This illuminated sign advertises the Strasbourg Christmas market. Christkindelsmärik is Christmas market in alsatian, a dialect of German spoken in Alsace until the 20th century. Started in 1570, the Strasbourg Christmas market is one of the oldest in Europe.
Christmas market stands are distributed throughout the Strasbourg old town. Some stands sell wooden ornaments and candy.
Others sell vin chaud (hot wine), flammekueche, and choucroute. In the background the spire of the Strasbourg cathedral disappears into the fog.
Strasbourg had the prettiest and most extensive lights of the three Christmas markets we visited. The distant sign reads “Strasbourg Capital de Noël”, proclaiming with some self-promotion that they’re the Christmas capital, at least for the French-speakers.
The Christmas market fills la Place de la Cathédrale in front of the Notre-Dame Cathedral. The cathedral keeps going up and up, and you can’t get back far enough to take it all in. The cathedral was the tallest building in the world for over 200 years.
And even more dramatic on a foggy night.