5 January 2019

Berlin Christmas Markets

And just like that, it's all over.  As the time has come to pack away the decorations for another year, I'm reminiscing about our trip to Berlin for the Christmas markets last winter.  We were in an Uber on the way to Tegel airport when the driver checked which terminal our flight would be going from, and informed us that it was in fact cancelled due to the snow at Heathrow, despite the British Airways app saying otherwise.  Hours on the phone to BA and a long queue at the airport later, we were rebooked on the earliest available flight and our three day weekend became five days.  Stressful at the time, but rather nice having an extra 48 hours in one of my favourite cities.

Emma Louise Layla at the Hackesche Höfe in Berlin at Christmas - travel & lifestyle blog


Christmas star lights in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

I love Christmas market trips (we visited Cologne in 2016 and Lille this December), have visited Berlin a few times before - including a press trip earlier in the year and at Christmas years ago - but no one does Christmas markets like the Germans, so happily headed back for the fifth time.  We stayed at the Ellington Hotel - chic hotel, lovely staff; highly recommended - and ate very well, with delicious dinners at Restaurant VOLT and Nobelhart & Schmutzig, lunches at Meisterstück and Oxymoron in the Mitte district, and plenty of wursts at the markets.  We had cocktails at the hipster Cafe Kreuzberg and drinks at the buzzy Monkey Bar at the top of the 25hours hotel, where I stayed last spring.

Gendarmenmarkt Christmas market in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Ich Liebe Dich heart shaped biscuits at the German Christmas markets in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

We wandered around every market we came across, including Alexanderplatz, with its colourful carousel and huge wooden Christmas pyramid, and headed east to the family-oriented market in front of the lit up Charlottenburg Palace, but our favourite was the beautiful Gendarmenmarkt between two churches and the concert hall, which we visited each day.  It's less crowded due to the €1 entry fee, and features sparkling Christmas trees, live music and rows of traditional huts with handcrafted glass baubles, local artisanal produce, the famous iced lebkuchen heart biscuits, food stalls and a champagne bar.  We ordered a bottle of Moët & Chandon and watched ballerinas perform a version of the Waltz of the Snowflakes (possibly my favourite sequence in Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker) on stage beneath the Konzerthaus, followed by a children's choir.  We went inside one of the little tents to warm up and share a flammkuchen (the thin, crispy German pizza) before moving onto the next market. The perfect festive winter's evening!

Emma Louise Layla at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Kaiser Wilheim Memorial Church at Christmas in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

We walked through the wintry Tiergarten and visited the Holocaust Memorial, Brandenburg Gate, the book burning memorial at Bebelplatz, Checkpoint Charlie, the beautiful tiled Hackesche Höfe - where the fabulous Chameleon Theater is - and the Kaiser Wilheim Memorial Church, with its impressive stained glass window designed by the celebrated Gabriel Loire featuring 22,750 pieces of blue and red glass.

Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Holocaust Memorial in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

On what was probably the coldest day, we hired bikes and cycled 35km around the city and its parks, including along the old Berlin Tempelhof Airport runways in the iciest winds.  Face-numbingly cold, but great fun.  On our final day, we wandered around the Mitte district beneath the TV Tower and visited the Berliner Dom cathedral on Museum Island, climbing the steps to the rooftop dome to take in its super views across the city.  We had time for one last mug of glühwein before grabbing our bags from the hotel and heading to the airport once again.  There isn't a bad time of year to go to Berlin, but if you haven't visited at Christmastime, you must!

browse other Berlin posts & travel features

Berlin at Christmas - travel & lifestyle blog

Children's choir singing at the Gendarmenmarkt German Christmas market in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Berliner Dom Cathedral roof in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Nutcracker wooden soldiers at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Berlin TV Tower on a cold winter's day - travel & lifestyle blog

Wooden Christmas Pyramid at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Blue house bauble at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Book burning memorial at Bebelplatz in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Christmas Berlin streets at dusk - travel & lifestyle blog

Christmas tree at the Berlin Wall - travel & lifestyle blog

Colourful graffiti on the Berlin Wall - travel & lifestyle blog

Glass baubles at the Christmas markets in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Cycling on the Berlin Tempelhof Airport runway in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Brandenburg Gate statues in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Father Christmas and kids at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Gendarmenmarkt Christmas market at dusk, in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Deutsche Demokratische Republik sign in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Gendarmenmarkt German Christmas market in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

German gingerbread heart biscuits at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Gluhwein at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Gold mosaic tiles at the Kaiser Wilheim Memorial Church in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Gluhwein at the Christmas markets in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog







Konerzthaus Berlin beautiful architecture - travel & lifestyle blog

Berliner winter warm cider at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Le Monde Diplomatique sign in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Mulled wine at the Berlin Christmas markets - travel & lifestyle blog

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Nutcracker ballet at the Gendarmenmarkt German Christmas market in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Peace now sign on The Berlin Wall - travel & lifestyle blog

Snow outside the Ellington Hotel in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

The best Christmas market in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Potsdamer Platz metro tiled station sign - travel & lifestyle blog

View from the Berliner Dom Cathedral in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

The best Christmas market in Europe - the Gendarmenmarkt in Berlin - travel & lifestyle blog

Weihnachtsmarkt vor dem Schloss Charlottenburg, Berlin Christmas markets - luxury travel blog
Share:

No comments

Related Posts Plugin for Blogger...
© Emma Louise Layla | All rights reserved.
Blog Layout Created by pipdig