Frohe Weihnachten! It’s that time of the year again. Christmas is a wonderful time to visit Europe, and more specifically its famed Christmas markets. Christmas markets form the perfect setting to get into the holiday spirit, with the sweet aroma of mulled wine and cinnamon, the lovely smell of Christmas trees and the sound of Christmas carols. Millions of people from around the world flock to Germany to discover its unique Christmas market culture so I’m heading to Lower Saxony to browse the decorated stalls for unique handcrafts, drink Glühwein and warm myself around a bonfire.
The Christmas markets in the nine cities of Lower Saxony sparkle in front of charming historic backdrops. Among idyllic half-timbered houses, Gothic gable brick and magnificent baroque facades, you will be tempted by a warming cup of mulled wine and gingerbread in wonderful historic squares. A varied program of events makes a pre-Christmas tour through the 9 cities a special experience.
In front of the magnificent historic background of the old quarter around the St. Blasii Cathedral around 150 artisans, crafts people and market vendors invite you to Braunschweig’s Christmas market. In NorthernGermany, the Christmas market of Braunschweig is considered one of the most impressive of the region. Its tradition dates back to the year 1505. Guided tours of the city, its museums, theatres and inner-city shopping landscape are features that promise an eventful stay in Braunschweig
The enchanting city of Celle will fill you with Christmastime nostalgia. At Advent time, the delightful old town, founded 725 years ago, looks particularly splendid. The bright Christmas lights create a festive atmosphere among the colorful half-timbered facades with the aroma of spiced almonds and fresh biscuits enchanting you.
The Christmas market in Hameln seems to emerge straight from a fairy tale. The market is located in its historic center and hosts more than 60 wooden stalls, richly decorated. Highlights ofHamelin’s Christmas market are: the Nativity scene, which has real animals for the kids to play with, a Christmas pyramid standing at a mere 11 metres tall and a massive advent calendar on the Hochzeitshaus (Wedding House). A recommended guided walk of Hameln explores all the historic highlights and its beautiful ChristmasMarket. The 90-minute walk gives an in-depth guide to German Christmas customs and traditions, finishing with a well-deserved free hot drink of mulled wine.This tour can be booked, for only €10 per person, with the local Hameln tourist information office.
Allow yourself to be enchanted by the romantic background of the old city center that frames the Christmas market. Hannover’s Christmas market takes place at the historical old quarter around the Market Church and on the Ballhofplatz. Visitors looking for a real Christmas experience are spoilt for choice here, with no fewer than 190 attractively decorated stalls selling Christmas tree decorations, carved items, wooden toys and lovingly produced craftwork. An additional highlight is the “Wishing WellForest”. Within the forest, made out of more than fifty real fir trees, you can find the Oskar-Winter-Fountain with its “Wishing-Ring”. Legend says turning the ring will make wishes come true.
The historic market square of Hildesheim is where the heart of the Christmas market beats. The magnificent façades of the half-timbered houses will get you into the Christmas spirit in no time. Festively decorated stalls invite you to come for a stroll around the square „Platz an der Lilie”.
50 kilometer south of Hamburg, the ancient salt-trading and Hanseatic town of Lüneburg has an exceptionally good atmosphere and a beautifully romantic Christmas market. Thousands of little Christmas lights illuminate the town, its storybook gabled houses, baroque façades and medieval churches, to wonderful effects. The diversity of gastronomic offers ensure your visit to the Christmas city of Lüneburg is well worth your while.
Around the medieval Old Town Hall and St. John’s Church, the Christmas market of the university city Göttingen has its traditional place. At over 80 festively decorated stalls, you will find a multitude of typical Christmas items including candles, jewellery and Christmas tree decorations. Many artisans and craftspeople demonstrate their skills and invite you to come and explore their craftsmanship.
Set in the romantic ambience of the historic town market a visit to Wolfenbüttel Christmas Market is always an experience. The Christmas market has been held in Wolfenbüttel since 1585, making it one of the oldest in Germany. Five enchanting festively decorated courtyards open their doors on the weekends. Immerse yourself in fairy-tale worlds, experience historic Christmas or enjoy the wintery courtyard atmosphere.
As soon as the cold season sets in, Goslar lights up in the shine of festive decorations. The crisp air is bearing promises of Christmas with the aromas of baked apples, roasted almonds and cinnamon filling the air. Romantically framed on the market square, 80 lovingly decorated wooden huts invite you to stroll around and give yourself a delicious treat. In the fairy-tale Christmas forest, you can find 60 tall illuminated pine trees which are definitely worth visiting.
Christmas Markets 2018:
Braunschweig: 28/11 – 29/12
Celle: 29/11 – 27/12
Göttingen: 28/11 – 29/12
Goslar: 28/11 – 30/12
Hameln: 28/11 – 23/12
Hannover: 28/11 – 22/12
Hildesheim: 26/11 – 27./12
Lüneburg: 28/11 – 23/12
Wolfenbüttel: 27/11 – 23/12
More information: https://9staedte.de/en/christmas-markets-season/