How about doing your Christmas shopping and taking in a sight-seeing historical trip. We were able to do just that in December 1998. Flying to Christkindlmarkets in Germany and Austria.
First stop was Frankfort where our bus and guide were waiting for us. After an interesting ride through a countryside of small quaint looking villages we arrived at our first stop Rothenberg. This is the finest medieval city in Europe. A walled city overlooks the Tauber Valley.
We were introduced to the famous hot mulled wine available to shoppers at the Christkindlmarkets. The temp was about 30 degrees for outdoor shopping. We were dressed for the occasion and looked forward to seeing the Kathie Wohlfahrts Christmas store. World’s largest section of Christmas decorations in the world.
A highlight of the day was attending an advent church service at St. Jakob’s Kirche in Rothenberg. Unheated churches in December only draw the faithful to attend. However, the worship service was carried on with great feeling which was not deterred by cold. The attire or dress for the evening was a head cover, scarf, and a coat which was worn by the pastor, choir and orchestra.
The highlight of shopping Rothenberg is a visit to Kathie Wohlfahrt store. It is in the category of Oh’s and Ah’s upon venturing through Christmas beauty.
We visited many small villages on our romantic road tour of Bavaria.
A lively Christmas Market awaited our visit to Nuremberg famous for handmade toys, puppets, and traditional gingerbread.
Next stop the lively city of Munich which also has the enticing smell of nutmeg and cinnamon.
At many of our stops we were enamored by visit to churches, both large and larger. Even smaller towns seemed to have good sized Gothic churches.
Innsbruck was our next stop. More Christmas markets under the “Golden Roof” with approximately 31 pounds of gold. On our way we stopped at a Benedictine Abby in the beautiful Alp mountains of Austria. An added attraction was a tour of Linderhof Castle. The contents of this beautiful building housed many priceless treasures. So much beauty had to be guarded by U.S. Soldiers at the end of WWII. So, the enemy would not confiscate it.
Our next stop was Salzburg, Austria which was most notably shaped by music-thus Mozart and the first performance of “Silent Night.” This famous song was performed for us at the old church of St. Nicolas. Modern era brought the production of the Sound of Music.
Shopping at Christkindlmarkets and a tour resulted in a complete and satisfying experience.