The Christmas Markets: Frankfurt

Happy 2020, folks!

Back in September I began researching flights home for the Christmas holiday. With no direct flights from Moscow to Boston, I generally avoid crazy busy airports like Heathrow and Charles de Galle. I’ve been impressed with Lufthansa lately and noticed the chance to have a long layover in Frankfurt on my way to Boston.

Moloko in Moscow

After calling the airline (something I’ve only recently realized merits great results), I was able to extend my layover to two nights at a minimal fee. My plan was hatched and I started researching Frankfurt’s Christmas markets.

Moscow lights

I’ve visited a few Christmas markets during my time in Russia. Red Square itself boasts a small market next to GUM, the department store dripping in white lights.

GUM Department Store in Moscow

Last year I took a long weekend in Riga, Latvia, and wandered around its multiple markets. The year before I stopped in Zurich for a night to enjoy the markets there.

Riga
Zurich

Frankfurt proved the best of the lot thus far. Essentially one huge market stretching from the waterfront of the River Main through Römerberg Square and up to Hauptwache Plaza, the market spanned nearly a half kilometer.

Frankfurt

While some markets tend to be weighed down by products brought in from China, I’m always keen to find arts and crafts created in a style or technique unique to that region.

Römerberg Square

Food vendors sold treats (the Berlin jelly donut of JFK fame, for one), carousels turned in the squares, and crafts from all over the world dotted the stalls (Peru the farthest spot).

Rained out on the Friday evening I arrived, I made a plan to arrive first thing Saturday morning. As December 22 marked the last day of the Frankfurt Market, crowds were even larger than normal.

The waterfront

The Frankfurt waterfront proved far more charming than expected. Perhaps it was the first sun I had seen in weeks or it’s similarity to Boston’s Charles River but I absolutely loved walking the bike path from my hotel to the market. Wood ducks played in puddles left from the storm and the locals were out in droves – running, biking, enjoying the unusually warm December weather.

Other Frankfurt attractions…

The Palmengarten

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Greenhouses full of botanical gardens
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Grounds to walk and enjoy
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The perfect antidote to market crowds

Schirn Kunsthalle

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I stumbled upon a phenomenal retrospective of Lee Krasner
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Known to many as Jackson Pollock’s wife, Lee was a great deal more

Bauernmarkt Konstablerwache

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Apple wine, or apfelwein, is a Frankfurt must

My Frankfurt layover proved the perfect kick off to the holiday season. Have any of you visited a Christmas market in Europe? Suggestions welcome!

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Frohe Weihnachten!