Christmas market at Cologne Cathedral, Germany - Weihnachtsmarkt am Kölner Dom

in Pinmapple3 months ago (edited)

I have been dealing with my depression, and physical sickness for a couple of months so when I saw the budget-friendly offer for Ukrainians to go to Germany, I instantly took the offer without thinking twice. I also asked Blind-spot (not mentioning him) to join me and he happily agreed because I didn't want to feel like a leftover foreigner among all the Ukrainians. The trip was a day trip, and the main focus was to explore the beautiful Cologne city in Germany and the gorgeous Christmas markets. Yes, Christmas markets and I am not talking about just 1-2 markets, I am talking about several markets. After coming to the Netherlands, I always heard that, in Belgium and Germany, beautiful and famous Christmas markets are located. People from all over the world even from the Netherlands, go to see these markets.



Cologne is a city located in West Germany on the magnificent Rhine River (northern part). Ranking on the list as the 4th largest city in Germany, this city has so much to offer to tourists. Astounding medieval cathedral, Ludwig Museum, Lindt Chocolate Museum, and many more this city has offered. Of course variety of Christmas markets makes this city attractive to tourists from around the world.

Every year around 4 million tourists come to see the markets, stroll around, and enjoy the holiday season. And that makes these Christmas markets the largest and most visited markets in Germany. Initially, these markets used to sell toys, and sweets following the advent calendar in 1820 at Nicolaimarkt, Cologne's name introduced later.

Our main attraction was to stroll around the city and feel the warm Christmas spirit. So, one of our key locations was the "Christmas market at Cologne Cathedral" (Weihnachtsmarkt am Kölner Dom). source

Christmas market at Cologne Cathedral



Not only this Christmas market is huge and crowded but also it is famous for the cathedral as well. So, without any further thought, we went to this Christmas market first. I have never seen such a kind of Xmas market before. In Kharkiv, Ukraine, we had one large Christmas market but every year it was almost the same and not so big as the one I was experiencing in Cologne. From far away, not only you smell the gingery, cinnamon-warm fragrance but also, you will feel the warmth of winter and the spirit of the holiday season. From far away, the cathedral (Dom) was inviting us but the closer we went, the warmth and celebration of the holiday season we felt. In this post, I will share both day and night views/photos because I was there to experience both moments.

From the Netherlands, it's very easy to go to Cologne, by car it takes around 3 hours and by train also 3-4 hours. The weather was not harsh at all when we reached Cologne; in fact, we were happy to see such winter weather; especially I was happy.




When we were there, it was already crowded, people were strolling around, checking out traditional handicraft shops and trying to taste organic culinary delicacies. From any angle, the beautiful cathedral can be seen from the market. The red sparkling shaded shops seemed like starlights at night, they look so glowy and beautiful.



To make it understandable, I am going to share both day and night view but trust me, the experience was completely different even though the location and market was the same. Daytime feels warm and beautiful because of the cathedral but nighttime is more of a vivid, vibrant, and festive look. Obviously, nighttime was way more crowded than the daytime.


I had begun my exploration by strolling around, looking at different foods and handicrafts. Of course, my phone was busy taking all the photos even though many people didn't like that much. Many thought I was taking their photos, well no, I was capturing the moment I was experiencing. Anyway, it was easy to feel hungry because of the delicious smell that was coming from different shops.

Many started their day having famous Mulled Wine but I avoided it even though I was craving to taste it. Mulled wine is a traditional winter drink made with various spices and red wine during Christmas time. In Kharkiv, it was very popular and people used to drink it almost every evening after work during the holiday season.

It was not early morning but you can already see how crowded it was when I was there.

As I said, every minute was special and memorable. The entire atmosphere of the market was different.


This is the main stage area where the concert happens. Mainly it stays crowded at night, I will show you the nighttime atmosphere as well. This is also the center of the market.




During the daytime, people normally stroll around and buy goodies and handicrafts. But in the evening, when the concert starts, people gather in front of the main stage and enjoy the music.

