Towns and villages throughout Europe take on a festive atmosphere strolling through old-fashioned Christmas markets, originally created in the middle ages to celebrate the beginning of Advent. One of the best ways to experience some of the many markets is on a river cruise where you can relax and enjoy multiple stops in charming hamlets all decked out for the season. Often established near the principal church, cruise passengers may also have the opportunity to attend services at an historic church or hear church and children's choirs singing from performance stages as part of their itinerary. Characterized by twinkle lights, regional foods, wooden vendor stalls and Christmas curios, the markets are filled with the festive spirit of the season. Make the most of the season by experiencing the best the markets have to offer.
Scooter Tessari, MCC, owns The Cruise Center, Inc. in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and operates the website Tasteful Journeys devoted to enrichment vacations with a culinary accent and featuring cruises, tours, and custom designed vacation packages.