Throughout Germany, Christmas markets celebrate seasonal customs and traditions in delightful historical settings. Particularly popular with visitors are Nuremberg’s Christkindlesmarkt and the Striezelmarkt in Dresden. Since I spent last pre-Christmas time in Munich, I will list my favourites there.
Munich has the widest variety of Christmas markets I’ve seen so far. From classical to medieval to pink, party and fairy tale markets. During November and December every corner seems to be decorated and selling some hot wine and würstchen along some cheerful Christmas music. And there is a Christmas market even in Munich Airport.
The most popular and also … one of the most crowded one takes place on Marienplatz, right in the heart of Munich. A huge Christmas tree covered in lights towers over the stands selling everything from mulled wine and sweets to handcrafted gifts and Christmas decorations. All aglow with pre-Christmas magic. Festive music is performed live every evening at 5.30 p.m. from the balcony of the Town Hall.
Theresienwiese, where just 1,5 month earlier took place on of the Europe’s most famous festival, Oktoberfest, turns in November into the biggest Christmas market – Wintertollwood. If you prefer a bit more of a party atmosphere, that’s where you should head. Lots of vendors, creative Christmas tree (last year made out of bicycles), lively concerts and fire shows, quirky crafts and ethnic foods will keep you busy for hours.
Klein aber fein – small but cute – the Christmas market at the Sendlinger Tor. Just 5 minutes walking from Marienplatz, but a lot less packed.
I used to live in Glockenbachviertel, the area known for being LGBT friendly. And just around the corner, where I lived, was the Pink Christmas market. Lot of colors, especially pink, cool handcrafted gifts, hot wine, show program and a lot and I mean it, A LOT of people. Going there during rush hour and you can easily spend 20 minutes working your way through people to the wine stand. Otherwise the most cheerful Christmas market I visited in Munich.
One more alternative Christmas market is the Märchenbazar, the Fairy Tale market in Viehhof. You can find nostalgic circus tents, old vendor stands and everything around a fairy tale here. Not to mention the burritos, crepes and all German classics. Slightly longer walk from city center, but with kids totally worth it.
Mittelaltermarkt / Medieval Christmas Market is just a few steps from Odeonsplatz. You’ll wonder if you’ve just stepped into a time machine and popped out back in the middle ages, the era of the knights, minstrels and noblewomen. Vendors dressed in medieval clothing sell their medieval wares. Even the food and drinks have medieval touch. It’s a Christmas market like no other and you definitely don’t want to miss it!
Fly to Munich between November 18th and December 29th and you have a chance to walk through the festive Christmas market with 300 real Christmas trees and a 15-meter-high giant Christmas tree already before you leave the airport 🙂