5 festive Christmas Markets in Dresden

Dresden is the capital city of the Free State of Saxony. If you would walk from the centre of town 58 kilometres to the east, you are already in the Czech Republic. It is so lovely to spend the whole day at the Christmas markets. They are all in such close proximity to each other that it nearly feels like Dresden is one massive Christmas Market. You feel the Christmas spirit all over town. Most stalls at the markets offer traditional Christmas angels, incense Smokers (these little wooden traditional German dolls), and the famous Christmas Pyramids. The scent of spices, baked traditional delicacies, roasted nuts, and hot mulled wine runs through all little lanes. The low hanging grey winter sky of the Elbe valley plays an insignificant role.

1. Christmas Market Hauptstrasse in the Baroque quarter of Dresden

This Market is one long row with stalls on both sides. It is on the right side of the Elbe, in the Dresden borough of Neustadt. Eat, drink, and be merry, there even is a merry-go-round for the little ones.

Open daily till 23.12. Opening hours: daily 11 am – 9 pm, Fr. and Sat. 11 am – 10 pm

2. Medieval Christmas Stallhof Dresden

A real special place to visit is the Medieval Christmas Market in the Stallhof inside of the castle. Stall holders, mostly tradespeople, are dressed in traditional clothes of their guild from medieval times. The variety of wooden and wrought-iron objects they produce at their stalls, are excellent examples of traditional German craftsmanship. This place gives you a very detailed idea of how life in medieval times used to be. Try your luck at archery at one of the stalls, it is big fun.

Open daily till 23.12. Opening hours 11 am to 9.30 pm. Entrance fee EUR 3 for adults.

3. Traditional Christmas Market at Frauenkirche Dresden

This enchanting market is right between the very famous Frauenkirche and the Brühl Terrace.

Open daily till 24.12. Sun. - Thurs. 10 am – 9 pm. Fri. and Sat. 10 am – 10 pm
24.12. 10.00 am – 2 pm.

4. Romantic Christmas Market Anno 1900

The Romantic Christmas market offers everything you would have found between the years 1800 to 1920. The industrialization and urbanization had a huge impact on the quality of life. Go for a stroll at this market to see with your own eyes why that period is called the century of the bourgeoisie.

5. Striezelmarkt Dresden

The biggest of all markets is the Striezel Markt. It has been in this exact same spot ever since 1434. Its name is derived from the German dialect for Struzel or Striezel, which is the Dresdner Christstollen. You can buy Christmas Stollen in all towns in Germany but only the ones from Dresden are allowed to carry the name Dresdner Christstollen, and those ones proudly carry a medal as a prove of identity.

This Christmas cake is made from yeast dough with raisins and almonds, and very important marzipan. In medieval times it was prepared during pre-Christmas Lent. During these times the church (ever the party pooper) made it illegal to eat butter and milk, and obviously the cake didn't go down too well. The pope changed the law, from then on people were allowed to use these ingredients and the Dresdner Christstollen as we know it today was born. Around 1500 they sold the first one at the Striezelmarkt in Dresden. Happy end. Please make sure you buy one to take home with you. If you are vegetarian, please ask for ingredients, it is often made with lard (yikes). 

Can't get enough of Christmas Markets

So far this Christmas season I visited 17 Christmas Markets in Austria and Germany, and I just can’t get enough this Christmas. Watch this space and wait what I have in store for you next. Do you like Christmas Markets as much as I do? Looking forward to hear from you.

From Berlin with love

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Greetings stranger. I always try to be myself and to be a tourist as often as I can. I would love to get in contact with lots of hard travelling tourists who love to be out and about as much as I do. I am looking forward to all your comments. Thanks so much in advance.