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I’ve been having a great time eating, photographing and shopping my way through various Christmas markets in Germany so far. It’s been cold and a little wet in some places, but this has not dampened my spirits. How could it? With steaming hot mugs of glühwein to enjoy together with bratwurst and roasted chestnuts, Christmas carols, ice skating rinks, mini trains, giant Christmas trees, colourful carousels and rows upon rows of Christmas trinkets in festively decorated stalls, Christmas is definitely in the air. Here are some of the markets I’ve had the pleasure of wandering through so far and why they were memorable:
Frankfurt was our first stop and therefore held the biggest impact factor for us. The main market is also situated in a particularly picturesque square presided over by the Font of Justice.
We walked a lot in Heidelberg. From the haunting ruins of the castle, down the steep castle path, then across the Old Bridge and uphill on Philosopher’s Way for breathtaking views over this immensely picturesque town. By the time we made it back across the Neckar River and into the market, I was pretty hungry. The bratwurst and kartoffelpuffen (fried potato cakes) with apple sauce tasted especially good that night!
3. Baden Baden
Another beautiful cobblestone town and another great market location right by the grand and opulent casino. Baden Baden also had the cheapest wooden decorations I’ve seen so far and delicious soft nougat from the region of Provence. The day was completed with a relaxing soak in one of the public baths.
Stuttgart isn’t the prettiest city, but it does offer the Mercedes Museum for the car aficionados amongst us, and is a great base for exploring the fairy tale destinations of Hohenzellern Castle and the town of Tubingen, which was also hosting the ChocolArte Festival when I was there. The Stuttgart markets are also my favourite so far, featuring not only the usual market stalls and carousels, but also an ice skating rink, a giant model railway set surrounded by a mini train, a ferris wheel, and a less crowded feel owing to the fact that it’s sprawled out over a large area extending from the Town Hall to the palace garden close to the railway station.
We braved the cold, light drizzle and crowds in order to watch the renowned angel chorus at the Augsburg Town Hall, which happens at 6pm every Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout the Christmas market season. It was worth it! The Town Hall in Augsburg is very pretty. I also tried a rolled doughnut-like goodie called baumstriezel here – yum.
Have you been Christmas marketing in Germany? Which is your favourite? What do you like to eat at the markets?
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