Moscow Christmas Markets 2020
Moscow is a real gem if you look for a destination where to spend your Christmas holidays. Last year even a British newspaper The Telegraph included Moscow in top-10 cities with the greatest Christmas markets. The Russian capital is getting famous for its festivals and markets, and we must confess that it is quite well-deserved. Winter markets in Moscow, the capital of one of the coldest countries, are very colorful and bright, and it is so easy to lose track of time while exploring all the stalls. So winter is definitely the best time to visit Moscow.
Where to watch Christmas Lights in Moscow?
In 2019/2020 the festive season of Christmas and New Year markets and events in Moscow is called Journey to Christmas. It will run for 31 days from December, 14, till January, 13, in 78 places around the city. Keep in mind that Russians celebrate Christmas 2 weeks later than Europeans, therefore winter holidays start here a bit later. More about Christmas traditions in Russia in this post. It will take a while to discuss all of them at once, but we are happy to present some carefully selected by Moscow Urban Adventures team festival’s highlights.
GUM Christmas market on the Red Square
There is little chance you will miss the most Instagrammable and delicious Christmas markets in Moscow as it is located right on the Red Square. Every year GUM (Central Department Store) puts out dozens of stalls full of Christmas treats and beverages as well as the endless number of the cutest New Year and Christmas gifts. Among Christmas delights, you can find pies, pancakes with caviar, donuts and waffles, ginger cookies, and many other treats. It will be even more challenging to make up your mind about buying some festive souvenirs, as there you will find Orenburg shawls, jewelry boxes, mittens, and valenki. If you are not so much of a shopaholic, you can always switch to ice skating. There is a great skating rink right on the Red square in winter! It is not as big as in Gorky Park, but still big enough to spend your time while your loved ones do their Christmas shopping. Check out our list of best ice skating rinks in Moscow 2020.
New Year market on VDNKh
If you look for a perfect place to make a Christmas wish, it must be a Christmas market in VDNKh park. Dozens of magic Christmas trees will be installed in the park, decorated with cards signed by the park guests. Isn’t it the best place to make some New Year resolutions? If one of them is to be more sportive in 2020, you can start right there by going to one of the biggest skating rinks in Europe. The VDNKh skating ring is overwhelmingly beautiful and colorful.
Magic white forest on Novy Arbat
One of the busiest Moscow streets will turn into a magic forest, where a great number of performances will take place. If you are an Instagram lover, then visiting a festival in this street is a must. Everyone will be able to take pictures with magical trees and inhabitants of the forest. Bring some winter magic to your pictures.
If you feel more sportive, you can also try to snowboard on a slide, which is quite impressive. It is 5,5 meters high, 30 meters long and 6 meters wide. It also has special railings and structures for performing tricks. There you can try your snowboarding skills or just watch professionals performing.
Christmas market in Sokolniki park
The Christmas fair in Sokolniki park is another fair not to be missed in Moscow. Though Sokoliniki park is not quite in the center of Moscow, it is still worth visiting. At the market, you will be able to buy gifts, clothes, jewelry and Christmas decorations, as well as enjoy delicious treats and drink punch or grog. And if you feel like skating, do not hold yourself back! Park alleys have been turned into skating rinks there, so you can enjoy the beauty of the park together with some exercise. Btw the rink here has free entrance, just bring your skates or rent in the park and have fun!
Space themed New Year market on Tverskaya street
If you are interested in space explorations, this winter you will have a great opportunity of learning more about this topic during festive celebrations on Tverskaya street. In the program, you will find performances, dancing, singing, and some educational events. There will be stalls at the market serving food and drinks, prepared by chefs from 8 Moscow restaurants. The chefs have been inspired by the space theme, too, so the menu should be really interesting.
Central Children’s Store
If you are tired of looking for presents, Central Children’s Store is a perfect location for you. There you can find everything, even for the most sophisticated taste. But even if you have already bought presents for your friends and relatives, there you can participate in a charity campaign and buy presents for children who are left without parental care. Children wrote there most precious wishes on Christmas cards, which now are used for decorating a Christmas tree. Just grab one of the cards, find this gift, and give to charity volunteers. If you make even one small wish to come true, it is already a very big deal.
And if you want to see a real Ded Moroz (Grandfather Frost), who is now traveling across Russia, make sure you come to the store on December, 28. On this day Ded Moroz tour will finish, and he will be welcoming all children and their parents in the biggest children’s store in Russia.
Christmas market 4 Seasons in Artplay
Those in search of trendy and untraditional presents will most probably head to the 4 Seasons Christmas fair in Artplay, happening on the weekends. More than 150 artists across Russia will be waiting for you there. There they will offer you designer clothes to make you stand out from the crowd, original scarves and hats, beautiful covers for documents and tickets to hit the road immediately, unusual jewelry to emphasize your style, natural cosmetics to make your skin glowing, magic notebooks to make everything come true, funny cards and posters and much more. If you don’t want to go there along, join our Alternative tour that covers Artplay and other modern districts of Moscow.
There is an endless number of events happening in Moscow these weeks. You do not even have to plan your way from one market to another. Trust us, you will catch the flow quite quickly, once you start walking on Moscow streets. And if you want to learn about Moscow from the local perspective, you are always welcome on Moscow Urban Adventures tours!
Written by Yana, a local guide