Did you know that Christmas markets date back to late medieval times? Sales fairs and markets – often one-day markets – were held to give townspeople the opportunity to stock up on meat and winter needs at the beginning of the cold season. Only later in the 14th century, it was customary to allow artisans such as toy makers, basket weavers or confectioners to set up stalls for the trifles that children were given for Christmas. Even the tradition to offer stalls with roasted chestnuts, nuts and almonds goes back to the Middle Ages. December or St. Nicholas’ markets they were called. In Munich for instance one of those markets was first mentioned in history in 1310!
Today – more than 700 years later – these wonderful, magical markets are found all over Germany and welcome visitors from around the world from the end of November until the end of December. The figures on the number of markets vary a little, but it is estimated that there are about 3000 different ones.
In cities like Berlin alone there are – would you believe it – about 90 different markets for every taste, every age group, with or without carousel and music, even for dogs there is a special one! And the greatest idea of all – when it is cold and snowing and maybe even dark already in the late afternoon – take a horse-drawn carriage, wrap yourself in warm blankets, drink some hot & tasty mulled wine and ride from market to market. A truly unforgettable experience!
Christmas Market Season this year starts on November 25th, 2019 … don’t miss it!