Hi everyone! While getting into the holiday spirit, I thought I would share 5 fun reasons to put Germany on your travel list in December. Earlier this month, I traveled to Munich with my mom, Mark’s mom & my best friend Liza for a girls trip. Trust me when I say there are few places in the world that are as festive as this!
Despite the short days (the sun starts setting at 3:30pm) and the chilly temperatures (30-40’s), Germany is an ideal place to get inspired for Christmastime. Our home base for the week was in Munich, Germany, but we were also able to take day trips to Nuremberg, Germany and Salzburg, Austria to visit their markets as well. Check out our top reasons to plan a Christmas Market trip in Europe below!
Most of the Christmas markets are filled with stands selling crafts, ornaments, soaps and goodies. This makes it the perfect place to get some Christmas shopping done for loved ones. Some of our most beautiful ornaments on our tree have come from Germany!
Many of the stands at the markets are also selling food. A typical meal at the markets is a Bratwurst sandwich. They do, however, sell some other things too! I recommend keeping an eye out for a booth selling Stollen–tradition German Christmas bread. You can get all types, to either enjoy in the moment or bring home to share with others!
A spin on your traditional bratwurst sandwich–currywurst!
At certain times of the day, each market will have live performers, either caroling, story-telling or playing traditional instruments. The music is a fun source of entertainment, and sets the perfect mood to get into the Christmas spirit!
Probably one of the most famous things that come to mind when you think about Germany at Christmastime is the traditional drink called: glühwein. (Pronounced: glu-vine). This translates to mulled wine in english. In the cold weather, it’s the perfect drink to keep you warm while walking around the markets!
One of my favorite parts about this tradition, is that each market (or sometimes even each stand) will have their own Christmas mug. They usually have the name of the market and year written on it. When you first purchase some glühwein, you pay 3-4 euros deposit on the mug, and then the 4-5 euros for the mulled wine itself.
When you are finished with your drink, you can either return to the stand and pay for just a refill or give them your mug and get your deposit back. (Or, if you’re anything like Mark & I on our first trip to Germany, start a Christmas mug collection and keep them all!)
If you’re not a fan of wine, don’t stress. There are also many other festive drinks you can try, including spiked eggnog, hot chocolate and punsch. They serve different types punsch, including hot orange juice and rum, or hot tea with apple juice and orange liquer. They also have non-alcoholic beverages for the kids too!
Finally, and possibly my favorite reason for visiting this time of year, is the ambiance of the Christmas markets. Everything is so well decorated and festive. There’s music, delicious drinks and beautiful displays in shop windows! It’s hard not to get wrapped up in it all.
In the evening there are lights hung from every street lamp and market stand, which makes the area truly glow. There is this amazing smell in the air, that you notice instantly when approaching a market. If you love Christmas, this is the place to be.
Special thanks to the Moms & Liza for joining me on a trip I will never forget! Following our Christmas Market tradition, we’ve created a (part II) video celebrating our fun getting festive together! (To view the original video we made 3 years ago, click here). Hope you enjoy the video–Merry Christmas & Frohes Fest!