The magic of Italian Christmas markets with True Italian Experience

Christmas markets are some of the most eagerly-awaited and best-loved events of the whole year: swathes of tourists flock to Italy for the occasion, seeking out a special way to spend their holidays. Despite the magic and beauty of these markets, some might dismiss them as nothing more than a commercial gimmick to capitalise on the Christmas season. But that couldn’t be further from the truth: they are actually a tradition that is deeply rooted in European culture that has long since grown into an unmissable feature of the Christmas period.

Experience Italy’s Christmas markets with True Italian Experience and Trenitalia

From the end of November, Christmas markets start to pop up and bring a wave of festive spirit into most city centres. Quaint wooden stalls, ice skating rinks, and stands offering all manner of sweet treats, mulled wine and hot chocolate fill town squares all over Italy. Thanks to True Italian Experience, the 100%-Italian travel hub, you can now visit some of the most charming markets the country has to offer with tailor-made experiences. Trentino Alto Adige is home to Bolzano, which has the oldest and most famous market in Italy, boasting a 75% leap in visitors in 2022 as against previous years. Thanks to Trenitalia, parent company of the Passenger Hub of FS Group and main partner of True Italian Experience, we can now reach the capital of Alto Adige with Frecce, Eurocity and Regional trains. From Verona, for example, Bolzano is a mere hour and a half away.

The heart of the market is in Piazza Walther, which is incredibly easy to reach as it is just a two-minute walk from Bolzano’s central station. Aside from traditional strudel and pretzels, here visitors can also find typical products from around the region and enjoy a genuine Alpine experience thanks to the folk music bands and magical carriages to be found throughout the historical centre.

Trentino Region also has another major Christmas market to offer in Trento, the regional capital. As part of Trenitalia’s Winter Experience offer, two new Frecciarossa trains a day now serve Trento with departures from Rome, Florence and Bologna, making a total of 12 Freccia trains per day, plus two new Frecciarossa trains from running from Milan at weekends. Inaugurated a mere two years after Bolzano’s market, Trento has all manner of distinctive local products including ‘tortel di patate’, a sort of fritter made from grated potatoes, and ‘treccia mochena’, a strudel-like dessert enriched with crème pâtissière and blueberries. Of course, the mulled wine flows freely as always, with a record 10,000 litres being sold over the Christmas period. Trento attracts more than 58,000 visitors, mainly concentrated over the weekends. A mere 1 hour 20 minutes away from Trento, there is another unmissable market to enjoy: Merano. Its market is spread throughout the city streets, with a wealth of different delights that can make for a perfect family getaway, especially for kids.