SOUTHAMPTON will be feeling as festive as ever in just over a week.

The Christmas Market is back on after Covid forced the council to call it off last year.

As always, it will be organised by WELA Markets, and based in the Above Bar pedestrian precinct and Bargate Street.

It opens on November 18 and runs until December 23.

City councillor Spiros Vassiliou, said: “I’m so excited that the Southampton Christmas Market will be returning this year. We all had a slightly different Christmas last year and can’t wait to return to our favourite Christmas activities. There really is something for everyone, young and old, with chalets selling unique gifts and delicious food.

"Southampton is a real Christmas destination and the place to enjoy over the festive season. Southampton’s exciting offer also includes a special lights switch on event, pantos and live entertainment, in addition to our hugely popular retail offering. There is so much to get involved in for local families, and we look forward to welcoming them as well as our visitors."

Here is everything you can expect:


Daily Echo:

The traditional market features unique, individually designed alpine chalets.

There are plenty of independent stallholders offering a range of hand-made, authentic gifts.

These include: environmentally friendly and recycled goods, candles, clothing, jewellery as well as Christmas decorations.

Chalets are open 10am to 8pm daily.

Food and drink

Daily Echo:

There is plenty of choice – from German bratwurst and waffles to gingerbread hearts.

Visitors can enjoy a mulled wine if in need of warming up, and the cold steins of beer will be available once again in one of the open-air bars.

Food stalls are open from 10am to 8pm. Bars will remain open a further two hours until 10pm.

Lights switch-on

Daily Echo:

The Christmas Lights Switch On takes place on Thursday November 18 to launch the market.

Festivities will run from 5 pm to 7pm with live entertainment and street performances in the city centre.

Flying Santa

Daily Echo:

Sadly, the market operators have had to make some concessions to Covid and Flying Santa will not visit Southampton this year.

This is to ensure crowds are kept to a minimum.

Children can instead see Santa at Tudor House and Garden, but booking is essential.

Read the full story by clicking here.

Ice Rink

Daily Echo: Photo Stuart Martin -  Opening day of Southampton's Christmas Ice Rink Skate at WestQuay.

Southampton will be without an ice rink for the second year in a row.

Doubt shrouded whether the popular attraction would return to WestQuay this Christmas.

It was cancelled last year due to Covid, and in previous years has been announced as early as September.

But all was kept quiet this year, and after weeks of questioning by the Echo, organisers revealed the ice rink will not take place due to "pressure on resources, staff and materials".

Read the full story by clicking here.