Alsace is certainly beautiful from South to North, but I still get the overall impression that a lot of people don’t always think of going north of Strasbourg. To convince you to go and have a look for yourself, let me tell you about my experience at Haguenau Christmas Market!
For me, Haguenau is first and foremost a vast and pretty flat woodland and is famous for the potteries of neighbouring villages… However, it is actually the 4th town in Alsace! When you arrive by car, you’ll first see houses and industries, its military history and you won’t notice one single half-timbered house. And yet, when getting there by train, you’ll be right next to the town centre with its modern, independent and charming pedestrian area, just as the town history is.
During an afternoon in November, right at the beginning of the Christmas Market, I went to discover Haguenau, which was already decorated for the holidays. With my paper guide “Christmas treasure hunts in Alsace”, I wandered around the town for 3 hours, in every corner of Haguenau: the majestic Hop Market, the theater, the Historical Museum, the city walls, Saint-Georges Church… My visit was enhanced by beautiful decorations and illuminations, immersing completely my little heart into the magic of Christmas.
There is no risk of getting lost, as everything is around Place de la République, but my favorite spots are the following:
- Getting lost in Impasse de l’Oie: when you are in Grand’rue, follow the red carpet to meet the local cellar man and bookshop owner… a real treat!
- Enter the former chapel, renamed “Espace Saint-Martin”, after passing by the luminous ball. You’ll admire a spectacular nativity scene. Haguenau is probably the cradle of nativity scenes in Alsace: this is where you can find the oldest written mention of a nativity scene, in a register dating back from 1420 and stating the making of a nativity scene in Saint-Georges Church!
Finally, as you might suspect, I made a lot of stops in a few chalets of Haguenau Christmas Market (there are about fifty!). I won’t forget the delicious aligot (mashed potatoes with Cantal cheese) and the special jet set mulled wine “Boudoir” (wine, rhum, Morello cherries, whipped cream!). In a restaurant, someone told me to try the “Tigre et de l’Ancienne Douane” (Place d’Armes) – you’ll let me know!
- The music and projections in the streets
- The conviviality of shopkeepers
I liked a little less
- Some fairground carousels
My pictures of Haguenau Christmas Market
Opening days and times
Haguenau Christmas Market is open every day (very practical!) and offers an extensive schedule of activities. Don’t forget to check what’s on before going. If you have time, why not let yourself be charmed by the typical Christmas events of the villages nearby? The tourist office will be of good advice!
The address is as follows: Marché de Noël de Haguenau, Place de la République, 67500 Haguenau. It is located about:
- 35km from Strasbourg (about 30 min drive)
- 104km from Colmar (about 1h15 drive)
- 145km from Mulhouse (about 1h40 drive)
By public transport
You can check your itinerary on Vialsace.