Berlin and it's Festive Christmas Markets
Berlin had the most fantastic Christmas markets. In my opinion, German Christmas markets are just superior (I may be a bit biased due to having German relatives, my great-grandma was German and my grandad is half-German). But, they just have to be the best I have ever been to! I couldn't have felt more festive. The great thing about visiting Berlin around December time was that I was able to explore the great city and experience its festivities and markets.
First up: the city. First impressions; it was a lot quieter than I thought it would have been, this was more so at some of the landmarks, but everyone was so friendly especially at the markets. One of the locations that was top of my list was definitely the Berlin wall, with great history and beautiful murals it was definitely a must visit location. The wall was beautiful, with very talented murals representing the artists emotions and portraying their thoughts. It was not too hard to find as the metro made it easy to get there. I had taken so many photos, I just wanted to take a photo of every mural. I would recommend visiting, full of history and talent.
Next, there is the Reichstag Building, housing the German parliament. There is so much history within this building walls. We had booked in advance (which was free) to visit the glass dome at the top of the building which offered great views of the city, in order to visit you had to book in advance. When walking around we were given an audio guide informing us of all the important events that take place in the building. I would recommend doing so if you plan to visit the Reichstag and the glass dome.
When in Berlin, there is just the famous landmarks that you have to visit; such as the Brandenburg Gate. An iconic landmark in Berlin. It is more central than I thought it would have been, which actually resulted in us getting the metro. It was only one stop away, which was probably only a short walk. The Gate was impressive, and a beautiful Christmas tree was placed in front, adding to the festiveness of the city.
Additionally, the Berlin Cathedral is a beautiful building, located on museum island. it is in a great location that allows you to visit the national history museum and the national art gallery. A triple tourist destination, all with astonishing architecture. During December it was also not far from one of the many amazing Christmas markets.
One of my favourite tourist destinations was the TV tower. The views from the city were beautiful with all the Christmas markets in full swing. After being on the viewing deck, we noticed that there was a restaurant, so we asked if we could have a table and luckily enough, they did. The restaurant was fabulous, all the tables and chairs were on a slow spinning revolver, so we were able to have a full 360-degree view whilst eating and drinking. The atmosphere was amazing, and it was the most romantic date with twinkling lights glowing around us. We were even lucky enough to get a window seat. The food was exceptional, with traditional German dishes. We had currywrust and they were amazing. It was central so the view was great and also right next to the Alexanderplatz Christmas market.
Finally, another place that has great importance as a place to visit in Berlin is the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. Situated close to the Brandenburg Gate, the holocaust memorial has 2711 grey concrete slabs varying in height. It is an important place to visit and you are to show respect.
Now it is time to talk about the best Christmas markets I have ever visited. We didn’t visit one market, not even two or three but 8! We visited 8 Christmas markets all over Berlin. I have never felt so festive. Below I will mention my favourite markets and what they entailed as well as displaying cute Christmas Photos.
First, I have to mention the Weihnachtszauber Christmas market at Gendermenmarkt. It was beautiful. This may have been my favourite due to its aesthetics, resulting in my favourite photo from the trip. It consisted of hundreds of market stalls consisting of gifts, Christmas decorations and food. A large tree was situated in front of a beautiful building in the middle of the market. Although we had to pay a 2-euro entrance fee, it was worth it. After visiting this market, it made me so excited for Christmas. It was everything I imagined them to be like and more.
Another notable mention is the Berliner Weihnachtszeit in Roten Rathaus. This was a joint favourite too. It was beautiful, consisting of a large Ferris wheel that had bright lights and a nice sized ice rink with a beautiful statue in the middle. The market consisted of similar things as the others, but it was more vibrant and cheerier. It was louder and there were more people. At certain times of the day a small Santa and sledge flew across the sky on a wire, which made everyone excited. The ice rink wasn’t badly priced, and it was beautiful to skate around taking in the bright market. I definitely felt festive when visiting there.
Another great market was the Alaxanderplatz Christmas market. This was very central and near the Berlin TV Tower, it was also a few minutes’ walk away from the Weihnachtszeit market. It was a lot smaller, but it had a tavern like barn that served steins and had loud traditional and modern German music playing. This was very similar to the Postdamer Platz Christmas market which also had one. The vibe was great, loads of people were drinking, singing and dancing. It was a great experience. I even had the chance to try a grapefruit beer (I didn’t like it, but it was something new!).
We also visited the Charlottenburg palace Christmas Market. This was quite a distance away and resulted in a long metro journey. The building glowed surrounded by pretty market stalls, full of amazing food. Bratwurst were everywhere to be seen, chocolate covered fruit on sticks, and many more amazing traditional foods. The food stalls were great and trying all the different food was a must.
Finally, on our last day we had some spare time after we had visited everything we had wanted to, we managed to squeeze in one last market. This was the Spandau Christmas Market, again a bit of a train journey away. This felt more traditional and was in an older looking street. There were traditional music playing and food stalls that flowed all down the street. It was a great end to our trip visiting a more traditional market.