It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The holidays are upon us and approaching quickly. The good thing is, when it comes to Christmas and the holidays, Germany has got you covered. Christmas is one of its biggest holiday seasons. It’s so big and special, they actually start celebrating anywhere from four to five weeks ahead of the actual day. Because Germans celebrate Advent, most of the “Weihnachtmarkts,” or “Christmas markets,” start around the end of November.
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Maybe this is your first Christmas market season in Germany or maybe you feel like you’ve visited every one you can handle. What if I told you about one that is underground? When I say underground I don’t mean it’s a secret. I mean it is literally in caves!
Walking through grocery stores, shoppers can tell Christmas is only a few weeks away. The shelves are filled with Christmas cookies, gingerbread and chocolate Santa Clauses.
German Christmas markets have inspired a sense of community cheer and holiday merriment for over 400 years. Amidst the dark days and cold nights, it is easy to be dreary and avoid venturing out. Historically, days near or on Dec. 25 have always been celebrated in multiple cultures as a crucial day of the year: Egyptians paid homage to their key gods; Romans celebrated the sun god Saturn during this season; and every year Germanic ancestors started multiple midwinter festivals near the winter solstice.