Is there anything more magical than a Christmas market in Europe? The smell of roasting chestnuts, the sound of carolers, and the twinkling lights on the trees all contribute to the enchanting atmosphere of these festive events. This year, why not combine your love of food with your Christmas shopping by exploring some of the best markets on the Rhine River in Europe? As a travel advisor specializing in European culinary travel, I have scoured the region to bring you my top 5 picks for the most delicious and charming Christmas markets.
Known as the “Capital of Christmas,” Strasbourg’s market is one of the largest in France. Feast your eyes on the stunning decorations while feasting on the local specialties like choucroute (sauerkraut with sausages), flammkuchen (a type of pizza with cream, onions, and bacon), and foie gras. Be sure to try a cup of vin chaud (mulled wine) to keep you warm as you shop.
With over 150 stalls, Cologne’s Christmas market is one of the most popular in Europe. You’ll find plenty of traditional German treats such as bratwurst, potato pancakes, and stollen (a type of fruitcake). But be sure to try a local specialty called Rievkooche, which is a type of potato pancake with bacon bits and onions. Wash it down with a gluhwein, a hot spiced wine.
This charming university town’s Christmas market is unique in that it offers plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. The market is known for its handcrafted wooden toys, but the food offerings are just as impressive. Try the Gebrannte Mandeln (candied almonds), Kaiserschmarrn (a type of sweet pancake), and spicy potato wedges.
This tiny town’s market is a hidden gem that foodies won’t want to miss. The star of the show here is the Rudesheim Coffee, a delicious blend of coffee, Asbach Uralt (a type of brandy), sugar, and whipped cream. But be sure to also try the local sausages and Flammkuchen.
This market is famous for its sweet treats. You’ll find plenty of cookies, chocolates, and gingerbread on offer. But save room for the local specialty called Basler Läckerli, a spiced cookie made with honey and hazelnuts. Pair it with a hot chocolate or a cup of mulled wine for the perfect snack.
There’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than by visiting a Christmas market in Europe. And if you’re a foodie, the markets on the Rhine River are a must-visit. From Strasbourg’s hearty Alsatian cuisine to Basel’s sweet treats, there’s something to please every palate. So why not book a trip this holiday season and indulge in the festive food and drink of these charming markets? As a travel advisor specializing in European culinary travel, I can assure you that you won’t regret it. Need some help? Let’s chat about your Christmas Market holiday – schedule a complimentary call with me here.
At Gourmet Adventures Travel Co., I craft culinary getaways for travelers who love to eat well and yearn to truly savor the authentic side of their destination. From a river cruise through Provencal wine country to a journey through the heady spice markets and medinas of Morocco, you'll taste your way through the world's most enchanting landscapes.