The year is coming to an end and the most contemplative time begins. The smell of cinnamon and freshly baked cookies, candlelight, shining children's eyes and houses decorated with fairy lights - all this makes for a wonderful Advent season for me. What should not be missing in any case - and awakens the fondest childhood memories - are Christmas markets. The best thing about Bergweihnacht Innsbruck is that there is a Christkindlmarkt for every occasion and every taste. Whether it's for a quick mulled wine after work, a round on the carousel with the kids or a romantic date, everyone can find the perfect Christmas market in Innsbruck. And I am very happy to introduce all seven of them to you.
With its medieval house facades and the Golden Roof, Innsbruck's Old Town is always - no matter what time of year - an absolute "must-see". In Advent, however, it goes one better: the Christkindlmarkt, which looks back on a long tradition and is already taking place for the 49th time this year, has a number of special features to offer. Here, for example, you can buy enchanting Christmas tree decorations and unique handicrafts. Another highlight is the delightful Fairy tale and giant streetwhich celebrates its 25th anniversary this year - a highlight for children. Also popular with the little ones are the fairy tale performances on the theater wagon at the corner of Seilergasse and Kiebachgasse, which take place daily at 4:30 and 5:30 pm. At the heart of the Christkindlmarkt are the Amras tower brass band. At 5:30 p.m., just in time for dusk, they delight young and old with traditional and atmospheric Christmas carols.
The family market
The Christmas market at the market place is a popular meeting place - especially for families - thanks to its diverse gastronomy and over 60 stalls. This is due on the one hand to the daily children's program, on the other hand the nostalgic carousel attracts young and young at heart. Special highlights are the Advent celebrations, which take place on Advent Sundays , and of course the popular senior citizens' and children's afternoons every Wednesday. Don't worry that you won't find the Christkindlmarkt: Even from afar, you can see the Swarovski crystal tree, which is over 16 meters high. Just follow the sparkling star at the top of the tree.
The Christkindlmarkt in Maria-Theresien-Strasse is chic, even elegant. Glass, light and crystal dominate again this year. The whole thing is topped this year by the new light trees and the giant Christmas tree balls. And even though it is super-modern compared to the other Christmas markets, tradition does not necessarily have to be renounced: In addition to international Christmas products and gastronomic delicacies, you will also find traditional mulled wine and punch.
Life is a wish concert
Our wallets are never as loose as they are in the run-up to Christmas. Gifts are bought, lovingly wrapped and waiting under the Christmas tree to bring someone great joy. And that's what Christmas is supposed to be about, not necessarily the gifts, but making others happy. Donating is a wonderful way to help people who are not as fortunate as we are. On November 25 at 5:30 p.m., the Christmas Market in Maria-Theresien-Strasse will open with the "Inn Seit'n Big Band." Following the opening ceremony, there will be a cooperation with the Tyrolean Choir Association, ORF Tyrol and Licht ins Dunkel for the first time. In front of the Anna Column, a "Wish Concert" will take place, where visitors can wish for Christmas songs directly on the spot. The proceeds from donations will go to Licht ins Dunkel.
The panoramic market
Even the journey to the highest and probably most romantic Christmas market in Innsbruck is an experience. The Hungerburgbahn takes you directly from the city up the mountain. Well, ok, almost, but in only eight minutes you are on the Hungerburg and enjoy a unique view of the city. If that is still not high enough, you can take the Panorama Gondola really really go up the mountain, namely to the Seegrube. Here the heart of every mountain lover beats faster, because now you are really in high alpine terrain. But back to the Hungerburg. Especially when it is already dark and the sea of lights of Innsbruck lies at your feet, Kiachl and punch taste twice as good. The Christmas market on the Hungerburg is one of the smaller ones, but still one of the most beautiful I know.
"Christmas like back then" - if you are looking for that, you will find it at Hans-Brenner-Platz in St. Nikolaus. The Christkindlmarkt with its lovingly designed stalls invites you to a cozy get-together with contemplative music. On December 6, you should definitely be there, because as befits the district, the patron saint - St. Nicholas - will drop by in person.
