Step right into a winter wonderland as we embark on a digital journey to certainly one of Germany’s most celebrated Christmas markets. The Dresden Christmas Market (or Striezelmarkt), with its historical past of over 5 centuries, invitations guests to embrace the enchantment of the vacation season. This market has every part from time-honoured traditions to culinary delights that tantalize the style buds. Let’s discover the magic and appeal of Dresden’s Striezelmarkt, the place Christmas comes alive in a whirlwind of lights, crafts, and festive culinary treasures.
🎦 Watch our quick video on Christmas in Germany, which can encourage you to discover this stunning nation in Europe for the vacations ⤵
Concerning the Dresden Christmas Market
The German title for the Dresden Christmas Market is Dresden Striezelmarkt.
One in all Germany’s premier Christmas markets
Nestled within the coronary heart of Dresden on Altmarkt Sq., the Striezelmarkt is Germany’s oldest Christmas market, showcasing its timeless traditions since 1434.
This famend market beckons guests with its picturesque atmosphere and boasts the world’s largest Erzgebirgische Stufenpyramide (carved Christmas pyramid), standing tall at 14.62 meters.
Yearly, greater than 2.5 million individuals collect right here to revel within the vacation spirit, making it a must-visit vacation spot.
The Dresden Striezelmarkt: A Christmas Wonderland
What units it aside and brings pleasure 12 months after 12 months is the lovingly designed and distinctive stalls, providing a various array of products, from Erzgebirge crafts to freshly baked Stollen and the beloved Dresdner Kräppelchen.
Add within the enchanting sounds of the season and the everyday Saxon coziness, and you’ve got a recipe that captivates each younger and outdated, making their hearts soar. A go to to the Striezelmarkt is, certainly, experiencing Christmas in Dresden!
What Makes the Striezelmarkt Distinctive?
Constantly, the Dresden Striezelmarkt is chosen as a favourite amongst Christmas markets within the German-speaking area.
In 2023, it celebrates its 589th version, incomes the excellence of being the oldest Christmas market in Germany.
This attraction is replete with superlatives, together with the world’s largest 14.61-meter-high Erzgebirge pyramid, arguably the world’s largest walk-in Schwibbogen, and a day by day cultural program that caters to each younger and outdated.
A real heart-stealer on the market is the beloved Pflaumentoffel. Nobody can resist the little wrinkled determine, peering mischievously from underneath its prime hat. The handcrafted element in each millimeter of this fruity puppet with picket legs is unmistakable.
One other charming characteristic, although not grand in dimension, is the historic Ferris wheel. A experience on it appears like a journey by means of time, as you take pleasure in a cotton sweet whereas gazing over the glowing market stalls.
The scent of roasted almonds wafts by means of the air, accompanied by the mushy tune of a barrel organ within the background.
Dresdner Christstollen: A Slice of Custom
Guests to the Dresden Striezelmarkt typically deal with themselves to a thick slice of Dresdner Christstollen. This delectable deal with is solely crafted by conventional bakeries in Dresden, utilizing a carefully guarded and time-honored recipe.
The title “Striezelmarkt” has its origins within the scrumptious baked good now often called “Dresdner Christstollen“, well-known worldwide.
In Center Excessive German, “Strutzel” or “Striezel” referred to a yeast-based pastry, sometimes in an elongated, typically braided kind. It possible was meant to evoke the picture of the Christ youngster swaddled in a blanket from the Christian Nativity story.
As a consequence of its distinctive look, this “Christbrot” was additionally sometimes known as “Stolle” or “Stollen,” a reputation that finally prevailed.
Over time, the components have been refined, and varied flavors have been developed. Since 1617, the Stollen has been an integral a part of the Creation season and is a telltale signal of a scrumptious Christmas.
Culinary Delights on the Striezelmarkt
The Dresden Striezelmarkt is not simply famend for its festive atmosphere and conventional crafts; it is also a meals lover’s paradise.
Guests are handled to a wealthy array of culinary delights that seize the essence of the vacation season.
