Cologne Christmas Markets 2018Posted on: 01/12/2018
What a start to December! On Friday 30 November, we left for our trip to Cologne, and it was, to say the least, absolutely fantastic.
Despite the early arrival, it was thrilling to be waking up in Cologne – right next to its renowned Cathedral. The beautiful feat of gothic architecture is the second tallest cathedral in Europe. Construction began in 1248, and to this day, has never been fully completed, since the fragile decorations are constantly being eroded by rain.
Throughout the day, we visited the ‘Markt der Engel’ and the ‘Kölner Dom’ market, as well as spending time shopping in the city centre and visiting the Lindt Chocolate Museum. This was my favourite part of the day, mainly because of the free chocolate samples, though the history was fascinating as well. Did you know that chocolate has its origins in the Maya and Aztecs? They used cacao beans in making fermented beverages over 2000 years ago!
However, it would be an understatement to say that the chocolate museum was the best part of the day. That title would go to Cologne’s Christmas markets, which are very well known for their beautiful decorations and traditional German meals. Having now experienced a piece of such wonderful German culture, it is clear to see why. Markt der Engel offered a variety of delicious dishes, from the classic Bratwurst and Schnitzel, to honey roasted nuts and fresh churros, as well as plenty of festive huts selling all kinds of stunning Christmas decorations.
If you hadn’t found the food to be enough, then the atmosphere and decorations would certainly have made you think otherwise. Unfortunately, we were in the Markt der Engel during the day, meaning that we didn’t get a chance to see the gorgeous star shaped lights in the trees whilst it was dark. They’re decorated to look like the stars in the night sky, creating a rather unique yet stunning, effect. It was the Old Town of Cologne that hosted the original Christmas market back in 1820 and, almost two hundred years later, the tradition continues.
Busy and atmospheric, we spent the afternoon shopping among natives and other tourists, even practising our German phrases ourselves! One student found this part of the day ‘awesome, having so much opportunity to buy so many lovely things’, which I can definitely agree with. The entire day was a fantastic experience, and I would most definitely recommend the trip to anyone looking for a day of eating delicious food, shopping and experiencing some true German culture.
A massive thank you to Ms Croft and the other teachers who made the trip as amazing as it was!
Anna - Year 10