The Frankfurt Festive market, first mentioned in official documents in 1393, is among the oldest and most beautiful festive markets in Germany. Hot apple wine warms cold fingers, the fried sausages smell tasty and the scent of roasted hazelnuts hangs in the air. In front of the picturesque backdrop of the medieval Römer building and the timber-framed houses, the Frankfurt festive market provides everything that the pre-Christmas season has to offer. Naturally this includes Frankfurt's specialities such as the famous Bethmännchen pastries as well as local pottery. A special thrill for younger visitors is a ride on the nostalgic carousel at the heart of the market by the Römer buildings. The Festive market also takes place at Liebfrauenberg, Liebfrauen Street, at Paulsplatz, Fahrtor and Mainkai.
The history of the Festive market:
The so-called "Christkindchesmarkt" used to be a purely Frankfurter affair, as only residents were allowed to visit it. Locally produced handicrafts were on offer, toys, sweets, traditional Frankfurt baked goods such as Brenten marzipan cookies, Bethmännchen pastries and Quetschemännchen prune and nut cookies. An abundance of gifts were also on offer. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was an admirer of Frankfurt's baked goods and in far off Weimar he received a packet of his favourite Brenten cookies for Christmas every year from his mother. The Swabian poet Eduard Mörike also dedicated a 7-verse poem to the Frankfurt Brenten.
Further festive markets in the surrounding area:
Festive market in Hanau
The Brothers Grimm's hometown of Hanau is only a half-hour drive from Frankfurt am Main. The Christmas market there has a fairytale atmosphere. Festively decorated stalls on the market square, around the Brothers Grimm monument, are inviting places for taking a break with a mulled wine and some Christmas sweets. You can also marvel at Hessen's largest Advent calendar here. Every day at 6 pm a new window is opened to reveal a new scene from the Brothers Grimm's fairytales.
Festive market in Offenbach
Festively decorated stalls with various tasty treats, as well as inspiration for present ideas await you on an excursion to Dribbe, which is another name for Frankfurt's neighbouring city.
Festive market in Wiesbaden
The capital of the state of Hessen can also be quickly reached from Frankfurt (approximately 30 minutes' drive). The Sternschnuppenmarkt (shooting stars’ market) takes place in front of the historical backdrop of the palace and the town hall and doesn't just light up the eyes of children.