From Dresden’s iconic Christmas deal with, the Christstollen, to glazed apples, Kräppelchen (a sort of pastry), and steaming mugs of Glühwein (mulled wine), the market presents a gastronomic journey that is certain to fulfill each palate.
The Iconic Christstollen: A Style of Custom
As we already talked about, on the coronary heart of the Striezelmarkt’s culinary choices is the well-known Dresdner Christstollen, a reputation that pays homage to the normal Christmas market.
This delectable deal with is meticulously handcrafted by expert bakers in Dresden, following a carefully guarded and time-honoured recipe. A thick slice of this candy, yeasty bread laden with candied fruits and nuts is a must-try for guests.
Pfefferkuchen: A Historic Delight
One other pleasant deal with is the Pfefferkuchen, gingerbread from the city of Pulsnitz.
This candy and hearty delight has been a favorite for the reason that thirteenth century. Whereas the precise origin of gingerbread is not documented, it is believed that the title “Lebkuchen” is derived from the Center Excessive German “lebbe,” that means candy.
Within the Franconian area, the heartland of “Lebkuchen,” its roots are thought to have taken maintain. Data present the existence of a “Pfefferkuchenzunft” or Gingerbread Guild within the Silesian city of Schweidnitz as early as 1293.
Monasteries on this area are believed to have created the primary mixtures for these delectable treats, also known as “Pfefferkuchen” because of the wonderful spices, often called “Pfeffer” in medieval instances, included into the dough. These gingerbreads happy candy tooths and have been used as appetizers, digestives, and even cures for illnesses resembling again ache and fever.
In an innkeeper’s privilege granted to “those from Schlieben zur Pulsnitz” on January 1, 1558, Pulsnitz bakers have been first allowed to bake Pfefferkuchen. Initially, Pfefferkuchen was a sideline enterprise for bakers.
Nevertheless, from the second half of the 18th century, there have been devoted bakers in Pulsnitz solely making Pfefferkuchen. Their presence turned a year-round fixture, as the recognition of Pulsnitz’s high-quality Pfefferkuchen led to them being offered at gala’s, festivals, and markets all 12 months.
Glühwein: Warming Hearts and Palms
No go to to the Striezelmarkt can be full with out a cup of Glühwein. This scorching, spiced wine is a quintessential a part of the market expertise, warming you from the within out.
The Striezelmarkt and Glühwein are inseparable, and the market presents quite a lot of choices to select from. Whether or not you like berry or grape-based, with or with out a shot of spirits, white or pink, alcoholic or non-alcoholic, you may discover a model to fit your style.
Native winemakers and regional merchandise additionally make their presence felt, making certain that the wine choice is numerous and pleasant.
A short historical past of the Dresden Christmas Market
The Dresden Striezelmarkt, certainly one of Germany’s most cherished and enduring Christmas markets, has a wealthy historical past of over 500 years. It has developed by means of varied areas and modifications whereas sustaining its distinctive character, making it a particular place for locals and guests.
1434 – The Humble Beginnings
In 1434, the primary Dresden Striezelmarkt existed, lasting for a single day. The Saxon Elector Friedrich II, often known as “the Light,” and his brother, Duke Sigismund, granted this extraordinary occasion.
They authorised a free market to be held “on the day earlier than Holy Christmas Eve” within the Altmarkt sq., the present-day web site of the market.
Custom Takes Root
Over the following 500 years, the Dresden Striezelmarkt developed into certainly one of Germany’s most conventional and beloved Christmas markets. It yearly attracts in retailers and showpeople from close to and much to showcase their wares.
The Position of Striezel and Stollen
Within the fifteenth century, the Striezel or Stollen, a sort of Christmas bread, turned a major a part of the market’s custom. The town’s information present town council offering Striezel or Stollen as items to the poor and sick. These “Christbrot” and “Christstrüzel” have been a token of goodwill.
By the flip of the sixteenth century, the market turned often called “Striezelmontag” or “Stollen Monday” as a result of it came about on the Monday previous Christmas.
