It’s time to open Christmas markets in Italy.
While I am writing this article in some parts of Italy is snowing and now I would like to be in front of a fireplace drinking a hot chocolate and chatting with my family. The cold weather brings with it a change of habits. We would like to lie under the duvet for a long time, eating and drinking hot food and drinks, reading books or doing something we couldn’t do all the rest of the year.
This winter mood is perfect for waiting Christmas and when Christmas markets are going to open means that Christmas is just around the corner. A period made of good things, sweetness, the desire of being at home with our family.
Christmas markets are connected with the Advent, the long period before Christmas. It’s very popular in the German speaking countries to live it in a particular way. For example children create their ‘Advent’s calendar’ with little windows and behind each window there is a little present to discover (very often chocolate candies). In Italy this is typical of the North, especially in the Alto Adige area at the border with Austria, where the majority of the inhabitans speak German. In fact Christmas markets are a German tradition and the first ones date back to the 14th century.
In the ’90s the tradition began in Italy too, becoming a reason to leave for a break during December for the Italian people. Afterwards every single Italian town started to organize its own Christmas market. I think that a list of the Christmas markets not to miss in Italy would be useful for your holiday in this period. I chose 3 of them that you have to put in your bucket list.
Christmas markets in Bolzano
The opening day is on 24th November at 5pm in Piazza Walther. The booths will be lighted up by a single candle and the only one illuminated place will be the Nativity scene. A piece of a local sweet would be offer to all the participants.
Many different events will take place in Bolzano until 6th January. On Saturdays and Sundays you can attend concerts, while on Sunday mornings the town band will song in traditional costumes. Every day you could admire local artisans working on handmade products.
Christmas market may represent an opportunity to visit Bolzano and its treasures. For example here is preserved Ötzi, a cave man founded by chance by two people hiking in the mountains: the glacier protected him for million years.
Christmas markets in Merano
Driving half an hour northward from Bolzano you reach Merano. This is another place famous for its Christmas market. The appointment is on 24th November at 5pm for the launch of 2016 edition.
Walk through the booths, drink mulled wine to get warm and do some shopping to take home handmade products. You can do this every day until 6th January. The programm is full of events. You can listen to concerts, discover Merano by lantern light and ice skating in Piazza Terme. Click here for the complete list of the events.
Christmas markets in Naples
Actually in Naples there is a Christmas market all the year round. Via San Gregorio Armeno is a street of the city centre famous for artisans making Nativity scenes. The peculiarity is that the Nativity figurines represent, not only the Holy Family, but also well-known personalities. Simona has already written about Christmas in Naples talking about Via San Gregorio Armeno.
It has already begun the 145th Fiera di Natale ai Decumani, that is the Christmas exhibition along the Decumani, the 3 Greek roads in the very centre of the city. The event is dedicated to water this year. So you will expect to see reproductions of mills, fountains, cascades, laundresses in Piazza San Gaetano and along Via San Gregorio Armeno.