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The town is host to one of the largest Christmas markets in northern France. With an alpine flavour, this market is quite different to many around Europe and offers visitors a change from the traditional wooden crafts found elsewhere. Instead, visitors can enjoy Le Creuset kitchenware, fine crystal and hand-made glass, as well as Angora sweaters. For fish lovers, the market is home to many stalls selling eel, shrimp, duck and trout, as well as Beauvais chocolate and Amiens macaroons.

The Arras market includes about 60 exhibitors, organised around the themes of decoration, presents and gastronomy. You can enjoy cooking lessons with chefs, craft demonstrations and a merry-go-round, in addition to the usual arts and craft stalls and Father Christmas.

The month-long Christmas Market in Lille is the largest in Northern France and has been a tradition for centuries. A popular destination for British visitors because of the Eurostar link, the festival is held in the Place Rihour in the town centre.

There is plenty for all to enjoy at this Christmas market. A variety of delectable delights and gifts are offered by all the stall holders and there is entertainment to delight and captivate all the family, including traditional folk dances and costumes, parades and games.

In the Biovès Gardens and throughout the town. The Christmas festival in this charming Riviera town features lights, shows, and a Christmas market and nativity scene.

Besançon's Christmas market offers carol singing, over 60 stalls selling arts and crafts and local products, folk dancing and plenty of street entertainment.

The sights and sounds from the stalls lining the city square of Metz are perfumed with mulled wine and gingerbread when the Christmas Market arrives. The whole Place Saint-Louis and the Esplanade is illuminated with enchanting waterfalls of lights and wonders to behold.

Béthune is an attractive small town in Northern France with a Christmas market that holds around 40 Flemish-style chalets selling festive crafts, regional produce and other gifts. The market is located by the Belfry tower in the central square of the city and is regarded as one of the best ones in the region.

Montbéliard holds its annual Christmas Festival of Lights with a Christmas market (one of the best in the area), craft fair and many other seasonal festivities. The town is ablaze with lights and decorations during this festive time of the year and attractions include pastry-making workshops for children, chocolate and warm wine tasting and sleigh rides.

Each year, Bordeaux's Allées de Tourny is transformed into a magical winter wonderland of little wooden huts and stalls. This is a traditional Christmas market and a great place for picking up some original gifts for your loved ones.

Montélimar, the capital of nougat enjoys Christmas times, full of joy and tradition. Visitors will be well entertained with markets, museums, cribs and tales.

The market in this charming town is nestled in a natural harbour in Brittany. The market features chalets selling Christmas wares.

Mulhouse offers a typical Alsatian market with half-timbered stalls featuring exceptional fabric and other French products. The whole shopping experience gets even better while sipping mulled wine and snacking on "bredele" (small typically Alsatian cakes) or Christmas biscuits.

Chartres hosts a fantastic Christmas market, the town ablaze with festive lights. There are stalls with local artisans displaying their goods as well as plenty of tasty treats of chocolate, chestnuts and cinnamon to tempt the taste buds. Younger visitors will enjoy the manger scene, a welcome parade for Santa Claus and ice skating.

The medieval town of Nancy, famous for its triumphal arch built to honor Louis XV, hosts its celebrated market in the historic Place Maginot. A wide range of local specialties are on offer, from delicious fresh bread to spicy charcuterie and, for those with a sweet tooth, Bergamotte bonbons, Macarons and Mirabelle liqueur. Enjoyable Christmas activities include carol singing, folk dancing and lively street entertainment. Several little chalets (stalls) sell hand-crafted toys and an array of other presents.

Colmar holds its annual Christmas market from 23 November to 31 December and it is regarded as one of the most unusual French markets with its special character. It takes place in the Old Town at 5 various venues: Petite Venise for children, Place des Dominicains, Place de l'Ancienne Douane, Place Jeanne d'Arc and inside the Koifhus, the old customs house.

Noisy le Grand Christmas Market is one of the biggest in the Paris area and has become a favourite Christmas shopping destination. Twinkling decorations, traditional glassware, hand crafted wooden toys and horse-drawn carriage rides create a festive atmosphere that appeals to children and adults alike.

Dijon's Christmas market at Place de la Libération offers a host of over 60 stalls selling local products (spice bread, mustard, foie gras and honey), plus colourful arts and crafts, children's toys and mulled wine. Visitors can glide on ice at the skating rink at the Place de la République.

Organised by the town of Orléans, this month long Christmas Market is located at the Place du Martroi. The market boasts 62 chalets which offer a large range of local produce. There is also an ice rink to enjoy!

Licques Christmas Market is famous for its traditional turkey parade and market with high quality traditionally-reared organic poultry. At the market there is the opportunity to purchase various foodstuffs, regional produce, beautifully packaged sweets and chocolates, traditional decorations and local crafts.

Christmas in Paris is truly spectacular. Paris is always a picturesque city but at Christmas the city of lovers really comes into its own for visitors and residents alike. If you decide to spend Christmas in Paris, you will only have to walk a few steps to spot a Christmas tree. The city features several Christmas markets, with most starting some time between late November and early December. This is a wonderful time of year to visit the capital and take in the sites that the city has to offer.