Native housewives flocked to buy their festive Striezel from boards often called “strutzelbretern,” which have been laid out on “struzelwahen” or carts. As a consequence of its reputation, the market was later prolonged from Monday to Christmas Eve.
Stollen Feasts and Market Variety
Within the early seventeenth century, metropolis councillors obtained two Striezel every for Christmas and a Westphalian ham for Easter. Regardless of later transitioning to a financial allowance, the title “Schinken- und Striezelgeld” endured.
The market noticed a rising number of retailers within the 18th century, together with potters, gingerbread makers, goldsmiths, glass retailers, and extra. It turned a melting pot of numerous choices.
Notable Christmas Markets
Within the nineteenth century, alongside the Dresden Striezelmarkt, different German Christmas markets just like the Nuremberg Christkindelmarkt, Berlin Christmas Market, and Frankfurt Christkindchesmarkt turned important festive markets.
The Pflaumentoffel and Past
The artist Ludwig Richter immortalized the “Feuerrüpel” or “Plum Folks” youngsters who offered in the marketplace in 1853 with a woodcut titled “Sale as a result of Going out of Enterprise.” The long-lasting Pflaumentoffel figurine turned synonymous with the Dresden Striezelmarkt.
Rules and a Nostalgic Contact
The market has undergone varied modifications and areas over time. In 1910, the sale by youngsters was prohibited, and in 1937, a “nostalgic Striezelmarkt” was held within the Stallhof, providing historic Saxon merchandise.
Challenges in Current Instances
Current years have introduced challenges, together with the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in the cancellation of the Striezelmarkt in 2020 and 2021 as a result of authorized restrictions. Nevertheless, in 2022, the market made a triumphant return to the Altmarkt, permitting guests to benefit from the Christmas season and as soon as once more go to the Christmas image of town, simply as they did earlier than the pandemic.
For extra details about Dresden, try the Striezelmarkt’s official web site.
What to see in Dresden at Christmas
Different Christmas markets
Dresden, typically dubbed the “Christmas Metropolis,” boasts a cornucopia of enchanting Christmas markets, every with distinctive appeal and character. Past the long-lasting Striezelmarkt, which dates again to 1434, these markets supply a plethora of vacation delights, making a magical ambiance all through town. Let’s tour a few of Dresden’s most charming and conventional Christmas markets.
The Neumarkt Christmas market
Between the Altmarkt and the Frauenkirche, is one other Christmas market: “Creation auf dem Neumarkt” which beckons guests throughout probably the most stunning time of the 12 months.
When it comes to type, this little Christmas market is harking back to Dresden round 1900. All of the merchants’ stalls and the big selection of food and drinks on supply are designed initially to provide the impression of being transported again to that period.
Artisans resembling bell casters, signal painters, leatherworkers, engravers, chocolatiers, and purveyors of historic and handmade toys captivate your senses. Along with the distinctive craftsmanship, guests can take pleasure in basic Dresdner Christmas treats whereas listening to church choirs, carolers, and festive tunes. The Neumarkt comes alive with the spirit of the season.
Christmas markets on the Frauenkirche and Münzgasse
Adjoining to the Neumarkt is one other Christmas market centred across the Frauenkirche and the Münzgasse.
Conventional crafts like pottery, glass artwork, and lace from Vogtland are showcased round this historic landmark.
The spotlight is an eight-meter-high pyramid adorned with handcrafted picket figures. Santa Claus seems daily from 4 p.m. to maintain the youngest guests entertained, bringing surprises for all.
Located between the world-famous Dresden Frauenkirche and Brühl’s Terrace, the festively illuminated Münzgasse presents a romantic Christmas scene.
For those who’re within the temper for purchasing and twinkling lights, the Christmas market on Prager Strasse, often called Dresdner Winterlichter, is the right selection.
This market is the southern gateway to town’s Christmas festivities, with a shocking 15-metre Christmas tree lighting up the evening. The market presents a winter wonderland expertise, full with a go to to Santa Claus’s home, rustic merry-go-rounds for the little ones, and a medley of regional specialties.
