Around France

Best Christmas Markets in France: Strasbourg

Eleven Christmas Markets in one town … oh my! Strasbourg is a busy city during the Christmas Market. Not only is it home to approximately 300,000 full-time residents, Strasbourg bulges at the seams with holiday visitors during November and December.

Known as home to one of the best Christmas markets in France, the old city of Strasbourg is closed off to traffic during the market because of the crowds. That means you walk down the center of streets filled with holiday goodies and shops on both sides. Also, it means you must carry your bags through a security check and to your hotel. Fortunately, our hotel was nearby. So after dropping off our things at Hôtel Des Arts, we set off to check out the first of eleven Christmas markets we were to visit on our two-and-a-half day stay.

The narrow streets of the old town were crowded and brightly lit. All we could think about was how glad we were that we were in Strasbourg before the “real crowds” showed up Christmas week. Well, that’s not truly all we were thinking about. Visions of choucroute, spaetzle and beef bourguignon were swirling around in our heads.

best Christmas markets in France,

The christmas markets, or areas where vendors show off their wares and food items, were set up in little wooden storefronts. They were all very similar.

The differences were that, along the way, permanent merchants lured shoppers with their over-the-top decorations and window dressings. Many spilled out onto the streets. Every alley, every turn in the road displayed street lighting and banners that were better than the one before.

Of all the attractions, the Cathedral de Notre-Dame  stood out as the city’s centerpiece.

Its majestic buttresses, vaults and arches dominated many of the streetscapes. Its presence added a special luminescence to those market stalls that were fortunate enough to surround it for the holidays.

Although our visit to Strasbourg was for the Christmas Market only, we took a boat tour along the canal that borders the old town. It was a perfect way to get an overview of the city’s history and to get a glimpse of some of the new parts of town. It’s definitely a place I would love to see again.

In Strasbourg the mix of French and German is visible in the architecture, the people, the language and the cuisine. From foie gras to spaetzle — from German beer to fine wine — Strasbourg is where the best of the best meet today in seemingly perfect harmony.

 

 

Read more about Christmas Markets in France

The Very Best Christmas Markets in France

Best Christmas Markets in France: Colmar and Kaysersberg

The Three Most Magical Christmas Markets in France

14 replies »

  1. I have certainly enjoyed all your writings on your Christmas Market Adventure! Great descriptions and information for all of us Followers👏👍❣️❣️

    • There’s more yet to come. So much information and photos I have a hard time trimming it all down. So glad you’re enjoying it since I’m having a great time remembering it all again. Happy New Year!

  2. Bonjour,
    Seeing the Christmas markets in Europe is something that I have been hoping to do since many years…
    So, thank you for sharing information and pictures about your tour of Christmas markets.
    Have a Happy and healthy New Year,
    Céline

    • Céline, thank you for your note. I really appreciate knowing that you enjoy the tour information and photos. It makes it even more worthwhile to share it all with you. Happy New Year and stay in touch!

    • Good to know, Paula. I can easily see why, can’t you? Going back to create the video made it fun to visit all over again! Let’s go back!

  3. Deborah as usual you have provided a wonderful view into such a wonderful market for Christmas and the City of Strasbourg. I must admit I want to do this visit and also go into Germany for some or the good Christmas Markets they have each year.

    • That means you’ll have to stay in Europe over Christmas some time! Hope you have a wonderful new year. It’ll be springtime in no time! Thanks, Rich.

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