Christmas is no longer just an event. These days it’s more of a season in and of itself. And for this season Cambridge and its surrounding region are putting on quite a show, with many Christmas markets and festive events. All of which are in striking distance of the Varsity Hotel.
Starting off closest to home is the Mill Road Winter Fair, held from 10.30am – 4.30pm on Saturday December 7th. Mill Road is famous in Cambridge. A long, straight narrow road lined with many independent small shops and restaurants, constantly full of car, bike and foot traffic, and sprouting dozens of roads tightly packed with terraced houses. Newcomers to the city often consider cycling down Mill Road to be some local form of extreme sport. But for one singular day it becomes one large pedestrianised space filled with perhaps ten thousand visitors. The shops and restaurants spill out onto the streets to be joined by live music. It is truly not to be missed.
Also, running daily 11am – 9pm from November 16th through to January 5th, The North Pole returns to Cambridge. This ice skating rink on Parker’s Piece is a very popular annual fixture, its clear span roof giving the impression of open air skating without the weather issues that involves. And its Alpine Cabin bar does a roaring trade in bratwurst, hot chocolate and mulled wine.
And let’s not forget some of the other top attractions of Cambridge at Christmastime – our very own River Bar Steakhouse and Six Panoramic Restaurant. Both of which also make excellent venues for Christmas parties of all shapes and sizes.
Local Christmas Markets
The region surrounding Cambridge will also be hosting a number of Christmas markets, largely in the final week of November and the first week of December. Here are a few of our top picks for your consideration:
We start off with the Burghley Christmas Fair and Fine Food Market, running daily from November 28th – December 1st, 9.30am – 4pm. Located in the lovely Burghley House, Peterborough, this fair focuses on fine foods and luxury gifts and features 100+ individual stalls.
Next is the pretty new Histon Handmade Christmas, open 12 noon – 7pm on November 30th in Histon. This craft and design fair first ran in 2016 and is now expanding due to popularity. It is billed as an excellent place to obtain weird and wonderful stocking fillers.
Then there is the 7th annual March Christmas market/fair. Held in March town hall on December 1st from 10am – 3pm, this fair boasts 100 stalls, live entertainment and festive foods.
Finally there is the Norfolk Christmas Fayre in Norwich Cathedral on Friday December 6th 10am -9pm and Saturday December 7th 10am – 5pm. This is a local market featuring home grown makers, creators and producers from around the county.