I couldn't recognize what they were singing because it was in German language but soon they also started performing English songs as well. People were dancing, enjoying the moment with drinks. Some were having food while enjoying the music. I barely found a spot to stand there because it was heavily crowded as it was the center of attraction during the night.

Obviously, you won't be able to see the cathedral but little rays of warm light showed that the cathedral was still there. Evening means festival time, I think daytime means shopping even though I saw the crowd in front of every shop.


Can you spot the beautiful Cathedral and the large Christmas tree??


The entrance of "Weihnachtsmarkt am Kölner Dom", during the daytime, it's not so visible.




My initial plan was to see this Christmas market and after that to explore the city and other locations in Cologne. Because I didn't know whether I would be able to come back here during evening time. I was lucky enough to experience both day and evening time because we only had a few hours before we went back. Day trips are always hectic but fun though. I planned to see as many as locations possible before going back. Our group also agreed with me and we followed each other often whenever we went to new locations. We didn't take a sightseeing trip through a guide; instead, we had decided to explore everything on our own.



I personally liked wooden handicrafts, very neat and nicely done. The handwork was very detailed and really beautifully crafted. I saw many people like mechanical models made with plywood without glue. They are normally expensive. I also saw many unique goodies to decorate Christmas trees, even you can even make your own small winter village at home. Obviously, the price was a little expensive but it's the holiday season and you are getting very unique handmade decors.


Decor shops were overcrowded, people were buying their desired decor according to their theme for this year's Christmas trees. I barely found a spot to look at what they were selling because shopkeepers were busy and they didn't have time for curious people like me who were not going to buy anything from them. Well, I wanted to buy but I don't have any space in my room and I knew eventually the decor would become my dog's toy.


The best discovery was finding these "Kupfer licht" which means copper lights. They were beautifully crafted. But yes, unique things cost money nowadays. These lights are made of acrylic glass with copper, very nicely and uniquely designed. These were tealight and glass holders, price depended on the sizes.



I tried different kinds of food but unfortunately, I didn't take photos. I tasted momos, bread with sausage, cinnamon rolls, some chocolates, chicken steaks, and Crêpe.

I took Nutella Crêpe because I couldn't eat other Crêpe because of the ingredients. I faced a food crisis and couldn't try everything because I don't eat ham or pork so I had to avoid many tasty traditional delicacies. I could have gone to a restaurant but I rather preferred tasting something different this time of the season.

This crepe was nice, the shopkeeper made it fresh in front of me. It cost me 3 euros which was very cheap in my opinion.

I should have taken more photos but anyway, already I had taken enormous photos.




I personally loved this diverse center of the market and the big Christmas tree. It was really a moment when I was under that lighted roof.





I was a little bit tired for walking a long time so I was trying to find a place to sit. I discovered a beautiful spot in front of the Cathedral fountain from where a part of the market and the large tree can be seen.


A shop full of sweets...


Daytime atmosphere of the famous Christmas market.

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Time flew so quickly and I was kinda sad when I was leaving the market. But yes, I was grateful that I had an amazing time there strolling such an attractive market and having some amazing food. Good time passes quickly but puts remarkable memories in life. My time was short but in this short time, I made memories and had an enjoyable moment.


The market location is very easy to find, the cathedral is located near the train and tram station. The location is called Roncalliplatz, cathedral, and markets are located nearby.



I am @priyanarc.... An architect, a dreamer, and a passionate writer who loves to write about life. I try to present my own perspective and experiences. Please leave your feedback and criticism because it's the only way I can know and reach your mind and thoughts easily...

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All images used are captured by the author...


Cologne is a city located in West Germany on the magnificent Rhine River

Hehehehehe Cologne as in perfume?

Hey @priyanarc I hope you get well soon and from this pictures you had a swell time🥰

Well, you are right, Cologne has a perfume museum called the Farina Fragrance Museum that I haven't visited (my time was limited). The world's oldest factory is located here 😁

I had a great time and enjoyed every moment of being there...

