Frankfurt Christmas Market
City Centre, Birmingham
Christmas in the city of Birmingham is the happiest time of the year for many residents as for the six weeks between November and January, the largest German market outside of Germany and Austria occupies the city centre with wood, lights, massive glasses of Beer and even bigger Hotdogs.
Finding the German Market is easy: in fact, it’s almost unmissable as it spans the length between two city landmarks; Grand Central/New Street Station and Birmingham town hall and is visible from another, the Bullring Shopping Centre making it yet another reason as to why you just have to be in the city centre.
With all of the attention being brought into such a concentrated area, Birmingham City council have made extra measures to ensure that every visitor to this German extravaganza is safer than ever before. These measures include: A strict alcohol exclusion zone, increased security and police presence as well as several hundred meters of concrete barriers around the market which aims to successfully protect market goers from the potential of a terror related vehicle attack.
In fact, all of this additional security and fencing makes the market feel like a paid event, yet despite what you might be spending here, entry is free and with it all being street level, it means that any date here has no barrier to entry.
But this free entry does not mean that you can arrive here with your pockets empty and enjoy what the market has to offer. In fact, I would strongly recommend that you bring as much as you are willing to spend as prices at the market feel more like matchday football prices than your typical Wednesday at the Farmers Market.
Yet like the farmers market, the Frankfut Market has a lot to offer: with food options ranging from Creps to Pretzels and Hotdogs to Steak with Ostrich Burgers in between. And whilst alcoholic drink beverages may liken to a session at Oktoberfest, this is a market with families in mind, so if you don’t want a hearty German beer there are always a selection of soft drinks on hand.
Whilst it may not be snowing, bringing a date here can feel like the two of you are stuck in a winter wonderland.
- At night, the lighting is gorgeous and it gets busier, really making the entire place feel like it has a buzz (sorry we couldn't bring you any pictures, cameras do have limits.
- Whilst it may look like a quick trip into town, you can very easily spend several hours here just taking in the sights. If you're wrapped up warm enough, you could spend the day here with little trouble.
- Everyone seems to fit in here, from school children looking to take a diversion & work mates delaying from going home, to the couples who want to hold hands with a smile on their face; everyone is welcome.
- Free entry means anyone can enjoy the sights.
- Additional security this year makes the event feel safe, rather than tense.
There's not much to see or feel during the day as once the light fades, the charm of the place really comes alive.
- If you aren't a fan of the cold, dreams of enjoying this winter themed market will be crushed.
- Prices can be confusing, as deposits for glasses are not included in the alcohol charge.
- Whilst the inflated price for fan favourites such as beer, pretzels and hot-dogs were expected, some places charge WAY more than others, so you'll have to walk around.
- The queues can get a little lengthy and messy with fraying tempers, especially on Saturday which is arguably the best day to go.