Merrymaking in Muenster
If you find yourself in northern Germany this holiday season, consider planning a day to enjoy the five unique Christmas markets and more than 300 traditional wooden stalls set up around the city of Münster.
Start your day at the Aegidii market, where you can marvel at the giant fans of the wooden Christmas pyramid as they spin above your head. While you are there, enjoy the fairy-tale world and listen for the bells that ring every half hour. Christmas market dates: Nov. 27-Dec. 23, 2017.
The Rathaus, or Town Hall, market is considered the largest and oldest Christmas market in Münster. Here, you’ll find a selection of fine jewelry, crafts and a carousel for the little ones. Enjoy dining on tasty German street fare beneath twinkling lights in the Rathaus courtyard. Christmas market dates: Nov. 27-Dec. 23, 2017.
When the sun starts to set, head to the St. Lamberti-Kirche market. Also called the lights market, the stalls glow blue in a square surrounded by the city’s famous gabled houses. The city’s largest Christmas tree is the focal point of the festivities. Christmas market dates: Nov. 27-Dec. 21, 2017.
The Kiepenkerl market, known for its cozy atmosphere, is a favorite place to find Westphalian specialties and handmade trinkets. It is the perfect spot to finish up your holiday shopping. Christmas market dates: Nov. 21-Dec. 23, 2017.
Before you leave, make sure you stop by Münster’s newest Christmas market, the Giebelhüüskesmarkt. It is also considered the most romantic, since it is set in front of the beautiful Überwasser Church and illuminated by the scenic towers of St.-Paulus-Dom. Christmas market dates: Nov. 27-Dec. 22, 2017.
To learn more about Munster’s many markets, visit www.stadt-muenster.de.
Helpful hints: Free parking is available at Park and Ride (P+R) locations around the city. Also, it is important to note that Münster’s city center is considered a green, or low emission, zone. Only vehicles with a green sticker are allowed to enter; however, exemptions may be available. Check out www.bit.ly/ms_umweltzone for more information.
If you prefer to take public transportation, the markets are just a few minutes’ walk from the main train station and the bus stop on the corner of Hafenstraße and Frie-Vendt-Straße. Download free city maps at www.bit.ly/ms_fueralle and www.muenster-barrierefrei.de.
If you find yourself burdened by the weight of your Christmas market purchases, you can store your items for free from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Advent Saturdays in the bag container located at the Münster Information Center on Heinrich-Brüning-Straße.
Beyond the market: If you have time to explore more of the city, consider visiting Stadtmuseum Münster, Museum für Lackkunst, Kunstmuseum Pablo Picasso Münster or LWL-Museum für Kunst und Kultur to learn more about the region’s unique history and culture. Domkammer im St.-Paulus-Dom Münster is also a worthy stop, offering a look at 12 centuries of Episcopalian art and culture.