If you live in the north west, it is definitely one of the things you have to do every year. The period from the mid November up to Christmas marks the time when Manchester opens its doors to the Christmas Markets. The markets have been going on for over 10 years now and are based on the original idea of German Markets. The streets are laden with rows of wooden huts selling anything christmassy which is supposed to incite the Christmas spirit and help the visitors with their festive shopping. What I personally like about the Manchester Christmas Market is that it has the drop of the Neo- Gothic Town Hall that makes you feel like you are strolling through the original German Market either in Frankfurt or Nuremberg with their stunning Gothic cathedrals.
Welcome to the Markets
So every year we hop on the train and join the throngs of fellow passengers all heading to the Markets to see what in stall this year and, most of all, to have a few cups of gluhwein and to devour the massive Krakauer hotdog.
The Markets are definitely expanding. There are more and more stalls around Albert Square which has always been the heart of the Markets and it is most sociable with all its chalet like bars and huts. The market here is overseen by a massive, sparkly red Father Christmas sat in front of the Town Hall reminding everybody what it is all about and making the children scream with joy when they see it sparkle in the dark.
The Market Stalls
If you are looking for an unusual Christmas gift this is a place to come. The variety of artisan gifts is enormous, from handmade Christmas wreaths, tree decorations, woodwork, jewellery, candles and other festive goods. The price tags are not too bad either and definitely reasonable and cheaper than most of the local garden centres I have been to.
You won’t go hungry and thirsty either whilst meandering between the stalls. In my experience, it is a place where £40 does not last a long time…It is obligatory to feast on hot dogs, mulled wine, hot chocolates and apple strudels. It is all part of the tradition and, after all, you only do it once a year, don’t you?
If you are a fan of French cheeses , Spanish olives or German salamis you can definitely feast your eyes and your palate on a vast array of products from all over Europe. And this is another thing I like about the Markets, its cosmopolitan and international feel. You are served Dutch donuts by a Dutchman, your Krakauer hotdog by a Polish person and French cheese by a person who was closer to the production of this cheese than anybody else.
So whether you are visiting the Markets to get into the Christmas spirit, get some shopping done, enjoy yourself with your colleagues on a staff Christmas do or just want to have some family time ice skating , you will definitely come away with bags of pressies and also a massive festive glow either from being surrounded by all the Christmas goodies or just having too much mulled wine!
Till next year! [wc_fa icon=”tree” margin_left=”” margin_right=””][/wc_fa]