After visiting some Christmas markets in different cities of Germany, I decided to write a comparative analysis of them in terms of their foods, drinks, decorations, events and environments. In this article, you will be reading my opinions regarding to Christmas markets in Bonn, Düsseldorf, Köln, Aachen, Dortmund, Münster, Bochum, Berlin and Hagen.
Christmas Markets in Germany
Christmas Market in Bonn
I preferred to start with Bonn because it was my first Christmas market experience in my whole life. Thus, I had no chance rather than liking it. However, after I explored the other markets I realized some missing details in Bonn’s Christmas market like some Christmas events and activities. I have never experienced a Christmas concert or any other kind of Christmas event in Bonn but food and drink varieties are sufficient. I also like the decorations of Bonn. However, the side events are definitely missing.
Christmas Market in Düsseldorf
When I compare Düsseldorf’s Christmas market with Bonn’s Christmas market, I can say their drinks and food are very similar to each other. However, Düsseldorf’s Christmas market was shinier, brighter and more angelic. Yes, you read it correctly. In Bonn, booths prefer to use reindeers for decoration purposes, but in Düsseldorf it is more focused on fairies and angels. Thus, Düsseldorf’s environment is naturally lighter, brighter and shinier than Bonn. Moreover, of course, the Christmas market of Düsseldorf is bigger than Christmas market of Bonn as Düsseldorf is a bigger city than Bonn and it is the biggest and the capital city of North Rhine Westphalia. However, I could not observe any specific Christmas activity in Düsseldorf as well. Thus, Düsseldorf could not fully pass the test of Christmas market even though its capital status.
Christmas Market in Köln
Now, it is time to talk about a real Christmas market! Probably Köln has the biggest Christmas market in Germany. There were countless Christmas markets starting from Kölner Dom/ Köln Hauptbahnhof and they are going to the eternity. They are all attached to each other. While you are chilling in one Christmas market, you realize it finishes and then another one starts. There was also a wonderful Christmas band playing Christmas jazz music. We had a wonderful day with my friends. However, the worst part of Köln’s Christmas market is its crowdedness. Since it has an amazing environment, everyone naturally wants to visit it. Thus, walking in a Christmas market in Köln is definitely harder than the other options.
Christmas Market in Aachen
Aachen definitely has its own atmosphere. The city protects its aura in Weihnachtsmarkt period as well. They did not have a specific Christmas event when we visited, but they have a specific Christmas food called “Printen”. Printen is a special Christmas cookie belongs to Aachen and it has a little bin cinnamon taste in it. Thus, if you like to taste different Christmas food alternatives, visiting Aachen might be a good alternative for you.
Christmas Market in Dortmund
I had a big expectation from Dortmund’s Christmas market that has the biggest Christmas tree in the world. However, it could not satisfy my expectations fully. Firstly, they have the biggest Christmas tree in the world, but they did not even on the lights on the tree. Thus, it could not impress me. Secondly, they do not have any special food. Thirdly, there was no any special Christmas activities. The best part of Dortmund was some food options were cheaper than my city Hagen. Their Christmas market was also big like Düsseldorf’s Christmas market. However, it failed because of its deficiencies in decorations and activities.
Christmas Market in Münster
Münster was a complete disappointment. It is a really beautiful city with nice architecture but its Christmas market was more than terrible. There was nothing to see. There were very few places to eat and drink. The food and drink options were not satisfying. There were no special Christmas activities. Because of the lack of booths in terms of amounts everyone had to accumulate at the same place and it made it too crowded for nothing. It was my worst Weihnachtsmarkt experience. I may visit Münster one more time but definitely not at Christmas time.
Christmas Market in Bochum
Bochum’s Christmas market was definitely better than my expectation. It was more than enough for a small city. There were different varieties of food and drinks. The amount of stands was sufficient. There were also special Christmas events especially for children and small statuettes of fairy tale characters. Bochum prepared even a flying sled for Santa Claus and we watched his flight show between stars. Its amusement fair and special places for games were big enough to entertain every resident of the city. Bochum definitely passed Weihnachtsmarkt exam with a good grade.
Christmas Market in Berlin
There are so many Christmas markets in Berlin and they are not attached to each other. They are also separated and distributed in the different parts of the city. Since I had only one day to visit the Christmas market in Berlin, I had to choose only one place to go. As a result, I visited Schloss Charlottenburg Weihnachtsmarkt in Berlin. I generally visited Christmas markets in city center, so it was my first experience to see a Weihnachtsmarkt at a more historical and architecturally beautiful place. I like the place, so I like the environment. The decoration was nice. There was also one man was playing his guitar, so we had a live music that made environment more lovely and lively. In addition, there was a light show on palace that resembles Berlin light fest. Thus, Schloss Charlottenburg’s Christmas market met my expectations and I can advise you to go there too.
Christmas Market in Hagen
Like Bochum’s Christmas market, Hagen’s Christmas market is also better than my expectations. Their styles are quite similar to each other, but I like Hagen more than Bochum. It is because Bochum’s Christmas activities focused more on children rather than adults, so there were less for me. On the other hand, Hagen has sufficient varieties of activities for children, but also satisfying adults. There are also some food alternatives in Hagen that I have never seen in another Christmas market before like Schneeball Träume, Schaumküsse and fruity lokmas. Yes, we have also lokma in Hagen Weihnachtsmarkt. It was a very nice surprise for me to see a Turkish desert in German Christmas market. The best part of Hagen Christmas market is that the Christmas activities has never stopped since it started. Every day we have at least a small event in city. Concerts, live music, water and laser shows, violin recital… I feel very lucky because of living in this city.
What is your favorite Christmas market?
Which Christmas market is your favourite in Germany? What about in other countries? Do you also have Christmas markets in your home country? Do you like them? Why? Why not? What is the best and the worst part of a Christmas market? Please share your opinions in the comments section!