Tails From the Vienna Woods


Christmas Markets

Weihnachtsmarkt in Villa Wartholz

Because who doesn’t love Sven?

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Adventmarkt in the Father’s Frathouse

Off road time and a snowy trail walk to reach this first Adventmarkt of the season.

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So Schmeckt Niederösterreich!

Feinkost treats in a palatial setting.

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It’s Christmas Time in the City

Not a list of Vienna’s markets, don’t worry; just impressions of the ones we have dropped in on. With markets opening this weekend in extraordinary locations like castle ruins and palaces, these are the only Vienna snaps I’ll likely have to share.

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Dobré trhy

Buried within the seemingly endless streams of, “Christmas Markets You MUST Visit” and practical? advice such as, “Tips for Navigating Christmas Markets” running across my news feeds last week was a quiet little notice for something called, Bratislava Good Market.

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Like Startled Feldhasen

Christmas markets spring up like startled Feldhasen at this time of year…

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Weihnachtsmarkts in Cellars and Stables

Our Christmas holiday was like the month of March, it came in like a lion and went out like a lamb. Though holiday preparations at home kept us well occupied throughout December, we did manage to take in two unusual Christmas markets. The first, woven through the labyrinth of a 900 year old wine cellar in Niederösterreich. Quite a lovely market!

The second was a little closer to home, the Ochs und Esel market in some of the abandoned stables at Vienna’s horse track. Rather cleverly, a few dozen local artisans displayed their wares in the individual stalls. Of all of the Christmas markets we enjoyed this season, this was the one from where we were able to find those final, special gifts.

And in the blink of an eye, our Christmas holidays had begun.




Schloss Grafenegg Adventmarkt, a Rare Return Visit

Call us holiday market connoisseurs. When the Niederösterreich newsletter arrived in my inbox, listing the “most beautiful markets,” of the season  I pored over it like I once did the Toys R Us catalog as a I child. And why not?  So many palaces and castles that rarely open to the public fill their rooms with holiday greenery and handcrafted, locally produced goods for just one weekend, making visit feel like a mini-holiday. Add in a spectacular setting, and we are happy daytrippers. With so many markets to choose from, though, we have only made rare return visits in our soon-to-be four Christmases in Vienna.

Christmas Market-ing in the Salzkammergut: Wolfgangseer Advent

St. Gilgen, St. Wolfgang, and Strobl are the three villages trimming Lake Wolfgang, about an hour east of Salzburg. We spent a magical day between the villages, cheerily dressed for the holidays and with their glittering Advent markets offering something for everyone. The day was easily the highlight of our Salzkammergut holiday. Enjoy.

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