Germany's weirdest Christmas markets
Published: 14 Dec 2012 12:04 GMT+01:00
Updated: 14 Dec 2012 12:04 GMT+01:00
Christmas markets are an intrinsic part of the holiday season in Germany. But for those fancying an odd twist on the standard stalls offering Glühwein, The Local has uncovered markets with erotic, nautical and various other themes.
Erotic Christmas market in Hamburg
Aptly dubbed “the horniest Christmas market in Germany“, this unorthodox Weihnachtsmarkt can be found in the St Pauli district of Hamburg and offers an array of sexy seasonal treats for the sixth year in a row.
The set up is similar to a normal market, with wooden stalls touting their wares, a decked out Christmas tree and vendors selling mulled wine. But there is one main difference; sex everywhere, in true St. Pauli style.
Alongside the traditional Christmas paraphernalia sit scanty knickers, erotic pictures, and hand carved wooden dildos made by a family-run team specializing in wooden sex toys.
Gingerbread hearts, instead of reading “I love you” are emblazoned with romantic phrases such “let’s bonk”, and Glühwein has been renamed “virility punch,” or “hooker juice.”
Inside the market tent, burlesque dancers swing around poles and perform regular strip shows. There is even fortune teller, for those who want to know if they’ll be getting lucky in the New Year.
Probably not one for the kids, but definitely worth a visit, the erotic Christmas market can be found on Spielbudenplatz daily. Entrance is free.
Harbour Christmas market in Cologne
Fish might not be the first thing that springs to mind when thinking about Christmas, but nevertheless, on the banks of the Rhine River in Cologne, a nautical Weihnachtsmarkt has sailed into town.
On Cologne’s oldest bridge, in front of the chocolate museum, revellers can enjoy a range of fishy snacks whilst bobbing along to sea shanties played on the accordion. Go at the right time and you might even catch a performance by the choir of sexy sailors.
Children can hope aboard a story boat and listen to tales of sea monsters, pirates and mermaids, as grown-ups can stroll around the 70 stalls enjoying a Glühbier – a deliciously spiced, warm beer.
The market runs daily and entrance is free.
Underground Christmas market in Kleinbremen
Pop on a helmet and some sturdy shoes, and enjoy the underground Christmas market in Minden.
For three days in December, visitors will be able to peruse handmade goods and enjoy local delicacies by candle light in an abandoned mine, not to mention watch a laser show each evening. With just 50 stalls lining a 150 metre subterranean walkway, this unusual market it bound to be one of the cosiest ones around.
Catch it whilst you can, however, as this Weihnachtsmarkt is only open from the 14 to 16 of December. Entrance fees are a little pricier than normal at €8 for adults and €4 for children, but enjoying a Glühwein and a bratwurst away from the biting cold will be worth it.
Feng-Shui Christmas market in Bergisch Gladbach
If the bustle of Christmas markets sometimes proves too stressful, the North Rhine-Westphalian town of Bergisch Gladbach may be able to help with its Feng-Shui market. Christmas goodies a-plenty can be found in the grounds of Schloss Bensberg, where not a fairground ride is in-sight, and visitors can soak up the ambience to the soulful grooves of gospel group Harlem-Grooves.
Stalls are arranged in accordance to ancient Feng Shui principles of grouping elements together: stalls selling wooden knick-knacks or paper items are sold together in the wood area. Roasted chestnuts or freshly baked goods are sold in the fire section, and the handcrafted jewellery in the metal area.
And what’s more is that the stalls are all arranged in a way the strictest Feng Shui adherent would approve of, creating the most harmonious of Christmas environments. The overall result should be a market with a flowing energy. Or flowing Glühwein at least, which has been especially produced with grapes from Rhineland-Palatinate.
The Bergisch Gladbach market has a small entrance fee of €6 for adults, which includes a drink. Children are admitted free.
Children’s Christmas Market in Lübeck
A Christmas market just for kids has been opened up in Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein. Here, little ones get to experience the magic properly as smaller stalls allow them to get just as stuck in as the adults.
There is also a 200 metre square ice-rink, but strictly for those under 1 metre 60 tall, and under the age of 10. Parents also have the opportunity to enjoy an adult beverage, whilst their children bake Christmas biscuits in the baking tent under the watchful eye of a trained professional.
Budding actors or actresses will also get the chance to re-enact the nativity story, complete with costumes. More retiring youngsters can sit and watch, however, with a mug of hot chocolate.
The market is open daily through December, entrance is free but the ice-skating rink costs €3 per child.