Disability and accessible tourism: 7 wheelchair friendly Christmas markets

Disability and accessible tourism: 7 wheelchair friendly Christmas markets

The Bimblers describe themselves as the UK’s most unlikely travel bloggers. Rob together with his partner Bridget travel in a wheelchair, reviewing access as they go. Driven by the mantra “Access For All” Rob has joined us to share his thoughts, observations and ideas to make travel easier for people of all abilities. In today’s post, accessible tourism…

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When the ghouls of Halloween have screamed their last scream and the bonfire embers have cracked their last crack, it can only mean one thing – it’s Christmas! And what better way to get in the festive mood than visiting a wheelchair friendly Christmas market.

With so many fantastic markets to choose from, we’ve listed seven of our favourites, all of which are accessible in a wheelchair. Please bare in mind, markets can get very busy so be sure to check the official websites for access information and to find the best times to visit.

Without further ado, we give you “7 Wheelchair Friendly Christmas Markets

Christmas Market

London
If you live in or are visiting London, a trip to the Christmas market at Tate Modern is a must. In its second year, the magical Christmas wonderland brings together a Santa’s Grotto, Carousel, Christmassy entertainment and a festive market selling unique gifts and delicacies. Held at Bankside between 20th November and 23rd December, there s no better way to start your Christmas festivities.

Official website and access information: Christmas Market at Tate Modern

Birmingham
Billed as the largest German market outside of Germany, the Frankfurt Christmas market and Craft Fair is set to be the best ever. The German-themed market mixes seamlessly with local traders, offering authentic German foods alongside local produce. The market is on between 12th November and 22nd December and is held in and around Birmingham city centre.

Official website and access information: Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market and Craft Fair

Manchester
Spread across the city centre, Manchester’s festivities are more of a Christmas experience than a market. Starting in November, the northern powerhouse transforms itself into a Christmas wonderland. European and local producers sell their wares on some 300 stalls, and a full programme of activities and yuletide frivolities means Manchester is a must visit, award-winning Christmas market.

Official website and access information: Manchester Christmas Market

Liverpool
Liverpool takes Christmas to the extreme. Themed as “One Magical City” Liverpool doesn’t just celebrate Christmas, it becomes Christmas. During November and December the city morphs into a winter wonderland with traditional stalls, Jack Frost’s Snowflake Trail, the Ultimate Christmas Fair and this year you can pay a visit to Weeping Window, the fantastic display of ceramic poppies which are on show at St George’s Hall.

Official Website and access information: One Magical City

Edinburgh
Edinburgh has over 20 years experience of staging Christmas markets, this year is set to be the best yet. A truly magical city any time of the year, Edinburgh surpasses itself over the Christmas period. Set against an iconic Edinburgh backdrop, the romantic market runs between 20th November to 4th January and stretches from the Mound, along East Princess Street and around the Scott Monument. More than a market, Edinburgh has rides, Santa Land and a winter ice rink. If ever you needed an excuse to visit Edinburgh, a Scottish Christmas has got to be it.

Official website and access information: Edinburgh Christmas

Cardiff
Christmas arrives in Cardiff between 12th November and 23rd December. Spread throughout the pedestrianised areas and with a free city centre mobility service, Cardiff Christmas market should be high on any Christmas list. With 190 stalls, selling gifts and crafts from local and international traders, Cardiff has Christmas all wrapped up.

Official website and access information: Cardiff Christmas Market

Belfast
Belfast Continental Christmas market encompasses Christmas from around the world with Germany, Spain, France, Italy and, of course, Northern Ireland all represented. Set in City Hall and Gardens between 14th November and 20th December, an eclectic mix of craft, food and a traditional Irish welcome is sure to light up your festive season. Maybe not on your typical Christmas dinner, but rare meats such as Alligator, Kangaroo and Wild Boar will be available to try alongside more traditional Irish culinary delights and no doubt brews.

Official website and access information: Belfast Christmas Continental Market

Nativety Scene

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
We hope you enjoyed our short round-up of accessible Christmas Markets. We’d love to hear about the markets you’ve visited and how accessible they were. Above all else, Bridget and I from TheBimblers.com would like to extend our very best wishes to each and every one of you and wish you a happy and healthy Christmas and New Year.

By Robert Obey

Want to get in touch with Disability Horizons? You can message us on Facebook, tweet us @DHorizons, email us at editor@disabilityhorizons.com or leave your comments below.

If you’re planning your next holiday, why not visit our new travel site, Accomable, to find accessible accommodation not just in the UK, but across the world.

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