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Christmas Markets in Germany

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Mar 20th, 2012, 04:17 AM
  #1
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Christmas Markets in Germany

We hope to visit the Christmas markets in Germany late Nov. early December. Where are some of your favorite markets? We plan to spend time in Berlin, Bavaria. Nurnberg,Munich, Dresden and of course small towns in those areas. I am not sure if we will get to the Rhine Valley, it seems that may be more of a summer destination, but please correct me if I am wrong.
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Mar 20th, 2012, 04:59 AM
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We had a lovely Bavarian Christmas a couple of years ago, which included a stay at Rothenburg for a few nights, where we could go to their night market, as well as the one at nearby Dinkelsbuhl. They were really atmospheric - and Rothenburg has the added extra of the Wolfenkart Christmas shop, which has great decorations and trinkets. You need to check exactly when in December those night markets begin though ( I think it may be mid December??)
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Mar 20th, 2012, 05:15 AM
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The ones in Berlin start to open in late November as I recall. The one at Postdamer Platz is fairly extensive
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Mar 20th, 2012, 08:17 AM
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We did Rothenburg, Nürnburg, Stuttgart, and Salzburg, Austria.

Stuttgart and Nürnburg are are the larger ones but frankly, I though they would be much bigger than they were. I liked Stuttgart better. Salzburg is well organized. Rothenburg is very small - but I really loved the 1/2 meter long bratwurst!
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Mar 20th, 2012, 10:45 AM
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Berlin has some very nice Christmas markets.

The one in the Franconian town of Bamberg is small, but nice, and Bamberg also has a "Route of Nativity Scenes."
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Mar 20th, 2012, 11:44 AM
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How long are you planning to be in Germany?

For the Dresden area - Dresden itself has the Striezelmarkt, one around the Frauenkirche (themed the years about 1900), the medieval one in the Stallhof nearby. And several others, but these are the best Christmas markets.

Definitely make a side trip to the smaller towns in the Erzgebirge mountains - it doesn't get more authentic for Christmas than there (that's where the wooden Christmas items are manufactured). Kurort Seiffen, Annaberg-Buchholz, Schwarzenberg, Freiberg are my favourites.

Another option, for a slightly different ambience, is Görlitz, with Silesian and Bohemian influence.
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Mar 20th, 2012, 11:58 AM
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Seiffen, the centre of woodcarving, absolutely. The whole village is a Christmas market and there you buy right from the producers, so you know the stuff is genuine.
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Mar 20th, 2012, 12:05 PM
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I was at the Dresden Christmas market every day in 2011 (my serviced apartment overlooked the Frauenkirche) and Ingo gives a very good description. I did not get to the Erzgebirge because there was no snow , apparently the first time it's been like that in ages

My personal favourites are Dresden, Basel (although Switzerland's not on your itinerary), Bruges (Belgium's not on your list either) Muenster, and Baden-Baden.
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Mar 20th, 2012, 12:15 PM
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It is a great time to visit Germany. We sight see during the day and shop at the markets in the evening. We enjoyed many stops. Some with pictures.

Rothenburg:

http://mcchelsea.smugmug.com/Germany...6787052_jw7Xdk

Bamberg:

http://mcchelsea.smugmug.com/Germany...6785879_wz7Mrj

Regensburg's Romantic Christmas Market:

http://mcchelsea.smugmug.com/Advent-...5030947_4WtqMc

Veitshöchheim on a shortday trip from Würzburg:

http://mcchelsea.smugmug.com/Advent-...5024966_hfGwvD

There were many more. I would only suggest that you select your cities for the setting as well as the market itself. There are so many good choices that you can hardly lose.

Regards, Gary
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Mar 20th, 2012, 01:45 PM
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This is all sounding wonderful. We will be in Germany about 3 weeks.
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Mar 20th, 2012, 05:45 PM
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If you go from one town to another you will find the Christmas markets are pretty much the same.

Munich has several large Christmas markets including one that is entirely focused on carved wooden crèche figures of all sorts, the Krypt Markt. Whe I say all sorts I mean it. If you have always wanted an elephant for your nativity set, this is the place to get it. The big Munich Christmas market is the one is at Marienplatz and the Krypt Markt is a block away. The lights at night and the smells from the bratwurst, the chestnuts, the gluhwein and the candied almonds are enticing whether you buy anything at all.

Nuremburg is one of the oldest markets and they are known for their sausages that are served three at a time and for their gingerbread. Be sure to watch for the Christmas angel with her gold clothes and long blond curls.

When you are in Rothenburg be sure to have their half-meter sausages. Very good and very long. It makes a great funny vacation picture if nothing else.

The Salzburg market is small but nice. The highlight in Salzburg is the Christmas eve midnight mass at the cathedral if you are there at that time. The church bells all over town are inspiring.
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Mar 21st, 2012, 01:54 AM
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>If you go from one town to another you will find the Christmas markets are pretty much the same.

They are not if you focus on those that have local/regional traditions, like Nürnberg, Aachen, and especially the cities and towns in Saxony.
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Mar 21st, 2012, 03:44 AM
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Medium to large cities have their Christmas Markets begin the 4 weeks before Christmas, better known as Advent. Small towns and villages may have their market on just one weekend or perhaps 2 weekends.

My favorite small markets are in Höchst, Büdingen, Idstein, Bad Homburg, and Seligenstadt. Look for medieval markets for a change.

For big city markets, I do think the one in Frankfurt is fun, with the setting in the old town Römer square, especially if you are there on a Wed. or Sat. when the brass band plays from the Alte Nikolai gallery that overlooks the market. Stop inside the many churches in the middle of the market, like the Kaiserdom, Liebfrauen church, St. Katherinas or the Alte Nikolai for organ concerts, and carol singing.

Wiesbaden and Mainz are also good ones.

Ruedesheim can be nice, due to the setting but the quality offered at the stands ranges from decent to downright kitsch, and the latter much too often. Not impressed with the many of the gift items on sale there, but the place is decorated extravagently and a ride on the chairlift overlooking the Rhine is a treat.
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