The Tivoli Christmas Market: The Best Place to Experience Christmas

They are the happiest people on earth, so it should come as no surprise that the Danes know how to “do” Christmas. Christmas is such a magical time in Europe and there is no better to experience the magic than at The Tivoli Christmas Market in Copenhagen. Visiting Tivoli Gardens is one of the best things to do in Copenhagen.

Tivoli Gardens in an amusement park in the center of Copenhagen that was opened in 1843. Tivoli Gardens (also known as Tivoli) has always included an oriental architecture theme, a theater, band stand, eateries, flower gardens, a gorgeous lake and of course amusement rides. In 1994, Tivoli Gardens held the first Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market.

Tivoli is constantly evolving to continually provide a new experience for its visitors. Despite the constant evolution, Tivoli has managed to maintain it’s charm and traditions. It is for this reason that Tivoli Gardens is a must on any travellers (or locals) bucket list. 

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Tivoli Gardens Seasons

Tivoli gardens has been voted the most magical theme park in Europe, and if you ask me, it is the most magical theme park in the world. If you visit Tivoli at different times of the year you are transported into different worlds. Tivoli has three main seasons, Summer, Halloween and Christmas. 

The park is closed from the beginning of January until June, so make sure you are in Copenhagen from June until the beginning of January to experience the magic of Tivoli Gardens.

Tivoli Gardens Season dates

A visit to Tivoli Gardens will be a highlight of your trip to Copenhagen, so avoid disappoint by planning your European adventures around their opening dates. Our original plans to for Copenhagen had us leaving the day before the Tivoli Garden Christmas Market opened, so we added in a stop on the way to Copenhagen to ensure we would see the Christmas Market.

Summer: 8th of June until the 4th of October

Halloween: 8th of October until the 1st of November

Christmas: 13th of November until the 3rd of January.

Tivoli Christmas Markets

Merry Go Round Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market

I have been lucky enough to visit Copenhagen twice, both times, at Christmas. After my first visit to the Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market, I knew I would have to go back to Tivoli at Christmas time. I had never experienced something so amazing!

At Christmas time, Tivoli Gardens transform into a winter wonderland mix between an amusement park and Christmas market. The air is filled with the sounds of Christmas Carols and smells of mulled wine. Snow dusts the roofs of the wooden huts selling beautiful hand made decorations. 

As soon as you walk through the gates the thousands of twinkling lights and Christmas decorations take your breathe away. It really is a sight to be hold. The array of Christmas trees are amazing, don’t miss out on seeing the trains driving around the big Christmas tree.

A brightly lit Christmas tree with a miniature train going around the bottom.

How much does Tivoli Gardens Cost?

Tivoli Gardens is not the cheapest activity but it is worth every penny. You have the option to pay for just entry and then pay for rides as you go. There two are two entrance prices, Monday to Friday is 135DKK and Saturday – Sunday is 145DKK for adults. 

For children, accompanied by an adult, the prices are cheaper with a flat rate of 60DKK.

If you are just planning on visiting the Tivoli Christmas market, you do not need to purchase ride passes. However, if you plan on going on a few rides, I suggest purchasing a ride pass, the prices start at 245DKK. When we were at Tivoli, we did not purchase a ride pass so we purchased individual tokens for rides and this adds up very quickly. After going on three rides, we thought that it would have been better to purchase a pass.

If you are unsure whether you will go on rides or not, or you’re travelling Europe on a budget have a walk around the Gardens first and then do some quick maths. You can purchase your unlimited ride pass once you are there. There are kiosks all around Tivoli that sell ride tickets and you can decide if which option works best for you. Each ride, requires a different a number of “tokens”.

Where to eat at the Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market

A great place to eat is the Tivoli Gardens food hall. There is a fantastic range of local and international foods and drinks. The food hall is an awesome place to warm up on a cold winters night. Be warned, the food hall gets very busy so it can take a while to find a seat. The food hall is located outside the park but as you leave the park you will be “stamped out” of the park so you can return without any issues. 

Top Tip: The Food Hall is open to the public all year round without visiting Tivoli Gardens, so if it is too busy when you are there, go back during the day! It is the perfect place to visit on your Food Tour of Copenhagen

Of course, you can always eat at the Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market stalls. The range of warm food and drinks are great, I highly recommend the mulled wine, it was some of the best we tasted at the Christmas Markets in Europe. 

If you purchase a drink from the Christmas Markets or the carnival food stalls you will need to pay a deposit for your cup. If you return the cup, you will get your deposit back. If you’re like us, you will probably keep your cup and it will be a cheap keep sake!

There are also several restaurants around Tivoli Gardens, that all offer different cuisine. It is recommend that you book with the restaurant if you would like to go at a specific time. If you are a group of less than nine you can book directly, otherwise you will need to email to book. The wait times on restaurants can be quite long at busy times.

Snow falling at the Tivoli Christmas Market

Tips for visiting Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market 

I suggest going late in the afternoon before the sun has set. This gives you time to see the Christmas market during the day as well as at night. We arrived at 3 pm on the day that Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market opened and this was perfect. It was not too busy and we saw the gardens in the day light as well as the night time. The night time is the best time to see the true beauty of the lights!

Don’t miss out on the light and sound show on the Tivoli Lake. It is absolutely beautiful. The show starts at 7:30pm but I suggest getting there early as it gets busy. We got to the bridge over the lake at about 7:10pm and found the perfect spot. After the first show, the show happens every half hour, no matter the show you choose, I recommend getting there early. 

Restaurants lining the lake at Tivoli Gardens at night covered in lights in Copenhagen

Tivoli gardens are the busiest on the weekends and later on in the evening. If possible, go on a week day and earlier in the evening. 

If you are travelling on a budget, you might want to factor this into your budget. The cost of things add up very quickly, expect to pay around 135DKK for decorations!!

It is well worth a visit and well worth eating into your budget a little bit but you may need to plan ahead, to ensure  you have enough money for the rest of your trip.

Where to stay when visiting Tivoli Gardens Christmas Markets

The best hotel to stay in when visiting Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen is Hotel Nimb. Not only is this hotel beautiful but it located right inside the Tivoli Gardens.

A little further a way, but extremely affordable options are the Copenhagen Downtown Hostel or if you would rather a cheaper hotel instead of a hostel you could stay at the CABINN Copenhagen.

Have you visited the Tivoli Gardens Christmas Market? Let me know in the comments below what you thought of it!

Fiona xoxo

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8 thoughts on “The Tivoli Christmas Market: The Best Place to Experience Christmas”

  1. I love Christmas Markets! They are just so…Christmas. They are definitely on my bucket list! Love the photos and thanks for posting!

  2. I’ve only ever visited Tivoli in summer and I had no idea how amazing it was during winter! I definitely need to plan a visit there for Christmas!

    • I would love to visit Tivoli during their other seasons!! Although, I have a feeling that winter might their best season.

  3. The Tivoli Gardens look so magical on a winter evening! We try a new Christmas market every year. I hope we get to visit this one!

    • I’m jealous that you get to go to Christmas markets every year! I wish we had them in Australia, although I have a feeling they wouldn’t be the same in the heat!!


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