German Christmas Markets by Motorhome

For those motorhomers who wish to enjoy Christmas in Germany, Christmas markets are unique, offering traditional treats for the senses: from food and drink to handmade toys, tree ornaments, candles, etc. The stands of the German Christmas markets offer something for all ages.

See the corresponding motorhome site or stopover at the end of each city.

Una ciudad que merece la pena visitar en cualquier época del año
Berlín, Christmas market

The main market of the city is in front of the spectacular Gedächtniskirche (Memorial Church), making Berlin a great destination for a unique experience in a Christmas market. This historical and cosmopolitan city has something for everyone, with more than 60 markets scattered around the centre (the longest one runs from November 26 to December 31).

The Gendarmenmarkt (Gendarmes' Market) offers culinary temptations from some of the best chefs in the country, as well as an entertainment feast that includes jugglers, acrobats, fire artists, choirs, dance and music groups. The Potsdamer Platz market, which has the biggest toboggan in Europe, is at 30-minute walking distance.

The Market Hall of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church offers the possibility of finding a gift for everyone among the traditional wooden cabins; Of course, while you enjoy your hot chocolate and nibble the toasted almonds. Meanwhile, the Spandau market celebrates Advent with a Nativity scene presented with live animals.

On the other side of the city, the "Christmas Market of Lucía" has a Nordic-Scandinavian theme, which offers a romantic and intimate atmosphere. For the traditional and nostalgic, the Staatsoper and Opernpalais market is worth seeing. From here you can enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride through the old town of Berlin.

Address of the motorhome site in Berlín:
Köpenicker Hof - KTG Köpenicker Tourismus GmbH
Stellingdamm 15 - 12555 Berlin
E-mail: info@koepenicker-hof.de  | Telephone: +49 30 650 150 42 
Open all the year around. Price: tariff according to the lenght of your motorhome. Find out on the website.

GPS coordinates: N 52.45914,  E 13.58540  /  N 52°27'33",  E 13°35'07"
Location map

NB: there are parking areas around the city, usually appear in android applications. However, for your own safety, it is advisable to park in motorhome sites or stopovers (stellplatz) that have electricity, as temperatures can be very low in the winter season.

Los mejores de mercados navideños de Europa
The Cathedral of Cologne and the Christmas market. Photo: Getaway Travel

Cologne (Köln) It is one of the most popular of a series of Christmas markets during the entire period leading up to Christmas holidays. The most famous of these is held in the shadow of the Cologne Cathedral, the largest in Germany and a UNESCO World Heritage site.

With the imposing Gothic backdrop and the largest Christmas tree on the Rhine, the 'Am Dom' flea market (from November 26 to December 23) offers more than 160 stalls selling the traditional "Yuletide" (Christmas festivities in German) and his famous Glühwein (mulled wine). Traditional music provides the perfect atmosphere for Christmas shopping.

For children, the Alter Markt (the Old Market) is the place to go, with the Santa Claus route, puppet theatre and stalls full of toys. The Rudolfplatz will transport large and small children to the world of the Grimm brothers, with fairy tale figures and festive illuminations.

Cologne is not just for Christmas: there is much more to experience in the city, as it is considered one of the most interesting places to visit for its art and its traditional style.

Address of the motorhome site in Cologne: 
Reisemobilhafen, An der Schanz, 50735 Köln, Alemania.
Open all year around. Price:  12 per day (motorhome + 2 people);  water: € 1,00; hook up electricity: (16A): € 0,50 por kWh.
Telephone: +49 178 467 4591 | Email: info@reisemobilhafen-koeln.de 
GPS coordinates: N 50.96238,  E 6.98594  / N 50°57'45",  E 6°59'09"

Una ciudad que merece la pena visitar en cualquier época del año
Dresden, Christmas market "Striezelmarkt"

The Christmas market in Dresden dating from 1434 is traditionally known as Striezelmarkt (November 30 to December 24), it is the oldest in Germany. With the backdrop of the Elbe River, Dresden becomes annually a Winter Wonderland with thousands of twinkling lights: romantic, festive and charming.

The Striezelmarkt and its famous Christmas pyramid. Here you can buy figurines for smoking, stars of Advent of Herrenhut and Pflaumentoffel (edible figurines) traditional Dresden, a chimney sweep made of dried plums. Examine the stalls and observe how traditional glassblowers, carvers and bakers practice their crafts.

There are also a number of notable Christmas markets that are located around the city, including those held in the stable patios in Residenzschloss (Royal Palace), the famous Frauenkirche (Church of Our Lady) and the Loschwitz market .

