I am traveling to Germany this month and visiting Frankfurt, Munich, Dresden, and Berlin. Even though it's not the season for Christmas markets, do you know of any place/store I can get the feel of one? THanks. Rosa
In Frankfurt you could visit this store: http://www.cuckoo-clocks.biz/startseite
It isn't decorated for Christmas, but they have all of the authentic wooden items for sale, as well as glass decorations. Other than that you will have to either travel to Heidelberg or Rüdesheim where they have a Kathe Wolfahrt store.
I think there's probably a Käthe Wohlfarht store in Münich.
EDIT: I was wrong, surprisingly, they don't have one. There's a branch in Berlin, however.
Seiffen in the Ore mountains or course! The Ore mountains are Germanys Christmas country, and Seiffen is the epicentre. It's a village with nothing but Christmas shops. Forget the Käthe Wohlfahrt shops, Seiffen is the real thing.
Here is a nice article about Christmas in the Ore mountains:
And here are some blog posts by people who traveled to Seiffen for shopping:
To get there you have to take the train from Dresden to Freiberg. Freiberg is a completely preserved miners town with a very interesting cathedral. From there take the bus to Seiffen.
I'm pretty sure that I did recently see traditional Christmas ornaments for sale in the shops around Munich's Marienplatz. The Viktualien Market near there has a fun "regular" market atmosphere.
In my opinion the goods at the Christmas Markets have little to do with their attraction. For us the best part is walking around the town in the evening taking in the atmosphere. You can not easily duplicate the Christmas atmosphere, the nippy weather.
We also like evening strolls in the non-Christmas season. You can do that for free. Stop for a cup or coffee, a glass of wine or whatever at a cafe. After 5 Christmas market visits, we visited Germany in April. The evenings were every bit as enjoyable as in Advent season.
If you like booth shopping. That has caught on in Germany and extends beyond Christmas season. Some of the goods are similar. We happened on such markets in Nürnberg in Bamberg. I bet that you can find a market square with an active market fair in at least one of the towns that you are visiting.
Live for the moment.
Thank you all!