Christmas in Strasbourg

It's day nine (for me) in the A-Z blog challenge! This month I'll be sharing all about my Christmas/New Year travels in NYC and Europe – providing insight into the places I went, reviewing the hotels I stayed at, and telling my story. Today's letter is L for laid-back, likeable Strasbourg! Feel free to follow along as I make my way through the alphabet this month! :)


In case you are just now joining in, at this point in our travels, Justin and I were on our way to Stuttgart to meet up with friends for New Year's eve . Because I had done my research (Woot!), I knew that the train we were taking would be going straight through a cute little town known for it's fabulous Christmas market. That's when I decided to incorporate a short overnight stop into our journey.

When I originally planned this trip, there were three things that I failed to consider:
1. Sunrise was much later in Paris than expected. Sunset was much earlier. In essence, the days were short.
2. How good the views from our hotel rooms would be. Would we even want to leave our room to do other things? … like sightsee?
3. Train tickets go up in price the closer you get to the time of travel. So tickets to the Vaux le Vicomte that I held off on purchasing increased in price far beyond any number I had imagined.

As a last-ditch effort to see Vaux le Vicomte, the day before we were scheduled to leave Paris, Justin and I went to the train station to change our tickets to a later time. Maybe, we thought, if we left for Strasbourg later in the day, we could spend our morning seeing the Vaux le Vicomte.

I don't know why, but when we moved our train tickets, we didn't even mention purchasing train tickets for Vaux le Vicomte to the ticketer; we just left the station and went to do our own thing. It wasn't until nearly 11am on the day we were leaving Paris that we realized tickets for the train ride to Vaux le Vicomte were too expensive for us to be rushed through the experience. And thus we went out to a fancy lunch and forgot about it. While I had great hopes of seeing the chateau, it simply wasn't going to work out for this particular trip.

And thus after our lunch, we gathered our luggage and got to the train station early for our late afternoon departure to Strasbourg. We knew we wouldn't have time to do or see much, but we were looking forward to the experience of being in a new city all the same. :)

When we finally got to Strasbourg the sun was in it's last stages of setting. We caught the nearest cab, confirmed that he took credit card, and were on our way. A dense fog was just starting to settle over the town and we knew that there would be very little that we would get to see or do before moving on to Stuttgart the next day.

After checking into our hotel, we spoke with the front desk concierge about getting us a restaurant reservation somewhere he would go, somewhere that served local food. And he did just that!


Of course, after making the short walk to La Petite Alsace, we did the American no-no of waiting at the door to be seated. Oops! Perhaps we were trying to see how long the waitstaff would ignore us?

Eventually we figured out what we needed to do. As we walked toward the center of the dining room, a waitress said "oben!" and so we headed upstairs. She seated us at a large table where we ordered a bottle of wine (Justin's choice since he knows what he's doing), a stew of sorts (beef and vegetables cooked in red wine sauce), and a flammkuchen (a thin pizza-type "pie" with cheese, onion, and bacon but no red sauce).


We enjoyed our dinner slowly wondering how in the world we would eat everything we had ordered.

Then it came time for dessert. There were a variety of options that stood out, but only one of which I had to have: raspberry sorbet. And by God, it was the best sorbet I think I've ever had! :)

While eating the sorbet my husband and I received a text from our German friend "preparing" us for the New Year's eve "dance" that they perform every year.* Anyway, I'd be remiss to say that my husband and I didn't have fun coming up with sarcastic responses indicating that perhaps we might not follow orders as received from our commanding officer. Perhaps we might do things a bit differently?!

Or maybe that was just me.

Justin offered threatened to leave me in Strasbourg.

By the time we finished dinner, the Christmas Market had shut down for the evening, so we were left to explore the dark albeit Christmas light covered town. The wind and fog made it seem colder than it really was though, so we cut our night short knowing we would have to wake up early in the morning to catch our train to Stuttgart for meeting up with our friends.

shop window

Memorial for the victims of the Paris shooting

What are your thoughts? Would you ever consider visiting Strasbourg during the holiday season?

A • C • D • E  F  I • J • K

* It's not actually a dance. It's more of a tradition. Going from house to house telling your neighbors and friends they have beautiful trees in exchange for alcohol. *shrugs* It's what they do.


  1. Enjoying your epic Christmas journey...

    Michele at Angels Bark

    1. It was epic, wasn't it? :)

      Glad you are enjoying!

  2. I have been there but doubt I would travel anywhere in Europe during Christmas - due to crowds. Looks like you had a lovely time.
    Im blogging from Fill the cracks and Moondustwriter's Blog. Happy A to Zing!

    1. I didn't think the crowds were too bad outside of the cities. Of course, the lack of tourists could be because of all of the terrorist problems Europe has been having recently. :(

  3. Oh yes, of course the days would be short. At that time of year, the winter solstice just passed. Too bad you missed a few sights, but that's just an excuse to go back another time ;)

    Liz A. from
    Laws of Gravity

    1. You'd think that the knowledge of shorter days during the winter would be obvious (even when traveling), but I'm not the most skilled of observers. ;)

  4. I love your series! I have never traveled at Christmas time, and I have never even made it to a French or German Christmas Market, even though they are just in my neighbor country.
    The Alsace is charming. If you can, come back in spring for some asparagus!

    1. Glad you like it! I've had fun writing it! :)

      I love asparagus! Unfortunately, I think spring is a no-go this year, but maybe in the future? :)


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