PLANNING TO VISIT BERLIN THIS WINTER? GET IN THE FESTIVE MOOD AND HEAD TO ONE (OR ALL) OF THE BEST CHRISTMAS MARKETS IN GERMANY’S CAPITAL
As winter’s chill sets in, little else can keep us warm like the aromatic and potent hug of Glühwein (mulled wine to us English), best enjoyed in all its festive glory at Berlin’s Christmas Markets. From November until the start of January the city's early days are compensated by the warm glow of Christmas lights and the delightful sound of carols. The city has plenty of Christmas markets to get you in the festive mood this year. Here is our roundup of the top five to head to when you’re there.
1 ALEXANDERPLATZ CHRISTMAS MARKET
Under Berlin’s iconic TV tower, the whole of Alexanderplatz is transformed into an iconic Christmas market from 27 November - 26 December 2017. Located in Berlin’s Mitte, the warming market attracts hundreds of people each year to bask in its Christmas atmosphere. With a colourful merry-go-round and stalls that house hand-made gifts, German-style food and, of course, Glühwein, the Alexanderplatz market has plenty on offer. The centrepiece of the market is undoubtedly Europe’s largest Christmas pyramid with over 5,000 lights that brings an electric energy to Alexanderplatz - and entry is free!
Located a short walk from the Alexanderplatz Christmas market is ‘Wintertraum am Alexa’. It’s Berlin’s most modern market and boasts a carnival-like atmosphere. It pairs all the traditional festive joys of Christmas markets; traditional stalls, hearty food and Glühwein, with all the fun of a carnival. With a roller coaster, bumper cars, a Ferris wheel and many more arcade games and rides, this market is for the those wanting serious fun and adrenaline as well as a traditional Christmas atmosphere. Admission is free and it runs from November 27 to December 23 2017.
3 GENDARMENMARKT CHRISTMAS MARKET
Beautifully situated between impressive buildings, The Deutsche Dom, the Konzerthaus and the Franzozische Friedrichstadtkirche, the Gendarmenmarkt Christmas market has a classic and cosy feel. It’s rows of white sheeted tents with glistening golden stars on top and a large stage by its entrance, give the market a sophisticated feel. Its gastronomy is also a cut above the rest serving classics such as goose legs, apple strudel and sugared pancakes with raisins and applesauce. It also has some unusual delights, like a Christmas Burger, mulled beer or a Christmas punch with cinnamon licor. It’s a foodie’s playground and runs from November 27 to December 31, with a New Year’s Eve party to end the festivities. Entry is 1€.
4 LUCIA CHRISTMAS MARKET AT KULTURBRAUEREI
For people looking for something a little bit different, this Scandinavian Christmas market is the perfect fit. The market has Swedish and Finnish specialities such as “glögg” (nordic mulled wine), reindeer sausage and elk goulash. You might even bump into Father Christmas while you’re there, who gives out small presents to children daily between 5:00-6:00pm. Try out some of the nostalgic rides if you’re feeling brave enough like the chairoplane, or the bungee trampoline. The market runs from November 27 to December 23, with free admission.
5 MEMORIAL CHURCH CHRISTMAS MARKET
Surrounding the famous Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, known by Berliners as ‘The Hollow Tooth’, this Christmas market runs from November 27 to January 7. The market is located between Breitscheidplatz and Wittenbergplatz with over 100 festively decorated market stalls and 70 fair entertainers to fill everyone with the Christmas cheer. The Memorial Church markets are known for their amazing hand-crafted products from tree ornaments, hand-made toys to holiday decorations coming from all over Germany. As always, the market also features a photo booth to capture the happy and sometimes blurry Christmas market moments.