Glittering Streets of Strasbourg, France

In Christmas, En-Route, Europe, France, Our Journeys, Trip-Types, World Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

Capitale de Noël

This was our 2nd visit to Strasbourg at Christmas; the last time was back in 2008.

Strasbourg - Capitale de Noël, Strasbourg, France

Part of us was looking forward to discovering the changes, but also, we hoped to find still the little familiarities that we fell in love with the first time around.

Strasbourg was our first stop on our 2017 Christmas Market road trip before we headed on to Munich, Frankfurt & Cologne. So, we were having a soupçon of France prior to our wurst fest in Germany.

Grande Île

The festive atmosphere here is all around the Grande Île, so head in and enjoy the fun.

We visited Place Kléber first to see the amazing Christmas tree, and it indeed is a sight not to be missed.

The height of the tree is astonishing; I think they must have used a crane to decorate it.

They even have a viewing platform for it, so that you can get closer.

The tree in Place Kléber , Strasbourg, France

Although the centrepiece of Place Kléber is the tree, the lighting and the decor on the Aubette (Orderly Room) are wonderful, it makes such a grand statement.

The Aubette, Strasbourg, France

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It’s all about the lights

While strolling the streets and lanes of Strasbourg, our outstanding memory is the illuminations throughout the city.

Gingerbread illuminations, Strasbourg, France

It’s not just your average twinkling street lights; there are eye-catching themes running all the way through.

One lane was even lined with huge boxed chandeliers.

Boxed chandeliers, Strasbourg, France
Decorated in Pink, Strasbourg, France

There is no expense spared here for exterior illumination; you’re all going to be dazzled while sipping your vin chaud.

Did you know?

That the Grande Île was inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1988, all the more reason to visit any time of the year.

Ancient history

There has been a Christmas market held around the Cathedral in Strasbourg since 1570, making it one of Europe’s oldest Christmas markets. So, it’s not surprising it holds the accolade of Capitale de Noël.

The cathedral as a backdrop to the market, Strasbourg, France
Avenue of Angels, Strasbourg, France

At the feet of the Cathedral are bustling little market huts selling a variety of gifts, decorations and local delicacies, all the while a children’s carousel is whirling around.


Vin Rouge or Vin Blanc, Strasbourg, France

Take your time and wander around the Place de la Cathedral, and we highly recommend sampling the vin chaud, it’s a little bit sweeter than gluhwein but certainly just as warming.

Vin chaud, Strasbourg, France

Before we left for Strasbourg Gary and I looked through his photos from 2008, and when we arrived at the vin chaud stall that we remembered visiting nine years ago, the same happy chap was still there. Now that brought a smile to our faces…

A vin chaud in 2008, Strasbourg, France
A familiar face, Strasbourg, France

Attention to detail

We always say that the Christmas markets come alive when the sun goes down, however, Place de la Cathedral is stunning day and night.

The Carousel in the market place, Strasbourg, France

The half-timbered dwellings that encircle the square are unbelievable, the care and maintenance taken to keep them looking so beautiful is a tribute to the city.

Browsing a stall, Strasbourg, France

Don’t forget

Your comfy shoes and warm clothing!

Soak up the atmosphere

The street not to be missed off the square is Rue du Maroquin.

During the festive season, I urge you to stroll up and down here during the day, and in the evening, you won’t stop looking high above you at the décor.

Amazing decoration along the Rue du Maroquin, Strasbourg, France
Rue du Maroquin, Strasbourg, France
Glittering Rue du Maroquin, Strasbourg, France

At the bottom of Rue du Maroquin, we turned left, to follow the river along and come across another market (Place du Marche-aux-Poissons). From memory, we don’t believe there was one here in 2008, it had some unusual stalls and had a charming local feel to it.

The market at Marche-aux-Poissons, Strasbourg, France

Petite France

Not quite Christmassed out, there are still more markets to visit. We headed over to Petite France, which will take your breath away at how picturesque it is before you have even reached the festivities.

Wandering through Petite France, Strasbourg, France
Petite France, Strasbourg, France

Surrounded by waterways and intriguing buildings, small lanes and cobbled streets.

Looking over Petite France, Strasbourg, France

Fun & Friendly

One of the largest markets on Grande Île is Christkindelsmärik, held in Place Broglie. This is a really friendly bustling market and full of colourful gifts and great treats for everyone.

The entrance to Christkindelsmärik, Strasbourg, France

Weaving your way through you’ll discover some wonderful stalls, and you won’t go hungry around here.

Antique Decorations, Strasbourg, France
Vin Chaud in Copper pots, Strasbourg, France

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Why not?

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Land of Fire & Ice

Every year in Place Gutenberg, Strasbourg welcomes a different country to highlight their traditions around Christmas, this year it was Iceland’s honour.

The Blue Tree and the Bear, Strasbourg, France
The Icelandic Market, Strasbourg, France

Have You

Visited any French Christmas markets, we’d love you to share them with us?

Astronomical clock

While in Strasbourg we couldn’t resist visiting the Cathedral and its Astronomical clock, which stands 18 metres high and is one of the world’s largest.

The Astronomical clock, Strasbourg, France

The cathedral itself is amazing inside and out, and when it is lit up in the evening it looks very serene.

Inside the Cathedral, Strasbourg, France

Local Delicacies

A selection of Gingerbread, Strasbourg, France

There are great things to eat around the markets especially if you have a sweet tooth.

Regional delights, Strasbourg, France

However, a visit to the Alsace region of France, would not be complete without enjoying a tarte flambée.

Tarte flambée, Strasbourg, France

It is loved by everyone young and old.

Where we stayed

Our accommodation for the two nights in Strasbourg was at the Mercure Centre. Lovely friendly staffed and welcomed you with a vin chaud, what could be better.

Parking was good. However, security around the Grande Île was extremely high, with vehicles only being allowed to enter before and after Christmas market hours.

Something for the Traveller

Inspired to visit Strasbourg at Christmas?

Does a vin chaud tempt you? would you like to see the lights?

Why not spend a couple of nights to enjoy the sights, smells and tastes of Strasbourg.

Check out the latest deals on Booking.Com?
Glittering Streets of Strasbourg, France

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About the Author


Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight. Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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