German Christmas Markets

Jun 22nd, 2001, 11:24 AM
Kelly Bratich
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German Christmas Markets

I am very interested in visiting Germany and even Switzerland during Christmas. I have heard the Christmas markets are great. Can anyone give me information on them or share experiences with me. Thank you.
Jun 22nd, 2001, 01:26 PM
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Hi Kelly:

I am going back this year for my 3rd Christmas Market! I just love the feeling I get when I travel to the German Markets, wonderful! I was going to post this question myself but you beat me to it. As for where I have been:

Nurenberg The largest of the Christmas Markets. Some say its TOO BIG and you do not get that quaint experience feel. I still think its worth a stop for a first timer.

Rothenberg: My favortite town, especially in the Christmas season, youo have to hit this one!

Munich: Smaller than you would think, but still a great town.

Garmish: Another small market, but aother of my favorite towns. I just love Garmish!

I was going to post my request for other "special" markets that I could visit on this trip Lets see who responds

Have a great time!

Jun 22nd, 2001, 02:11 PM
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John just pointed out the "Romantic Road". Look up Romantic road on the web to get info on major attractions...John is right on target. Rothenburg is by far my favorite. My wife and I did a bus tour with DER Tours fall '96 and they had info on a Christmas market tour. Have fun!
Jun 22nd, 2001, 03:25 PM
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The Christmas markets are wonderful; the only advice I can give, though, is be aware they can be incredible mob scenes on week-ends. If you can do the markets on week-days and sightsee on week-ends, you'll enjoy yourself more.
The markets others have listed sound great. The only Christmas market that I didn't like was Aachen's; too many stands selling only alcoholic drinks, too few selling food or craft items. And we went on a Saturday and could barely move for the crowds.
Jun 22nd, 2001, 05:25 PM
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We have visited Germany last December and almost every town/city that we stayed have a christmas market. The largest one was Stuggart, follow by Nurnberg. Rothernberg's CM was actually not as appealing as the rest though the town is super. The one that we like most was Trier, there was a stall selling fried mushroom which i think is the best in the world. we couldn't one as good as the one at Trier. We like Regensberg CM as well and sometimes smaller towns' Cm have a better atmosphere though the scale is smaller. CM in Deidesheim and Speyer were very nice as well.
CM in Berlin actually resume business after Christmas eve!
To us most of the CM were selling almost the same thing, and normally we like the warm wine best.
It was great fun but the only set back was we couln't take good picture of the buildings and churches around the square.
Jun 22nd, 2001, 05:57 PM
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I was in Munich last December. While I'm not much of a shopper, I definitely recommend the Gluhwein (it's sold at numerous stands in the Christmas Markets). I don't know the exact ingredients but it's red wine, cinnamon, sugar, & also a little fruity taste. Best of all, it's served warm. It really hits the spot on a cold winter's day (or night).
Jun 22nd, 2001, 06:49 PM
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I've been toying with this idea myself for the past year. I have seen a few tour companies offer Christmas Market tours..generally about one week in length. Any one with any info on these?? Any other ideas? I've already done my big trip this year but could certainly squeeze this in!
Jun 22nd, 2001, 06:59 PM
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There's another thread on this subject that outlines a lot of opinions. I've been to a few over the past few years and they're really great.

Frankfurt - there's a great carousel at this one and lots of unique crafts.

Bad Wimpfen - beautiful little town, lots of cobble stone roads, picturesque hilly areas, lots of food

Nuernberg - big and one of the most famous in Germany. I didn't particularly enjoy it because it was extremely crowded the day I went. I really couldn't get near the booths. Lots of ornaments at this one though. I wish I could remember the name of the cookies that I got there - kind of flat, square with almonds on the top - famous for the area. Also, the wursts there are fabulous.

Mannheim - big and rather spread out.

Heidelberg - there are several different areas in the town that have little markets set up. Gorgeous setting. My favorite, by far - but I'm biased because Heidelberg is my favorite place in the world. There's a glass blower at one of the markets who does beautiful candle holders, every year, I bring my mother a new piece.

Gluhwein is the best! As Doug said, it's spiced red wine. You can request an added shot of more alcohol if you want (vodka, rum, gin, etc). Most towns have their own mugs with the name of the town and the year on it. You pay one price for the drink (maybe $US 2) and a deposit on the mug. You can get it refilled during the evening for the $2 and then turn in the cup and get your deposit back. Or, keep the cup as a great little gift for yourself or someone else.
Jun 23rd, 2001, 03:07 AM
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Hi again:

Stacy reminded me why I liked Nurenberg. The "nurenberg Wursts" and the "Leberkase". The wursts are the long thin type that they place on a roll (semmel) If you have not tried Leberkase you gotta give it a shot! It is not " Liver Cheese" as the direct translation would lead you to is like a square "Hot Dog" in taste..but tastier!!! Ah!!, wash it down with a great beer or if too cold a Gluwein. Finish it with a shot of "Obstler" Keeps me occupied when the wife spends 1/2 hr looking at "prune men" ornaments!!

Jun 23rd, 2001, 05:43 AM
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I enjoyed reading all the responses to your posted question. I lived in Germany in the past, and by far some of my greatest memories are of the ChristKindleMarkt in Nuerumburg. The rows of tents in the city square selling hand made ornaments is an awesome site. It is truely a must see for a traveler to Gemany. Beware of the crowds! But all the Christmas Markets offer something different. Definitly try to visit Rothenburg. It's a wonderful city, touristy, but wonderful. Happy traveling
Jun 23rd, 2001, 11:18 AM
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Another really nice market is the one in Cologne. And it's right outside the fabulous cathedral.
One thing that has not been mentioned (or if it was, I missed it) is that one CM tends to be much like another, except for the size. So, visiting two or three should be enough for just about anybody in one year. After that I should think you will get bored. (Save the rest for another year and more Christmas ornaments!
Aug 28th, 2001, 07:09 AM
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Aug 28th, 2001, 07:06 PM
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When do these christmas markets begin? Is there any sights online that give details?
Aug 29th, 2001, 03:59 AM
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They begin usually first Weekend in December, the German ones close on the 24. and the French (Strassbourg) on the 31.
My favourites: - but never on a Weekend!!!!
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
( I have never been to Vienna - they say it is good. Also Dresden).
I can be very very cold. Don't drink too much hot vine, otherwise you shall buy stupid things.
Jul 2nd, 2002, 05:11 AM
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Don't forget Cologne, the market starts right at the foot of the Cathedral.

Also Bonn, just down the line from Cologne, smaller and not quite so packed solid, spread over 3 squares or so.

One things is for sure, you won't go thirsty or hungry at them!
Jul 2nd, 2002, 05:17 AM
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I recommend VÝEnna CHRÝSKINDLMARKT....

and also SALZBURG.
Jul 2nd, 2002, 09:39 AM
Doug Weller
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Just wondering why Colmar hasn't been mentioned?

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