With this year being the 17th year in a row that the German Market has swept the streets of Birmingham, it’s about time that we looked back to figure out what the occasion actually means. Majority of people don’t know why the German Market exists in Birmingham, and often get confused with where and when the event takes place. As a local, it seemed odd to me that I barely knew anything about the occasion- yet didn’t remember a time where the German Market wasn’t here with its masses of sweet and savoury food; sparkling attractions and mountains of Christmas decorations.
So let’s narrow down the information:
What is at the German Market this year?
So, so much! If you’re interested in German food, Christmas decorations, crystals, alcohol, lights- there is definitely something there for everyone. However, after years of visiting the Market at least once a year, it does become obvious that more than one stand sells the same products, and the same salespeople come back each year. As a local, it can all become a bit boring to say the least, but if you’re not from here, this is definitely something you can bring the entire family to.
Where is it?
The majority of the Market is located in Victoria Square, in front of Birmingham’s Council House. This is then spread from the large square down on to New Street, as well a few stores surrounding St Philips Cathedral in Pigeon Park. The massively popular Big Wheel and Ice Rink, have been relocated this year (due to major building works on Centenary Square) to New Canal Street, not far from Selfridges.
There are several routes you can take to commute through Birmingham on foot to access the brilliance of the market, but I’ve highlighted below the route my friends and I recently took when going through the Market ourselves 🙂
Red: main areas of German Market, Green: possible travel routes
In my opinion, it’s best to traverse the Frankfurt Market starting from Victoria Square and heading down New Street. A lot of side streets lead to Pigeon Park, where a few stands can be found, and the Big Wheel and Ice Rink are perfect activities to finish off a night of German cultural explorations.
When does the German Market Start?
Birmingham’s ‘Frankfurt Christmas Market‘ starts November 15th of 2018, from 10 am to 9 pm and will end on the 23rd of December of 2018.
Why is it here?
The German Market holds a lot of history that can be hard to unpack all in one go, but I’ll keep it sweet and short. It all starts, as you may have guessed (surprise, surprise!), in Germany. Seventeen years ago, the Frankfurt councillors decided to bring over the market to advertise and sell German goods abroad. The markets often occur throughout Germany, and Birmingham was the first place in the UK to present one. Although it first came over to us in 1997, it was so successful that both the Birmingham and Frankfurt government decided to bring the Market back in 2001. It’s been with us ever since, and only ever been more and more successful each year.
So there you have it! A short fact-file on the German Market, packed with all the information you could need . Do these tasty treats and unique items entice you? With only a week left, you better hurry up and experience Frankfurt in the UK while you can!