People walk through a festive Christmas market at night, with illuminated snowflakes and a large Christmas tree in the background. Booths line the path, selling various goods and treats. Experience one of the Top 10 Christmas Markets in Tennessee here for an unforgettable holiday evening.

Top 10 Christmas Markets in Tennessee: Must-Visit Festive Destinations

When the holiday season rolls around, Tennessee transforms into a winter wonderland. The state is full of festive lights, cheerful music, and charming Christmas markets. These markets are perfect for finding unique gifts, delicious treats, and enjoying holiday traditions with your loved ones.

What are the best Christmas markets in Tennessee for you to visit this holiday season?

A bustling Christmas market with colorful stalls and twinkling lights, surrounded by festive decorations and joyful shoppers

Spanning from bustling urban centers to quaint small towns, Tennessee offers a variety of Christmas markets that cater to every taste and interest. Whether you are looking for Victorian-inspired crafts or local vendors showcasing their homemade goodies, the state has a market for you.

Explore our top picks and feel the magic of Christmas in the Volunteer State.

1) Chattanooga Holiday Market

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The Chattanooga Holiday Market is a must-visit for anyone in Tennessee during the festive season. This market is held at the Chattanooga Convention Center and is a vibrant hub of holiday joy.

You’ll find over 200 local vendors offering a range of arts and crafts, artisan foods, and unique gifts perfect for the holidays. It’s a great spot to find something special for everyone on your list.

The market is open on three weekends in December. This gives you plenty of chances to experience the festive atmosphere, complete with live music and delicious seasonal treats.

Make sure to wear comfortable shoes as you’ll want to spend hours exploring the countless stalls. Not only can you shop, but you can also enjoy the sights and sounds that make this market truly unique.

Here’s a quick guide to the Chattanooga Holiday Market:

DatesDecember 2-3, 9-10, 16-17
AddressChattanooga Convention Center, 1150 Carter St, Chattanooga, TN 37402
Times10 AM – 5 PM
PricesFree Entry

2) Knoxville’s Christkindlmarkt

The Chriskindlmarkt in Knoxville bustles with festive stalls and twinkling lights, as visitors browse handmade crafts and savor the aroma of mulled wine and roasted chestnuts

Knoxville’s Christkindlmarkt is a charming take on the traditional German Christmas market. Set in the heart of Knoxville, this market brings together festive lights, holiday music, and a warm community vibe. You will love the blend of old-world charm and local craftsmanship.

As you wander through, enjoy authentic German treats like bratwurst, pretzels, and glühwein. There are plenty of vendors, offering unique handmade gifts that make perfect holiday presents.

The market atmosphere is vibrant, with carolers and performers adding to the festive spirit. Families can enjoy activities like ornament decorating and carriage rides.

This market is a fantastic spot for holiday photos, with beautifully decorated stalls and twinkling lights. Don’t miss out on Knoxville’s own Christkindlmarkt for a truly memorable holiday experience.

DatesAddressTimesPrices
December 1-23, 2024126 Bernard Ave, Knoxville, TN11 AM – 8 PMFree Admission

3) Nashville Christmas Village

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The Nashville Christmas Village is a highlight of Tennessee’s holiday season. Held at The Fairgrounds Nashville, it’s a premier shopping event featuring over 260 merchants from various states. Expect a wide array of unique gifts, from handmade crafts to gourmet treats.

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Every year, the Village attracts more than 30,000 shoppers. It’s a perfect spot to find holiday presents or just enjoy the festive atmosphere. Kids under 9 get in free, making it a family-friendly destination.

If you’re planning to visit, make sure to mark your calendar for November 8th-10th, 2024. Tickets are available online starting October 1st. This event is popular, so purchasing in advance is a good idea.

The venue charges a $10 parking fee, so bring cash if you’re driving. The location at 500 Wedgewood Avenue is easy to find with GPS. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, Nashville Christmas Village offers a delightful way to celebrate the season.