Mittelalter-Weihnachtsmarkt im Stallhof
Enterprise into the guts of Dresden’s Residenzschloss (Royal Palace) for the “Stallhöfischer Adventsspektakel“. This medieval Christmas market presents a country ambiance with artisans traditionally showcasing their wares.
Performers, together with jesters and minstrels, guarantee by no means boring moments. A selected spotlight is the annual public bathhouse with two giant picket tubs the place as much as eight individuals can luxuriate in a scorching soak.
Romantischer Weihnachtsmarkt am Schloss
For a extra tranquil various, head south of the Residenzschloss to the “Romantischer Weihnachtsmarkt“. Situated on the nook of the Taschenbergpalais, this market recreates the appeal of historic market stalls.
In opposition to the backdrop of certainly one of Dresden’s most beautiful locations, the previous royal metropolis of Taschenberg gleams with a nostalgic vacation spirit.
The Postplatz in Dresden transforms right into a charming Finnish Winter Village through the vacation season.
Guests are transported into the magical world of Finnish winters, surrounded by conventional craftsmanship, genuine Finnish specialties, and distinctive Christmas items. It is a slice of Finland’s winter enchantment proper within the coronary heart of Dresden.
For an après-ski and mountain hut social gathering expertise proper within the metropolis centre, the Dresdner Hüttenzauber is the place to be. Protecting over 2000 sq. meters, this Christmas market on the “Haus der Presse” (Home of the Press) boasts a restaurant, a hut bar, an occasion hut, and even a curling rink.
It is a hit, particularly among the many youthful crowd. Whether or not you wish to take pleasure in hearty delicacies or take pleasure in an exhilarating sport of curling, this vibrant market has all of it.
Augustusmarkt – Worldwide Christmas Market
The Augustusmarkt, extending alongside the Hauptstraße on the ft of the Goldener Reiter (Golden Rider), radiates worldwide Christmas aptitude.
Situated within the Neustadt on the opposite financial institution of the Elbe River, that is Dresden’s second largest Christmas market which opens till the seventh of January 2024.
The white-gold illuminated pagodas, harking back to Augustus the Robust’s Zeithainer Lustlager in 1730, seamlessly mix Saxon custom and Dresden’s worldwide spirit.
Stroll by means of the market to search out merchants showcasing merchandise from Saxon artisanal traditions and others representing vacation traditions worldwide.
Uncover Danish Glögg, Finnish Piparkakut, Swedish Julskinka, Italian Pandoro, Alsatian Weihnachtsbredele, Belgian pralines, Swiss chocolate, Czech Obladen, Dijon mustard, spices from the Orient, and far more.
The Christmas market options the Golden Rider Ferris wheel and the legendary blue tree in the midst of the market.
Live shows on the Dreikönigskirche, the galleries, and outlets of the Baroque Quarter invite you to linger, discover, and savour the Neustädter Elbseite.
Nestled close to the long-lasting “Blaues Wunder” (Blue Marvel) bridge, the Elbhangfest-Weihnachtsmarkt in Dresden-Loschwitz presents a novel ambiance.
This hidden gem blends seamlessly into the romantic idyll of the village centre, surrounded by half-timbered homes. Thought of a neighborhood secret, this small market completely embodies appeal and tranquillity.
Christmas Occasions in Dresden
A number of Creation occasions are held in Dresden resulting in Christmas, for instance, in 2023:
- 02/12/2023 – Dresden Creation Calendar Pageant
- 03/12/2023 – Cross Church Day
- 08/12/2023 – Dresden Stollen Pageant
- 10/12/2023 – Dresden Gingerbread Pageant
- 16/12/2023 – Christmas Pyramid Pageant
- 17/12/2023 – Christmas Sounds Pageant
- 23/12/2023 – Christmas Choir Pageant
- 24/12/2023 – Grand finale of the Striezelmarkt
What to do in Dresden
This is an inventory of inspiring actions in Dresden:
Dresden Christmas Market: What it is advisable to know
Listed here are some sensible information to plan your go to to the Dresden Christmas Market.
