It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… and where I live here in the Netherlands, the beginning of December marks the presence of Christmas trees and ornaments, beautiful lights glimmering at night, Santa Claus hats, and of course, Christmas markets!
In a small square, stands decorated with garlands and lovely lettering will appear and selling various things, from classic winter clothing, beautiful handmade products from wood, metal, ceramic or glass, gorgeous jewellery, and intricate Christmas tree decorations. Additionally, of course no one goes around a Christmas market without food! Stands selling smoked sausages, bread with meats, chicken, smoked salmon, raclette, and desserts like waffles, poffertjes, and crepes.
I bought two tickets of day trips from the Dutch railway company NS: One ticket costs €18 and includes the train ticket to and from Maastricht plus a free drink and one piece of cake on the spot. It’s an excellent deal and perfect to gift to someone you plan to go with this beautiful holiday season.
We went on a Wednesday and the trip took us around three hours from The Hague, with only one transit stop. I got to the city by 12.30 pm and the market was around ten minutes walking distance. From the moment we got out of the station we saw that the city was beautiful, lined with classic European buildings and pretty stores, and decorated with Christmas ornaments and lights.
The market itself is small but lovely. Very well organised, it’s located in the town square and at the centre is the skating ring. Our first destination: lunch! I immediately walked to the wonderfully-smelling sausages stand, where the people were grilling the meat on top of a fire. We ordered one each: for €6 it was an awesome deal, considering the amount of sausage and bread we got!
Walking around the stands were fun, and though it was cold the weather wasn’t horrible with at least a bit of sun shining! Additionally we stopped by to get some Christmas tree decor, a small snack of champignons with caramelised onions and garlic sauce.
After walking around for approximately half an hour, we went to have a drink and the free cake we deserved – I ordered a gluhwein, which was lovely, and also a wonderful view of the skating ring.
A stroll around the entire square would probably take an hour – it isn’t too huge, which is nice. I love how quiet it is – I’m not sure if it’s because we went on a weekday, but it’s definitely quieter than markets in Germany that are more famous, way bigger, but also much much more popular and therefore more crowded.
Finally as the sky darkens, we stopped by for our final snack at the waffles stand. The beautiful whipped cream on top of warm, buttery and slightly crunchy waffles was perfect!
Maastricht is just a pretty city with great stores and museums to visit in general – but the Christmas market is a definitely fun addition this holiday season! I’d highly recommend buying the day out ticket as well, since one train trip from where I lived was already €25 one way, and so we had an awesome deal overall.
Now I’m so ready to visit other markets around the country. Have you been to Christmas markets? Share your thoughts to me in the comments! And thank you so very much to my boyfriend for all the amazing pictures! ❤