Durlach and Karlsruhe Christmas Markets

karlsruhe christmas market

A complete guide to the best Christmas markets in Karlsruhe and Durlach in 2020 (including opening times, locations and must-eat foods).

karlsruhe christmas market

Karlsruhe is one of the largest cities in southwest Germany. Located near the French-German border, the city was founded in 1715 by margrave Karl Wilhelm von Baden.

Often overlooked in favour of its famous neighbour Heidelberg, the city is not a popular tourist destination. Which is such a shame, because Karlsruhe hosts one of the best Christmas markets in Germany! Besides this, you’ll find a gorgeous Baroque palace and a medieval Christmas market nearby.

If you happen to be in the area during the Christmas season, follow my advice and visit Karlsruhe. You won’t regret a single bit!

Where is the Christmas market in Karlsruhe

You’ll find two markets in the city centre of Karlsruhe. The main one is located at Friedrichsplatz. And there is a smaller one at Marktplatz. Also, a huge ice skating rink is built in front of Karlsruhe Palace.

In addition, there is a Medieval market in Durlach, a borough of the city of Karlsruhe. It’s just a short ride by public transport from the city centre.

The best Karlsruhe Christmas markets in 2020

  • Friedrichsplatz
  • Marktplatz
  • Stadtwerke Eiszeit at Karlsruhe Palace (a huge ice skating rink)
  • the medieval Christmas market in Durlach

Christmas market stalls

When is Karlsruhe Christmas market

The market starts at the end of November and continues until Christmas Eve. There are no markets open after Christmas, except the ice rink in front of Karlsruhe Palace.

Karlsruhe Christmas market 2020 dates
From 26 November to 23 December 2020
(please note that the official dates for 2020 are yet to be announced)
Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM

Where to stay in Karlsruhe for Christmas markets

The best place to stay in Karlsruhe for the Christmas market is the area between the Central train station and the palace. The main tourist attractions are in this part of the city, as well as two huge shopping malls, Ettlinger Tor Centre and Postgalerie. Plus, you’ll be just a short walk from the two Christmas markets and the ice skating rink.

Kaiserhof – Most popular

Hotel Kaiserhof is the perfect base to explore the city on foot. Fantastic location, just a short walk from the Christmas market at Friedrichsplatz, Karlsruhe Palace and public transport. Spacious rooms with all the needed amenities.
Why book – 200m from the market at Friedrichsplatz, luxury spa, private parking, pillow menu, free minibar (first filling)

Novotel Karlsruhe City – Best rated

Novotel is located right in the middle between the palace and the train station. This 4-star luxury spa hotel has the ideal location for shopping, sightseeing and exploring the Christmas markets.
Why book – 500m from the market at Friedrichsplatz, private parking, modern spacious rooms

Check out the best hotel deals (winter 2020)

Karlsruhe Christmas Markets 2020


Christmas roundabout

The Weihnachtsmarkt at Friedrichsplatz is the biggest Christmas market in Karlsruhe. Every year, the whole square is turned into a magical fairy tale.

Once you step there you’ll find yourself surrounded by sparkling pine trees, tens of festive stalls and crowds of cheerful people. The spicy aroma of mulled wine and pine trees wafts through the air making you forget the reality.


There is even a real flying Santa, who floats on his sleigh over the crowds every day at 05:00 PM and 07:00 PM.

Weihnachtsmarkt at Friedrichsplatz Opening times
From 26 November to 23 December 2020
(please note that the dates for 2020 are yet to be announced)
Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM



Just a short walk from Friedrichsplatz you’ll find a second Christmas market, at Marktplatz. Although smaller, it is a great place for some mulled wine with friends.

Weihnachtsmarkt at Marktplatz Opening times
From 26 November to 23 December 2020
(please note that the dates for 2020 are yet to be announced)
Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM

Karlsruhe Christmas market food

Rostbratwurst with French Fries

Rostbratwurst is a tasty pork sausage that usually comes in a bun. Don’t miss to order French Fries as well (one of the best I’ve ever had).


