It’s the most wonderful time of year — and the most shopping-est time of year, too. But, no matter how festive malls can be around the holidays, playing Santa Claus with thousands of other people at the same time can be a recipe for disaster. Of course, we don’t have to tell you that. You’ve been in the same overcrowded parking lots and waiting in the same lines we have.
So, we have an alternative for you. Skip that big-box shopping center life and all that Black Friday craziness and instead celebrate the beauty of more unique and local goods with this bevy of Christmas markets in the Dallas area that will leave you inspired rather than tired.
All you have to do is make your list and check it twice — and get set to find all the perfect presents, and so much more, at these markets that won’t turn you into a Grinch.
When: November 23 - December 23; Sunday to Thursday, 11 am. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: The Plaza at Texas Live!, 1650 E. Randol Mill Rd., Arlington
Inspired by a cherished German tradition, this cozy, family-friendly market features unique holiday gifts, decorations, and one-of-a-kind finds including authentic German gifts and collectibles. And, you really won’t want to miss the official Texas Christkindl tree-lighting ceremony on Sunday, November 25 at 6 p.m. featuring the Christkindl Angel.
When: November 23 – December 30
Where: Globe Life Park, 1000 Ballpark Way, Arlington
This world of wonder is like a Christmas fairytale come to life. It includes a Christmas Market, but there’s so much more to explore at this fantastical experience, including an ice skating trail, all the glittering lights, live music and shows, and the World’s Largest Christmas Light Maze, where you’ll help Santa find eight gifts hidden by the mischievous Eddie the Elf. As for that Market, it’s a one-stop-shop for local crafts, artisan goods, international finds, and more. See the full list of vendors here.
When: Saturday, November 24; 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: 317 W. Mulberry St., Denton
If you live close to the Denton area, add this market to your list. There will be live music all day along with kids’ activities and holiday decorations.
When: November 24-25; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and December 8-9; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Dallas Farmers Market, 920 S. Harwood St., Dallas
You have two weekends before Christmas to get in on The Boho Market’s local, handmade, and vintage collection of goods. The artsy-bohemian pop-up is hosted at the Dallas Farmers Market, so you know there will be plenty of artisan food along with craft beer, too.
When: November 30 – December 16; Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: 1508 Commerce St., Dallas
With weekly rotating Unbranded pop-up shops, holiday crafting, complimentary gift wrapping stations, happy hours, photos with Santa (and pets!), and even a WeWork Recharge Lounge, Downtown Dallas’ Wanderland experience should be at the top of your holiday to-do list. On Fridays, there are even movies at sundown including ‘Elf’ (November 30), ‘Christmas Vacation’ (December 7), and ‘A Christmas Story’ (December 14).
When: Saturday, December 1; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: North Haven Gardens, 7700 Northaven Rd., Dallas
From handmade jewelry to artwork and other finds by more than 30 local artists, this market combines the best of both art and nature. That’s because North Haven sets up the vendor tables throughout their gardens so you can peruse seasonal greens and a legendary selection of fresh Christmas trees, too. Live music, food, drinks, and more are also part of this annual experience.
When: Saturday, December 1; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Where: TUPPS Brewery, 721 Anderson St., McKinney
A bazaar with craft beer? Say no more. This shopping event and party will showcase the best in handmade gifts, apparel, jewelry, home décor, accessories, art, pottery, and more with hand-picked artists, crafters, and designers from both near and far. But, what’s really cool is the location at TUPPS, a microbrewery at The Cotton Mill in McKinney, where you can also expect both an indoor and outdoor covered event space, bar, stage, games, and food trucks — oh, and some solid brews, natch.
When: Saturday, December 1; 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Where: Shades of Green, 7401 Coit Rd., Frisco
Not only will Shades of Green garden center be stocked with all shades of holiday sparkle — from premium Christmas trees, wreaths, and poinsettias, to other seasonal decorations — this market will specialize in one-of-a-kind gifts from vendors that have just the things you want, but could have never thought of.
When: Saturday, December 1; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Jesuit Dallas, 12345 Inwood Rd., Dallas
Jingle all the way to Jesuit for the Jesuit Women’s Auxiliary’s 25th annual Christmas Bazaar that is nothing short of a legit shopping extravaganza with more than 115 (yes, 115!) vendors, artisans, chefs, and other local talent proffering home décor, jewelry, gourmet food, clothing and accessories and much more in addition to a wide range of religious, Catholic, and Christmas items. There’s also a Bake Sale — yum! All proceeds from the Bazaar go to benefit the students at Jesuit Dallas.
