Munich Christmas Market.
Ah, a proper Christmas. Chesnuts roasting on an open fire, snow covering the ground, mulled wine, carol singers, overeating and drinking. Yes, an almost Dickensian Christmas. Obviously, not a true Dickensian Christmas, that would involve a match seller dying in the snow, workhouses, a 40% child mortality rate and the threat of cholera. No, in short, we were looking for the sanitized version of Christmas. And how to achieve that? A Christmas market, maybe the Munich Christmas Market?
Tam has always wanted to go to a Christmas market. Whereas I, a slightly Bah Humbug type, (you wouldn’t have guessed eh?) had always resisted. However, German flights with British Airways are often cheaper at the weekend. This is usually due to it being a business destination for weekdays, so we packed our bags and went for it!
As usual, our flights were with British Airways. Of course, as long-time readers will know, BA is my go-to choice for Europe. As I said, flights were cheap, below is a screenshot of this year’s prices. (2017 – we visited in 2016)
Economy prices and Business Class prices to Munich, as shown above, for this year. We dropped the price by £200 as a result of using the ‘part pay with Avios’ feature. If you have never used it, see my How To Collect Avios and my Part Pay With Avios.
In order to get from Munich Airport to the city centre, we jumped on a train. The tickets are as cheap as chips, literally, and as you would expect, the trains were quick clean and efficient. Of course, this is Germany! Tickets may be bought from machines at the airport. But see the transport website for all the details.
We booked to stay at the Buddy Hotel, right in the centre of Munich. It was small but functional. It seemed to be set up for business users with a desk included. Featuring a clever compact design, the room maximised storage and facilities. Lots of tech, such as a free to use tablet with internet access, electric beds and plenty of sockets. Everywhere you looked there was another smart storage solution!
We didn’t really need a big room as we were only in town for 1 night. But as we had so little time, location was key. The room cost a pleasing 109 Euros which, in the light of the time of year, I didn’t think was too bad. As usual, I used Booking.com to scope out the hotel that best suited our needs. Use this link and get £10 off your first booking! Buddy Hotel was an automated affair which proved quick and simple to use. We soon had our room key from the dispenser and off we went to the room.
Munich Christmas Market
24 hours is no time to see a city but it is certainly enough for an event. We, and of course, by that I mean Tam, just wanted to see the Munich Christmas Market. As can be seen, by the above map, it was just a matter of crossing the road and we were there. There is no entry fee, in this case, you just wander in. Dazzling lights of all colours lit up the stalls and shops, and oh, the smells! There were plenty of stalls hawking food and drink as well as Christmas decorations of all shapes sizes and costs.
To be sure, Munich Christmas Market really is a glittering spectacle of light and colour. Even for one such as me, the ‘don’t really do Christmas’ type, I would thoroughly recommend it. I was even starting to feel ‘Christmassy’ as I walked around the stalls, after all, I am just a big old softy.
The stalls were doing a brisk trade and not surprisingly, the whole atmosphere was one of happiness and joy. The Christmas surroundings seemed to bring the best out in people. The air was crisp, and while there was no snow, it did make it feel very seasonal. Indeed, I was pleasantly surprised by all this and would definitely go again!
Traditionally Gluhwein is served, it’s a bit like a mulled wine. To explain how the system works, you buy the drink and the glass it comes in. Then after you’ve finished, you can keep the glass as a souvenir or you can return the glass and get some money back. Just like the Corona pop bottles when I was a kid.
I, and it was my fault, of course, probably could have done my research better. Because, in this case, there was a football match on. It was some bunch of chaps playing another bunch of chaps, I guess Munich? I have no knowledge or interest in football so therefore it just passes me by! What with all the visitors to the Munich Christmas Market and then a football match there were people everywhere! For that reason, it made it a little tricky to find somewhere to eat, so I would recommend making a reservation in advance!
Eventually, we managed to squeeze in somewhere. Then after dinner and a couple of glasses of wine, we trolled our way back to the hotel. Then up the next morning, jump on the train to the airport and home. A whistle-stop visit to be honest but, we achieved all we set out to do and had a fantastic time at the market.
Munich Christmas Market – Conclusions
- Wrap up with suitably warm clothing
- Get a hotel close to the market
- The train from the airport is very efficient and quick
- Take a bit of cash as not all stalls take plastic
- Stop and enjoy the atmosphere!
- Make a dinner reservation in advance