#Blogmas - Birmingham Christmas Markets
Last year, Luke and I spent a day in Birmingham before Christmas visiting the markets, ice skating and doing some Christmas shopping. It was still very early in our relationship, and I loved that date so much. This year we decided to go back and visit the markets again, and it was just as much fun.
There are so many stalls to browse, with lots of food, decorations and other gifts. This market is the largest German Christmas Market outside of Germany/Austria and after living in Germany, I love getting the opportunity to try lots of German food again. There are definitely differences to the Christmas markets in Germany, but the essence is there.
There's loads of stalls with different gifts, from crystals to wooden decorations and childrens toys. There were more stalls last year if I recall - I think they're doing construction or something nearby so some of the market has moved? The ice rink and ferris wheel has definitely moved to a different location, but there's still plenty to see!
The stalls are so pretty. They are decorated with lights and Christmas decorations, and there's plenty of Christmas trees too, including a giant one in the square.
There's plenty of Glühwein to be had at the markets! Though I didn't see any weißer Glühwein at the stalls, which I much prefer...
The only drawbacks of the markets is that they're pretty overpriced (in comparison to Germany) and they are bloody crowded. However we did visit on a Saturday, and Birmingham is just not much fun on a Saturday on the run up to Christmas. Yep, you are going to be queuing for escalators in the Bull Ring. The crowds meant you would queue a long time for a hot drink or Bratwurst, or you were going to get stuck in a group of people. If you really want to have a proper browse of the markets and avoid the masses, I would definitely suggest visiting on a weekday.
I had a lovely time at the markets. It was so festive and everyone was in good spirits. There were Christmas music, lights, and hot drinks and if a visit to the markets doesn't get you into a festive mood, then you really are a Scrooge. I'm just kidding.
Ok these markets aren't exactly like German markets, I still enjoyed them a lot. Though I would've loved to have some weißer Glühwein, Flammkuchen or Spätzle, there is still plenty of authentic German food like Bratwurst (served in an appropriately small bread roll), gebrannte Mandeln (caramelised almonds). Next year I'm going back to Germany for sure, but until then, the Birmingham markets are definitely a great alternative.
Have you been to any UK Christmas markets? Which would you recommend?