When: Sunday, December 2; 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Sixty Five Hundred, 6500 Cedar Springs Rd., Dallas
Lucky for you, CultureMap is bringing back its ultimate holiday shopping experience with this popup shop presented by Verizon. The wonderfully curated boutique features 25 of the online publication’s favorite local retailers for men, women, kids, pets, jewelry, gifts, home, and gourmet food and beverages — which basically means it’s a shopping dream. To fuel all that browsing, cocktails and festive food will be up for grabs with carolers, crafting, and more adding festive spirit.
If you really want to take it to the next level, sign up for one of the workshops link the ‘Plant and Sip’ holiday succulent workshop and the intro to brush pen holiday lettering. They come at a higher price of $35 and $45, respectively, but are so worth it.
When: Tuesday, December 4; 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Where: Heart of the Ranch at Clearfork, 5000 Clearfork Main St., Fort Worth
Take a festive field trip to Fort Worth and get in the holiday spirit outdoors at this third annual market at Heart of the Ranch, which is surrounded by a grotto of trees and has views of the downtown skyline and Trinity Trails. Shop more than 30 local merchants and artisan vendors for gifts, holiday treats, and more at the family-friendly event — plus, you may just see an appearance by Santa Claus along with living reindeer, a North Pole Mailbox, photo stations, and more. Food trucks will also be onsite with food and beverages available for purchase.
When: Saturday, December 8; 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: 9150 Garland Rd., Dallas
The jam-packed holiday market, hosted by Good Local Markets at Lake Pointe Church, is like a farmers’ market gone festive. You’ll still be able to procure all the local produce, meats, eggs, and baked goods you need for your next feast along with artisan crafts and other gift-y goods.
When: Saturday, December 8; 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Samuell Grand Amphitheatre, 1500 Tenison Pkwy., Dallas
Go back in time to a winter village of yore when Shakespeare Dallas transforms the park into an old English market. You’ll find top local artisans while drinking and feasting like royalty and experiencing the bustling merriment of the season with Elizabethan entertainment, festive games, live holiday music, and more. Naturally, costumed characters will likely be roaming the grounds. This is Shakespeare theatrics, after all. You can also get a VIP ticket that will give you access to a warming tent, a complimentary drink, and cocktails with Hamlet, and access to other giveaways.
When: Saturday, December 8 to Sunday, December 9; 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: Dallas Heritage Village, 1515 S. Harwood St., Dallas
Speaking of traveling back in time, the historic Dallas Heritage Village’s annual holiday celebration is another charmingly quaint affair with twinkling lights and décor, strolling carolers, St. Nicholas sightings, holiday crafts, and more. While it’s not technically an all-out Christmas market, you really can’t miss the magic — or the carriage rides. There will be a bake sale, though, along with lots of other festive fare, cooking demos, and treats.
When: Wednesday, December 12; 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: Highland Park Village
Highland Park Village is pure magic around the holidays with its seemingly endless array of white lights strung across every single square inch of the luxury shopping destination. Embrace the enchantment with fairytale carriage rides, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, face painting, and live musical performances all while shopping your favorite brands, exclusive in-store offers, and your fave LOCAL artisan vendors from the Village’s monthly neighborhood market.
When: Sunday, December 16; 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Downtown Plano Arts District, 998 E. 15th St., Plano
Steal a kiss under the mistletoe — fresh sprigs will be for sale! — at this second annual event that encompasses most of the shops and restaurants in historic downtown Plano. There will be hot cocoa and mimosas while you browse all the gifts to give along with special offers and promotions.
When: Sunday, December 16
Where: Lola’s Trailer Park, 2735 W. 5th St., Fort Worth
Rock on at this Sunday Funday monthly market that takes on a jingle-all-the-way theme in December. Collectibles, original art, vintage, vinyl, handmade goods, and the odd and the unusual are all of the kinds of things you can expect to find when browsing around here. Of course, the charm of Lola's Trailer Park and delicious food from a variety of food trucks and vendors, topped off with live music, ensures this is one delightful trailer-treasure.
When: Saturday, December 22, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Will Rogers Memorial Center, 3401 Lancaster Ave., Fort Worth
If you’re the ultimate last-minute shopper, this expo will save the day — and keep you out of that crazy holiday mall life. Expect to find thousands of cool items perfect for holiday gifts along with festive tunes, prize drawings, and delicious food.