December 12, 2013
One of the most cool things around the holidays in Chicago is the Christkindl Market downtown. It’s located at the Daley Plaza in front of the court house where during the summer months, they have various cultural festivals and fresh farmer’s market weekly.
Christkindl Market is a Santa’s Village of sorts replicating the Christkindl Markets in Germany, but on a small scale and more local to Chicago. It was started by the Germany immigrants into the City and has been a yearly tradition for me to stop there. I used to visit more often when my office was located in the central loop across for it’s location so it was easy to go across the street for lunch to get a quick German bratwurst or schnitzel fix, to grab some hot apple cider or to meet friends for a beer, pretzels an/or potato pancakes after work.
Besides the food and drinks, it’s a nice place to shop for lots of holiday gifts from vendors and artisans and there are ample selection of Christmas Ornaments or Germany Chocolates to give out for business associates and clients during the holidays.
If you have little ones (or for the kid in you), You can visit Santa’s House and get a phone with Santa.
There are many options to get to Daley Plaza where the Chriskindl Market is located: You can take public transit and there is an El Station underneath Daley Plaza for both the Blue and Red Lines. The #20 Madison Bus goes right by Daley Plaza and it’s only a short 2 block walk from Michigan Avenue. A taxi is always nearby and there are plenty of parking lots in the surrounding blocks, but be prepared to pay hefty during peak hours for the parking downtown. There are a few metered spots in the blocks around the area if you are willing to wait and not planning on staying for more than an hours or two, otherwise, the paid parking is usually a better option both financially and for flexibility on time.
It’s open daily from November 26th through December 23rd! I hope you will make it a yearly tradition like I have in Chicago.
OTHER NEARBY WINTER ATTRACTIONS — There are some other Winter Attraction Nearby if you are making a day of it:
1) Outdoor ice skating in Millennium Park at Michigan and Washington Streets.
2) Visit Cloud Gate at Millennium Park.
3) Shopping along Michigan Avenue’s Mag Mile.
4) View the annual holiday Window Displays at Macy’s — it’s only a block away on State Street and there is usually a cute story to be told.
5) Take in a Theater or show in the Theater District close by