Christmas and holiday markets in Toronto this year are sure to dial up the festive spirit as the cold weather takes hold of the city. Get ready for plenty of mulled wine, wood-burning fires and gourmet treats. And lineups. While the Distillery District’s Winter Village may have started this festive trend, it’s become so popular that it can be hard to enjoy the atmosphere among the crowds. Fortunately, it’s not the only option for holiday cheer this season.
Here are nine holiday markets that’ll add sparkle to your winter.
Evergreen’s Winter Wonderland
Casa Loma Christmas at the Castle
From Dec. 2-Jan. 2, Toronto’s famed castle is set to be transformed into a winter wonderland, featuring stunning light displays performers and more. The interior will be decorated accordingly with a 40 foot tall evergreen in the Great Hall. The little ones can visit Santa’s workshop, decorate treats and enjoy arts and crafts. There will also be the castle’s Holiday Lights immersive outdoor experience from Dec. 1- Jan. 8 – upgrade your ticket to include both!
Great Hall Holiday Market
Elevate your gift-giving status by exploring the Great Hall Holiday Market on Nov. 26. With more than 40 local makers, you’ll discover one-of-a-kind treasures. Need a beautiful piece of handmade jewelry for your sister? Check! A stunning art print for your mom? Check. A perfect scarf for your significant other? Check! Be sure to arrive early because the first 30 visitors will receive a VIP swag bag.
One of a Kind Winter Show
Here’s another annual favourite not to be missed. The ‘One of a Kind Winter Show’ will take place this year from November 23rd to December 3rd and will include everything from craft soy sauce to knitted gnomes – a great place to find that unique holiday gift.
Holiday Fair in the Square
We love a good holiday market that also rhymes, and the Holiday Fair in the Square doesn’t disappoint. This year’s Square of choice is the Mel Lasman Square (in the north of the city) and will include everything from a hot chocolate (and booze) bar to a fireside lounge. Check out the site for a complete list of vendors and details.
Toronto Vegan Christmas Market
Here’s a new one for your holiday market list! All things vegan will be sold at this cruelty-free Christmas market. You’ll find the Toronto Vegan Christmas Market at the Lithuanian House (1573 Bloor) from December 9th to 10th.
Riverside C’mon Holiday Market
Festive Nights in the Village
If you haven’t been to Black Creek Village in a while, December is the time to go. Stroll through the village at nighttime and experience a puppet show, holiday-themed games, crafts, and some old-fashioned treats on December 2nd, 9th, and 16th. You can buy tickets at the door or online here.
Is any family holiday outing complete without a drive to Downey’s Farm? The annual tradition of farm-fresh goodies and Santa visits continues from November 25th to 17th until 4 pm. Families can also participate in scavenger hunts, making reindeer food, and other festive events. Details here!
Toronto Art Crawl Christmas Pop-up
Shop directly from 80+ talented Toronto artists and artisans during the Toronto Art Crawl Christmas Pop-up at the historic Great Hall on Queen Street West on Dec. 3. Discover unique art, photography, sculptures, jewelry, fashion, home decor, skincare, and more. Enjoy food vendors and DJ Kid Artik for some shopping and dancing.
The Distillery Winter Village
This list wouldn’t be complete without the most popular holiday market in the city. Step into this twinkling holiday wonderland with giant gingerbread houses filled with unique holiday vendors, strings of fairy lights, a giant Christmas tree and an array of daily performances. Note well, there is an admission charge on weekends at the Distillery Winter Village starting at 6 p.m. on Fridays, and the market isn’t open on Mondays!
The Garrison Holiday Flea
Always free to visit and always fun, the Garrison Holiday Flea is back this year on November 26th. The best way to keep up with this holiday favourite is to check the Garrison’s Instagram regularly.
Christmas Book Sale at the Toronto Reference Library
A market solely selling holiday books? We’re in! The Christmas Book Sale at the Reference Library (Toronto Public Library) is back this year from November 16th to 18th. Expect to pay a $2 admission fee if you arrive on the 16th. Otherwise, admission is free. You’ll find books starting at $1 and kids books for $0.50.
Maker Bean Holiday Maker Market
It’s effortless to find locally crafted goods in the GTA this time of year, and one of the best spots to find something interesting is the Maker Bean Holiday Maker Market. From December 9th to December 10th, you’ll find tons of unique goods taking up the two floors at the Maker Bean Cafe (1052 Bloor St W, Toronto). Bring a non-perishable food item to donate, too.
The Holiday Antique Show at Parkdale Hall
Want to shop vintage for your friends and family this season? The Holiday Antique Show on Queen West is the place to do it. Featuring more than 35 of the GTA’s best antique and vintage vendors, this two-day events from Dec. 4-5, you can look for the coolest vintage knickknacks and unique finds to dazzle your friends this year.
If you’re up for taking a drive through Ontario you should also check out the Christkindl Market in Kitchener, and Holiday Street Market in Milton.