The place is the Dresden Christmas Market positioned?
The 589th version of the Dresden Christmas market will happen within the Altmarkt from the twenty ninth of November to the twenty fourth of December 2023.
There are different Christmas markets throughout town.
For extra details about Dresden, try the Striezelmarkt’s official web site.
The way to get to the Dresden Christmas Market?
🚄 By practice:
Dresden’s accessibility by practice is nothing wanting handy and picturesque. With its well-connected railway community, reaching town’s coronary heart is a breeze.
Excessive-speed trains and regional providers present quick access from varied European cities, together with Berlin, Prague, and Vienna.
The Dresden Hauptbahnhof, town’s primary railway station, is a central hub for travellers. As you journey in direction of Dresden, be ready to be greeted by the beautiful Elbe Valley panorama, including an additional contact of magic to your journey. It is a seamless and sustainable option to arrive on the enchanting Striezelmarkt.
✈️ By air:
For those who’re coming from afar, Dresden’s worldwide airport is your gateway to town. The Dresden Airport (Flughafen Dresden-Klotzsche) presents a variety of connections, together with flights from main European cities.
When you land, you are only a quick drive or a fast practice experience from the festive Striezelmarkt. With trendy amenities and a handy location, the airport makes your journey as easy as potential. The spirit of Christmas awaits you simply moments after stepping off your flight.
🚗 By automobile:
For individuals who desire the pliability of a highway journey, Dresden is definitely accessible by automobile.
The town is well-connected to Germany’s motorway community, making it a simple drive from main cities like Berlin, Prague, and Leipzig.
Listed here are some key routes to achieve town:
From Berlin: The most typical route from Berlin is taking the A13 autobahn, which connects Berlin to Dresden. This journey presents a comparatively easy and direct drive, taking you thru the scenic panorama of Brandenburg and Saxony. The drive from Berlin to Dresden sometimes takes round two to 3 hours.
From Prague: For those who’re coming from the Czech Republic, take the D8 motorway. The D8 connects Prague and Dresden, providing a direct route between the 2 cities. The drive takes roughly two hours, making it a handy choice for guests from Prague.
From Leipzig: To achieve Dresden from Leipzig, you should use the A14 autobahn. This motorway connects Leipzig and Dresden, offering a simple journey between the 2 cities. The drive sometimes takes about an hour.
The well-maintained highway infrastructure ensures a cushty and scenic journey.
Dresden is :
- 120 km from Leipzig
- 150 km from Prague
- 195 km from Berlin
- 310 km from Nuremberg
- 460 km from Frankfurt
- 460 km from Munich
- 570 km from Cologne
The place to park your automobile?
For those who’re coming to the Dresden Christmas Market by automobile, there are two choices:
- Park your automobile straight within the metropolis centre, in one of many lined automobile parks. Nevertheless, parking areas within the metropolis centre are fairly costly.
- Park your automobile freed from cost outdoors town centre in one of many Park+Trip areas and take the tram to town centre. Extra information on Dresden’s Park+Trip.
The place to remain in Dresden at Christmas?
Immerse your self within the magical ambiance of the Dresden Christmas market by choosing comfy and handy lodging!
When visiting the Dresden Christmas market, deciding on appropriate lodging is essential to completely having fun with this enchanting season. Thankfully, town presents a variety of lodging choices proper for each style and funds.
You possibly can select from elegant lodges within the coronary heart of the outdated city, cosy hostels, or charming flats that present an genuine home-away-from-home expertise.
To streamline your search, you’ll be able to try this listing of lodging, that includes quite a lot of choices to your keep.
Bear in mind to have a look at our interactive map to find lodgings near the Christmas market and choose the one which most accurately fits your wants.
Concerning the illustrations within the article
Many of the pictures are ours (© French Moments). Nevertheless, I’ve chosen some pictures (together with the Featured Picture of this text) from Depositphotos, a business platform that brings authors of high-quality licensed inventory pictures, graphics, vectors and movies along with appreciative patrons.