Bad Homburg’s enchanted Christmas
You may have been to Frankfurt am Main. But have you heard of its charming little neighbour Bad Homburg? Well, you should! Just minutes away from downtown Frankfurt lies a multifaceted jewel with a great deal to offer.
Bad Homburg may not be as big as Frankfurt am Main, but nestled within the beautiful countryside of the Taunus Mountains, with the UNESCO World Heritage Site LIMES and its Saalburg Castle right at its backyard, Bad Homburg not only is a historic gem but also a modern spa town that beautifully links old tradition and modernity.
Celebrities in Bad Homburg
Bad Homburg’s charm has never eluded the rich, famous and beautiful. In the olden days, Bad Homburg was visited regularly by European gentry and crowned heads in search of divertissement and respite from their busy lives. The German emperors paid regular visits to the spa town they had elected as summer residence.
Famous poets like Hölderlin, Goethe, Gogol, Eliot, Stephenson or Oscar Wilde were regular visitors and the famous Russian writer Fjodor Dostojewksi even used a game of roulette played in Bad Homburg’s famous casino as material for his opus ‘The Gambler’.
Things to do
Climb the top of Bad Homburg castle’s White Tower and overlook the old town, the Taunus hills and get a glimpse of Frankfurt’s impressive skyline. Soak in the spirit of former times when Kings and Landgraves strolled down the paths at the well-kept gardens. Take a museum tour and enjoy a hot chocolate in the charming castle café.
The sweeping Kurpark, laid out in 1854 by the grand landscape gardener Peter Josef Lenné, and its mineral springs are an invitation to spend some pleasant and relaxing strolls through historic Bad Homburg. The impressive Kaiser-Wilhelms-Bad, built in 1890, had already been visited by Prince Albert and former Reichskanzler (Reich Chancellor) Otto von Bismarck. Today it is home to the luxury Kur-Royal Day Spa, an ideal place to pass an idle spa day in perfect relaxation.
Quaint cafés and restaurants certainly meet the tastes of even the most critical gourmets. Small and charming little specialist shops as well as big brands like Boss, Baldessarini or Michael Kors are sure to grant shopaholics fabulous good catches. Those who are more inclined towards the arts can expect a diverse programme from fine art galleries and exhibitions to theatre or vibrant concerts at unique settings. Classical or jazzy tunes, swing, pop or rock music? Bad Homburgs cultural calendar is bursting with musical events of all genres. Within ‘Bad Homburg’s summer’ special there is a magical highlight taking place each year. At the Klassiknacht in Weiß (White Night of Classic), people all clad in white, gather in the candle-lit Kurpark and celebrate the warm, mellow nights of summer with champagne, canapés, nibbles and classical music in front of the Kaiser-Wilhelms-Bad.
Christmas in Bad Homburg
While the spa town is vibrant in the warm months from April until October, the rather chilly season lets you experience the cosy charm of winter in Bad Homburg. The pre-Christmas period starts at the beginning of November with the so-called Stadl, a rustic wooden chalet set up in front of the Kurhaus, where you may enjoy a hearty meal, pretzels as well as one (or two) pints of tasty beer.
Test your skating or Bavarian curling skills in one of the regions’ most romantic ice rinks, which is set up right in the centre of the Kurpark between the impressive Kaiser-Wilhelms-Bad and the Casino.
The traditionalists will be glad to hear of the Romantic Christmas market, which is located around Bad Homburg’s castle and the White Tower. At lovingly decorated, Christmas-themed stalls you may buy beautiful presents for your loved ones at home or enjoy the famous German Glühwein (mulled wine) in an enchanted Christmassy surrounding. A path of lights leads you from one attraction to the other. Feel the spirit of Christmas while wandering through the town of Bad Homburg. What an excellent backdrop for a perfect winter day out. If you would rather spend those crispy winter nights indoors, Bad Homburg invites you to a variety of literary readings, Christmas-themed concerts, ballet performances of Swan Lake and Nutcracker, as well as performances of The Wizard of Oz or the celebration of an Irish Christmas.
Can you think of a better way to celebrate the festive season?
TEXT: SILKE HENKELE | PHOTOS: WWW.BAD-HOMBURG-TOURISMUS.DE
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