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The Christmas Market Experience Throughout Europe

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The best way to get into the holiday spirit in Europe is to visit a Christmas market. Around mid-November, Christmas markets start to pop up and holiday decorations fill the streets. At the markets, you can find carolers, sparkling lights, and fresh treats. It is almost guaranteed that you will find mulled wine in seasonal mugs which are optional to keep as a souvenir.

While studying abroad in Prague, I managed to visit several markets in Germany, Poland, and Prague (while they were still open), as seen in these pictures. Ice skating rinks and other winter activities also appear near the markets, so attendees can get the full experience. Navigating Christmas markets during COVID can be a little more difficult, but a vaccination certificate can guarantee entry to markets with more restrictions.

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In Germany, I visited the Christmas markets in Bernkastel-Kues and Cologne. Cologne required proof of vaccination for entry to the market and purchase from any of the booths. This fostered a safer way of enjoying the market. Meanwhile, Prague had to, unfortunately, close their major markets out of concern of spreading the virus. Smaller markets are still being held and they attract fewer tourists. While many Christmas markets have been canceled, it is still worth visiting these cities to experience the overall holiday spirit!

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Hannah Frankel is the Fall 2021 CEA MOJO Photographer in Prague, Czech Republic, and is currently studying at Syracuse University.
 
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