It’s Christmas Eve, Christmas is so close you can almost touch it. Homes everywhere are bedecked with Christmas finery, refrigerators bulge with Christmas indulgence, for most of us the shopping’s been done and the presents wrapped. Where did you shop this year? I was fortunate enough to visit the Cologne Christmas market, glittering beneath the mighty spires of the magnificent Cologne Cathedral it exceeded all expectations!

Cologne Cathedral by the Roncalliplatz, Cologne, Germany

Cologne has hosted a Christmas market since 1820. There are several markets but the biggest and most famous fills the Roncalliplatz. Huddled beside the resplendence of Cologne’s cathedral, over 150 stalls sparkle and entice. Open from the last week in November until the night before Christmas Eve it thrills the several million eager Christmas shoppers who visit it each year from all across the globe.

Cologne Christmas Market, Cologne, Germany

The German Christmas markets are world famous. I’ve been to Christmas markets in Belgium, England and of course in France and although I’ve enjoyed the Christmas market in Aix-en-Provence, elsewhere I’ve been fairly underwhelmed. I was actually in Germany for work and after a fairly long day never mind my usual struggle with jet lag , despite it being about forty minutes away by train, the Cologne Christmas market seemed just too close to miss. It really was wunderbar, I hope I’ve succeeded in capturing some of its splendour below.

Christmas decorations and gifts to buy

Natural products with fire cones and cinnamon sticks.

Fir cone Christmas garlands and decorations at the Cologne Christmas market

Traditional decorative Christmas villages

Traditional Christmas villages for sale at the Cologne Christmas market

Christmas baubles and decorations for the Christmas tree

Christmas baubles and decorations for the Christmas tree at the Cologne Christmas market

Sweets and candies

sweets and candied for sale at the Cologne Christmas market

Mistletoe for sale

Mistletoe for sale at the Cologne Christmas marketand locally made gin!

Local Gin for sale at the Cologne Christmas market

Strudel bakers in traditional dressed looking as if they’ve just stepped from a Christmas card.

Strudel bakers dressed in traditional dress at the Cologne Christmas market

Delicious baked sweet treats

Bakery at the Cologne Christmas market, Cologne, Germany

Cosy cabins to nestle in and sip your gluhwein

Gluhwein at the Cologne Christmas market

Everything sparkling with Christmas festivity and magic

The entrance to Cologne Christmas markets, Cologne, Germany

If you missed the Cologne Christmas Market this year it will be back in 2020, click here for details. Maybe you’ve visited a Christmas market somewhere that you’ve loved, do let me know I’d love to hear about it.

And finally, Happy Christmas to you all. Thank you for following my blog, I hope you continue to do so in the coming year and may 2020 be filled with joy and peace for you all, in which ever corner of the world you may be!