I think I owe you a big thank you for this post. I love the market, it really brings the Christmas spirit to life. So many yummy things and the gingerbread is 😍.

The other thing I love is the cathedral! I'm obsessed with architecture and these cathedral all over Europe are absolutely amazing.

3€ for a crêpe was not a lot. I paid 2€ for a very thin one years in Paris, but it was with strawberry jam as I hate Nutella :)

I hope you can post about the local Christmas fair soon and maybe from Amsterdam too :) I'm really happy you had the chance to visit Cologne.

It was really nice, I had to declutter many photos even I forgot to take food photos that I have tasted. The energy I felt staying there was so different than living in Almere. The city has so much to offer and it's not like Amsterdam where you only get the smell of marijuana. Besides, in my opinion, Amsterdam is overcrowded and you hardly find a place to sit and relax. I am glad that the Ukrainian group decided to go to Cologne just to see the Christmas markets. Otherwise, I would never thought about going there.

I'm obsessed with architecture and these cathedral all over Europe are absolutely amazing.

I am sure, you will enjoy exploring this cathedral and the inside visit is also free. I went there and spent time sitting in front of the cathedral. It's not huge like the Duomo di Milano but the architectural style is similar, gothic style. Keep this city on your travel list, you will enjoy the old town and architecture.

3€ for a crêpe was not a lot. I paid 2€ for a very thin one years in Paris, but it was with strawberry jam as I hate Nutella :)

🤣 Why Why!! I like Nutella a lot and if it is with banana and Nutella, I feel like I am tasting something exquisite. The food price was cheaper, the best thing was all the food was freshly made in front of you. Oh I also ate traditional-style potato chips and it was so so good...

I hope you can post about the local Christmas fair soon and maybe from Amsterdam too :)

I have a plan to visit at least one market in the Netherlands, let's see where to go next...

Thank you Erikah...

Amsterdam has always been crowded. I remember when I was there, in the RLD at 8 pm you could barely walk on Saturday.

🤣 Why Why!!

I hate it! Can't stand it and when I see people buying it, or kids eat it with loaf, it gives me goose bumps 😁

But I'm sure I'll love Cologne and will visit one day.

in the RLD at 8 pm you could barely walk on Saturday.

Yes and of course the speed of cyclists, they ride cycles like they are on a race 😀

I hate it! Can't stand it and when I see people buying it, or kids eat it with loaf, it gives me goose bumps 😁

Definitely gonna avoid it in front of you 😁

I'm sure I'll love Cologne and will visit one day.

My recommendation will be holiday season 😁

Definitely gonna avoid it in front of you 😁

Lol, no worries, it's not so bad, but I don't like it.

Such beautiful market pictures 😍

Thank you so much, I am glad you liked the market...

That is beautiful ❤️

The copper light defintely caught my eyes too! Mulled wine is so good it is also a tradition here in Romania.

At night all Christmas markets look better. It is like entering a magic place

I will try mulled wine next time, I kinda regret of not trying it in cologne though. You are right, it was a magical place. Everything was so nice and felt like a dream...

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Thank you so much, that is awesome...

I love a Christmas market. I don't seem to buy much though as everything seems so expensive. I'm not a big alcoholic drinker but I like a mulled wine, especially on a cold winter night.

I sometimes stand behind the crowd following the tour guides if I need to find something out. Never pay for it, though. 😀

I am definitely gonna try mulled wine next time, probably gonna visit more markets this year. I am fully indulging myself in holiday spirit no matter whether I am sick or not 😀. Started carrying my medicines so that I could take them anytime whenever needed. I was scared of tasting mulled wine because I was not in NL and scared of getting drunk. 🤣

I sometimes stand behind the crowd following the tour guides if I need to find something out. Never pay for it, though.

Darn, definitely gonna do that next time. Guides know a lot about the city, so those who take a private tour guide, basically walk around. I am going to follow your trick.

Handicrafts decors are expensive now but I saw some really good quality and unique decors. Commercial decors are not so good. I don't celebrate Christmas but I had a lot of decors of winter village when I was in Ukraine. I would have bought some decors from Germany if I had a place to decorate...

