Saturday, December 14, 2013

Kerstmarkt Dordrecht 2013

Last night my husband and I spent about 2 hours walking around the Kerstmarkt (Christmas Market) in Dordrecht.

Here are just a few of the highlights, as told through my blurry pictures...Any tips on how to use a simple point and shoot at night for moving objects and have clear pictures???


Cultural snippet:  Sinterklaas and his helper(s) Zwarte Piet bring gifts to children in early December. Both Santa and Sinterklaas are based on St. Nicholas.  The Dutch word for "Santa Claus" is "kerstman" -- literally translated, "Christmas man."  Really.  Makes me chuckle.

So, this picture is of a brass band made of Kerstmannen with LED lights -- who occasionally sang Christmas carols like "Walking in a Winter Wonderland" with a Dutch accent.

Fries anyone?
 You could buy any kind of food...warm ham, fries, hot chocolate, oliebollen, etc.  We ate before we left home, just so we wouldn't spend too much money and/or have our mouths water as we smelled each type of lekker food!

This house just looked so gezellig (cozy)
 Every so often we passed by live music - including a women's group singing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer -- and also music blaring from speakers.  I sang along, but not too obnoxiously.  :)

Donut camper
Grote Kerk by night
We also ducked into some local shops to check out their crafts.  One was Gemivaria, a store with crafts made by people with disabilities, and another was a ceramics/craft store.  Some stores (like Blokker) were closed, but others like V&D (department store) were open for business.

The streets were filled with stands of people selling their wares and gifts, like festive Christmas decorations, warm winter gear, or edible treats like tools made of chocolate.


Around this time of year -- mostly for the New Year -- "oliebollen" are sold in stands like this. I've heard them described as "Dutch donuts," since they are sweet-ish fried dough.  You can have plain ones or raisin-filled ones, with or without powdered sugar.  Each one costs about 1 euro.

Biting down on our shared oliebol.

Dordrecht Stadhuis


We didn't try one of these tasty treats but just watched the process.  This stand called them "chimneys," and the treat consisted of dough rolled around a metal roller and rotated over warm coals.  When I was in Budapest two years ago, I tried these -- and they are definitely yummy!  You can get them with cinnamon on them, or perhaps other toppings.  

Still one more day! Check it out!

~*~

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