The Nuremberg Christmas Market, aka Christkindlesmarkt, is perhaps the most famous and largest in the world. Located in Nuremberg’s Old Town, in the central square called Hauptmarkt, the Christkindlesmarkt starts November 27 and ends Christmas Eve.
Christkind, literally “Christ Child” is a focal point of the festivities, and you will see the angel motif of the Christkind all over. There is even a live person that is dressed as and angel and featured as a centerpiece in the opening ceremony for the Christkindlesmarkt.
Food & Drink
Go to the Nuremberg Christmas Market with an appetite. There is food galore, and all the German Christmastime classics like Gluehwine and Lebkuchen. Nuremberg is famous for its gingerbread and has a 600 year tradition making Lebkuchen with ginger, almonds, honey, and spices.
The Nuremberg Christmas Market offers the world’s largest Feuerzangenbowle. Feuerzangenbowle is a warm punch made with rum and red wine. A burning, rum-soaked sugar cone is placed the punch bowl and as the sugar melts, it drips into the concoction, imparting the unique flavor.
There’s also gluhwein, served up in decorative cups (a lot of people choose to keep the cups as souvenirs). When I’m in Germany there is just one drink for me, and that is weisbeir. And for the first time I had warm spiced beer at an organic brewery not far from the Christmas market. For those not into the harder alcohol drinks, this beer is amazing. You can read about that here.
You’ll find bratwurst (but not vegetarian–the only place I’ve found this is in Munich’s Tollewood Market), pommes frittes, apple cakes, cookies, chocolate and a ton of other snacks. The air is teeming with the fragrance of spices and food being cooked in the stalls.
While I love Christmas markets for the ambiance and food, some people like to go to shop. There’s tons of stuff–wooden Christmas tree ornaments, angels, hand crafted goods, etc. I kept seeing these glowy stars at markets this year and I loved the color and light.
One of the highlights of the market, especially for children, is the Stagecoach. These are replicas from mail coaches from the 1900’s. The coach makes a little tour through the streets led by draft horses. It’s so cute watching the little ones get excited about the coach.
The Children’s Market
The Kinder Market is just for the little ones. Most Christmas markets have a carousel, and this one is no exception. A rooftop santa and his sleigh, teddy bears, and crafts and decor geared for children create a magical Christmasland for kids.
In addition to the Children’s market, there is a Sister City market with goods from other countries like Austria, Poland, Scotland and the US. There is also a Craft Market, where everything in the market is hand made and local.
Nuremberg Christmas Market Bottom Line
Christmastime ambiance in Nuremberg is beautiful and everywhere. There is more than one market, so you can hop a little and take the kids to their own special market. Find out more on the Nuremberg Tourism website.