I've heard about the Christmas market in Koln, but haven't managed yet to visit it, so thank you for bringing me with you 😊 It's good that you travel and try to enjoy yourself 😊

There are a few beautiful Christmas markets in Holland as well. I have visited one in Valkenburg a few years back and it was stunning 😊

Koln has some amazing Christmas Market, I visited 5 markets in total but there were more. Each market has its own character and the food was also good. I really had a nice time seeing all the markets. walking on the street. It was so crowded but festive and celebration vibes were everywhere.

Ah, Valkenburg, it was on my list but it is so far from Almere. It is a 3-hour and 30-minute train journey, the same as the drive to Cologne or Luxembourg. I will keep this location on my list, will definitely gonna travel there... It's a beautiful city...

Thanks, Martina, I know you love traveling so I am sure you will enjoy Cologne as well.

You are joking!! I'm in town as well!!

OMG!!! Really!! I thought you would be there a week before Christmas otherwise I would have texted you while traveling there. I was there for 6-7 hours, it was a small day trip. We could have enjoyed mulled wine together if I knew you would be there already. Miss the golden chance, Pauline...

Wow, you really feel the Christmas spirit on this street especially when at night.

Yes, it was a lovely day... Thank you for stopping by and have a great weekend...

I know you don't celebrate Christmas, but glad you are enjoying the markets. They always have a good vibe to them, so treat yourself. A lot of people here aren't religious but enjoy the spirit of it. Some of them return to being miserable f*ckers after Christmas though lol.

Just have a sip to see if you like mulled wine. I only have to smell alcohol and I'm tipsy. I'm such a light weight.

Some of them return to being miserable f*ckers after Christmas though lol.

True indeed and I met such an individual in life. Good vibes are always helpful to cheer and boost mood, people's faces, expressions, festive mood, and atmosphere play a great role in those who are dealing with mental health issues. I completely forgot about other things while being there. I was happy and wanted to see more and more because of my energy level...I went there with a high fever even I had migraine pain but I took medicine and moved on, the pain was there but my mood and energy were so high 😀. I always love seeing cities, culture, and celebrations, it is always me.

Light weight mulled wine available? In Ukraine, there were different flavors, I didn't see the Germany one though...

My friend has migraines and takes medication every day. I've only had 2 in my life and that's enough for me.

If you start blogging with lots of spelling mistakes, I will know you've been on the mulled wine!

My friend has migraines and takes medication every day. I've only had 2 in my life and that's enough for me.

Migraine is so painful and hard to adjust to life with this painful disease. You are lucky...

If you start blogging with lots of spelling mistakes, I will know you've been on the mulled wine!

🤣 or text you privately with a lot of drunky words and statements...

Ha! Poor Gigi. She's got it all to come.😁

😁😁, Oh forgot to tell you; I am planning and trying to find a way to travel with Gigi. I already started talking to the Ukrainian group 😁

Oh that's good. I'm sure she will love it.

Wow I love it!! It’s so beautiful!! I’ve never been there, but I remember the Hannover markets and they were also very beautiful!

The stop you discovered in front of the Cathedral is amazing!! Great that you could sit there!

It was really nice being there and feeling the festive and celebration vibes of this holiday season. I visited 5 markets within 6-7 hours and I didn't feel tired at all. The atmosphere was amazing and the city itself is worthy to explore. Definitely gonna recommend this city visiting during the holiday season...

Todo un espectáculo hermoso!! Por lo que leí lo disfrutaste mucho, por el cambio de rutina, por la situación que vive Ucrania y por tu depresión, esas decoraciones se ven hermosas, las construcciones súper antiguas también tienen bastante historia que contar, también probar comida nueva y conocer a otras personas, ese tipo de viaje son únicos, y en estos días de paz y armonía valia la pena viajar..

