Winning the title of North Amercia’s Best Holiday Market, the Carmel Christkindlmarkt has brought the old world charm of Christmas in Germany to Indiana. The Christmas market tradition stretches back to the middles ages in Saxony, Germany. Since then the joys of the traditional Christmas markets and customs have spread from town to town, around the world and has found a home in the Midwest.
On the day of our visit to the market they were celebrating Nikolaustag, or St. Nicholas Day. The tradition is that on the night of December 5th, children set out their shoes for St. Nicholas to fill with sweets and gifts. And depending on if they were good or not they will be visited by St. Nicholas or his sinister sidekick Krampus. It is similar to the Christmas Eve tradition on December 24th with the visit of Santa Claus, however we got lucky and there is no bad guy to this story.
The market is located in the City Center of Carmel and is decorated in traditional German flare with tempting treats, beverages and the opportunity to do some Christmas decor and gift shopping. One of the activities that many people took advantage of was renting a pair of ice skates and taking turns around the pop-up ice skating rink in the very center of the festivities.
Something that I noticed was a bit of a tradition was the Carmel Christkindlmarkt mugs. These mugs are called Gluhwein Stiefel and for 2019 they came in either a white boot or a green train version. I was drawn to the boot so after purchasing one from one of the vendors, I hunted down some much needed hot chocolate. There were a couple of different options but I went with the Java Haus because the name speaks for itself.
After warming up with hot chocolate by the fire, we started feeling our hunger pains. One of the cozy things about the market was the fact that it was all things German. If you’ve been around the blog for awhile you’d know that we spent our honeymoon in Germany, so naturally being surrounded by German things brings us back to our romantic trip submerged in the culture, including the food.
While we were on our honeymoon in Germany, we definitely had our fill of pretzels, schnitzel, currywurst and bratwurst. So while browsing the menu’s at Carmel’s Christkindlmarkt we were instantly greeted with all of our favorite indulgences. Jacob’s pick was currywurst that came with a roll while I chose a traditional bratwurst on a similar roll. Personally, I was very happy with my choice!
^my horrible yet proud joke of the night was “all of the shops were great but this one was the wurst…”
Something we rather enjoyed about the market was the well-rounded planning that Carmel put into the event. They advertised visiting the market first and then taking the Christmas trolley into the Arts and Design District for more Christmas decorations, holiday shopping and local eats. So with that great plan in mind, we took it and follow their wonderful advice. Soon we found ourselves browsing around cute shops while holding hands and letting our date night in Carmel wind down.
My most favorite part of the market, was the time of the day that we got there. We were there early enough to catch the sun setting behind the market. So in the sea of Christmas lights, evergreen trees and crackling fires, everything was cast in a rose gold glow. However, this same glow and the previous warmth of the day tricked us into thinking that the night would follow suit. I definitely advise some good, Christmasy layers to keep yourself warm and to not be shy to blasting some heat in the car at the end of your night.
Do yourself and your loved ones a favor this holiday season and go check out this Christmas Market before its last night on December 21st! All the information you will need is on their Facebook page linked here >Carmel Christkindlmarkt. Next week on the blog I get the privilege of sharing more of our holiday season with you all! And how we are celebrating this year may or may not surprise you!