DatesAddressTimesPrices
November 8-10, 2024500 Wedgewood Avenue, NashvilleFriday: 9am-9pm, Saturday: 9am-6pm, Sunday: 12pm-6pm$15 online, $12 advance at TRUIST locations, Children under 9: Free

4) Memphis Holiday Market

A bustling holiday market in Memphis, Tennessee with festive decorations, twinkling lights, and a variety of vendors selling gifts and treats

The Memphis Holiday Market is a must-visit for anyone in the area looking to dive into the festive spirit. This market is held from October 25-27, 2024, and brings together over 200 merchants offering a wide variety of goods. It’s a perfect place to get your holiday shopping done early.

You’ll find a range of unique gifts, including handmade crafts, artisanal foods, and holiday decorations. The market also hosts a silent auction and special events like “Margaritas & Mistletoe,” making it a fun outing for the entire family.

Set in the Ridgeway Trace Shopping Center, the Memphis Arts Collective also offers another delightful experience with its holiday artist market running from November 24 to December 24. Here, you can explore creations from local artists like painters, potters, and jewelers.

Memphis’s vibrant holiday pop-ups are also worth checking out. They usually continue through the end of December and offer a charming mix of local crafts, great food, and festive drinks. The city’s holiday traditions, like Zoo Lights, add another layer of sparkle, making your visit extra special.

Event Details

DatesAddressTimesPrices
October 25-27, 2024Ridgeway Trace Shopping Center9 a.m. – 8 p.m.Varies
November 24-Dec 245847 Poplar Ave. Suite 110, MemphisSee specific event for detailsVaries

5) Franklin Dickens of a Christmas

A festive Christmas market in Tennessee with colorful stalls, twinkling lights, and bustling crowds. A giant Christmas tree stands in the center, surrounded by vendors selling handmade crafts and delicious treats

Experience the magic of the past at the Franklin Dickens of a Christmas. As you stroll through historic downtown Franklin, you step into a scene straight from a Charles Dickens novel.

The event recreates the Victorian era with its charming architecture and costumed characters. You can expect to see Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and even Fagin from Oliver Twist.

Musicians and dancers fill the streets, bringing joy and festive cheer. Vendors offer unique holiday gifts, and food stalls serve seasonal treats.

It’s a wonderful way to celebrate the season with family and friends. Don’t miss this iconic Middle Tennessee tradition!

DatesAddressTimesPrices
December 14-15, 2024Main Street, Franklin, TN 3706410:00 AM – 5:00 PMFree Admission

6) Gatlinburg Winter Magic Festival

The Gatlinburg Winter Magic Festival features festive Christmas markets with twinkling lights, holiday decorations, and cheerful vendors selling handmade gifts and treats

The Gatlinburg Winter Magic Festival transforms the city into a sparkling winter wonderland. From November 10th to January 27th, you can immerse yourself in a world of twinkling lights and festive cheer. The streets are lined with millions of LED lights, creating an enchanting atmosphere.

You won’t want to miss the Trolley Ride of Lights, which offers a cozy, heated tour of the dazzling light displays. The trolley ride starts in early November and runs through late January, giving you plenty of time to experience the magic.

Throughout the festival, you can also enjoy special events like the Festival of Christmas Past. This event offers a glimpse into the traditions and stories of Christmases long ago, adding a touch of nostalgia to your holiday season.

The Gatlinburg Christmas Parade, known as the Fantasy of Lights, is another highlight. With its colorful floats, marching bands, and holiday characters, it’s a must-see for families.

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In addition to the lights and parades, you can explore local shops that are beautifully decorated and filled with unique gifts. Many shops and cafes even offer seasonal treats to warm you up.

Event Details

DatesAddressTimesPrices
Nov. 10 – Jan. 27Downtown Gatlinburg, TNVarious timesFree
Trolley Ride of LightsMain Street6:30 PM – 8:00 PM$10 per person
Fantasy of Lights ParadeMain StreetDec. 7, 7:30 PMFree
Festival of Christmas PastGreat Smoky Mountains National ParkDec. 8, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PMFree

7) Tennessee Christmas Market at The Mill

The Tennessee Christmas Market at The Mill is a gem tucked away in Lebanon. It’s perfect for those looking to enjoy a festive atmosphere with unique holiday finds.