Lángos with Nutella

It’s a delicious deep-fried dough. I tried the one with Nutella, but they are also served with various toppings like cheese, cream, ham and many more.

Lángos with Nutella


No, it’s not an edible snowball as one could think. In fact, the Schneebälle (Snowball) is a shortcrust pastry shaped like a snowball, often dipped in chocolate.



These balls made entirely from marzipan are shaped like potatoes. It’s quite hard to tell the difference between this pastry and a real potato (at least before you taste them).


Glühwein with Jägermeister

If you think that a regular mulled wine isn’t strong enough, try the one with added alcohol. It’s the ultimate way to warm yourself on a cold evening. You won’t need a second glass, one will be enough. You can choose from all kinds of alcohol, but I especially loved the one with Jägermeister.

What to do in Karlsruhe in December

Ice skating

If you’re a winter sports lover, don’t miss the huge ice rink, Stadtwerke Eiszeit. Set in front of Karlsruhe Palace, it’s southern Germany’s largest open-air ice rink!

The ice skating rink is open from the end of November until the end of January (daily 10 AM – 9 PM).

ice skating rink Karlsruhe Palace

Visit Karlsruhe Palace

The palace used to be the main residence of Charles III William, Margrave of Baden-Durlach, during the 18th century. Nowadays, the beautiful palace houses the Badisches Landesmuseum.


The exhibit presents items from prehistoric to the present time, including ancient cultures, history of the Romans, the Middle Ages and many more. The entrance is free every Friday after 02:00 PM.

Karlsruhe Palace

State Museum of Natural History

State Museum of Natural History is one of the largest natural history museums in Germany. The collection features native and exotic wildlife from different regions, including over 30 aquarium tanks!

Karlsruhe State Museum of Natural History
More popular tours

How to get to Karlsruhe Christmas market

By train

Karlsruhe Central train station is about a 20min walk from the Christmas market at Friedrichsplatz. You can also take the tram (line 4 or 10) or the S-Bahn (lines S1 or S11) to Friedrichsplatz.

Check timetables and book tickets online at Deutsche Bahn official site.

By air

The closest airport is Baden-Baden Airport. To get to Karlsruhe, take bus number 234 (to Rastatt Station) or bus 285 (to Baden-Baden Station). From there take a train to Karlsruhe Station (20min journey).

karlsruhe weihnachtsmarkt

Medieval Christmas market in Durlach

Medieval Christmas market Durlach

Looking for a different Christmas? Then visit the Durlach Weihnachtsmarkt. Held in front of Karlsburg Castle, this market is a great way to find out how people celebrated Christmas in the Medieval Ages.

Campfires, jugglers, blacksmiths and musicians will carry you centuries back in time. You can take a photo with a medieval sword, shoot with a bow or try a roasted hog! The Glühwein comes in mugs decorated with dragons. Take one and stroll along the stalls, stuffed with all kinds of handmade medieval toys and decorations.


Durlach Weihnachtsmarkt Opening times
From 26 November to 22 December 2020
(please note that the dates for 2020 are yet to be announced)
Daily from 11:00 AM to 09:00 PM


How to get to Durlach Christmas Market

As Durlach is a suburb of Karlsruhe, you can easily reach it by using public transport. Take tram number 1 from Durlacher Tor station in Karlsruhe to Durlach Schlossplatz station (less than a 15min journey). You can use this online tool to plan your journey to Durlach.

You need to buy a single ticket for 2.60 EUR for 2 zones. We used a daily CityPlus card, that is for 3 zones, up to 5 people (more info about the tickets here).

Have you visited the Christmas markets in Karlsruhe and Durlach?
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Karlsruhe Christmas market
Durlach and Karlsruhe Christmas Markets

About the author
Avatar Milena Yordanova
I'm a travel blogger based in Sofia, Bulgaria. Travelling has always been my passion and I love to discover new places and cultures. I want to show you how easy it is to organize your vacation all by yourself.

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