Public holidays are traditionally the busiest times of the year in the car-hire business. Many people take time off to go away together with family or friends. Winter sports are a case in point. Then, a spacious large car is exactly what you want to hire. But if you are thinking of going away with your partner to a couple of Christmas markets, then a compact car may be a better choice. Whatever your plans are: always make sure that you book in time!
Amsterdam Winter Market
Christmas markets have become really popular. Germany has traditionally been the place for such markets, but there is an ever-increasing choice in the Netherlands and Belgium too. An old-fashioned, convivial one is the Winter Market in Amsterdam (open until 12 January 2014). Some 85 chalets and numerous stalls selling Christmas and winter items are to be found on the Damrak and the Beursplein, where you can enjoy hot chocolate and mulled wine. And do not miss the wonderful artificial ice rink on Museumplein – with the Rijksmuseum forming a spectacular background – where you can join the locals on the ice!
Maastricht Christmas Market
Another recommendation is the Christmas Market in Maastricht that you can visit every day up until 30 December 2013, except on Christmas Day and 26 December. The famous Vrijhof has been transformed for the event into a breathtaking Christmas paradise; with so much to see and do, you will be left wondering where to start. There are, in addition to a – partially covered – Christmas market, numerous heated terraces and dozens of stalls offering mulled wine, old-fashioned Dutch tiny pancakes, Dutch donuts, waffles, pea soup, pancakes and potatoes fritters. The 800 m2 lit ice rink, the 60-metre high giant wheel and a traditional double-decker merry-go-round, the Grande Carrousel, complete the Christmas experience.
Antwerp Christmas Market
Our southern neighbours too know how to create a Christmas atmosphere. The best proof of this is the Antwerp Christmas Market, which you can still visit until 31 December 2013. The market stretches over the Grote Markt, Suikerrui, Handschoenmarkt and Groenplaats, where an entire Christmas village, Christmas lighting and seasonal music give this area of Antwerp, with its mediaeval architecture, a unique atmosphere. And, of course, there is a skating rink. Now ask yourself: What could be more romantic than to spend an evening strolling under glittering lights with your loved one, stopping every now and then to warm yourselves up with hot chocolate?
Düsseldorf Christmas Markets
The Christmas Markets in Düsseldorf are extremely popular in the Netherlands, given their close proximity to the border. The town is transformed until 23 December 2013 into one large Christmas village with gingerbread houses and all the streets lit with atmospheric lighting. Marktplatz becomes a romantic Renaissance-style Christmas market, while the Christmas market on Heinrich-Heine-Platz stands out with its glittering Art Nouveau-style golden angels. And do not forget to visit, among other, the Christmas markets on Sternchenmarkt, Gustaf-Gründgens-Platz or Schadowplatz.
Would you like to know more about the Christmas markets?
You will find a map on the website Kerstmarkten.nl showing all the Christmas markets in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany!