It’s finally that time of the year again! That’s right, the Christmas season is now officially upon us. And although we curse the cold harsh winter months we are still livid with excitement for the arrival of the Christmas shops and their mulled wine, punch, cookies, bars, enchanting smells, Christmas lights, and so on… So sit back, relax and enjoy this beautiful guide to the top Christmas markets in Germany.
German Christmas Market History
Christmas markets date back to the 14th Century when licenses, allowing craftsmen to sell their products in market stalls over the festive season, were granted. Thus, basket weavers, toy makers, bakers, and much more provided Christmas shoppers with everything they needed. You could even buy toasted almonds, walnuts and roasted chestnuts, everything to make the visitors’ stay as pleasant as possible. Of course, these Christmas markets fast became an annual tradition in Germany due to their increasing popularity.
Nuremberg Christmas Market
The Nuremberg Christmas market is one of the most famous Christmas markets in Germany. It is opened every year by the Christmas angel. This year the momentous event took place on November 30th 2012 at 5:30 and the market will remain open until the 24th of December 2012. A large choice of festive programs with a special children’s Christmas event is on offer, as well as over 200 stalls selling a wide variety of goods including food stalls with sausage, gingerbread, candy and spices. Other stalls offer various items such as candles, jewelry, gifts, Christmas decorations, books, and of course toys. Don´t forget to try the Glühwein (German Mulled Wine) as well as some Feuerzangenbowle (Fire Tong Punch) to warm up. If you plan to visit the Nuremberg Christmas market then there are three things you should definitely do which are; eat a Nuremberg Bratwurst, as not only is it delicious but it is very big (up to 9 cm long, 1.5 cm diameter), treat yourself to some Nuremberg gingerbread and buy a Zwetschgenmännla (figurine handcrafted from prunes).
Munich Christmas Market
The famous Munich Christmas Market has been set up once again this Christmas 2012 in Germany and will remain until the 24th of December. Renowned for being, what is probably, the largest Christmas manger market in Germany, Munich Christmas Market has something for the young and old alike. Children can let off steam by baking and tinkering in the Town Hall‘s “Heavenly Workshop” whilst the Discoverer Game (Entdeckerspiel), suitable for all ages, will not only put visitors’ creative and baking skills to the test, but will also teach them Christmas traditions. From 4pm to 6pm Santa even visits the Munich Christmas Market distributing small gifts to the kids. But that’s not all, the Krampus (demonic like creature from folklore thought to punish bad children) and his gruesome friends will also feature, much to the delight of visitors, who will run around the market scaring unsuspecting passers-by.Comprising an annual custom, it is actually a lot of fun! Of course, visitors will also find the traditional bratwurst, gingerbread, mulled wine, etc, combined with some festive live music for a very Merry Christmas in Munich!
Kassel Christmas Market
The Kassel Fairytale Christmas market, held this year from the 26th of November to the 30thof December, is also worthy of mention. This market boasts a unique atmosphere and as its name suggests, every year it has a different theme based on one of the world famous Brothers Grimm fairytales with “Little Brother and Little Sister” story taking center stage this Christmas 2012 in Germany. There will be an extensive pre-Christmas program open for all ages and while the children are kept occupied, the adults can sit back and relax with a delicious glass of hot mulled wine. In addition, not only does the Kassel Christmas Market feature the world´s tallest fairytale pyramid, it boasts a 300m2 free-standing Advent Calendar. Finally, visitors can participate in daily prize draws throughout December, and the Christmas Coca Cola truck passes by Kassel on the 1st of December 2012.
No matter which German Christmas market you choose, a smashing good time is sure to be had. And while you get ready for your trip don´t forget to check out www.localnomad.com. Merry Christmas!