Thursday, December 7, 2017

December - Christmas Market in Bordeaux

Bordeaux & its Christmas Market

Now that I've been here in Bordeaux for 6 years, I have come to appreciate many of its Christmas traditions.  I have seen some events come and go like any city, but many events stay and traditionnally appear every year.  One being, all the lights and decorations that go up around the city and another the annual Christmas market set up in Allee Tourney located just down from the Place de La Comedie & Grand Theatre.  This event is traditionally held each year and any French person you speak to, often talk about the Christmas market.
This afternoon I had the opportunity to wander around a bit on my own.  The market is open everyday through December 26 from 10h30 am to 20h or 21h on Friday and Saturday nights.   The ambiance is fun, festive and there are some very creative artisans and some traditional ones also.
 It's less crowded during the weekdays - but by late afternoons and early evening, especially on Friday and Saturday nights it's packed with standing room only.  I have seen this year after year.  The girls and I will be venturing out this Friday evening to enjoy it all together with all the lights of the city.
Love the Beer choices here at this stand
 In addition to the many artisans, there is food and drinks served too.  Traditional drink, mulled wine or Vin Chaud.  It's tradition here to order a cup and then walk around the market drinking it.  There is nothing like that festive feeling, day or night.
Traditional Vin Chaud - Mulled wine
 Another very traditional booth/display at the Christmas market are the Santons or creche pieces.  These are beautiful works of art and mainly come from the Provence area of France.  Many people will add to their collections year after year with these beautiful figurines, mainly depicting the bible scene of Jesus' birth.  French families will display these in a creche, on a mantle, on a window sill or even a holiday table.  
 One can find all sorts of unique gifts here at the Christmas market.  Anything from scarfs, jewelry, pottery, regional products, artwork, sculptures - it all can be found here.  Always a treat to wander around and see what each year brings.  I have seen some of the same artisans return, year and year and many new ones too.
 It's not just local either, the booth below was all kinds of products from Canada!  Especially Quebec.  For my American friends, there was also a Yankee Candle booth this year. 
Canadian Booth
 I adore this market and the festive feeling one gets just wandering through.  It's becoming one of my favorite Christmas traditions here.  I love browsing during the day but it's also amazing in the evening with a totally different vibe! 

Bordeaux is just one example of these French Christmas markets - other cities have them too and even small towns will hold theirs over a single weekend.  There is one coming up the weekend in the village of Saint Emilion.  It's a fun way to bring on the Christmas spirit.  Larger ones like this one also have Pere Noel (Santa Claus) appearing in the evenings and on the weekends - making this place even more family friendly! 

Hope you enjoyed the photo tour, would love to hear if you have enjoyed any of these markets before.  Have a lovely afternoon.


  1. Jen, I'd love it if you'd come and link up at #AllAboutFrance again. It's been a long time! Any plans to come over my my way during the holidays?

    1. Hi Phoebe - Just did link up....getting back into writing/blogging. With working, it's been a bit tough to keep up, but I have lots to share over the next few months. Thanks for the reminder. Unfortunately, not heading South for the holidays - would have loved to...but staying in Bordeaux - new home...looking forward to making new memories!

  2. I love wandering around the Christmas markets in France and Germany with a steaming cup of mulled wine in my hand. It's even better when it's snowing! It sounds as though the Bordeaux market is really worth a visit!

    1. Definitely worth a visit!! I agree about the snow, but unfortunately we don't see too much of it here. Thanks for commenting - love hearing from readers!

  3. I love Christmas markets. I imagine French ones have fantastic mulled wine! x #AllAboutFrance

  4. It looks lovely! We are in the middle of the festival of light here in Lyon, but I think I'll try our Christmas market finally this year once it is over... #AllAboutFrance


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