Shop Local. Shop Often.

Over the past couple of decades, Euro-style holiday markets have colonized almost every neighborhood in Manhattan—indoors and outdoors, uptown and down. Not that we’re complaining. Nothing beats that big-box ennui like browsing the wares of indie vendors with a cup of hot cider in your hand and flurries gently falling from the sky. Here’s where to find a few of our favorites.

Midtown East: Founded in 1993, the Grand Central Holiday Fair is the original modern New York Christmas market… it even predates Square! Although it has fewer vendors than the popular Union Square market, Grand Central’s version has one main advantage: it’s inside the terminal itself. (So no flurries, but also no frostbite.) Head to Vanderbilt Hall, in between the main concourse and 42nd Street, to find such gifts as Apotheke charcoal bath soaps and Calderesque mobiles.

new york city holiday marketsPhoto Courtesy of MTA, Patrick Cashin

Union Square: Much larger than the Grand Central market and nearly as old (it was founded in 1994), the Union Square Holiday Market consists of 150-plus stalls neatly aligned in the southwestern half of the square. On our list: tiny terrariums that you can hang on your Christmas tree.

new york city holiday markets

new york city holiday marketsPhotos Courtesy of Urbanspace

West Side: As the Columbus Circle Holiday Market is run by the same outfit that wrangles the Union Square market, you may notice some vendor overlap. Still, if you’re uptown already, it’s worth a stop, just to pick up a bag of hot-fresh mini doughnuts.

new york city holiday markets

new york city holiday marketsPhotos Courtesy of Urbanspace

Bryant Park: This park’s Winter Village features the usual shopping suspects, with one very cool addition: free ice skating at the Village’s temporary rink. Oh, and there’s a Baked Cheese Haus serving raclette—a very Swiss dish that involves melted cheese scraped onto bread or ham.

new york city holiday marketsPhoto Courtesy of Bank of America Winter Village

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