Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Taking a festive stroll through Old Town's Christmas market

Oh, how I adore this time of year!  Strolling through the Christmas markets (Vánoční trhy) in Prague with the sweet smell of hot Trdelník in the air, sipping on Svařák to stay warm, taking in all of the sights and sounds of the holiday...this is what I look forward to every year!

Enjoying Svařák (hot mulled wine)

Be sure to visit the Christmas market during the day as well as at night when thousands of lights are twinkling...

The Christmas markets are now up throughout the city, but the most famous one is in Old Town Square.  So grab a Svařákor Medovina (honey wine or Mead) and take a leisurely stroll around Old Town Square.  If your're lucky, it may begin to snow...adding to the Christmassy feel.  

Be sure to admire the tree that came to the city centre from Krkonoše (Giant Mountain) in the Czech Republic.

 Old Town Square at Christmastime 

  Christmas just wouldn't be right without a nativity scene, but a live one!?  This is one you won't want to miss!  There's also a petting zoo, performances of Christmas music and dance, and many, many stalls selling everything from Czech food, beer and treats, to glass, candles, and traditional Czech toys and marionettes.  It's a great place to pick up a little something to put under the tree or in a stocking.

   Other Prague Christmas markets are in Wenceslas Square, with smaller markets at Havelske Trziste and Náměstí Republiky, and all are within a 10-minute walk.  Another Christmas market is situated in Náměstí Míru, which is a bit outside of the city center but very easily reached by metro or tram.  You'll find more locals than tourists here.

Wenceslas Square

Snow begins to gently fall as people stroll through the market at Wenceslas Square

I recommend going atop the clock tower at dusk or later when it's dark...the view is spectacular!

A delicious treat!  Trdlo is dough wrapped around a hot metal pin, baked to perfection and then rolled in cinnamon sugar or almonds.

 The Prague Christmas market in Old Town Square stays open on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and through January 1, 2012.