As autumn winds down and the first frosts hit, it is a sure sign that winter is coming. Yet not everything about winter has to be cold and horrible. With the air cool and crisp and the first flakes of snow threatening, December is one of the most beautiful months to be in Europe – with Christmas markets aplenty!
Now, if you do end up at a Christmas market, you definitely have to partake in a hot beverage or three. Not only will it keep your hands warm, but it will warm you up from the inside too! Standing out in minus degrees with hundreds of other people is simply what you do in Austria in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Whether it’s Glühwein, Glühmost, Punch or Tea that takes your fancy, there’s something for everyone, even the kids!
The other thing that pops up on the streets once the weather cools a little is hot chestnuts, or Maroni. The Maroni Man will be waiting to serve you a cone of piping hot chestnuts as you make your way through the streets in winter. They can be hot little buggers to open, but that’s all part of the fun, and they’re the perfect pre or post-dinner snack!
I’m not one for the cold, my fingers and toes like to go numb and white once I’ve spent too much time in sub-zero – but I still love this time of year. I dress myself up like the Marshmallow Man and stroll the streets, drinking in the atmosphere and hot cider until I’m frozen before retiring somewhere warm and cosy!