Follow the Pied Piper to Hameln’s Christmas Market!

| September 29, 2014

hameln christmas marketHameln is best known for its famous rat-expelling kidnapper, the Pied Piper.  One of the biggest highlights when visiting the town in any season, is the Glockenspiel that reenacts this fairy tale.

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During the holiday season, the Hochzeithaus housing the Glockenspiel turns into the town Advent calendar.

hameln christmas market

Hameln’s surprisingly robust Weihnachtsmarkt stretched throughout town with several streets of vendors, some rides, and all the food and drink of Christmastime in Germany.


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There was, of course, a giant Christmas pyramid.

hameln christmas market

(Which stood not far from one of my favorite statues in Germany)

hameln christmas market

Don’t do it!

I noticed some nicer wood carvings at this market–better craftsmanship and more impressive sizes than what was available in most of the markets we’ve visited.

Some vendors were hawking rat-themed Christmas decorations and home decor.  In general, the market played up the fairy tale legacy of the town.

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Between the Glockenspiel, the rat theme, the architecture, and the quality of wares, this market has remained a favorite of mine.  They did a great job of marrying the wonder of fairy tales with the wonder of Christmas.  Were it closer to us, I would return.


We also enjoyed the timeliness of blowing our own glass ornaments at the local glassworks, the Glashütte Hameln.  We first watched a demonstration of how the glass is blown (albeit in German, which was kindly translated into English as much as possible for our benefit), then each of us went down to the floor to create our own ornament.

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What we brought home from the market: a glass votive with a Fachwerk-filled town image painted on it, a clay bell Christmas ornament in the shape of a rat, and our personally-blown glass ornaments.  Looking back, I wish I’d bought more!

hameln christmas market


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Category: Activities, Christmas Markets, Christmas Markets, FAMILY, Family Travel, Festivals, Germany, Travel, Uncategorized

About the Author ()

Kari Martindale is a writer and ESL instructor. She’s visited all 50 states and 37 countries, including many of the big cities of Europe and a ton of Christmas Markets. She spends her days straddling the fence between a sense of adventure and a sense of dread. She is married to what is clearly a patient man and has a daughter who, frustratingly, is just like her. Her academic and professional backgrounds are in linguistics and foreign languages. When she's not teaching ESL, she's writing. When she's not writing, she's thinking about her next trip.

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