Absolutamente de acuerdo contigo. Actualmente vivimos en un mundo donde la paz, la celebración y la calma mental son muy necesarias. He estado lidiando con depresión y trastorno de estrés postraumático durante mucho tiempo y también estoy bajo tratamiento. Lamentablemente mi vida no es tan normal como la de otros pero la estoy viviendo. Entonces, un día tan pequeño y la exploración de una nueva ubicación ayuda mucho para mi salud mental. Debido a mi depresión, la mayor parte del tiempo me quedo en casa, así que me esfuerzo por salir. Lo bueno es que me encanta viajar y eso me da tranquilidad. Este mercado fue increíble y la mejor parte fue su ubicación y atmósfera.

Gracias por comentarios tan reflexivos...

En verdad que no es fácil pero Fuerza fuerza y más fuerza.

You made a great decision booking one day trip to Germany and I'm sure that contributed even for just a little to your overall mood. Awesome pictures too! Had no clue the Christmas markets look so lovely in Germany.

After coming to the Netherlands, many people told me that in Belgium, and Germany; amazing Christmas markets are located. I didn't see the Belgium one but people told me that Brugge and Ghent have some amazing markets. I saw the Christmas markets in Germany on different bloggers' videos. I am really happy that I was able to go to such a location and time. It was a really budget-friendly trip. The best part I achieved from this trip was relief from unstable mental issues for a certain time as you have mentioned.

Thank you so much, I am glad you liked this location. Still, 5 more markets I have to share and they are very unique. I just need some energy to write :D

Christmas is one of the greatest festival and first time I seen amazing photography. This decoration is amazing and I never seen earlier then now. In the india also celebration preparation ongoing.

Thank you so much, India also does nice decoration as well...

The cathedral looks very pretty, and the pictures of the market were pretty good.
It's good to know that she was able to enjoy such an entertaining trip.
Take good care of yourself, and may Gigi be as well as possible.

I took more photos of the cathedral and also went inside to see the cathedral. I will write about it but till then all I can say is it's a very beautiful cathedral to visit. I am planning to take Gigi with me on the trips, especially for day trips. Let's see if I can make it happen or not...

This is lovely Priyan. Where I stay it is as though we are waiting for that certain something that starts the festive season for everyone.
However, you just kicked the start engines for me. Thank you for sharing your experience and the pictures, they are amazing. Merry Christmas in advance😇

Thanks for this lovely comment. In the Netherlands, the Christmas festival hasn't started yet, I am waiting to visit some local markets for the first time. Happy Holiday and have a great weekend...

You are welcome Priyan, and it is time now 🕺🏽😊 seasons greetings.

Your pictures are gorgeous! I love how you processed them to make them feel extra glowy and magical.

eventually the decor would become my dog's toy

😆same reason I don't get new furniture. It quickly becomes a scratching post for the cat.

Thanks a lot, I edited them a little bit to make them more vibrant and visible. I am glad you liked them because you do capture awesome photographs.

same reason I don't get new furniture. It quickly becomes a scratching post for the cat.

That's why we understand each other well...😁

Germany and Austria are always wonderful at Christmas time, and now that it's snowing, it's so much more beautiful. Wonderful pictures and excellent article. Enjoy it 😊

You are right, I just saw a piece of this celebration in Germany, there are much more. I hope one day I will be able to see Austria's celebration in Person. Haven't been to Austria... Thank you for reading and have a great weekend...

I love visiting Christmas Markets in Romania and Europe so much that these visits have become a tradition.
I love to see how whole cities dress up in festive clothes with millions of bulbs in thousands of colours, everything is like a fairytale.
Thank you for this amazing post through which I too got to see yet another spectacular Christmas Market.

I heard about Romania, and hopefully, one day I will be able to visit the markets there.

I love to see how whole cities dress up in festive clothes with millions of bulbs in thousands of colours, everything is like a fairytale.

Absolutely right, it's like a fairytale and the best season of the year...

Thank you for stopping by...

You're welcome.
I hope in the near future to see some nice posts from you made with places in Romania.

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Thank you so much...

You're welcome! @priyanarc
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