Something a little different
Something very special is the Christmas magic at Wiltener Platzl. Anyone looking for a place away from the hustle and bustle and the usual kitsch will find a little contemplation as well as culinary delights. Whether it's delicacies from Sardinia or organic mulled wine, it certainly tastes good. But not only the physical well-being is taken care of, with Punch and Judy shows and mini-concerts, entertainment is not neglected either. The Wilten Christmas Market is as diverse as life and as contemplative as the Advent season. It is the mixture that makes the stalls at Wiltener Platzl a small rarity in the fast-paced pre-Christmas season. "Small but nice" is the motto!
Like the Old Town and the Seegrube, the Bergisel is one of Innsbruck's absolute highlights. Especially in the pre-Christmas season you have to be here. High above the (hopefully) snow-covered roofs of Innsbruck, tradition and the history of Tyrol become tangible. The Christkindlmarkt at Bergisel combines everything that (for me) belongs to Christmas: it is contemplative, festive, traditional and down-to-earth. Children can deposit their wishes directly with the Christ Child, who on opening days accepts wishes, greetings and thank-you notes for one hour after his "prologue" at 4:00 p.m. and is of course also available for photos. The little ones will have plenty to do in the children's crafts or in the family workshop. But also the big ones do not come too briefly, top winegrower Ferdinand Zweiger spoils the visitors with the delicious crown prince Rudolf apple punch. This is not to be missed.
Walks to explore: 6 in one go
For all those who spend only one weekend in Innsbruck and wonder how they will manage to visit all Christmas markets i have a great tip: the "Walks to Explore: The Six Christmas Markets". This way you can do six Christmas markets in one day, and the next day you can visit the Kaiserweihnacht at Bergisel.
- Start at the station Congress
- Ride with the Hungerburgbahn to the Hungerburg (market 1), return with the train to the station "Löwenhaus
- across the Emile-Béthouart-Steg to the other side of the Inn River to St. Nikolaus (Markt 2)
- through the Waltherpark over the Inn bridge to the market place (Markt 3)
- continue past the Ottoburg castle into the old town (Market 4)
- then south on Maria-Theresien-Strasse (Market 5)
- and still further south along Leopoldstraße to Wiltener Platzl (Markt 6)
To a reflective time
With this in mind, I wish everyone a wonderful Advent. Make yourselves comfortable, spend as much time as possible with friends and family and try not to get infected by the stress. My colleague Kristina wrote a wonderful text about this - even though it's a bit older, it hits the nail on the head. What gets you in the Christmas spirit? Besides a visit to the Christkindlmarkt, in my case it would be baking cookies. You can find recipes at Nadja's site. If you like to do handicrafts, you will find them here or here. Oh, and be sure to check out Danijel, he captures Advent in Innsbruck perfectly with his camera.
Christkindlmarkt Old Town
15. November to December 23
Open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., trade until 8:00 p.m
Christkindlmarkt at the market place
15. November to December 23
Open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., trade until 8:30 p.m
Christmas Market Maria-Theresien-Strasse
25. November to January 6, 2023
Open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., trading until 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 24: 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Dec. 31: 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m
Christmas Market Hungerburg
25. November through Jan. 6, 2023
Open Monday through Friday from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.
On Saturdays, Sundays and holidays from noon to 7 p.m.
Dec. 24: noon to 3 p.m.
Dec. 31: noon to 5 p.m
Christmas market in St. Nikolaus
25. November through Dec. 23
Open daily from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m
Christmas market in Wilten
28. November to December 23
Open daily from 16:00 to 20:00
24.12.: from 14:00 to 16:00 Waiting for the Christ Child with Herbert and Mimi
Christmas at the Bergisel
18. November through December 20
Open Friday through Sunday
Friday: 2:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., Saturday: 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Sunday: 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Charity special opening day: Dec. 1, 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Special opening days: Dec. 8/19 & 20, 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m
Cover photo: © Danijel Jovanovic
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Mother, TV series addict and nature lover with a passion for good food and the mountains!