Charming, traditional and so festive! We loved the Le Rouret Christmas Market so much last year that we are making it an annual Christmas tradition. And it’s on tomorrow – Sunday 4th December!
What we love about this market is that it’s not just about Christmas shopping – there are so many fun things for kids to do! There is something for everyone, from Christmas crafts and workshops to pony rides, and from traditional French wooden games to small fairground rides and games. There was a small farm animals area with bunnies, chickens, guinea pigs and in another area: ponies, donkeys, goats and sheep.
A clown on stilts was walking around making balloon animals for the kids and that was a first for our Petit Garçon!
Obviously the highlight for most will be visiting Papa Noël in his woodland style grotto (it was for me anyway!). You can take a photo of your child with him and he gives them a treat. I was impressed that this was free and there was nothing tacky about it.
As you can expect from a market in France Le Rouret has a fantastic choice of local produce, for your festive meals or special gifts. Cheese, oils, herbs, preserves, vegetables and meats – and the sweet stuff chocolates truffles, honey, nougat – are just a few examples that are beautifully presented. If I had my way I’d be taking a huge disc of this cheese home!
If you’re looking for Christmas gifts there plenty to choose from among their 200 or so stalls. The market features artisan items and crafts such as baskets, ornaments, jewellery, and wooden crafts, to name a few. It was the handmade Christmas tree decorations, such as these ceramic hearts, stars and angels that caught my eye.
After walking around exploring the markets we stopped for some hot milk that we dipped chocolate lolly-pops in! A very special treat and pick me up for our little three year old. We nibbled on some homemade gingerbread, and enjoyed the smell of the crêpe stand, but the queue was too long for us.
Later in the afternoon we followed the sound of a traditional folk band playing in a clearing where anyone could join in the dance. We couldn’t resist a bit of toe-tapping to the merry fiddle! With the music playing, the sun setting, and my family dancing this was a scene to treasure always. It was our first December in France and gave us a wonderful first impression of the lead-up to Christmas here.
Tips for families
- Parking is horrendous (people parked on the road) so get in early if you don’t want to walk a long way.
- Take enough cash for all those treats and unexpected purchases.
Le Rouret Christmas Market (21e Marché de NOEL de pure tradition à Le Rouret) is on Sunday 4th December from 9.30am to 7pm, free entry.
You can find local Christmas markets in your area (France) at noel.org.
What do you love about Christmas markets? Let me know in the comments below.