Every year from mid-November to late December, the city of Frankfurt becomes a Christmassy wonderland thanks to the Frankfurt Christmas Market, which fills the city with over 200 stalls spread across Römerberg, Paulsplatz, Mainkai, and beyond.
In this Frankfurt Christmas Market guide, we’ll share everything you need to know about experiencing the wonders of Frankfurt Christmas Market for yourself, with practical tips on where to stay, where to go, and what to eat!
When is the Frankfurt Christmas Market?
You will be able to experience the magic of the Frankfurt Christmas Market from November 15 until December 22, 2021.
(With the exception of Sunday, November 21st, when it is closed for Totensonntag)
Where to Stay for Frankfurt Christmas Market
In need of a place to stay? Here are some quick hotel recommendations:
- Budget: Check prices and availability
- Mid-Range: Check prices and availability
- Luxury: Check prices and availability
Where to Find Frankfurt Christmas Market
The historic Frankfurt Christmas Market wraps itself around the city’s dreamy cobblestone streets, surprising you at every turn with its variety of festive stalls and holiday cheer.
There isn’t a single Frankfurt Christmas market location as the city’s celebrations are actually divided across several markets and venues, which can seem intimidating at first, but knowing the different sites of it will help you plan your route through this festive labyrinth.
So, here are some Frankfurt Christmas market locations to take note of:
Christmas Market at Römerberg
The Christmas Market at Römerberg is inarguably the core of the Frankfurt Christmas Market. (And you can expect it to look like so at peak hours, so plan accordingly).
The openness of this square allows you to take in a good panoramic view of the whole scene. With its old traditional timber houses as a backdrop, fairy lights hanging from any surface that allows, and the smell of mulled wine in the air, it doesn’t get more Christmassy than this.
Here you can find all kinds of Christmas Market food your heart desires and endless options of festive souvenirs. For the young at heart, or actual kids, there is also a beautiful carousel you can ride on.
Christmas Market at Paulsplatz
Just a few steps away you will find the continuation of the Frankfurt Christmas Market into Paulsplatz, right in front of St Paul’s Church.
Here, you will find a few more stalls with different kinds of snacks, drinks, and souvenirs — and particularly interesting — Wagner’s Honighhaus, a two-story shop selling all sorts of honey products.
Christmas Market at Hauptwache
Wandering away from the big open squares, Hauptwache is a portion of the Frankfurt Christmas Market located in the main shopping street of Frankfurt, making it the perfect location to check all the shopping off of your list in one place.
Here you can buy a heart-shaped gingerbread cookie with a funny saying engraved on icing for a friend back home or jump quickly into The Body Shop for a more practical kind of present. The options are endless!
Christmas Market at Mainkai
If you are feeling overwhelmed by all the crowds, or want to see a different backdrop for a German Christmas Market, head over to Mainkai, a little portion of the Frankfurt Christmas Market by the river.
The space is more open, the view of the city is stunning, and sitting by the river with a Currywurst and Pommes might be the break you need from all that Christmas Market exploring.
City Beach Market
Located at 5th floor of Konstabler Car Park, Carl-Theodor-Reiffenstein Platz 5
For a very unique and modern Christmas Market experience, make your way to the City Beach Market. A festive contemporary take on the German Christmas Markets located on a 5th floor open terrace, providing a jaw-dropping view of Frankfurt’s iconic skyline.
Because of the size of the space, this is probably not the best Frankfurt Christmas Market in regards to variety, but nonetheless, it’s a very unique spot to enjoy some mulled wine, and maybe have a go at their curling rink.
Rosa Weihnacht, or Frankfurt’s “Pink Christmas”
Another very unique Christmas Market experience to add to your list is the Rosa Weinacht, or Pink Christmas, located at Friedrich-Stoltze-Platz.
This LGBTQ market displays a fun bright pink Christmas tree and a much more chill local vibe that you will not find in the aforementioned bigger Christmas markets.
TNT Christmas Market
At Thurn-und-Taxis-Platz 1 you will find a small, but charming, market perfect for getting away from the big crowds and sitting down with a warm drink, and taking in the festive surroundings.
What to Eat at the Frankfurt Christmas Market
Eating and drinking your way through a German Christmas Market sounds like fun until you have to decide what to actually order.
The sheer amount of options might make the decision process a bit intimidating, that’s without considering that menus are in a different language.
So here is our guide on the foods and drinks you should really try while visiting Frankfurt Christmas Market:
1. Wurst (Sausage)
In all its kinds and sizes, with all its condiments, bread or no bread, if you are in Germany you absolutely must try a sausage.
The sausage is the epitome of German cuisine and you will find them everywhere you look at Frankfurt’s Christmas Markets.
