Dortmund is conveniently located close to many other great Christmas market destinations in Germany, like Essen, Duisburg, and Düsseldorf, all of which can be reached by less than an hour via train.
If you don’t mind travelling a bit further, you can even go to the Christmas markets in Cologne in less than two hours.
All that to say, if you’re looking to visit many Christmas markets during your trip, Dortmund is a convenient stop to bundle with some other great markets, which is what we did.
Looking for more Germany travel inspiration?
Check out these guides on the best places to visit in…
Christmas Market Locations in Dortmund to Visit
After rebranding as a full “Christmas City” rather than a Christmas Market, festive stalls can now be found all around Dortmund’s city center.
You can view a full stall plan for the market here, but these are some locations in Dortmund where you’ll definitely be able to find some great festive happenings:
South of the Westenhellweg shopping street, you’ll find a variety of Christmas market stalls in one of Dortmund’s oldest public squares: Alter Markt.
Here, you can expect a variety of food stalls selling drinks, confectionaries and savoury treats, along with many shopping stalls selling gifts you can bring home to loved ones.
At Hansaplatz is where you’ll find the centerpiece of Dortmund’s Christmas market festivities: the beloved giant Christmas Tree.
Of course, there’s more to do here than just stare at a tree! Organized around the central tree are dozens of stalls selling food, drinks, sweets, and gifts.
If your main priority is shopping, then don’t miss the cozy line of stalls organized along Kleppingstrasse. You won’t find too many food vendors here, meaning stall after stall of great shopping opportunities.
Platz von Netanya
Named after Dortmund’s Israeli twin town, this small square doesn’t have too many stalls to peruse, but it’s still a nice little stop with its own special light installation, and a few stalls selling refreshments and treats.
Around St. Petri Church
In the shadow of the medieval St. Petri Church, you’ll find another small collection of stalls selling mainly food and drink… but this area is especially noteworthy for its special Kids’ tent and light installations.
Around St. Reinoldi Church
All around the city’s oldest surviving church (including Willy-Brandt-Platz, Kampstraße and Platz von Leeds), you’ll find a large selection of additional food/drink stalls, plus a few different rides and children’s installations.
More Photos of Dortmund Christmas Market
Looking for some more Dortmund Christmas Market eye candy? Here are some additional photos we captured during our visit:
We hope you enjoyed this Dortmund Christmas Market Guide!
Let us know in the comments if you have any more questions about your trip – we’re always happy to help.