Girl Meets Bulgaria

Musings of an American expat in Bulgaria (with detours in Utah and Alaska)

Vienna Christmas Markets: Wiener Christkindlmarkt at Rathausplatz


We ventured out to Vienna’s city hall, Rathaus, after it got dark one evening to check out the largest Christmas Market in the city. The Wiener Christkindlmarkt was beyond packed but it was very festive and I am glad we got to see and experience it.

The market sits between the city hall building and the theater. The city hall is a beautiful building and setting and there are thousands of Christmas lights surrounding it and a huge illuminated tree in front, making it even more romantic.Wiener ChristkindlmarktVienna's Rathaus (city hall)Angel Christmas lightsRathaus Christmas Market

We decided to give the beer punsch a try this time around. It had whole berries in it and I liked it a lot more than the gluhwein we had at Schonbrunn palace. The mug was much more fun and Christmas-y as well. All in all, though, it’s just not my thing! Give me a mug of hot chocolate, and I’m good!

hot drink standDrinking some gluhweinWandering the Christmas MarketGlowing lights at RathausVienna's Rathaus-2012

We attempted to make our way around to the gift booths, but the size of the crowd made it impossible. At one point I was taking the lead and thought Vince and my mom were following me. I turned around and they were gone. At first I wasn’t too concerned and just kept walking and taking photos (only making a bad situation worse, but not a lot can come between me and my photo obsession!). After about ten minutes, however, I really started to freak out.

There were at least 1,000 people there, probably more. I don’t have panic attacks at all or even get anxious very often, but this time I sure did! I really did not know how we would all find each other and after being separated for over 20 minutes I was contemplating what to do next–and holding in my mounting hysteria–when I finally saw Vince’s worried face. He had returned to the gluhwein stand to return his mug. Thankfully, I had made my way over there and we happened to meet before he walked off. I was so relieved to find him and my mom. It was definitely our cue to call it a night.

Our adventures at Vienna’s Christmas Markets were fun and festive, but I really appreciated the city for some of the other things it had to offer. Things that didn’t involve hot alcohol, crowds, and kitschy trinkets.

(posts on those soon!)


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2 thoughts on “Vienna Christmas Markets: Wiener Christkindlmarkt at Rathausplatz

  1. I can’t believe that you didn’t get to keep those mugs. Were they holding something of yours so that you return them? One might have ended up in my purse that night!

    • Oh. I kept one! From this market and the other one we went to as well. I thought that out of everything there, they were the best souvenirs. How it works is that you pay an extra 2 Euro on top of the drink cost. If you return the mug, you get your money back. If not, then you get a nifty souvenir for just a few euros!

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