German Christmas Market: Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim

January 8, 2014

Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim church and lit Christmas tree at night I first fell in love with Freinsheim on a mini road trip a few years back. When a German historian friend tells you about a 5,000-year-old town, complete with a 15th-century stone fortification wall, you go. Based on the description, you might expect to step into a time warp once you get inside the city's walls - and you'd be right. The ancient wall (refortified in the 18th century after destruction in the Nine Year's War) remains and the city feels as through it still belongs in another era. Half-timbered, crumbling homes meander alongside the wall so close, at times you must turn sideways just to squeeze through. Even non-history buffs can't escape the immense feeling of time gone by.

So when I discovered they had a Christmas market, just like the rest of Germany, I knew we had to visit. Much like the town itself, its Weihnachtsmarkt is small, modest and lacks the showiness of larger cities, but that is its charm. Rather than the massive stalls, overflowing with meter-long gummi ropes and cotton candy machines, there is a little hard candy stand that I make sure to find every year to buy an assortment of flavors. Instead of loud and colorful kids' carnival monstrosities, there is a horse-drawn carriage you can ride through town. Food options stay more traditional, with Wurst and Flammkuchen, with a few eateries on the main block opening their patios to serve soups and a couple of plates centered around ubiquitous German meats and cheeses. We did make an amazing food discovery last year in the form of apple beignets - apple rings dipped in batter, fried, and dusted with cinnamon sugar - which were sadly absent this year. Here's hoping they return in the years to come...

Charm aside, one of the main reasons we made the hour-plus trek down for this particular market was the Portugieser Glühwein. While I'm not entirely sure what is different about this hot mulled wine, it is the perfect combination of not too sweet and not too spicy, not to mention it's served in the prettiest little rustic market mugs. Whether it's for the wine, the ancient wall or even for an excursion outside of the Christmas season, Freinsheim will remain one of my favorite little German towns.

Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim historic old town Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim entrance city fortress wall
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim narrow passages beside fortress wall Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim charming streets
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim city stone wall and barn Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim donkey Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim stands Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim main city gate Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim Gluhwein menu Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim Portugieser Gluhwein Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim flammkuchen
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim sun on the church Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim horse drawn carriage
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim Christmas carousel Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim city buildings and holiday lights
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim Christmas lights over the street Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim moon in the night sky
Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim at night

Weihnachtsmarkt Freinsheim
Historische Altstadt, von Tor zu Tor
67251 Freinsheim
Friday evenings and weekends, from late November to late December

1 comment:

  1. Lovely photos. And such happy memories of our visit on the way back from Wachenheim :)


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