Expect to find an array of homemade crafts, decorations, and delicacies from local artisans.

You can also enjoy live music and seasonal treats.

The market is family-friendly, offering activities for kids like crafts and meet-and-greets with Santa Claus.

The Mill’s historic setting adds to the charm, giving you an old-world Christmas experience.

With beautifully decorated stalls and twinkling lights, it’s a magical place to shop for gifts or simply soak in the holiday spirit.

Plan your visit to ensure you don’t miss the special events and entertainment scheduled throughout the day.

Schedule

DatesAddressTimesPrices
December 14-15, 2024300 North Maple Street, Lebanon, TNSaturday: 10am to 8pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Adults: $10
Kids (under 12): Free

8) Pigeon Forge Winterfest

Pigeon Forge Winterfest turns the town into a magical winter wonderland. The festival begins on November 9 and continues until February 18, making it a perfect destination for holiday fun.

More than one million dazzling LED lights illuminate the area, transforming it into a sparkling spectacle.

You can explore the Winterfest Wonders of Light Walking Trail. This trail features over 20 vibrant displays, including walk-through arches and a 52-foot-long caterpillar. The colorful lights and whimsical decorations make for amazing photo opportunities.

The festival offers plenty of activities for everyone. From visiting Anakeesta in Gatlinburg to checking out The Island in Pigeon Forge, there’s no shortage of things to do.

Both spots provide great shopping and entertaining experiences, perfect for making memories with family and friends.

The whole region of Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, and Sevierville embraces the winter season, offering unique holiday displays and events. The friendly atmosphere and festive decorations make it a must-visit destination during the holiday season.

Event Details:

DatesAddressTimesPrices
Nov 9, 2023 – Feb 18, 2024Pigeon Forge, TNVaries by eventVaries by event

9) Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas

Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas is a holiday treat you won’t want to miss. The park glows with over six million lights, transforming into a winter wonderland.

Enjoy festive rides and shows, including a special version of “A Christmas Carol.” The brand-new Joyful drone show will dazzle you with hundreds of drones lighting up the sky.

Live performances, holiday treats, and exclusive shopping experiences are just a few of the highlights. Be sure to book a stay at the DreamMore Resort and Spa for a complete holiday experience.

Event Details:

DatesAddressTimesPrices
Nov 1, 2024 – Jan 5, 20252525 DreamMore Way, Pigeon Forge, TN 3786311 am – 9 pmAdults: $79
   Children (4-9): $69
   Seniors (62+): $69

10) Johnson City’s Christmas Parade & Market

Johnson City shines during the holiday season with its vibrant Christmas Parade and Market. The Johnson City Holiday Market at Founders Park is a must-visit.

You’ll find a variety of vendors offering holiday-themed crafts and gifts. It’s an ideal spot to pick up unique presents and festive decorations.

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The Christmas Parade, titled “Christmas in Toyland,” is another highlight. Scheduled for December 2nd at 10:30 a.m., this event is a delightful display of holiday cheer.

Floats, marching bands, and festive characters make it a joyful experience for all ages.

Explore other festive activities, like the Tannenbaum Christmas Shop and the Lights Spectacular at Appalachian Caverns. These add to the city’s cheerful atmosphere, making it a top spot for holiday fun.

Event Details

DateAddressTimePrice
December 2, 2023Founders Park, Johnson City, TN10:30 a.m.Free

History of Christmas Markets in Tennessee

Christmas markets in Tennessee have developed rich traditions, blending local culture with festive celebrations. These markets have grown from small town gatherings into significant attractions.

Origins and Growth

The beginnings of Christmas markets in Tennessee were humble. Initially, these celebrations centered around small community gatherings in local towns and cities.

