The season is here! The smell of gingerbread and hot chocolate fills the air while Christmas carols play in the background. We have taken it upon ourselves to explore the best Christmas markets in Germany during the holidays. There is so much to see and eat (!) at these beautiful markets so without further ado…
This has been our favorite Christkindlmarkt thus far. Nuremberg is a two hours’ drive from Munich, but it can take a bit less on the Autobahn. It is surrounded by gorgeous buildings and the Church of Our Lady. You must try the famous lebkuchen (gingerbread) and the hot mulled wine. A carousel, horse carriages, a kid’s market, homemade toys (a Nuremberg specialty), little sausages, and much more will greet you with the Nuremberg Christmas cheer. We also made it into the Nuremberg newspaper!
2. Marienplatz (Munich)
We have been to Marienplatz, the main city square, so many times, but the first time I rode the elevator up to the square I saw the 80 foot tall decorated Christmas tree staring back at me I was taken aback. It is huge and so stunning next to the Glockenspiel! We bought a little Nutcracker ornament, a Munich snow globe, and some delicious candied walnuts and cashews. It is also worth it to stay for the 5:30 Christmas carols sung from the city hall even if it does get a bit chilly after dark.
3. Tollwood (Munich)
This Christmas market is in the same grounds Oktoberfest is held. Each Christmas market in Munich has a different theme, and Tollwood’s “vibe” is more homemade and artsy. They made their Christmas tree out of used bicycles! We loved smelling all of the Christmas scented candles, and every time we light it in our apartment we are brought back to that cold, wintry day. Tollwood is really nice because they have multiple tents filled with more souvenirs to buy which is a perfect way to stay warm in the freezing cold weather.
The Herrsching Christmas Market is right near our apartment and is only held for 2 days – this weekend. I can’t wait to walk down to the lake and see all of the familiar faces of our little town. It is supposed to be 50 degrees and sunny!
5. Munich Residenz
A short walk from Marienplatz, the Munich Residenz hall holds a smaller, but no less amazing Christmas Market. I loved being in the midst of the Residenz – one of the first museums we visited when we first moved to Germany. It had beautiful moving nativity sets placed on the outskirts of the market along with enactments of different children stories like Little Red Riding Hood.
There are numerous other Christmas markets around the country like in Berlin, Dresden, and Frankfurt. The more the merrier! Christmas in Europe is unlike anywhere else in the world. Must-try’s include gingerbread, hot mulled wine (gluhwein), candied nuts, and currywurst/bratwurst.