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Baubles, bubbles Baubles = bells MERRY CHRISTMETZ Just 1.5 hours from Paris by train, Metz (pronounced Mess) in Moselle, northeast France, hosts a marvellous Christmas market. And, if you love Christmas markets, fabulous architecture, streets lined with great shops and unique boutiques and great gastronomy – then pop Metz on your must-do Christmas list… Metz is Christmas central. Not just one Christmas market here. There are five Christmas markets spread around this compact city in a sort of ring around the great Gothic Cathedral. It’s easy to visit them all on foot or hop on the free navette buses that traverse the city. Head to Place de la Republique for traditional chalets specialising in local products and gorgeous gifts made by local artisans. Warm up at the German Christmas Pyramid bar with a steaming hot chocolate or vin chaud. Did you know that the German pyramid decorations were the pre-cursor to Christmas trees – which originated in neighbouring Alsace in the 16th century? At this market pick up a brilliant bauble for your tree. Meisenthal glassware have a chalet at the market – they are famous in these parts and make wonderful Christmas family heirloom decorations. In Place Saint-Louis, is a traditional gifts Christmas market with a carousel where the scent of gingerbread will make you smile. In Place d’Armes, there are more Christmas chalets and a Ferris Wheel from where you will have the most incredible views over the lit up Cathedral. And in Place Saint- Jacques, there are beautiful specialist artisan products on offer from food to gifts. 62 | The Good Life France Marché de Noël Place Saint-Louis©Philippe Gisselbrecht The Good Life France | 63
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