If you are not sure which one to order just look around and see what other people are getting the most, or go for whatever looks the most appetizing to you.
Whatever you choose, you will not be disappointed.
2. Reibekuchen (Potato Cakes)
If you are a fan of savory and delicious breakfast hashbrowns, it might be interesting for you to find out that Germans have a very similar dish that is consumed no matter the time of day, the Reibekuchen.
Reibekuchen (or Kartoffelpuffer) is a little potato pancake that is fried and is commonly served with a side of apple sauce. But feel free to eat it by itself if potato and apple sauce is not your thing.
3. Gebrannte Mandeln (Roasted Almonds)
Another iconic stall in the German Christmas Markets that you should not miss is the roasted almonds stall.
You will be able to identify these shops by the colorful gingerbread cookies hanging from the roof. And if the sight of that doesn’t give it away, the smell of the roasted almonds will.
In these stalls, you will find a variety of different candied nuts. All incredibly delicious and addicting, so make sure to do the math before ordering, because prices are often listed per 100g, and they are not a cheap treat.
4. Pommes (French Fries)
Pommes might not look like the most festive or German thing to order at a Christmas market at first glance, but in all honestly Germans do love their potatoes.
… And Pommes are a very practical presentation of them!
They are an easy one-size-fits-all snack that can accompany any other savory treat you might get at the market, or are perfect by themselves next to a beer.
5. Flammkuchen (Little Pizza)
Flammkuchen is a thin dough rolled flat and layered with creme fraiche, onions, and bacon—that is then baked in a wood-fired oven until deliciously crispy. A perfect savory snack on the go.
It is originally from the Alsace region of France, but you will find them in most Christmas Markets around Germany nowadays.
So currywurst, as the name suggests, is a sausage that is drowned in a sweet curry ketchup sauce and it’s normally served with a little Brötchen (bread roll).
Currywurst is an absolute German classic that you cannot miss.
It is said to have originated in Berlin, but it has soon become a country-wide favorite go-to after-party meal.
It may not be unique to Christmas time, but you will definitely find plenty of stalls selling currywurst at Frankfurt’s Christmas Markets, so you might as well give it a try!
On the sweeter side of things, a German Christmas Market dessert you will always come across is Marzipan.
Marzipan is made out of eggs, almonds, sugar, and honey, and you will find it in a variety of different shapes and forms. It makes for a tasty sweet something after eating savory all day and is also a perfect gift to take back home.
If there is only one drink you should have while at the Frankfurt Christmas Market it has to be Glühwein.
This is the drink of the season and the reason you will see crowds upon crowds standing by little tables holding on to some festive mug with steam coming out.
Glühwein is a spiced hot wine that warms you from the inside out. It is simply delicious and you need to try it.
Some stalls offer different varieties of it, with different kinds of wine, some with an added extra liquor, but if you go for the classic Glühwein they offer you will not be disappointed. Or if you want an alcohol-free option ask for the Kinderpunsch.
PS: If they seem to be charging you more than what the price specifies on the sign is because they are “renting” you the mug, and once you return it you will get the extra 2 euros back. Or you might want to keep the mug, which would actually make a perfect trip souvenir.
Eierpunsch has been described time and time again as the German eggnog. We are not so sure.
The Eierpunsch is made with egg yolks, white wine, cinnamon, clove, vanilla, and citrus juice. It is served with whipped cream and it tastes like a liquid dessert. A very unique German Christmas Market drink you should definitely try.
10. Heiße Schokolade (Hot Chocolate)
Because you simply cannot go wrong with a hot chocolate during a cold winter day surrounded by Christmas lights!
I know it may seem a bit boring but Christmas Market hot chocolates are particularly delicious and will put you right away in a festive mood.
A way to get even more festive is by spiking your hot chocolate with one of the liquors on the menu. Some of the favorite options for this are rum and amaretto.
What to Buy at the Frankfurt Christmas Market
You made it all the way to the world-famous Frankfurt Christmas market and now you want to take a piece of it back home with you to remember this trip by. Here is a guide of what to buy at the Frankfurt Christmas market:
First things first, you need to have cash on you. Germany might be very modern in some ways but accepting card payments is not one of them, so make sure to have enough cash for your purchases.
1. Frankfurt Christmas Market Mug
As mentioned before, whenever you order a hot drink at the Frankfurt Christmas market, the cashier will normally charge you an extra amount of money —normally around 2 euros— to rent the mug.
However, the mugs are normally specific to the city and the Christmas market you are in. In this case, it would be a unique design for this year’s Frankfurt Christmas Markets.
If you ask me, that is a perfect, affordable, and very thoughtful gift to bring back home.
2. German Christmas Ornaments
Handmade beautiful Christmas ornaments are a recurring item you will come across at the Frankfurt Christmas Market, and one you might want to consider as a good souvenir or gift option.
