Visiting Graz at Christmas time: Oooh yes!
The foodie capital of Austria very atmospheric indeed, especially during the Christmas season, and welcomes visitors like me with an open heart (and a variety of attractive offers).
Let me share some of them with you today.
Christmas markets in Graz
Graz offers a total of 14 different Advent markets. Each of them is unique. I was able to visit pretty much all of them during the day and in the evening and I can assure you: All of them are worth a visit! Especially as the motto is real arts and crafts before kitsch (well, a bit of kitsch is always allowed at Christmas time).
The city of Graz also offers Christmas market tours; official Graz Guide Sigrid Alber took me on one of them. We went to Mehlplatz, Glockenspielplatz, the “Artvent” in the Joanneum district and, of course, to the main square. All the information on all the markets and event tips can be found here.
The quality of the products offered will most certainly satisfy you. I bought a green tractor Christmas tree ornament for my son (hello kitsch – he’ll be happy!), treated myself to one or the other gem and, of course, tried some mulled Schilcher wine (only available in Styria!).
Visit the Diocesan Museum and listen to the city’s public Christmas carol singing!
I have absolutely loved the opportunity to sing Christmas carols together while in Graz. Eva Maria Hois, the local responsible, hands me a special Christmas song edition “meine Lieder deine Lieder” (my songs your songs) and asks us right away: “So what do you want to sing?”
At the local “Office for Christmas Carols”, we choose some of the well-known German classics “Es wird scho glei dumper”, “Stille Nacht”, and “Schneeflöckchen Weißröckchen”. Eva Maria Hois tells us: “We have collected about 7,000 Christmas carols … but before we count them all exactly, we prefer to sing”, she laughs and starts right away.
My little son Levin, nine months old and listening firmly on grandpa’s lap, is thrilled!
Nativity walk, Nativity Scene made of ice and the largest Advent wreath in the city!
But that’s not all. Did you know that there is a larger-than-life, freely accessible Nativity Scene made entirely of ice in Graz?! Spectacular enough during the day, it unfolds its true magic after dusk. The ice artist is Finnish and his name is actually Kimmo Frosti (Nomen est Omen!). He has created no less than four “editions” of his ice sculptures in order to save one or the other from a complete meltdown …!
Incidentally, opposite its location at the Landeszeughaus in Graz, at the entrance to Stempfergasse, you may find the “Krippenweg” Graz Nativity Scene Trail, which is no less worth seeing. Numerous shop windows in the shopping street display nativity scenes on loan from the Diocesan Museum. And what about the largest Advent wreath in the city? Well, it can be found on Schlossbergplatz right in front of the entrance to Graz Schlossberg.
Staying in Graz: Hotel Weitzer
I can recommend you this central, comfortable hotel with nice rooms and a delicious breakfast buffet, located at the Grieskai address right opposite the old town with a view of the Schlossberg of Graz. Our room on the third floor with a view towards the river Mur offered us this.
The hotel is also neighbours with the restaurant Der Steirer, one of my favourite addresses for good, typical cuisine and wines from Graz and Styria (be sure to book in advance).
Foodie travel tips from Graz: Der Steirer, Die Scherbe, Das KochGenussAtelier and more!
Austria’s capital of delights (more about this motto of the city of Graz here) scores many points in culinary terms. My family and I have been to Graz often. Nevertheless – or perhaps because of this – we have once again scouted out new foodie tips.
South of the Mur, in the city’s Lendviertel district, I can recommend the cosy restaurant Die Scherbe: After a tour of the local Christmas markets, we warm up with a good curry and homemade lemonade. Der Steirer restaurant is my absolute favourite for the typical Styrian fried chicken (don’t forget to order the potato salad with beans and cabbage, and pumpkin seed oil, as a side!)
And then, there’s a new, very nice family-run business called KochGenussAtelier, which Graz Guide Sigrid Alber and I find out about together (diagonally opposite the Steirisches Heimatwerk, on Sporgasse in Graz). Be sure to order grandma’s homemade vanilla bakery to go with the hot lemonade!
Travel Video about my experience of the Christmas Season in Graz
I’ve produced and recorded the following travel video myself, including vivid impressions of my journey through the Lumagica light show as well as the Christmas season in Graz. Enjoy!
More information and event tips for the Christmas season in Graz can be found here. In another blog post, you will find detailed information about the Lumagica light show, which will take place in the Graz region for another four years after 2022.
Check out all of my Lumagica and Graz Christmas photos in the gallery:
Disclaimer: I have been invited on this trip by the City of Graz Tourism Board. All opinions are my own.