Today I’m not going to tell you another great China story. This has to wait, because first I want to tell you about last weekend. I spent a couple of days in Maastricht and Heerlen (southern Netherlands) and it was so much fun! Soon more on Heerlen, but first Maastricht. Guys.. Maastricht is such an interesting and beautiful city! It blew me away. The winding cobble stone streets, de medieval Saint Servatius bridge and the soft spoken Dutch accent. For a moment I really thought I was in Leuven, Ghent or Lille instead of the Netherlands. This city is so not-Dutch. On top of that, these days Maastricht is even more fun than usual, because the city is getting ready for Christmas. ‘Magical Maastricht’ has opened its doors. This is the annual winter Christmas market that takes place at the Vrijthof. I visited this Christmas market for the first time this year and I really enjoyed it. In this article a photo essay of what you can expect during ‘Magical Maastricht’.
As soon as you leave the train station of Maastricht the Christmas joy begins. With every street the Christmas decorations get more and more. Lights are everywhere in the historical centre, which isn’t a surprise because there are over 250.000 lights bulbs in the city. The annual ‘Light route’ is the best way to explore all the lights of the city. My personal favorite is the tree on the Square of Our Beloved Lady. They call it the Mistle Toe, because the tree is filled with light balls. It’s already beautiful during the day, but it is even more stunning in the evening.
The highlight of ‘Magical Maastricht’ is the Vrijthof, the square that I mainly remember because of the open air concerts of André Rieu. Not that I’m a fan of his music or anything, but his concerts do look spectacular. These days the Vrijthof is filled with a peculiar mix of a fair, a typical Saturday market with fish and nuts and a German weihnachtsmarkt that offers flammkuchen. And this is all mixed in one. It’s kind of a strange combination, but at the same time it offers a variety of possibilities. For example, you could eat your salmon while taking a ride in the carousel and drinking a glass of glühwein? I mean why not.
During the day the Vrijthof is already fun, but in the evening the entertainment really begins. The lights are turned on and the smell of delicious is in the air. Especially for the sweet teeth there’s a lot to choose from. Fruit dipped in chocolate, candy sticks and chocolate marshmallows filled with pistachio. I simply cannot resist! And don’t forget to take a look at the background. The towers of the Basilica of Saint Servatius and the red Saint John’s are beautiful lit. It kind of reminds me of the Christmas market in Cologne next to the Dom.
Are you planning to visit a Christmas market this year?