If you want to make a Christmas getaway, we recommend Perpignan. Located in the south of France, Perpignan is the capital of the Langedoc-Roussillon area. Just 20 minutes from the Spanish border, Perpignan is an ideal destination for a weekend. This city has 130,000 inhabitants, where many of them are Spanish and Catalan who have emigrated. That is why they combine the Spanish and French traditions.
Christmas getaway: the market and the shops
Perpignan is a very nice city, but at Christmas it is the best time to go. The whole city is decorated with Christmas lights, ideal for a walk. In the center, next to the river, they make a Christmas market of craftmakers. These are located in beautifully decorated wooden houses, as in Christmas postcards. Maybe you’re lucky to meet Santa Claus among the people. In the Christmas market we find handmade jewellery, gifts, sausages, cheeses … There are also gastronomic options, such as Alsace sweets, bretzels, as well as crepes, waffles and even churros.
At the end of the Christmas market, you will find a large illuminated Ferris wheel. We recommend you go up to have the best views of Perpignan. In the city center, there is a wide variety of shops to complement your Christmas shopping. The stationery of the Loge, in the Place de la Loge, you can buy precious Christmas postcards. Nearby there is the church square, a place that offers drinks, like a vin chaude, accompanied by music. In this same square there is a center of artists meeting. They collect more than 50 artisans of painting, enlightenment, woodworkers, ceramics, jewellery … A place to be inspired.
Discover the center of Perpignan
Typical on a Christmas getaway, is to have a chocolat chau on some of the terraces in the center. Thanks to the stoves and the blankets they offer you, you will feel at home. You can always accompany it with a croissant, let us remember that the French are some pastry chefs. A good place to talk and observe the atmosphere of the streets.
You can continue the route of artisan shops, both clothes, shoe stores, food stores … And if you want to buy Christmas decorations, there are small workshops and stores of figures for the manger. Surely among all these options, you will find some gift to make this Christmas. And also in the outskirts there is the Porte d’Espagne. Here there are big supermarkets to buy gastronomic products, like cheeses, pates, foie, jams, butter, bread, viennoiseries …
Apart from Perpignan, you can complement this Christmas break with the surrounding villages. We recommend the Castle of Salses, the city of Ceret and if you want to go further, Colliure or Carcassonne.