Having witnessed the first snow just a couple of days ago, my mind already went to the Christmas Holidays, which I usually spend, like most people, with my family back in my hometown in Romania. Having to wait until Christmas is really challenging because I can't wait for it, but there is one opportunity to enjoy the winter festivities a month before they actually arrive. The Christmas Market in Sibiu has become a truly wonderful experience, with visitors from all over the world, bringing joy for all, small and big!
The Christmas Market in Sibiu began as a cultural project initiated by Dr. H.C. Barbara Schöfnagel, the Social Attaché of the Austrian Embassy in Romania, in cooperation with the Sibiu County in the year 2007, the year in which Sibiu was the European Cultural Capital. It is inspired by the Christmas Markets in Austria. The Christmas Markets became over the years a European tradition like the classic Christmas Markets in Vienna, the "hyggelig" Christmas markets in Denmark or the Advent in Zadar. This year, the twelfth edition of the Christmas Market in Sibiu takes place, and for the first time, it has a synthetic Christmas tree. It is open from the 16th of November until the 3rd of January, every day from 10 AM until 22 PM.
Besides the beautiful Christmas decorations and lights, as well as a big Christmas tree, people can enjoy the magical winter landscape projections on the buildings in Sibiu’s Big Square, like the Brukenthal National Museum. One can also take a stroll by the numerous wooden houses that offer winter beverages like punch and hot wine with cinnamon. To eat, one can choose between sweets like gingerbread, candies and Christmas food like roasted chestnuts. Everyone finds that one wooden house that has exactly what one desires.
The opening of the market is usually accompanied by a concert with local and national singers performing Christmas themed songs but also folk, rock and jazz. Children have a special place in the Christmas Market. Every year, Santa has several workshops where children learn different skills. This year Santa hosts “The Little Candle-maker”, where children learn how to make candles of different colors and how to decorate them. Another workshop is called “Christmas Biscuits”, where children learn how to make the dough and bake delicious biscuits. There are also “The Little Baker” workshops for children, where they learn how to decorate gingerbread. Last but not least, “The Pixel Art Decorations” workshop teaches children how to make Christmas tree decorations from the thermos-adhesive materials. Children can also enjoy a lot of activities like riding the carousel or the kids' train.
If one finds his way to Sibiu in the last month of the year, the Christmas Market is definitely a worthwhile experience. The magic of the holidays can be seen from every child laughing and adults having fun. It truly is a joy for all, and hopefully, it will stay a Romanian winter tradition as well.
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