We had a relaxing day today, we were just plain lazy! I knew this trip would be much different than our normal "go, go, go" trips, where we are up early and sight-see all day. We are setting a very relaxing pace, and that's fine with us!
We left our apartment around 10:30, walked along the river and crossed into another section of town. We wanted to visit two more markets, the last two that we haven't been to yet. There are 11 Christmas markets here in Strasbourg!
These two markets were very small ones; the first one we came to was only about 10 chalets, and had pretty much the same items as most of the other markets. We did a quick cruise through, and then found our way to the last market.
This markets was described as "The Market of Delights of an Alsace Christmas"--and it was delightful! It featured foods grown and produced in this region; there were wine producers and beer brewers, many chalets selling foie gras and related items, sausage and cheese makers, and several bakers selling assorted Christmas cookies. We looked at every booth, trying a few samples. We tried a few kinds of foie gras--I'm a big fan, but David doesn't really care for it. That's probably a good thing, since it sells for lot$ of Euro$ per kilo! We sampled a different kind of hot wine--supposedly "traditional to the region". It was a white wine, not sweetened and no spices. It did have some orange in it, though. It was just OK--the red wine is still our favorite. We tried a few samples of duck pate, and found one we really liked. We bought a jar--we'll have it on a fresh baguette one night for dinner.
We took a long loop back to our neighborhood, enjoying the pretty scenery along the river:
I really liked the decorations on this building--various old chairs, sleds, picture frames, etc. which were painted gold and hung with greenery, ribbon and stars. Of course, there were lots of twinkling lights!
We came to a bridge with three tall brick towers. These towers were among 90 or so towers that served as a defensive system for the city in the 13th century. Over the years they have been used as prisons and quarantine quarters.
There were pretty restaurants on each side of the bridge; this one would be lovely in the summer:
This one had an interesting menu, almost exclusively fish dishes. It looked a little fancy on the inside:
We roamed around the narrow lanes and alleys, enjoying some window shopping. I found a great shop that sold ribbons, buttons, fabric and needlepoint--I LOVE these trees made from old book pages:
We decided we were hungry, and we were near the restaurant we'd found last night, wo we decided a late lunch was in order!
This restaurant spéciales in baeckeoffe so we ordered one baeckeoffe and choucroute to share. They were both delicious, but not the best we've had on this trip. The nice waiter offered to take our picture, and here we are:
After that wonderful and filling meal we were stuffed and feeling quite relaxed. We strolled back across the river to our apartment, and took a nap! We were going to go back out to enjoy the festive lights and atmosphere--but we were just too lazy. We relaxed the evening away, reading our books, playing a game of cards and sipping on some hot wine--perfect!
Tomorrow: An early day: Train to Colmar, then riding the "Noel Bus" to enjoy some small villages and their Christmas Markets.