Walking through the market stalls you will find hand-carved wooden figures and hand-painted tree decorations that will forever remind you of your Christmassy time in Germany and all without hurting your wallet, or your baggage allowance for the flight back.
3. German Christmas Cards
If there is something Germans love, is a good card. And you will find evidence of this as you make your way through the Christmas Market.
Glittery, handpainted, 3D pop-up, whatever you are looking for in a card you will find it here. Making for a super affordable gift, and super light to pack.
4. Lebkuchen (Gingerbread Cookies)
The famous German gingerbread cookies are impossible to miss when wandering around Frankfurt’s Christmas Markets. They are bright, big, and bold, and they just scream German Christmas to everyone that passes by.
NOTE: These cookies are definitely more for looking at than for eating, but they nonetheless make for a very iconic souvenir to take back home.
5. Paper Stars
These are not necessarily unique to Germany, but you might think that they are by the sheer amount of stalls that sell these at Frankfurt’s Christmas Markets, and for good reason.
These paper stars make for a beautiful gift that will add a touch of warmth and coziness to any space. Plus, they are super easy and light to pack since they are foldable.
6. Traditional German Toys
Similar to the Christmas ornaments, you will also find an array of traditional toys that have been handmade and painted in Germany.
These make for a perfect gift for any kids back home or just as a cute home decoration.
7. Candles And Candle Holders
The winter months in Germany are all about coziness, whether that is having a mulled wine at the market or being cozy at home.
And nothing depicts that coziness like candles, and handpainted candle holders with beautiful German Winter Wonderland imagery on them.
Who wouldn’t love these as a present?
8. Local Liquour
The best way to get to know a place is through its food, or in this case its drinks.
Bringing home a bottle of local liquor is a nice way of remembering your trip and still living through it while being at home. Or sharing some of the flavors you tried while abroad with some of your favorite people.
You can even buy carry-on approved little bottles of unique local liquor.
9. Sheepskin Slipppers And Boots
Now we are on the pricier side of the scale. When walking around Frankfurt Christmas Market you will for sure encounter a few stalls with these fluffy pairs of slippers and boots made from the softest sheepskin.
These little fluffs of heaven will make the coziest winter gift, whether that is for anyone you know or for yourself.
10. Painted Porcelain Christmas Village Houses
This one might not be the most practical gift to travel with, but if you manage to take it home in one piece it is so worth it.
You will find these delicately painted porcelain Christmas houses in every German Christmas Market, and they are just a delight to admire and a bigger one to have at home.
These will make the perfect gift for anyone who loves to get in the holiday spirit, and a beautiful souvenir of your Christmassy time abroad.
Extra Tips for Visiting Frankfurt Christmas Market
We mentioned this earlier, but we cannot stress this enough; bring cash. Most stalls will not accept credit cards, and ATMs around the Frankfurt Christmas Market are sparse, so plan accordingly and prepare beforehand.
Remember that the Christmas Market is all open spaces and November and December can get pretty cold, especially at night when temperatures drop.
So make sure to have a proper winter jacket, scarf, hat, gloves, and very warm shoes.
You will be standing a lot, and walking a lot, so you want clothes that will retain the heat of your body—and your Glühwein.
No bulky bags or backpacks
Christmas Markets get really really crowded at times, especially when you head over to the main square in Römerberg. So make sure to avoid carrying bulky bags or backpacks because people will be colliding and pushing against them when passing by.
And as with any big city, it’s always safer to have a smaller bag and keep it closer to you, or on the front of your body.
Bring a reusable bag
This might seem to contradict the last one, but hear us out. If you are planning to buy bigger items and souvenirs, do bring a small foldable reusable bag that you can keep on your personal crossbody bag.
That way you don’t have to carry a bulky bag all day, and when you are ready to almost leave you can make the purchases and carry your souvenirs back to the hotel with you.
Also, a lot of the stalls won’t offer plastic bags or they might charge for an extra bag.
Plus, it’s just better for the environment, so just bring your own.
Speaking of crowds, you will definitely want to avoid going to the Frankfurt Christmas Market on a Friday or Saturday evening. Especially to the main square. It’s just way too many people.
Rather, try strolling through Frankfurt’s smaller streets, or if you only have the Saturday to be there, then go early in the day.
Where to Find More Info on Frankfurt Christmas Market
Official website: Frankfurt Tourismus
Help us improve this Frankfurt Christmas Market Guide!
Do you have a pro tip about Frankfurt Christmas Market? A particular souvenir you loved, or a delicious treat you tried? Let us know in the comments what your insider tips are for Frankfurt Christmas Market so we can help improve this guide for all future visitors.