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Top 5 Christmas markets

in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

If you’re wondering what to do during the Christmas holidays in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, our delicacies and spectacular events promise timeless end-of-the-year celebrations! The gentle summer lifestyle of the South of France becomes magical at Christmastime: enchanting markets, illuminations, nativity scenes with santons and the tradition of the 13 desserts in Provence, discover your South of France wishlist and give yourself a treat!


Nice for a mythical Christmas

At Christmastime, Place Masséna is turned into a real Father Christmas village. Light shows are projected on the facades of buildings, passers-by are plunged into a magical world as soon as they set foot there. They can see the 50-metre-high Ferris wheel.

In this South of France Christmas market, you can put your skates on for a pirouette on the ice or reproduce the famous scene from Bambi! Feeling peckish? Choose savoury or sweet – enjoy a mini-tartiflette or chocolate waffles! And if you feel the cold, come and warm the cockles of your heart with a favourite Christmas beverage, a nice hot mulled wine.

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Une publication partagée par Anca Lungu (@anca.lungu)

Feel free to dream in Toulon



Every year at Christmastime in the South of France, the magical and festive atmosphere of Christmas invades the port of Toulon. Head for the “enchanted” Place de la Liberté and let the magic take place: carousel, chalets and even live nativity scenes … Adults are in awe just like the kids – it’s a real trip back to their childhood! A toboggan run and a Christmas tree carousel bring a twinkle to visitors’ eyes and a feeling of warmth. All the ingredients for a magical Christmas with enchanting Christmas parades all over the town.

Christmas in the limelight in Marseille

For the occasion, the Mediterranean city becomes a real live stage with a calendarful of shows. On the beaches of Le Prado, the Cirque Medrano circus sets up its big top for several days with a special Christmas edition: trapezists, clowns and acrobats share the limelight. And the magic of fire and images on the Quai du Port for the Nuit de Lumière in December, and even a firework and music display for an explosion of sparks that twinkle and disappear into the sea. A sort of light contest between the show on the seafront and the stars in the sky. And of course the Christmas market on the Vieux-Port Quai de la Fraternité.

Avignon for a traditional Christmas

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Une publication partagée par Avignon (@villedavignon)

Don’t know where to spend Christmas in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur? Head for Avignon, a city which is still very attached to the tradition of Christmas, with its market and around 30 chalets with ideas for gifts to put under the Christmas tree. You’ll discover food specialities to place on the Christmas table or to eat on the spot. It’s also an opportunity to perpetuate the tradition of the Provencal 13 desserts : a well-rooted culinary tradition where 13 sweet dishes are served for the Christmas dessert. Among them, are dried figs, quince cheese, white nougat and calissons. THE MUST: The Célestins church to admire the big traditional nativity village and meet keen santon makers.

A snowy Christmas in Serre-Chevalier Briançon

No need to go to Lapland for a magical Christmas: head for the Valley of Serre-Chevalier Briançon , in its white cloak of snow! An invitation to spend Christmas by the fireside in a wooden chalet for good family times and do winter sports on the runs for the more athletic or tobogganing just for fun! Have paper and pencils ready for the kids, because when they’ve finished writing their letter to Father Christmas, they’ll take it to Father Christmas’s letterbox. Wander around the Christmas market in the resort, surrounded by snow-covered chalets, and be guided by the heady smell of cinnamon and the sound of Christmas bells!