Address of the motorhome site in Dresden: 
Käthe-Kollwitz-Ufer 4, 01067 Dresden, Germany.
Open all the year around. Price: € 12 per day (a motorhome + 2 people), hook up electricity: € 5.
Tel.: +49 351 456 94 60 | Email: info@wohnmobilstellplatz-dresden.de 
GPS coordinates: 51.057332, 13.761335 /  51°03'27.5" | N 13°45'40.3"E

Marienplatz, Christmas market, Munich

The Gothic town hall that borders the wooden huts of Marienplatz (Marien's Square) creates a spectacular setting for the Christmas market (from November 30 to December 24). Here you can find original Bavarian products, from exclusive Christmas gifts and delicious treats. Christmas concerts play an important role every day with the views of the market, away from the bustle of the crowd, from the balconies of the spectacular town hall.

The Kripperlmarkt (Munich's Mangers Market) specializes in all things of the Nativity. For something completely different, Tollwood Market is an urban cultural festival that offers a wide range of music, drama and international cuisine. With more than 20 different markets in Munich, there is something for everyone; from a medieval market with gospel choir to the Christmas market, where products selling pink and purple pagodas and shows, etc.

Address of the motorhome site in Munich: 
Busparking Allianz-Arena 
Werner-Heisenberg-Allee 25, 80331 München, Bayern / Alemania
Tel.: +49 892 00 50 | Email: info@allianz-arena.de | WEBSITE
Precio: € 15 per day (is located just outside the Bayern Munich Stadium).

GPS coordinates:
N 48.22185, E 11.62472
N 48°13'19", E 11°37'29"

1St FICC World Congress, Lisbon, 2018

Was celebrated from 21 to 23 at the Ramada Hotel, Lisbon

At the same time, it was also held the celebration of the 85th anniversary of the FICC, founded in 1933,
See  a brief history of the FICC at the end of this article

Most of the presentations and speeches were delivered in English, with the exception of 2 or 3 speeches in French. The norm of the Congress was established for the official languages ​​of the FICC, English, French and German. Since Portugal was the host country, Portuguese was also spoken, especially in the opening ceremony.

All the current topics of motorhome tourism were very present in the Congress. Experts from entities that have a large number of motorhome members attended, such as the NKC and the Camping and Caravanning club, United Kingdom.

The official opening of the Congress
It was officiated on November 22 by João Alves Pereira, president of the FICC; João Queiroz, president of the Portuguese Federation; Ana Mendes Secretary of Tourism, Portugal, and Jean Marc Mignon, World Tourism Organization.

The purpose of the Congress
The main reasons for this congress were based on the need for a new approach in the world panorama of itinerant tourism, camping and new technologies. There is a radical change in trends regarding the associative style of itinerant tourism and camping in general in many countries in the world.

For this reason, large associations such as the NKC from the Netherlands, the Camping Caravaning Club of the United Kingdom (a club with more than 100 years of history), the Motorcaravanners Club, United Kingdom, among other important European entities, also agree that the strategy can not be the same, is it has been applied in most clubs and federations; as a result, they could face either the loss of a large number of members or even their disappearance.

FICC World Congress Agenda 
On 22nd and 23rd were dedicated to the Congress (day 21 was the meeting of the FICC Council and commissions).
Presentations and speeches were divided into 4 parts by speakers who were well versed in the world of itinerant tourism (caravans, motorhomes, campervans, etc.), camping and technologies.
Find details of all participants below:

