Last night, some friends and I went to Durlach to check out the Christmas market. Durlach is the largest district of Karlsruhe and its residents like to say that they are the “real” Karlsruhe because Durlach was there first! (Karlsruhe is a relatively new city, having only been founded in 1715). Like some of the other more remote districts of Karlsruhe, Durlach has its own Christmas market – a Mediaeval one! And what, you ask, makes a Mediaeval Christmas market different to an ordinary one? Well, along with the usual Glühwein, alcohol-free hot punch and hot chocolate with added spirits, Durlach Christmas market sells hot mead – which I actually find a lot nicer than the cold variety – and provides lots of wood fires for people to huddle around. (Apologies in advance for the quality of photos in this post – my camera doesn’t do too well with darkness!)
It’s also held in a square in front of a former castle, the Karlsburg, which now houses a museum and a school, among other things.
There are stands selling all the usual Christmas market foods – Bratwurst, steaks, crepes and more – but something you don’t find at just any Christmas market is a pig on a spit! I didn’t try any of it this year, but I have in previous years and can assure you it’s delicious!
There are also stalls selling interesting things, like these bottle containing various types of alcohol:
We ate, drank and chatted while huddling around one of the various fires – my hair still smells of smoke! It’s a nice smokey smell though, nothing like the scent of cigarettes! Later, we headed to the stage to check out some of the entertainment.
It’s not every day you see people in Mediaeval costumes dancing!
Later, there was a fire show, which was very cool to watch!
If you’re in the area, I would certainly recommend paying a visit to this Christmas market. It’s smaller than the main one in Karlsruhe proper, but it tends to be less crowded and I find it makes a nice contrast to all the other Christmas markets that are basically the same concept. Be warned though… if you go anywhere near the fire, you will end up smoked!
If you would like to see the fire show, they’re back on Wednesday 11 December and Friday 13 December 2013 at 7:30 p.m.
**I’m counting this as my December trip for Need Another Holiday‘s #Take12Trips challenge.**