For your Christmas in Paris, Emily, helps you make your Paris Christmas dreams come true with suggestions on some of the best (alternative) Paris Christmas Markets filled with gift ideas and fun-filled experiences this season.
Ever since the Champs-Elysées Christmas market was canceled by Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo in 2017, the quality of the Marché de Noël has been called into question citywide. While the mayoral move may have been merely symbolic (the Champs-Elysées market simply moved to the nearby Tuileries Garden in the years that have followed and similar low-quality Marché de Noël continue to pop up all across town), those planning a Paris vacation should take the same heed as Hidalgo in separating the joyous from the junky when it comes to holiday fun.
Luckily those spending Christmas in Paris have several opportunities to shop for authentic French products and enjoy some festivities in the French capital. Regular Paris attractions, including markets, tastings, and food events, provide a great alternative to the overpriced cones of churros and Made in China products found at the typical Marché de Noël in Paris.
Here is a list of fun things to do in Paris this year to celebrate the holidays in a more wholesome way:
1. Champagne & Caviar & More!
What says Christmas in Paris more than a caviar and champagne tasting? Head to iconic department store Galeries Lafayette Haussmann from now until January for a pairing of Dom Perignon Champagne vintages and Baeri Beluga Royal Caviar.
After stocking up on Champagne for the holiday season, concentrate on wine by visiting one of several tastings and salons that take place in Paris. Wine shopping is on the top of the list of favorite things to do in Paris and the end of the year brings some fantastic shopping occasions such as Vignerons en Seine, an event that brings together over 20 organic and biodynamic winemakers and takes place from December 14-15. Similarly, from December 6-8 ViniBio Paris hosts organic winemakers from across France and also includes the organic Noël en Bio Christmas market with organic food and artisanal goods from wooden toys to eco-friendly Christmas decorations.
2. Head to the Burbs
Another fun Christmas in Paris event will be held in the hip Paris suburb of Montreuil, where microbrewery La Montreuilloise is hosting a Christmas Market on December 14 featuring local artists and designers as well as a DJ and snacks. The following day in another Paris suburb you’ll find L’Etrange Noël des Créateurs in Bagnolet, which also hosts several local artists and talent.
3. Dining with Great Chefs
If you want to eat out and about on your Paris vacation, reserve your spot at Le Grand Bistrot de Noël, which brings some of the city’s best chefs to you. On December 12, ten of the top Paris bistro chefs will come together at the Elysée Montmartre and propose small plates paired with wine so you can do an Uber-free tour of Paris bistronomie!
4. Give the gift of experiences
If you still don’t quite find what you’re looking for at the myriad of Paris Christmas markets, we’ve got one more suggestion for you. You’ve already given yourself the gift of Paris, now you can take that gift one step further or share it with your loved ones by offering them one of many experiences of a lifetime. A cooking class in Paris is a wonderful way to offer a taste of France. Offer them a gift certificate or indulge in a hands-on cooking class for yourself. While many schools will be closed on Christmas day, Boxing day (December 26th), and New Year’s Day, you’ll find plenty of offerings before and after the holidays.
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