Welcome to the part 2 of my Christmas trip to Germany to be reunited with Juan! Part 2 will be my memories of magical Hamburg and beautiful Bremen.
On our Hamburg day, we were blessed with the only sunny day of my stay! There were blue skies to be seen! We had to change trains at Bremen so whilst waiting for the train to Hamburg, we had a look at the mini Christmas market outside the Hauptbahnhof. With very little persuasion, Juan bought a Brezel because I wanted to try. However, to my surprise and slight disappointment, the Brezel was savoury. Juan told me Brezels are always savoury… I was expecting the type of pretzel that has cinnamon sugar that you find at Westfields D: The weather was lovely so the train journey was nice because there were some pretty landscapes, although it just looked a lot like England!
When we arrived, we headed towards the direction of the Miniatur Wunderland Museum which has miniature figurines of places around the world and also has a massive model railway (such contradiction but you know what I mean!). We did a bit of exploring around the river and headed toward the harbour because Juan hadn’t been there before. Funnily enough, when we did finally reach the port, it was more an industrial port with lots of cranes and shipping containers so it was nothing like we’d imagined so we had a quick look and then turned back!
Along the way, we stumbled upon a mini market and ice rink with a huge Christmas tree! It was getting very cold so we had a hot chocolate nearby which was themed like the Alps. The only reason we went there was because their logo had a unicorn! At the cafe, I picked up a leaflet about the museum and good thing I did because we thought that the museum would be closing at 9pm but that was for a different day and actually the museum would be closing in an hour and half!
We rushed to the museum which was thankfully not that far away and the guy at the ticket booth tried to warn us we only had an hour left and we were like DUDE DON’T WASTE OUR HOUR WE GOTS SOME TINY HOOMANS TO LOOK AT!!!
The museum was really cool though! I loved trying to find their little “easter egg” figurines… We found a couple of unicorns and also a demon! Even though everything was miniature, they were still grand masterpieces! The model of Neuschwanstein Castle was very impressive and we tried to take some pictures to pretend we went there haha.
I liked their Christmas market model and also their Italy section was gorgeous! There were so many places that I thought I wanted to go for real. Another cool feature was that there were buttons all around which would trigger some motion.
The American section had a space rocket launch! Another cool feature was that they would transition between day and night so you could see the different sights and atmospheres! The Rome section at night was really beautiful. So much detail and effort to put together these intricate models as well as thousands of tiny figurines.
When the museum closed, we strolled over to the Rathaus (City Hall) where there was a beautiful Christmas market with the traditional wooden stalls and twinkly lights. By this time, I’d seen plenty of Christmas markets but I must say, Hamburg’s one at the Rathaus was truly magical. Also, it was very busy there but it also didn’t feel so crowded like in Berlin. All in all, this was my favourite Christmas market for sure!
We tried some mini fried donut hole type sweets (I’ve forgotten the German name) which were quite tasty and then we had some Gluwein. In front of the giant Christmas tree made of lights, I attempted to do a yoga pose multiple times. Definitely got a lot of bemused and strange looks from Germans passing by!
At the other end of the market, there was another Christmas market! This one had a completely different vibe though, much more modern with white tents and blue lights.
We ended up having dinner at a rustic little tavern/restaurant. They had some steak dishes for quite cheap so we thought we’d check it out. The food portions were biiig and quite nice but also the chef was quite heavy handed with the salt.
My final day we spent in Bremen as my flight was from Bremen airport. Juan took me to all the famous sights such as the statues of the pig herder with his piggies. Bremen’s Weihnachtsmarkt was also very beautiful!
We tried some fried potato fritters at the market and copied a local by sprinkling sugar on the fritters. Originally, we ordered them with garlic sauce but adding the sugar actually made it taste even better! We also did the typical tourist thing of seeing the Musicians of Bremen statue and Juan told me that rubbing the donkey’s hooves was supposed to bring good luck so what the heck, I joined in with the touching of other people’s germs to polish the donkey.
We also shared a bratwurst – this bratwurst was much thicker than the one in Oldenburg… much better! We walked in the direction of the lights and ended up going through a shopping arcade which lead through to some more market stalls. I’d been saying that I wanted to have some cheese fondue for the entire trip and we finally managed to find a mini cheese fondue for only 6 euros! It was really yummy and quite boozy.
On the subject of stumbling upon things, we walked toward the harbour just to check it out, and there just so happened to be a Pirate themed market going on! At first, I thought it was a medieval/folk market, which was still cool because it reminded me of the medieval festival in Noia, but actually, all the vendors were dressed up as pirates, with pirate hats and skull and crossbone flags decorating their stalls! There was one stall selling cute and ornate, hand-crafted instruments. I was so tempted to get an ocarina but they were very expensive. There was a cute cardboard cut out with a face hole so of course Juan had to become a pirate!
It was getting a bit late when I got my goulash soup so we only had time to quickly see the end of the Pirate Market before heading over to the tram stop to get travel to Bremen airport. Along the way, I had to pause momentarily to admire the night view of the market and the harbour. The journey to the airport was emotional and I was also getting a bit panicky about missing the flight but also not wanting to leave 🙁 We had an emotional goodbye but I can’t wait until we can see each other again for our next adventure!