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Five Unique and Wonderful Christmas Markets of Munich 

MunichNOW’s Mike Richardson on some Christmas markets off the beaten path

Are you bored of the main Christmas markets with all of the same things from the same companies?  After seeing a few Christmas markets, many people just assume that they are all quite similar.  However, here are five examples of unique Christmas markets in the city of Munich (the airport counts, right?).

The Residenz Christmas Market at night, Munich, Germany — photo: dpa


  1. The Residenz Christmas Village - The Residenz is Munich’s main royal palace.  In one of its many courtyards there is a Christmas market with more to see than just the typical food stands and ornament sales.  Here, they have set up a “fairy tale forest” consisting of elaborate scenes (including talking characters) for children of all ages.  There is a daily music program with performances usually starting at 4pm or 5pm.  Starting December 3rd, there is also a puppet theater at 2:30pm on Tuesdays and Fridays.  Finally, on December 5th and 6th, St. Nicholas himself arrives in a 200-year-old sleigh for photos with all the children at the Residenz. 25.11.13 - 22.12.13   In German: www.dasweihnachtsdorf.de/

    Terminal 2 at Christmas Munich Airport, Munich, Bavaria, Germany -photo: dpa

  2. Airport Christmas Market - The airport Christmas market is much larger than one would expect.  In fact, its prices and options are similar or better than average as Christmas markets go.  For the traveler, it is marvelously ideal.  Fifty market stands, over three hundred christmas trees including one massive 15-meter tree, and a large skating rink make it feel as authentic as one can get.  If you’re taking any flights during the holiday season, this is a great way to waste time waiting for the flight. 23.11.13 - 29.12.13    Website in German : www.munich-airport.de/de/consumer/erlebnis/events/mac_forum/wintermarkt/index.jsp

  3. Medieval Christmas Market - Although this one works better in theory than in practice, the medieval Christmas market certainly makes for a fun spin on the usual commercialization of Christmas markets.  Christmas markets in Munich have taken place since the middle ages and so this market tries to create a convincing replica of what those early markets might have been.  There are numerous performances throughout the season that one might enjoy, so checking their website before heading down there might be the way to go. 25.11.13 - 23.12.13 at Wittelsbacher Platz   Website in English :  www.mittelaltermarkt-muenchen.de/mittelaltermarkt_html_ludwig/seiten/start_en.html

  4. Chinese Tower - The Chinese Tower is located directly in the center of Munich’s famous English Garden. It is among the largest beer gardens in the world and can be enjoyed 2/3rds of the year, weather dependent.  However, during the Christmas season it is transformed into a lovely market with everything the city markets have, but more of a middle of the forest atmosphere that just seems appropriate for the Christmas feel.  Although there’s nothing completely unique about it other than the atmosphere, if you really must go to the English Garden in the winter, this is the way to do it. 29.11.13 - 23.12.13     Website in German : www.weihnachtsmarkt-chinaturm.de/startseite.html

  5. Pink Christmas - This one isn’t my cup of tea, however, it is definitely worth noting for those so inclined. It’s the LGBT Christmas market.  Munich’s pink christmas market is quite lively with nightly performances at 7pm and is certainly welcoming to all. 26.11.12 - 23.12.12 at Stephansplatz just south of Sendlinger Tor   Website in German:  www.pink-christmas.de/

Many Christmas market veterans may wonder why I didn’t add Tollwood to this list.  The reason is that it quite simply is not a Christmas market.  It is however worth mentioning, and it is a really nice indoor new-age high-end hippie festival if you’re into that sort of thing.  If you’ve never been to Tollwood and want something different than Christmas market after Christmas market, then head over to Tollwood and it’ll be like a breath of fresh air.   Website in English:  www.tollwood.de/english/winterfestival-2013/


Now, my favorite Christmas market anywhere is in Augsburg, but that’s 40 minutes away with trains leaving every half hour.   Website in English: www.uk-augsburgerchristkindlesmarkt.com/

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