Chicago's ChristkindleMarket

If you have never visited Chicago's Christkindlmarket at Daley Plaza, it's a fun holiday tradition that need to be on your itinerary. Modeled after Nuremberg's traditional holiday market which originated in Germany in the 1500's, Christkindlmarket came to Chicago in 1996 and was moved to it's current spot at Daley Plaza in 1997. It's Chicago's largest open-air Christmas market.

It opens daily at 11 a.m., so you can pay a visit in the daytime hours when you're likely to see less of a crowd and have a little warmth from the sun.

The plaza is lined with little booths with most of the vendors coming from Germany and it's region selling beautiful handcrafted wares - jewelry, clocks, ornaments and more. You'll also find German entertainment and lots of hearty, German food and spiced wine in adorable commemorative boot mugs. There's activities for kids that you can pursue online - scavenger hunts and a passport for stamping.




My friends, Debbie and Lynn joined me for a visit to Christkindlmarket on opening day - on a surprisingly and pleasantly warm evening before our first snowfall.






Unfortunately we had just come from a tasting at a newly-opened restaurant and were too full to enjoy a meal, but I did grab some potato pancakes to take home.













The skyline of Chicago was a beautiful background. The only think I missed was the big Christmas tree, which was moved to Millennium Park this year.

Also, there's a Christkindlmarket that has been added in Oakbrook this year, so if you'd rather visit a market in the burbs, stop there for some of the same vendors. Visit Christkindlmarket.com for info on both locations.

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