Get out and enjoy the festive spirit at Christmas markets around the country.
Frankfurt comes to Birmingham
If you've always wanted to explore the best Christmas markets in Germany, but haven't managed to get there, then Birmingham has the next best thing, says Julie Delahaye in the Daily Mirror. Most of the action takes place in and around Victoria Square in the city centre, where you'll find the picturesque wooden lodges. Birmingham claims that its Frankfurt Christmas Market is the "largest authentic German Christmas market outside of Germany or Austria".
That means plenty of "pretzels, schnitzels, bratwursts, glhwein and weissbier (wheat beer)", says Helen Coffey in The Independent. The market has 80-odd stalls, selling everything from wooden toys and decorations to glass baubles and hand-crafted leather work. Live music is performed on the main stage in Victoria Square at weekends.
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Until 23 December
A Bavarian village in London
Winter Wonderland, based in London's Hyde Park, "is the best known festive extravaganza in London, drawing in thousands of people from around the country each year", say Jochan Embley and Harry Fletcher in the Evening Standard. With so much going on, you won't get bored.
To get the best traditional Christmas market experience, head to the Bavarian Village. It's packed with bars, cafes and restaurants, serving up the kind of fare you'd find in a winter market in Germany bratwurst, flame-grilled salmon and mulled wine. There's even a beer hall for the adults and much else besides "to fuel the merriment, from roller-coasters and ice rinks to stand-up comedy and circuses".
Until 5 January
Glhwein in Glasgow
It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas in Glasgow, says Ewan Mowat for The Scottish Sun. The traditional markets have returned to bring Christmas cheer to the city centre. "'Tis the season to gorge on delicious street food, find festive gifts for loved ones and sample the German bars' steins of beer and cups of Glhwein."
And with "gifts from as far afield as Kenya and Ecuador, Glasgow's markets are a great place to track down stocking fillers with a difference", says Wanderlust. There are two Christmas markets this year, each with 50 stalls. There's one in George Square and another in St Enoch Square. "Painted Russian dolls, Italian nougat and woollen jumpers from Lapland are among the highlights." The Bavarian beer house is a draw, as is the "Glhwein House run by Markus Kochems of the Mosel valley, one of the world's top wine producers".
Until 29 December
Chris Carter spent three glorious years reading English literature on the beautiful Welsh coast at Aberystwyth University. Graduating in 2005, he left for the University of York to specialise in Renaissance literature for his MA, before returning to his native Twickenham, in southwest London. He joined a Richmond-based recruitment company, where he worked with several clients, including the Queen’s bank, Coutts, as well as the super luxury, Dorchester-owned Coworth Park country house hotel, near Ascot in Berkshire.
Then, in 2011, Chris joined MoneyWeek. Initially working as part of the website production team, Chris soon rose to the lofty heights of wealth editor, overseeing MoneyWeek’s Spending It lifestyle section. Chris travels the globe in pursuit of his work, soaking up the local culture and sampling the very finest in cuisine, hotels and resorts for the magazine’s discerning readership. He also enjoys writing his fortnightly page on collectables, delving into the fascinating world of auctions and art, classic cars, coins, watches, wine and whisky investing.
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