Manchester Christmas Market has long been hailed as being one to watch when it comes to really great Christmas markets in the UK. While it is undoubtedly a hive of activity from the day it opens until the day it closes, is it possible that Manchester Christmas Market has lost some of that special Christmas sparkle?
Well over 200 stalls can be found sprawled all over the city centre, and it’s impossible not to see them if you’re heading into Manchester. These stalls attract many more visitors than usual to this already busy city, so throughout November and December, walking through the city can become quite an overwhelming task if you’re not prepared to wade through throngs of festive marketers!
Festive, Germanic market stalls adorning every corner of the city certainly adds some festive cheer to the streets of Manchester, and the stalls are fantastic to mooch around. If you arrive early in the day, there tend to be fewer people around so you won’t find yourself jostling with strangers to see what wares a stall is offering.
In the past, spending a leisurely afternoon wandering around the market has usually been a great way of passing time in one of the most festive ways known to man, and picking up some beautiful Christmas gifts for loved ones along the way. All kinds of edible goodies have usually been up for grabs along with home made trinkets and artisan treasures.
This year, the stalls feel a little different. While there are still food and drink stands aplenty, and stalls selling delicately crafted Christmas decorations made from holy wood from Jerusalem (or so we are promised), they are interspersed with street vendors selling phone covers and thin hoodies featuring decals that start to peel off if you breathe on them too hard. Somehow, these stalls make the whole thing feel a bit less special. The distribution of traditional Christmas stalls feels very odd, too. There are parts of the market where you can find several cheese stalls in quick succession, all featuring the same ‘Pink Flamingo Prosecco Cheese’. This is wonderful news if you like to take full advantage when samples are on offer, but not much fun otherwise.
Another qualm that many people have had with Manchester Christmas Markets this year, is the food. There are lots of food stalls to choose from if you’re feeling peckish, but your bank account will take a bashing. The traditional German sausage is up to a whopping £6 this year, and that’s one of the cheaper options available.
If you visit Manchester’s festive fete this year, make sure to do so with an open mind and a full bank account! Have you visited this year? We would love to know what you thought! Please let us know in a comment below.