A Sunday Stroll Through Christkindlmarkt in Munich

A Sunday Stroll Through Christkindlmarkt in Munich

By  Monday, 7.12.2015, 20:10    What's Happening

The season of festive cheer is upon us. A wander through Munich's Christkindlmarkt.

It is the season of good cheer, and the mood in central Munich in these bright sunny December days is very jovial indeed.

I like Sundays in Munich, despite still coming to terms with the fact that almost everything is shut. It is quieter, more relaxed, and families are out in force enjoying a break from their hectic lives. 

I chose yesterday as the day to check out Munich's Christkindlmarkt at Marienplatz, the main but by no means the only Christkindlmarkt in the city (click here for a map of all your options)

I took the S-Bahn into Hauptbahnhof and then decided to wander through the pedestrian zone to take in the atmosphere. First stop Karlsplatz Stachus, a square which is transformed each winter, and families were enjoying pitting their skating skills against one another, while parents lapped up the midday sun with a Glühwein or two. A really nice attraction for the city centre each winter. 

From distance, the bulbous heads of the Frauenkirche towers were looking somehow even more magnificent. Was it really true that one was 12cm shorter than the other?

Looking down the pedestrian zone, it would appear that I would not be alone... There was an irony here - hordes of would-be shoppers crowding Munich's central shopping district, and with cash to spend, but all the well-stocked shops shut for the day. That is Germany. Get used to it.

And of course the season of good cheer is a commercial rat race. If you have the money for prime advertising, the city is yours. McDonalds at Stachus undergoing a facelift, courtesy of Apple.

And so to Munich Christkindlmarkt. Any thoughts that it might be contained to Marienplatz were soon dispelled, as it started soon after Stachus. 

Cribs, one of the mainstays of the market. None was better than this clever collection, made entirely of stones. 

But if you wanted the real thing, there was a whole section for you... 

Looking to ward off the cold? It was actually very warm, at least for this Englishman clad in just a jumper. Plenty of options to warm you up. 

Especially the Glühwein, with many stalls offering the very finest, some with their grandmother's secret recipe. 

Some of the stalls were a little more creative, mirroring the local sights. Now was one of those towers 12cm shorter, or at least proportionately so? 

The young pretender against the established master... 

The shops may have been shut, but not their ability to lure customers in at a future date. Some very impressive window displays proved almost as popular as the market itself.  

It has been reasonably busy approaching Marienplatz, but then when I got there, it was clear I was in the thick of the action. The square was packed! 

Nothing for it but to look up and admire central Munich's three iconic towers in a perfect sky. 

A quick wander around the stalls, admiring all the tradition and innovation on show. 

And then wander on to somewhere else, away from the crowds, but not before enjoying the sound of a jolly accordion in this temporary tower just south of the square. 

The energy in the heart of Munich on the eve of Christmas is impressive indeed. I encourage you to take a stroll!

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Paul Bradbury

After 12 years living on the most gorgeous island in the world, Hvar in Dalmatia, I have begun to wonder if there is still life beyond its shores. Prior to discovering Paradise in 2002, I was a world traveller, living and working in Japan, Georgia, Somalia, Rwanda, Russia... and Munich.

After 95 countries and some 25 years have passed, the memories of my year in the hotel industry in the Bavarian capital (fired by the Sheraton for losing our pet snake, the first male chambermaid at Hotel Arabella, and a truly eye-watering introduction to five-star living in  my days as a bellboy in luxury Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten) are strong, and the call of Munich has been a constant theme over the last quarter century. 

And so here I am, answering the call some 25 years later. Twelve years of island living have changed me for sure, but also left me curious about life in a big city, and whether or not I could adapt to it after such an insular decade. 

I was surprised to see that for such a magnificent multi-cultural city, English-language blogs and regularly updated information are not that available. Static tourism information, such as that provided by the excellent tourist board website yes, but accounts of daily life delivered daily? Hard to find.

And so I have decided to take a break from my idyllic island and see if I could live in a city again. And what better way to try than to discover modern Munich in all its facets after so many years. It is a journey of discovery which I am relishing, and I hope the site proves to be of interest for Munich residents and its numerous visitors.

About Paul Bradbury

Author of Lebanese Nuns Don't Ski, Lavender, Dormice and a Donkey Named Mercedes and Hvar's first comprehensive guidebook, Hvar: An Insider's Guide to Croatia's Premier Island, as well as co-author of Split: An Insider's Guide with Mila Hvilshoj, I have lived in Dalmatia full time since 2003. In addition to running Total Munich, I also run Total Split (www.croatia-split.com), Total Hvar (www.total-hvar.com) and Total Inland Dalmatia (www.total-inland-dalmatia.com), as well as being an accredited Google News journalist for Digital Journal in Canada.

I also have various blogging clients, including the Central Dalmatia Tourist Board, European Coastal Airlines, Touristar TV and Andro Tomic Wines, and print clients include Qatar Airways inflight magazine, Out! magazine from New York, and Croatian Hotspots. 

In December 2014 I was delighted to receive the Marko Polo 2014 Award from FIJET Croatia (Federation of International Travel Writers and Journalists)  at a ceremony for the Croatian Journalists Society for the best international tourism promotion of Croatia. More here.

Ongoing writing projects:

A History of Hajduk Split, co-author with Frane Grgurevic - in 2015

Around the World in 80 Disasters - out in 2015

Total Hvar in the Media:

Interview of the Month, Croatian Embassy in Washington (May 2013)

Special Feature in Globus Magazine (May 2013)

Featured on Croatian TV show, More (2012) - watch the report here

Interviews in Slobodna Dalmacija, Dalmacijanews, Radio Split

I am available for writing services. Please contact me on [email protected] or visit my main writing website, www.bossandblogger.com 

Website: total-hvar.com Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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