Experience the true Old World charm and heart-warming Christmas traditions, as you explore the Advent markets held in towns and villages throughtout Germany. Visit the medieval Munich, historic Nuremburg and dreamy Rothenburg as you enjoy the romance of train travel, history, food, music and fairytale snowy landscapes.
The Munich Christmas Market
The Munich Christmas Market offers traditional Bavarian and unique Christmas gifts, including wood carvings from Oberammergau, gingerbread (Lebkuchen) from Nuremberg and notably some exquisite glassware from the Bavarian Forest. Crib figurines, bee wax candles, chimney sweeps made of plums and almonds are just some of the many thousands of other traditional Christmas gift ideas on display. Each day, from the balcony of Munich’s town hall, music lovers will be able to enjoy the festive season celebration with a special alpine Christmas Market concert.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Rothenburg is a medieval extravaganza which takes the visitor effortlessly back in time. It stands today exactly as it had in the 11th century, it's steep-roofed gabled houses, balconies, soaring spires, and narrow cobble streets still remain. The city's imposing gateway, towers, and city walls never fail to impress. The town walls with their battlements and mighty bastions form a protective circle around the precious relics of bygone ages. The Spitalbastei at the southern gate is particularly impressive. Its towers are not the only outstanding feature of St. James's Church; the interior is equally impressive, with three altars by Tilman Riemenschneider, the renowned woodcarver.
Neuschwanstein Castle is a Romanesque Revival palace on a rugged hill above the village of Hohenschwangau in southwest Bavaria and is one of the most beloved and easily recognized castles in the world. Despite its medieval look, it was built in the 19th century, and served no defensive purposes. It was commissioned and paid for by Ludwig II of Bavaria as a retreat and as an homage to Richard Wagner. King Ludiwg was Richard Wagner’s patron, and many rooms of the castle were inspired by Wagner’s operas. Ludwig II was fascinated by the medieval legends in the operas: Tristan and Isolde, Sigurd, the swan knight Lohengrin, Parsifal and the minnesinger Tannhäuser.