The BSR is picking up used Christmas Trees all around Berlin, below you can see the dates for when they will be in your neighbourhood.

A German Christmas is certainly a special affair which traditionally begins with the first Advent – the advent are the four Sundays before Christmas Eve on the 24th of December. Christmas markets open, the streets are decorated and the traditional foods have begun to be served. December is a time of many Christmas themed events, end of year work parties and performances at school for children.

Here are just some of the main events in a German Christmas:

Advent calendar – Adventskalender – this is a calendar counting the 24 days until Christmas. Something all children (and some adults!) look forward to opening all through December. They commonly contain chocolate or little pictures behind the doors, but many parents make the calendars for their children including small gifts & sweets. The calendar makes the wait for Christmas Eve sweeter!

Advent wreath – Adventskranz – this is a wreath decorated with 4 candles, each symbolising one of the four Advent Sundays, four seasons and the four periods of life. Every week a new candle is ignited to count the weeks before Christmas Eve. The wreath is usually made of pine or evergreen plants.

Christmas Market – Weihnachtsmarkt – this one needs little explaining. Small Christmas villages pop up all over the city, a place to take in the Christmas cheer, meet friends, buy gifts and ornaments, drink Glühwein and fill your belly with treats. At least one visit to a Weihnachtsmarkt before the 24.12 is tradition.

Christmas Cake – Weihnachtsstollen – this is a traditional cake which is found in Germany only during the festive season, it is also referred to as Christstollen. It is a sweet yeast-based dough filled with dried fruit and nuts with a powdered sugar topping. The most famous Stollen comes from Dresden. Stollen has been around since the 15th Century.

Christmas Eve – Heiligabend – In Germany, Christmas Eve 24.12 is the main event. It is the day which all the children are waiting for as gifts are exchanged on Heiligabend. The food on this evening is varied, however, it is common that people will eat potato salad and würstchen, goose with red cabbage or even carp. It is not a public holiday but stores tend to close around 2pm in order for people to get home in time to start celebrating. 25.12 is a public holiday and all stores are closed.



About the author

Hi there! I’m Juli, German roots but I grew up in New Zealand and have been living in Germany since 2004. I love sharing my passion for Berlin and all it has to offer with new ‘Berliners’ and through my work as a freelance Relocation Consultant with IRC I have the opportunity to do so.



Nothing says Christmas like a beautiful tree lighting up your home. Did you know this tradition stems from Germany and was popularized by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in the mid-1800’s when they were depicted in a drawing standing around a Christmas tree – thus a worldwide trend was started and now we can’t imagine the festive time of year without a twinkling tree.

One of the biggest questions in 2019 is real or fake – which one is better for the environment.

According to the Huffington post ‘The short answer, which may come as a surprise to some, is a real tree. But it’s actually more complicated than that. It ultimately depends on a variety of factors, including how far you drive to get your evergreen and how you dispose of it at the end of the holidays ― and, if you choose an artificial tree, how long you end up using it. ‘ and if you would like to learn more about the arguments for and against please see the article.

FUN FACT – In Berlin used Christmas trees are recycled as food for the elephants at the Berlin Zoo, so your beautiful tree makes a healthy snack!

However you decide, Berlin offers you options for both.

Real Trees – available at all Hardware Stores such as OBI, Toom, Bauhaus, Ikea. You can also rent trees in a pot and have them delivered and picked up again.

Mitte – Weihnachtsurwald

Prenzlauer Berg – Der Tannenmann

Charlottenburg/Wilmersdorf – Tannentraum

Zehlendorf – Werderaner Tannenhof

Fake Trees: Available at all Hardware stores such as OBI, Toom, Bauhaus, Ikea, also at all the big department stores for example Karstadt, Galleria Kaufhof or KaDeWe.



About the author

Hi there! I’m Juli, German roots but I grew up in New Zealand and have been living in Germany since 2004. I love sharing my passion for Berlin and all it has to offer with new ‘Berliners’ and through my work as a freelance Relocation Consultant with IRC I have the opportunity to do so.



“Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind.” – December is finally upon us, let the spirit fill your heart and enjoy what Berlin has to offer in the most wonderful and cheerful of seasons. (Quote from the motion Picture ‘Miracle on 34th Street’)

It is one of the most stunning times of the year in Germany, thus also in Berlin and surrounding areas. The 4 weeks before Christmas Eve (Heiligabend) are truly a magical time. Germany is famous for it’s Christmas markets (Weihnachtsmärkte), Mulled wine (Glühwein), roasted Chestnuts (Heiße Maronen) and the many other treats available during the festive season. Take a break from the gloomy weather and indulge in some delicious treats with friends and family under twinkling lights.

Berlin has many Christmas markets to choose from, some of the most beautiful include the ones at the Gendarmenmarkt and at the Schloß Charlottenburg. However, there are many more Christmas markets to discover over the month of December including many internationally-themed markets such as the Swedish Christmas Bazaar or the very British Christmas Market at St Georges Church in Westend. It is even worth venturing out to Potsdam and visiting the Christmas market ‘Blauer Lichterglanz’ on Brandenburger Straße and/or the romantic Christmas village at the Krongut Bornstedt in all it’s glory.

One more tip, the Botanic Gardens in Dahlem have a Christmas Garden, a walk through a winter wonderland of lights.

For a list of Markets visit: https://www.visitberlin.de/en/christmas-markets-berlin



About the author

Hi there! I’m Juli, German roots but I grew up in New Zealand and have been living in Germany since 2004. I love sharing my passion for Berlin and all it has to offer with new ‘Berliners’ and through my work as a freelance Relocation Consultant with IRC I have the opportunity to do so.