Tips for visiting Christmas markets

Tips for visiting Christmas markets

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Nov 16, 2017 - 1:52 AM

Anyone planning to vist a Christmas market might find this article useful:

10 tips for a perfect visit to the Christmas market

stories.sbb.ch/en/2016 /11/21/10-tips-perfect-visit-christmas-market/

In addition to those tips, my tips would be:

  • Make sure not to miss the experience of at least one Christmas market from dusk onwards, as that is when they take on a really magical and lively ambience.
  • Don't eat beforehand, so you can take full advantage of the variety of food and drink on offer.
  • You pay a deposit (Pfand) on mugs when you buy Glühwein or Punsch etc, and can keep the mug as a souvenir if you like. If planning to take it home, bring a bit of bubble wrap with you - some to stuff inside the mug, and some to wrap it in, to ensure it arrives home in one piece.

Alpenrose

Last modified on Nov 16, 2017 - 2:03 AM by Removed user
Lucas
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Nov 16, 2017 - 7:25 AM in reply to Removed user

That's a very cute post from SBB!
My main tip is to have lots of cash on you. :)

I'm counting the days until the markets open in Zurich...one more week.

Here's a pic from a few days ago at Zurich HB as they put the market together....putting that crazy Swarovski tree up - blinding!

Last modified on Nov 16, 2017 - 7:30 AM by Lucas
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Nov 16, 2017 - 8:22 AM in reply to Lucas

>> My main tip is to have lots of cash on you. :)

Yes, that helps!

>> Here's a pic from a few days ago at Zurich HB as they put the market together....putting that crazy Swarovski tree up - blinding!

Interesting - thanks for the pic! I went to the Christmas Market at Zürich HB last year and saw the tree in all its splendour!

Talking about "blinding" Christmas bling, I think Zürich Airport is up there with the best of them! (Photos from last year attached.)

Alpenrose

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Lucas
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Nov 16, 2017 - 8:24 AM in reply to Removed user

Yes they love putting up lots of lights there!

maggiehorswell
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Nov 16, 2017 - 4:34 PM

Hi everyone

We spent a week in Switzerland last December on a Christmas market trip - there is a report in the trip reports section of this forum.

Another tip I would add is to check out the dates carefully. The main markets are open for 4 or 5 weeks but you nay be lucky enough to catch some of the less well-known ones which only open for a few days or at weekends. one of our favourites last year was Einsiedeln and also a small one near the Kambly biscuit factory which was devoted mostly to local craftsmen so quite different from the bigger more commercial ones. Of the bigger ones, Montreux is a favourite - best for food and French in flavour whereas Basel is much more Germanic.

I have found this complete list of dates whioch I am attaching as a Word document.

Maggie

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Lucas
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Nov 16, 2017 - 5:01 PM in reply to maggiehorswell

Oh thanks Maggie! Very useful! I haven't been to a Christmas market that wasn't in a German area (except Prague but it was similar). Perhaps a French influence would be interesting! Strasbourg is tempting me from Zurich...

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Nov 16, 2017 - 11:29 PM in reply to maggiehorswell

Hi Maggie,

That's a great tip about checking the dates, as they do vary so much. What a fabulous resource that Word document is for everyone visiting the Christmas markets this year!

Alpenrose

Lucas
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Nov 17, 2017 - 3:48 PM

We also have a new page on Christmas markets with details on various markets and available tours.

Lucas
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Nov 30, 2017 - 4:56 PM

I thought I'd share some more Christmas spirit for anyone visiting Zurich between now and Dec.23
There are 3 markets in the downtown area:

  • Zurich main train station
  • Sechseläutenplatz (in front of the Opera House near Stadelhofen train station)
  • Niederdorfstrasse (shopping street in old town|)

You can walk easily from Zurich train station, along Niederdorfstrasse to Sechseläutenplatz - maybe 25 minutes if you don't stop to browse and drink Glühwein!

As you can tell from the pictures they are popular!

See a few pictures below. :)

Last modified on Nov 30, 2017 - 4:57 PM by Lucas
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Dec 1, 2017 - 12:27 AM

Thanks for the photos Lucas! Where did you take that photo of the Swarovski Christmas tree from? It seems to be taken from an elevated position - but not swinging from the rafters, I presume ;-)

Alpenrose

Lucas
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Dec 1, 2017 - 6:31 AM in reply to Removed user

Thanks! No, haven't gone that far for a pic yet!

There is an elevated sitting area with a couple fondue booths at that end of the market (Bahnhofquai entrance). It isn't too crowded as there are a couple small fondue booths and dining area - there is a menu beside the stairs going up and I think most people think it is a restaurant and don't go up if they aren't going to order a meal.

On another note I discovered a fondue booth title "Montreux Fondue" which is a loaf of bread with fondue cheese poured in the hollow centre - fondue to go!

Samfrula
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Dec 1, 2017 - 6:59 PM

I has been planning to visit interlaken night market on 18th dec but then realize its closed

Lucas
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Dec 1, 2017 - 8:40 PM in reply to Samfrula

Hi Samfrula,

The Christmas market should be open in Interlaken on Dec.18. Did you read somewhere it will be closed for some reason?

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Dec 1, 2017 - 11:50 PM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

Yes, it is in fact closed on 18 December:

www.weihnachtsmarkt-interlaken.ch/#oeffnun gszeiten

It opens just for the weekend of 16-17 December, then daily from Thursday 21 December until Tuesday 26 December 2018.

Alpenrose

Last modified on Dec 1, 2017 - 11:56 PM by Removed user
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Dec 1, 2017 - 11:55 PM in reply to Samfrula

If you aren't able to go on 17 December instead (or on one of the other days it's open), you could consider going to the Christmas market in Thun. You can get there by train from Interlaken in around half-an-hour.

www.thun.ch/leben/shop ping/maerkte/weihnacht smarkt.html

The location is the Waisenhausplatz (a square) in Thun, which is on the island called Bälliz in the Aare River. That's about a 5-minute walk from the station (map attached). Opening hours on Monday 18 December are 11.00 - 19.00.

Alpenrose

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Lucas
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Dec 2, 2017 - 8:49 AM in reply to Removed user

Ah ok, very limited. I thought Interlaken would be open longer as the town is one of the larger ones in the area.I suppose there is too much competition in the other Villages like Thun etc.

Good to note as Maggie's document states Dec.16-24 - and I thought even that was limited! Its great to see it is open on the 24th (until 18:00!) and the 25th and 26th even - very unusual!

Last modified on Dec 2, 2017 - 8:51 AM by Lucas

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