Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas market in Mannheim's art nouveau gardens

Mannheim, where I live, has an annual Christmas market, as do many German towns and cities. What makes it special and slightly relates it to gardening is the fact that it takes place in what Mannheim itself touts as Germany's largest art nouveau (Jugendstil) complex, including Mannheim's landmark, the art nouveau water tower; a large cascading fountain; the Rosengarten, Mannheim's concert hall; and very beautiful gardens with trellised passageways, art nouveau lamps and sculptures.

The Christmas market is grouped around the water tower, located at the end of Mannheim's main shopping pedestrian area. It's a favorite spot for shoppers to stop for a glass of mulled wine (Glühwein), a bratwurst, or to purchase baubles for the Christmas tree and other gift items.

Here you can see the Rosengarten concert hall in the background with some of the trellised walkways, art nouveau lamps and the cascading fountain (now empty in winter) in the foreground (click to enlarge).

In the summer there are of course many flower borders to admire. To the left of this shot is the water tower surrounded by the Christmas market.

Unfortunately I chopped off the statue of Amphitrite, Poseidon's consort, on the top. Here's another shot showing that. If you click to enlarge, you can barely see that there are even still some blooming pansies in the foreground, despite it being mid-December.

The next photo, taken later in the evening, gives an impression of the market around the now lit-up water tower.

Because I don't have any pretty flowers in this post, instead here are two pretty girls (my daughter and her best friend) out Christmas shopping in Mannheim.


  1. Barbara, so many beautiful things to remark on. I do not know which one is your daughter, but both are simply gorgeous.
    those art nouveau lamps are amazing, and I cannot believe that water tower. So many times I am driving on the highway into a town and see this ugly steel cylinder with the town name painted on it. They could take a lesson from this beautiful tower. The market looks like a lot of fun.

  2. Thanks for your comment, Deborah - yes, I'm very glad the citizens of Mannheim decided to rebuild the water tower in its original form after it was partly destroyed during WWII. I read that people strongly opposed plans to build a larger, more modern one. I'll post some pictures of the surrounding gardens in the spring.

  3. Barbara the square looks so festive and beautiful.

  4. Wow, what a wonderful place this is. I enjoyed going outdoors shopping with you today!

  5. What a pretty square, Barb. I love the lampposts and Margo looks adorable, as usual :)

  6. well the picture didn't turn out how i hoped it would - doesn't really reflect my annoyance :P