Stephen Travels

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Have Yourself a Merry German Christmas: Day 7

Cologne, GermanyOn my last day, I took an early train to Cologne, my thoughts consumed by Christmas, chocolate, and the cathedral — a trio of delights for all my senses. By the time I left the city about 12 hours later, I had seen the prettiest Christmas market of my entire trip, learned everything there is to know about chocolate (and eaten more of it than anyone should in a day), and explored one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world. Read more >

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Have Yourself a Merry German Christmas: Day 1

Frankfurt, GermanyEver since I was a child, the Christmas markets in Germany held a special appeal for me. For some inexplicable reason, they seemed to epitomize this most festive holiday, more so than those in any other country. I knew that, someday, I would have to see them. Several decades later, I made the dream a reality. After careful research about the cities with the best markets, I had to select a central location from which I could make easy day trips to other cities over the course of one week, traveling by train and sparing myself the hassle of changing hotels every night. I pinpointed Frankfurt as my home for seven days. But the city was more than just my base. It was my introduction to a centuries-old tradition that exceeded all my expectations and made me conclude that this is how you must spend some time in December. Read more >