Part I - November 22 - "Another World", presented by Stan Stolwerk, general director of the NKC (Dutch motor motorhome club with more than 50,000 members).
  • Erik Van Laar (The Netherlands), analyst of the NKC, "The Technological Revolution and Our World", environment, mobility and tourism: analysis of trends, "The Future Clients are already here".
  • Eric Zeevalk (The Netherlands), markets of the NKC, "Analysis of New Generations in Tourism and Camping.
  • Norbert van Noesel, (The Netherlands) Marketing Director of Thetford
  • Maarten van Soest, (The Netherlands) executive director of  Tonke Van company, manufacturer of campervans. "Effects on the Industry and Small Manufacturers.
Part II, November 22 - "A New Industry", presented by Fabien Produit (ASC, Switzerland)
  • Hermann Pfaff, (Germany) President of the CIVD (Association of Travelling Vehicle Manufacturers of Germany and Europe. "The Worldwide Leisure Vehicle Industry".
  • François Feuillet, (France) President of the  ECF, European Caravan Federation. "The European Leisure Industry).
  • Jost Kruger, (Germany) General Director of the ECF , "A New European Approach Towards Advocacy"
Part III, day 22 - "Changes in the Camping", presented by Beatriz Santos, Orbitur group (Portugal) and Thomas Mehlmauer, OCC, Austrian Camping Club (Austria)
  • Linda Gedink, (Luxembourg) president of EFCO & HPA (European Federation of Camping and Associations of Holiday Parks Organizations). "The Camping and the Challenge of the Future Electric Vehicles"
  • Bruno Lacroix (France), director of Editorials Pôle Tourisme. "A Reflection on the Modern Good Camping".
  • Maja Dimmik "Glamping and the New Trends in Camping Architecture Now and in the Future" (Glamping (glamor + camping) is a formula that began a few years ago and offers a perfect combination between camping outdoors and enjoying the comforts of the best luxury hotel. Prices can range between 200 and 10,000 euros per day).
  • José Iglesias González (España),  (Spain), honorary member of the FICC, ex-counselor and former chairman Motorcarvanning Commission, FICC. "Motorhome Sites, Stopovers and the Economic Impact on Tourism.
  • Jean Marc Mignon (France), member of the World Tourism Committee, UNWTO , "Camping and Ethics".
  • João Alves Pereira (Portugal), President of the FICC (Fédération International de Camping Caravaning et Autocaravaning). "Camping Card International, C.C.I."
Part IV - November 22. Clubs and associations: "Move, Share and Adapt", presented by João Alves Pereira (Portugal), President of the FICC.
  • Stan Stolwerk (The Netherlands), NKC, "Clubs and Associations": how to stay relevant locally, nationally and internationally ".
  • Robert Louden (United Kingdom), Director of the Camping and Caravaning Club (it has a lot motorhome members). "Proven Record of Adaptation", more than 100 years of history and relevance.
  • Lin Chin-Chang (Taiwan), Asia-Pacific Commission . "How to Implement and Expand the Culture of Camping".
  • Inés Ayala Sender (Spain), Member of the European Parliament. President of the OITS (International Tourism Organization). "Social Tourism and Camping".
The strategic importance of reinventing the approaches of the associations can not be underestimated. If it is not already on the agenda of each Board of Directors, it should be. As members or clients increase their expectations, the speed of adaptation also increases; therefore, exponentially, it will increase the need to develop capacities to administer and comply with these new rules of association.

The reality is incontestable, the member (client, etc.) no longer seeks, as in past times, an association, club ...; Now, these entities of itinerant tourism have to seduce them as if they were customers, with more services and information. Effectively, the member must be attracted; the interest disappears, if there is no convincing offer. The romanticism of past times, where there were many volunteers to collaborate, in those days members were proud to belong to a club, now this is beginning to be history. Currently, most members demand service as customers. Undoubtedly, associations require new formulas, far from those exercised so far.

Brief history of the FICC
June 4, 1933, is a very important date in the 85 year history of the FICC, since it was on that day when the FICC held its first General Assembly in 1933 in Hampton Court, United Kingdom.

In 2011 the word "Autocaravaning" was introduced in the statutes of the organization and the logo including the motorhome was modified and, at the beginning of 2012, the official title of the Federation changed to "Fédération Internationale de Camping, Caravaning et Autocaravaning" -in French language, since its headquarters are in Brussels-, but the acronym remains the same: FICC

Apart from the well known "Rally FICC", the international youth rallies are also a great success. These events are held annually since 1952, always during Easter time. This Youth Rally is very popular, it represents a great attraction for young people from all over the world.
At the moment, the FICC is present in many countries around the world, with more than 6 million members, despite difficult times.

Gas bottles in the motorhome when travelling to other countries

Gas cylinder installation review:

The following pictures shows only some of the many different types of gas bottles available in Europe.

  • Motorhomes must be subject to a regular check of gas installation.
  • Some countries do not apply this security measure.
  • This may sound strange, but some of these countries are in the European Union. This security measure should be taken into account when large international rallies are held.
  • This is a basic step for security. The necessary measures could only be introduced with a universal regulation in Europe.
  • The different gas bottles for motorhomes are usually a setback for those who decide to spend long periods in another EU country.
  • Unfortunately, for these cases, there is no universal valve to connect different bottles. Therefore, before travelling abroad, it is necessary to take some measures regarding this issue.
➤There are 2 possibilities:
  • To buy a gas bottle in the country of arrival.
  • Carrying the little camping gas blue bottle, the only one present in all countries; it contains less than 3 kg of gas, it is not the best solution, but it solves the problem for a few days - depending on the use.
Names of gas bottles in the main European languages

Bouteille du gaz
Bombona de butano

In general, there two types of gas in Europe:
➢Propane (this type of gas is used more frequently in low temperature areas.)

As mentioned, the real problem lies in the large number of gas cylinder types. Therefore, when crossing the border to other countries (including neighbouring countries), the valve (that connect gas to the bottle) format is different. Depending on the length of stay, this can be uncomfortable. Gas, apart from using it for cooking, is also necessary for most refrigerators - when it is not within the reach of an electrical connection. In spite of everything, if you take some of the measures mentioned here you can facilitate your stay.
➤ For your safety, the installation should be checked regularly by a gas technician.