Brno named European Capital of Christmas 2024

The Czech city has been recognized as a "creative Christmas jewel" by the jury of the European Capital of Christmas competition.

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky Published on 16.12.2023 12:40:00 (updated on 18.12.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

Brno has clinched the coveted title of European Capital of Christmas this year, taking over the title held by Kyiv for 2023. The international jury, which specifically focuses on cities with over 100,000 inhabitants promoting Christian values, bestowed the prestigious honor on Brno this year, notes TIC Brno spokesperson Hana Bánovská in a press release.

Over the years, Brno's Christmas celebrations have transcended local boundaries, capturing the hearts not only of Brno residents but also drawing visitors from various Czech regions and abroad.

Described as a "creative Christmas jewel" by the evaluating jury, Brno's Christmas festivities were recognized for their ability to attract tourists and bring about substantial social and economic benefits to the city.

"The city of Brno represents a creative Christmas jewel, through which the city itself conveys its tourist and Christmas appeal with important social and micro-macroeconomic repercussions on the city’s urban fabric," writes European Capital of Christmas on its website.

"The most representative values are undoubtedly solidarity and the strong commitment to its own heritage as a sign of global identity, which is one of the aspects also highlighted by UNESCO, so that the city of Brno is identified as the ultimate expression of creative culture and strong identity, as well as, with its illuminations and flea markets, the most atmospheric Christmas scene."

Christmas in Europe, according to the organizers of European Capital of Christmas, signifies a period of special importance, emphasizing values like integration, tolerance, coexistence, and peace. In Brno, this festive season also incorporates a robust charitable aspect, aligning with the broader themes of Christmas.

"The main themes that we emphasized in the application and that were highly appreciated were locality and solidarity," notes TIC Brno director Jana Janulíková.

"We have long-term cooperation with local sellers, artists, musicians, designers, manufacturers, but we also involve Brno companies and institutions. This cooperation creates an unrepeatable authentic atmosphere of Brno Christmas." 

For years, Brno has been a festive hub, with Christmas markets adorning Svobody Square, Zelné trhu, and Moravské náměstí. This year, the city introduced a new market at Moravské náměstí. Additionally, a charming oval ice rink, a first for the city, has been installed as part of the festivities at this year's Christmas markets.

Alongside Brno, Waterford in Ireland was named European City of Christmas 2024, recognizing cities with less than 100,000 people. The jury also recognized Almanza in Spain as the municipality with the smallest population.

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