The original Munich “Christkindlmarkt”
Relaxed and romantic Christmas shopping in the snow: Munich’s Christmas market offer everything you need to trim your tree or for your crib, traditional live music from the balcony of the city hall, mulled wine to keep yourself warm.
When the nearly 100-ft. high Christmas tree sparkles in the glitter of its 2,500 candles, the aroma of Gluehwein (hot spiced wine) fills the air and angel hair is glowing everywhere, then the heart of the Bavarian capital is under the magic spell of Christmas.
According to some sources, the Christmas Market dates back to the 14th century: town records first mention a “Nicholas Market” in the Kaufinger Strasse near the Frauenkirche (Church of our Lady) in 1642. “Goods from Oberammergau, Nuremberg Lebkuchen (gingerbread), cotton childwear, manger figurines, and chimney sweeps made of plums and almonds” were among the wide range of traditional fare on display.
In 1806 the Nicholas Market changed its name to “Christkindlmarkt”, but it wasn’t until 1972 that – after several changes of location – the Munich Christmas Market found its permanent home in the heart of the city.
The Munich Christmas Market is the oldest Christmas market in the city and can therefore rightfully claim to be the “original”
Baked apples, roast almonds, ginger nuts and plum figurines are as essential to a Bavarian Christmas as snow is to winter. For more substantial fare, be sure to try the delicious sausages or potato pancakes (Reiberdatschi). Many specialties are also available as organic food from authorized firms.
A stroll among the gaily decorated stalls is sure to get you into the holiday spirit. The sparkling festive ornaments, from traditional to modern, from miniature to bombastic, made of straw or pewter, are a delight for young and old. Many a guardian angel with gold-leaf wings will take flight as a special souvenir. The more than 160 stalls offer a wonderful array of toys and handicrafts, candles and ceramics, woodwork and gingerbread.