Monday, December 22, 2008

Germany Trip: Christmas Markets


I felt fortunate to be able to visit Germany during the holidays. Seeing all the Christmas Markets, or Weihnachtsmärktes, was truly a neat experience! Each town and city hosted a Christmas Market and length and size of the Christmas Market depended on the size of the town/city. All the markets we made it to were in large cities and were open every day of advent. Others may have only been on the weekends and even smaller ones may have only been on one weekend of advent.

I loved the look and general feeling of the Christmas Markets. All the booths were wooden and they all matched. There were usually lights and greenery hanging from each of the booths. Each market usually had either a huge Christmas tree, a pyramid or nativity or a combination of a couple or all of them. A lot of times there was also a carousel and other rides for kids.

The products that were sold really varied, but were mostly wintertime related. I saw things like ornaments, wooden toys, hats, mittens, scarves, pyramids, nutcrackers, and the list goes on! On top of that there were all sorts of food booths that usually had potato cakes, sausage, sweets, crepes and many other goodies depending on what market we were at.

It seemed like the main draw of the Christmas Market was the gluhwein, or hot spiced wine. I think we had gluhwein at nearly every market we went to. The area surrounding the gluhwein booths were always packed and hard to get to. When we'd purchase the gluhwein, we'd have to put a deposit on the mugs that they served it in. If we didn't want the mug, we just had to return it and get our deposit back. We never returned them, though, we kept them as souvenirs :-) The only Christmas market that didn't have gluhwein was the Medieval one, but they had Love Potion, which was actually gluhwien :-)

Here is a slideshow of my gluhwein mugs:


I'll admit after so many Christmas Markets, we were kind of Christmas Marketed out at the end of the trip. We were seeing a lot of the same things over and over again at them. I wouldn't change anything, though. The Christmas Markets were still a wonderful part of our Germany experience!

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