Walking around during the day was quite a bore on a late November as there was not much to do, though walking along the streets and just watching peoples lives going about was enough to pass two days of my time. Night time though was a different thing altogether. Christmas markets lights up the whole of the town center at night where only pedestrian are allowed with all the mini carts and food stalls and Christmas hand crafted trinkets stalls.
Every stalls are decorated with Christmas colors with Santa houses and candy sticks. The trinkets or gifts could be all kinds of stuff but mainly local hand crafted items and not those that you would usually find back in south east asia such as knock off bulk produced tourist trap goodies. These were locals with almost every stall selling different items.
|Christmas Market in Leipzig|
I don’t think you would be able to get them trinkets off a chain store anywhere but then again many items were pointless to a backpacker like me who cant carry much stuff. Still it was fascinating to just browse through the many stalls of goodies. I wouldn’t be able to tell if they have the same things every year but for me it was definitely a new discovery hence the long slow walk sniffing everything.
Food stall however was another story. Almost every three stalls of trinkets you would find a food stall. Most popular of course would be the German Bratwurst Hot Dog Stall from all different types of brands. I choose …. To be the kiasu Singaporean in this matter and just headed to the longest queue I could find. One problem was I couldn’t speak German and neither could they speak English. Good hand sign pointing to the next guy who just got his food and a thumbs up got me my food.
To wash it down came the hot mulled wine sold also every other three stalls in nice clay cups decorated and custom made for Christmas Market 2011. Apparently you would have to pay for the wine and the cup as well about 4 euro. The price also depends on how fancy the cup was as different stand would have different cups but generally only about 3 different kinds in the whole markets.
|Hot Mulled Wine and a Hotdog|
So if you wan a souvenir from Christmas Markets in Germany just keep the cups. Some could even make it a yearly tradition I suppose but for poor backpackers like me you could also return the cups and get a refund of 2 euro. Or a refill for 2 euro. Nice system I would say.
Seeing the people prepare the mulled wine out in the open cold no one could resist stopping and buying a cup to sip. Heck it was freezing as well so almost everyone nearly always had a cup in hand even the kids …. Though theirs might had been hot chocolate. You buy a drink at one edge of the town where the markets starts … keep refilling and finally return to another stand at the opposite side of the market as long it’s the same pattern.
I might had missed out German Beer and October Feast but sipping hot mulled wine out in the freezing cold eating a bratwurst hotdog sure made up for it.