These events focused on bringing together residents to share in the holiday spirit, featuring handmade crafts and local goods.

Over time, the popularity of these markets surged. Cities like Franklin began transforming their downtowns into winter wonderlands.

These festive setups include vintage-style decorations, carolers, and themed stalls, inspiring many other towns across the state to follow suit.

By the late 20th century, major events like the Smoky Mountain Winterfest started to gain traction. These large-scale Christmas extravaganzas helped cement the importance of holiday markets in the local culture.

Today, Tennesseans anticipate visiting these festive events each year, passing down these traditions through generations.

Cultural Significance

Christmas markets in Tennessee hold deep cultural importance. They serve as hubs of community and celebration during the holiday season.

People gather to enjoy the festive atmosphere, shop for unique gifts, and indulge in seasonal treats.

Events like Dickens of a Christmas in Franklin evoke historical charm, recreating the Victorian era.

These experiences not only entertain but also educate attendees about local traditions and history.

The markets support local artisans and vendors, which strengthens the local economy and community bonds.

Through these events, Tennessee celebrates diverse cultures, showcasing various holiday crafts, foods, and performances.

These markets remind you of the state’s rich cultural heritage and the importance of community during the holiday season.

Planning Your Visit

To make the most of your trip to the top Christmas markets in Tennessee, it’s important to consider the best times to attend and what to bring for a smooth and enjoyable experience.

Best Times to Attend

Visiting the Christmas markets during the weekdays is often calmer and more relaxed compared to weekends.

Weekdays offer shorter lines and a better chance to interact with local vendors without feeling rushed.

If you prefer a lively atmosphere, weekends are bustling with festive activities and special events, like live music and performances adding to the holiday cheer.

Evenings typically have the best holiday lights, creating a magical atmosphere that’s perfect for families and photographers.

Peak season runs from late November through December. For those who enjoy a quieter visit, early January can be a good option as the markets start winding down.

What to Bring

Packing for a visit to a Christmas market can make or break your experience. Be sure to bring comfortable shoes since you’ll be walking a lot.

Layered clothing is essential for adapting to the changing weather without being too hot or too cold.

A small backpack or tote bag can help carry your purchases easily while keeping your hands free to enjoy the festive treats.

Don’t forget your camera or smartphone, as the decorations and lights provide fantastic photo opportunities.

If you have young children, a stroller can be helpful, although it might be challenging to navigate through crowded areas.

Cash is also recommended, as some vendors might not accept cards. An umbrella or raincoat could be handy just in case, as Tennessee weather can be unpredictable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn about the best cities, markets, and experiences that Tennessee has to offer during the Christmas season. Whether you’re looking for festive food or live music, these FAQs cover it all.

Which Tennessee city is known for its outstanding Christmas celebrations?

Chattanooga stands out for its numerous holiday events. The Chattanooga Holiday Market is a must-see, along with iconic attractions like the Enchanted Garden of Lights at Rock City.

What are the must-visit Christmas markets in Tennessee for unique crafts?

For unique crafts, check out the Mistletoe Market at Bradley Square Mall in Cleveland. Another great option is the Nashville Christmas Village, offering a variety of hand-crafted items.

Where can you find traditional German Christmas markets in Tennessee?

Knoxville’s Chriskindlmarkt provides an authentic German market experience. You’ll find traditional crafts, mulled wine, and various German treats.

Which Tennessee Christmas market offers the best festive food experience?

For a top-notch festive food experience, Franklin’s Dickens of a Christmas is the place to be. The market features Victorian-inspired festive treats that will make your holiday season memorable.

Are there any Christmas markets in Tennessee that feature live music performances?

Yes, Nashville Christmas Village often includes live music performances, adding to the festive atmosphere. It’s a great place to enjoy some holiday tunes while you shop.

What safety measures are typically in place at Tennessee Christmas markets?

Tennessee Christmas markets generally feature several safety measures. These include crowd control, sanitation stations, and sometimes timed entry slots.

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