In my head, the song from Charlie Brown is playing "Christmas Time is here..." but now it's "Weihnachts time is here!" The Christmas market in Bonn opened this past Friday night. The kids and I didn't make it to the opening festivities due to that being the day our furniture arrived. Between unpacking, running up & down the stairs directing the movers to where things go, and also walking 4km to take & pick up Jackson from school, I was wiped out. My fitbit ran out of battery life and died at 3pm and I had already hit 8.6 miles for the day. Who knows what it ended up being by the end! Here's a sneak peek at our house with furniture! We still need to fill in a few missing pieces that we didn't bring over, add wall sconces (you can see the wires hanging out of the wall in the picture), and buy more rugs, but it just feels so civilized to be able to eat at a table again! :)
So we went to the Christmas market on Saturday instead. Brandtley had already gotten a glimpse of the market a few days before as it was being constructed and had told Jackson all about the ferris wheel and car rides that he had seen. I had also promised the kids a gluten free pizza from Vapianos (the Italian restaurant we tried a few weeks ago which is one of the few restaurants that we've found with gluten free options). They were beyond excited!
A Weihnachtsmarkt or Christmas Market is a street festival in the Altstadt ("old town" or downtown) in which small wooden houses are set up that sell everything Christmas... from ornaments to toys to candles and of course all sorts of candy, food, and beverages. It is lit beautifully with Christmas lights and there are rides for the kids. I believe most German towns have one, though some are larger or run longer than others. Bonn's will run from 18 Nov through 23 Dec.
The Christmas Pyramid in front of the Bonn cathedral
The main attraction for the boys - the ferris wheel
View of the Christmas Market from the top of the ferris wheel. The market actually extends into other streets & squares throughout the downtown area. This view is only a small portion. This square is usually an open cobblestoned area with cafes around the edges.
Roasted Chestnuts! I have loved these ever since first trying them on the streets of Rome during our trip in college. Thankfully, they are safe for Brandtley to eat! Sadly, they are the only thing safe for Brandtley to eat at the market. Some of the larger markets sometimes have a GlutenFrei food vendor, but I haven't found one here. I may start bringing gf chocolates in my purse for him so that we can all enjoy a treat!
A statue of Santa Claus.
Ornate candles at one of the stands. So pretty. I look forward to doing more shopping on our next trip to the market once Matthew returns.
Riding the car ride :) There needs to be a glühwein stand next to the car ride! Then we could all have fun. As it was, the boys were too excited about the rides to stop long enough for me to try a glühwein.
After a few rides and just a little walking through the stands, we enjoyed our GF pizza. :) Happy boy.
Then on our way home we stopped by Puppenkönig which is a large 3 story toy store. The boys enjoyed watching the train set in the window with other kids. :)
There are many other Christmas markets throughout Germany and neighboring countries. Some of them have themes and different attractions. One is in caves, another is a medieval-themed market, and another nearby is Dickens-themed this year. We hope to see several more throughout this Christmas season!