During the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, there are things you want to do and things you have to do. You want to sip mulled wine and seasonal IPAs surrounded by the sweet scent of pine trees and the glow of Christmas lights. You have to get your gift shopping done. Not to worry, you can do both at the same time at any of the charming Christmas markets that pop up this time of year. They are sprinkled all around the Charlotte area like unique little snowflakes; each just different enough that you could visit all of them and find something new every time.
The Girl Tribe pop up market returns to the Charlotte Convention Center Saturday, December 10th and Sunday, December 11th. It sets up a weekend of Holiday shopping from your favorite boutiques, beauty brands, makers, photo moments, and cocktails. There is a $5 admission fee for this one. You can get your tickets here.
Camp North End hosts a Mistletoe Market the first three Saturdays in December. You can eat, drink and shop from 4pm-8pm. There’s live music, fire pits to huddle by, igloos to chill in and Vintage Charlotte curated market vendors.
Hi-Wire Brewing in South End hosts mini pop-up markets every Thursday from 6p-8p. Each week they feature new local vendors.
Bring the kids and check out the Carolina Holiday Light Spectacular in Ballantyne’s Backyard. There’s a fee for this nightly experience, but it includes snow tube slides, larger than life decorations and a half-mile walking trail adorned with more than one million lights. While the kids have fun, you can grab a festive beverage and shop at the Christmas market.
Sip and shop at Pilot Brewing in Plaza Midwood. They are hosting a vendor night market on December 10th from 6pm-9pm.
The most well-known Christmas market in Charlotte is at the Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. This is the 11th year for the event. For four weekends a year, OMB transforms its biergarten into a Weihnachtsmarkt, or German-style Christmas market. There’s holiday music, Gluhwein (spiced wine), hot chocolate, fire pits, German eats and, of course, lots of beer. There are more than 40 vendors selling unique items in little huts. The market is open each weekend in December leading up to Christmas, Friday-Saturday from 12pm-9pm and Sunday from 11am-7pm. Santa will even stop by on December 17th from 2pm-5pm.
The Charlotte Regional Farmers Market might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think about where to do your Christmas shopping, but hear us out. They have gorgeous plants and flowers (great for host gifts), gift baskets, local honey, beauty products, locally-roasted coffee, gourmet olive oils, North Carolina wines and so much more. Click here to see the full list of vendors for Saturday, December 17th. It’s open from 8am-5pm. You can even get a Christmas tree here if you haven’t gotten one yet. Of course, there’s also a ton of amazing local produce, meat, fish and prepared foods.
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Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden in Belmont adorns its grounds with spectacular holiday lights every year. If you visit on Thursday, December 15th you can shop at the Garden Vendor Market after you wander the grounds. There is an admission fee for the event and you should reserve your spot online. There’s no guarantee you’ll get in if you just show up. If you haven’t seen the dazzling lights here yet, put it on your list of things to do. It’s a beautiful way to spend an evening. They have an outdoor fire pit where everyone makes smores and food trucks with yummy treats and hot chocolate.
Sure, the mall is heated and provides shelter from the elements, but where’s the fun in that? Grab your coat, get outside and do your shopping at a local market.