Lets Get Festive: Four Christmas markets to visit in Hamburg

Hamburg Christmas market fun

Its my favourite time of the year! and with a lot of planning and luck I managed to get TWO European destinations to experience the Christmas cheer, eat my heart out on comfort food and sip on bottomless Glühwein. Experiencing Christmas markets is a great thrill for someone coming from South Africa, where sweltering hot beach barbecues are the norm. Here are four Christmas markets to visit in Hamburg.

I was privileged to have a wonderful group of crew with me to explore the streets of this German city, sharing in my excitement. We decided to stay in the city centre making it easier to get back to our hotel in the freezing cold! Prepare yourself for a windy, early nightfall where (in my case) four layers of clothes were not enough. Wear gloves and a scarf, as no one wants to take a break from sipping on their Glühwein because of freezing fingers.

1. Gansemarkt Christmas Market

Feel like ‘Hansel and Gretel’ in your own fairytale at the ‘Gansemarkt Christmas market’. The statue of Lessing (German writer, philosopher, dramatist, publicist and art critic) is surrounded with gingerbread houses featuring a lit Christmas tree and merry-go-round in the middle. You will find a lot of hand crafts and homemade baked goods here! Try the traditional gingerbread biscuits dipped in chocolate (you might find it for a fraction of the price at a supermarket, but also for a fraction of the taste!)

27 November to 23 December 2017

Open daily from 11 am – 9 pm,
On Fridays and Saturdays until 10 pm

We tried: 

‘Bratwurst’, the famous German sausage made with beef, veal and the most yummy: Pork!

Glühwein: your fist round will include 2 EUR extra as a deposit for the cup is needed. Each Christmas markets has its own cup design, great if you would like to collect a few of these cuties.

2. Weihnachtsmarkt Jungfernstieg

‘Weinachtsmarkt’ in ‘Jungfernstieg’ is set up along ‘Binnenalster’ the artificial lake in Hamburg city centre. In the centre of the lake a Christmas tree is twinkling, adding to the festive spirit of this market. This feels like winter wonderland with illuminated stars planted on top of ice white stalls and white pine trees.

27 November to 30 December 2017

Open daily from 11 am – 9 pm,
On Fridays and Saturdays until 10 pm (gastronomy: 11 pm)
Closed on 24th and 25th  of December

We tried:

‘Kartoffelpuffers’ with Apple sauce or Sour cream

‘Champignons’ with garlic sauce. (Tasty pan fried mushrooms)

3. The Hamburg Christmas Market

This is Hamburg’s biggest market, with more than 80 traders sharing unique goods. The market is set against the ‘Town Hall of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg’. It is also one of the busiest markets, which led to our group losing a member! hold tight and enjoy the Christmas spirit in the air. Enjoy a Glühwein or hot chocolate while trying to see as much possible of this place.

27 November to 23 December 2017

Open daily from 11 am – 9 pm,
On Fridays and Saturdays until 10 pm

We tried: 

Pork roast sandwich with onion relish.

4. Gerhart-Hauptmann-Platz Market

We saved the sweets for last! The market at ‘Gerhart-Hauptmann-Platz’ is ideally located in the midst of all the shopping streets. Even though you are surrounded with brightly lit buildings, these wood cabins underneath the ‘Platz’ trees makes you feel like you are somewhere far off in the mountains

27 November to 30 December 2017

Open daily from 10 am – 11 pm
Closed on the 24th and 25th of December.

We tried: 

‘Schmalzkuchen’: made with a lemon and vanilla-flavored yeast dough that is fried into golden puffs, sprinkled with ‘confectioners’ sugar.

Bailey’s Hot Chocolate (Need I say More)

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