In Germany we have lots of markets around christmas. You can meet there with friends, drink mulled wine and shop for christmas. There are traditional markets at know places like Nuremberg or elsewhere. But today every small city has a market, more or less elaborate.
The typical ingredients for a christmas market are:
Food (sausage, waffers, crepes) and beeverages (preferably with alcohol like mulled wire) served in a decorated area with small cabin-like stands and – most important – music: modern, traditional, christmas carols, sung live or from cd!
And it has to be dark!
This is the Marienplatz at Munich …
That is the Tollwood at Munich, an alternative festival twice a year with organic food, it’s mandatory there.
And an impression from Stuttgart, a more traditional market!