Not quite French, not quite German - Alsace France is a world all to it's own. Nestled between the Rhine River and Germany, Alsace has some of the most spectacular Christmas Markets in Europe. Dating back to 1570, the markets run from late November until December 31st.
Strasbourg claims to be the capital of Christmas. History says..... that Christmas tress were sold here back in the 16th century along with decorations of paper roses, apple and sweets.
Folklore says that in 1858 there was a bad drought and there was no fruit for the children to hang from the trees, so a glass blower created glass balls - the first Christmas balls.
Unfortunately, due to high winds and heavy rains - the Strasbourg Christmas market was closed for the day. All of the chalets were shut tight.
A custom of this area is to decorate the windows and doors with elaborate decorations - with the primary ones being stuffed animals. To see many more of the decorated windows, hop over to my art blog - Ma Vie Trouvee.
Kaysersberg, a charming village with less than 3000 residents was the market we visited on Saturday. I was not able to get any photos of the market as it was crowded and raining so lots of umbrellas!
This was outside of a restaurant.
A peek through the windows.
With lots of sauerkraut and meat!
We stayed at our VERY favorite B&B in Europe, Ambiance Jardin. We have stayed here five times over the four years we have live in Brussels. If you visit this area you MUST stay here! I have shared many photos of the B&B in previous posts - but here are a few more with Pierrette's beautiful Christmas vignettes (and a little PSE altering).
Our lovely breakfast table.
Despite the rain, we still had a fun time. We highly recommend a visit to this part of France anytime of the year, but especially at Christmas!