German Christmas Market @ Victoria Square / Birmingham, United Kingdom
The history of Christmas markets goes back to the Late Middle Ages in the German speaking part of Europe. In many towns, Advent is ushered in with the opening of the Christmas market or "Weihnachtsmarkt". Generally held on the town square, the market sells food and drink from open-air stalls together with traditional singing and dancing - all for fun. Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market, held in beautiful Victoria Square, is one of the most popular outside of Germany and Austria with over two million visitors during the five week period that it is open. I think 250,000 of those visitors were there yesterday as it was a brilliant, crisp winter day. Popular delights include German mulled wine, grilled sausages and kielbasa, lots of German beer, and for those with a sweet tooth, gingerbread, marzipan sweets and other candies. A range of traditional German breads and pastries are also baked fresh on site each day. Me - I went for the beer and a soft pretzel. With four hours of Christmas shopping I needed fortification!