In Germany and many European countries, Christmas markets take place in December until Christmas. In the midst of the cold, small stalls line up in squares in the city. At a Christmas market, you can buy candles and traditional handicrafts – and of course, a lot to eat and drink. When people get cold, a hot mulled wine helps warm them up. As for Japan, you can experience a real German Christmas market in central Tokyo!
The venue of the German Christmas Market is the “O-YANE Plaza (Great Roof Square)” at the foot of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower (which is also famous for its Christmas illuminations). Considering the size of Christmas markets in Germany, this is a very small market – luckily, they do have everything you need.
At the the market, there is an official shop of “Käthe Wohlfahrt”, which is famous worldwide for Christmas decorations. It was so popular, the line in front of the shop was quite long. Luckily, there are also other stalls that sell cute goods such as Advent calendars and Christmas tree decorations.
Most important…the food!
Christmas market stands for me are all about mulled wine and bratwurst! More than half of the shops on the market are small restaurants with authentic bratwursts, stollen (traditional cake with raisins and dried fruit), German beer and a classic mulled wine.
In addition to imported goods, there are also many foods made locally. Therefore the prices are a bit higher than, for example, in Germany, but they are still not too expensive.
We bought hot dogs at the booth “König” (890 yen), whose bread was made of pretzel dough. That surprised even me as a German. I have never seen anything like this in Germany! You could even pick your favorite type of sausage. The taste? Simply delicious! The sausage was well grilled, as it should be, and the pretzel bread was an unusual but perfect match!
The right temperature for eating outdoors
What we really enjoyed was the fact that they had set-up enough tables and chairs around the market area. Although it was quite busy, we were able to find a free table after a short search. Seated and well prepared with our food, we could eat while enjoying the winter atmosphere of the Christmas market. Tokyo is not that cold yet making it easy to spend some time outside without getting cold.
I can only recommend a visit to the German Christmas Market in Roppongi to anyone who is already in the holiday spirit or wants to feel it!
Roppongi Hills Christmas Market 2018
Location: Roppongi Hills – O-YANE Plaza
Period: 11/23 (Friday) to 12/25 (Tuesday), 11.00-21.00