Regensburg’s Romantic Christmas market

The next day, Viking Pride docked at Regensburg, a city that did impress me. We headed out right away on our own to explore the medieval old town, where some buildings date back to the eleventh century. Fortunately, Regensburg’s historic center emerged largely unscathed after the war and was recently designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Regensburg Romantic Christmas Market

Regensburg Tourismus GmbH

While it was fun to wander through the narrow lanes and admire the Gothic and Baroque architecture, it was another experience that stood out for me. No surprise, it was a Christmas market.

The Regensburg Christmas Market is held by the church on Neupfarrplatz, while another, the Lucreziamarkt, specializes in local handmade arts and crafts. I have not doubt they’re both quite lovely. However, since the day’s schedule was tight, I chose to visit the Romantic Christmas Market in the castle courtyard of the princely Thurn und Taxis family.

I remembered reading about Princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis years ago. Back in the day, she was a fast-living, jet-setting royal who made lots of headlines but then, after the death of her husband, did a complete 180 and became not only the savior of the family estate and businesses but a devout and charitable member of the Catholic church. Her Highness is very much at the helm of all things connected to the castle, including the Christmas market. Naturally, I was curious.

Walking up the path to the castle, I noticed it was lined with torches and immediately realized that whatever I was about to see would be that much more magical after dark. There was a small admission charge, which I was happy to pay. The market was indeed romantic as billed. Open fires were burning at various points around the courtyard–roasting meats, warming punch—and were a welcome antidote to the chilly winter air. The stalls were peopled with local artisans at their crafts–a blacksmith, a hat maker, a glass blower, and quite a few others. The cares of the twenty-first century dropped away just like that.

I’m really thinking I’d like to go back to this market and to Regensburg too. Apparently there are daily concerts of Christmas music and every evening ends with a solo trumpeter playing Silent Night from the castle balcony.


  1. Victoria Jellis says:

    I am travelling from Australia at Christmas and having read this will definitely be visiting Regensburg to experience the Christmas Markets.

  2. Jennifer Coleman says:

    Hi I am doing the Christmas Market Cruise in December this year. I am very interested in the Christmas Market in Regensburg the Turn & Taxis Castle. Need to know is the Market opened all day ? also how many markets do they have in Regensburg.
    I love your story about the Castle.
    Many thanks
    Jennifer Coleman

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