Dates : 29th November – 27th December 2018
Opening Times : Sun-Thu 11am-8pm
Fri & Sat 11am-9pm
Closed on Christmas Eve
Christmas Day & 26 December 11am-8pm
The Christmas Market in the Former Royal Seat, Celle, is held on the “Stechbahn” At the end of November, the Old Town in Celle is again transformed into a Christmas fairytale. The half-timbered houses and streets are filled with festive splendour with Christmas illuminations, the scents of Gingerbread , Glühwein and Pine needles wafts on the air in the historic streets and courtyards. Take a stroll along the streets and look and linger at the variety of stalls that are displaying their goods here. The lovingly decorated Chalet-style huts display handmade beeswax candles, warm sheepskin products and wooden toys, also decorative Christmas items made of glass, clay, fabric or felt. Stalls with Christmas treats such as mulled wine, roasted almonds and Stollen waiting to be enjoyed. Sheltered by a small forest, the traditional crafts, such as rope-makers, glassblowers, silversmiths and doll carvers settled here and they show their skills on site. Chandlers and stone cutters will demonstrate their work and invite you to join in. To make a number of visits to the Christmas Market even more interesting, the craftsman will change at regular intervals after a couple of days.
Christmas Markets – Weihnachtsmarkt – Marche de Noël – Mercatino di Natale – Mercados de Navidad
German Christmas Markets or Weihnachtsmarkt,have now become popular and are a welcome and familiar sight in many of the cities, towns and villages throughout Europe during the season of Advent.
Whether visiting a local Christmas Market or taking a Christmas Market Tour, the wonderful festive atmosphere will be sure to lift your spirits and bring the Christmas cheer a little closer.
Wrap up warm and wander along the rows of pretty wooden chalets taking in the rich, warming aromas associated with Christmas such as hot roast chestnuts, grilled bratwurst sausages, crepes or pancakes, hot doughnuts, gingerbreads and Gluhwein or Mulled wines or ciders. You can sample the marzipan figures, chocolate covered fruits or one of the many festive delicacies on offer from around the world. There are all kinds of Christmas gifts and decorations, especially traditional things such as tree decorations, wood carvings, crib figures, traditional toys, candles, hand-knitted jumpers, lambskin slippers and glassware, you will be able to find that special little something that will be a unique gift for someone to treasure. Children will be excited to meet with Santa Claus and maybe, just maybe!! there will be a little present for them too!
With its rows of timber-framed houses, its imposing ducal palace and historic old town, it is easy to see why Celle is such a popular tourist destination for German and foreign visitors alike. Located in the German state of Lower Saxony on the banks of the River Aller and on the southern fringes of the Lüneburg Heath, it also makes a great base for a excursions into the Heath, as well as the nearby cities of Hanover and Brunswick. The mystical and legendary Harz Mountains are also within striking distance, about 1½ hours drive to the south. Steeped in history, Celle was the official residence of the dukes of Saxe-Wittenberg and, later, of Brunswick-Lüneburg. Celle still has that whiff of aristocratic charm about it, whether you’re strolling through the French Gardens, sitting in the grounds of the palace, boating on the river or exploring its maze of timber-framed shops. In short Celle is a must for anyone touring Northern Germany!
- Altstadt. The old medieval town centre has a large pedestrian-only zone that wends through a wonderful tapestry of timber-framed houses and shops.
- Celle Palace. The ducal palace, Schloss Celle, whose foundations date to the 13th century, is the oldest building in the town. What started as a castle for the dukes of Lüneburg, fortified with moats and ramparts, was gradually expanded and modified into a mixture of Baroque and Renaissance architecture. From 1772 it was home to the British-born, Danish queen, Caroline Matilda, the daughter of Frederick, Prince of Wales, who had been banished to Celle as a result of her affair with Johann Friedrich Struensee of Copenhagen. She only lived at the Celle court until 1775 when she died at 23 of scarlet fever. In the 19th century the castle was occasionally used by the Hanoverian royal household as a summer residence. Guided tours visit the Renaissance chapel, Baroque theatre, ducal chambers and palace kitchen. Open Tue-Sun 10am-4.30pm.
- Hoppener Haus, Poststr. 8/Rundstr. (in the ”Altstadt”). Perhaps the most impressive and best-known timber-framed buildings in the old town, the Hoppener Haus dates to 1532 and looks like something out of a picture book. In front of the house is a rather strange, modern work of art: five talking street lamps that are activated by movement and recount (in German) amusing tales of bygone years as well as extolling the sights of Celle today.
- Celle Hasenjagd. Once you’ve marvelled at the town’s old castle being converted to a tranquil palace and noted how well the Germans mix old and new, stop outside the railway station and gaze at the marshalling yard. Here, in 1945, allied bomber struck the station as a target of opportunity. Among the trains waiting in the yard was one filled with concentration camp workers. Many prisoners were killed in the raid. Many more took the opportunity to flee for their lives. Over the next several days, the SS guards and local townspeople scoured the town and neighboring woods, hunting down the escapees. Many of the “rabbit hunters”, were tried and convicted for this war crime. Several were hanged.
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