Where to warm up after visiting the Christmas markets

©olgagorovenko/123RF.COM
©olgagorovenko/123RF.COM

Where to warm up after visiting the Christmas markets

by Karen Bradbury
Stripes Europe

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and for many, adding yet another gorgeous Christmas market to the long list of those already visited ranks high on their agendas. Should your holiday market travels be taking you to a new city, why not spend time not only at its market, but at another of its great attractions? Choose a place that’s indoors and you’ll have a place to warm up after all those hours spent out in the cold. Here are just a few ideas: 

Cologne: With seven large markets and Christmas decor around every corner, it might prove hard to tear oneself away from all that holiday cheer. The 4711 Perfume Museum offers a place to not only warm frozen noses but to delight them. Enjoy a tour of the premises (in German) or take part in a “Duftseminar,” a crash course in putting together your own signature fragrance. Again, instruction is in German only. The course is offered 2:30-4 p.m. on Saturdays and costs 38 euros. 4711.com/kundenkontakt/event

Munich: Once the rounds through the markets have been completed, trade in the mulled wine for the beverage the city does best, beer. The Spaten-Franziskaner-Brauerei offers an expert-led tasting of five different beers, accompanied by a small snack. The experience is offered on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. and costs 25 euros. Advance registration is necessary. The brewery offers several different tours and additional experiences for both groups and private visitors. https://franziskaner-weissbier.de/ext/visitorcenters/de/index

Nuremberg: Trade winter hats and mittens for bathing suits and make way to Kristall Palm Beach, a huge water park in the nearby suburb of Stein. The place is known for its huge slides, including the Black Hole and the double-looping Pegasus. Adults in search of peace and quiet might prefer its spa and sauna area. https://palm-beach.de/erlebnisbad-rutschenwelt/

Stuttgart: After all that human activity, it could be nice to seek the company of other species. Wilhelma, the city’s highly regarded zoo and botanical garden, offers a mix of both indoor and outdoor spaces. Areas in which to warm up include greenhouses filled with tropical plants, an aquarium, the Moorish House with its cactus collection and display of crops associated with warm climates, or the indoor enclosures housing tigers, apes, giraffes or other wonderful creatures. wilhelma.de/en/visiting-us/round-tours/wilhelma-in-bad-weather.html

Würzburg: The pretty city by the Main River is home to one of Germany’s most lavish palaces. The UNESCO-listed Residenz was constructed between 1720 and 1744 by the most talented team of architects, painters and sculptors the prince-bishops in power at the time could pay for. American visitors will feel a bit of pride upon learning of the role a U.S. officer played in its preservation following its bombing in March of 1945. The palace offers visitors the change to take a self-guided tour every day of the week. residenz-wuerzburg.de/englisch/residenz/index.htm

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