This year was our second visit to Lincoln Christmas market. When we visited in 2011 the roads were very busy and the market was absolutely rammed! There were so many people that pathways had to be closed off and we were shepherded round the centre like cattle, in order to get everyone round safely. We barely saw any stalls and when we did we had only a short window of time to see what was on show before the constant wave of people piling through pushed us on towards the next place.
This year we went on the Friday instead of the Saturday in the hope that it would be quieter than the weekend. The traffic was better and we made it into the park & ride easily. A ticket for a car cost £13. The buses were frequent and the journey brief. We were even greeted by a very jolly bus driver who was dressed all Christmassy and liked to tell people that she had lost an elf…
We were dropped off at the top of the town, which is seen as the start of the market. We wandered along the main street, having a look in the craft tents as we went. There were plenty of places to buy food, but not a lot of variety. We ended up having a Lincolnshire sausage hot dog from a stall within the castle grounds. Later Emma bought some fudge and I had a large scrummy jam and custard danish.
It was still busy this year, but nothing like a few years ago. We were able to take our time, browse the stalls and take in the Christmas atmosphere. We even had a takeaway tea from Greggs to keep us warm and we didn’t have to worry about being in the way of a horde of Christmas revellers. Or slowing anyone down by taking a leisurely stroll. We had so much elbow room it was lovely! The cups had a picture of an elf on them as well, maybe it was the elf that the bus driver had lost…
While drinking our teas we walked through the wonderful archway which leads to the magnificent cathedral. Going through the arch makes it even more impressive as it gradually comes into view. There’s more about this in my blog historic-lincoln. We ended up being led towards the medieval market, which was put together by English Heritage. It was unusual, but enjoyable. This smaller market was partly in some ruins, with little white tents, straw under foot and stall owners dressed in medieval outfits! To add to the ambience, the winter sun shone beautifully onto the cathedral that loomed over the market.
We wanted to see the Christmas market in darkness, so we could enjoy all the pretty lights, but as we got there early it proved to be too long a wait. We spent over four hours there and that proved enough.
Emma bought a Christmas decoration for a good price, as well as mistletoe for a couple of quid, but the food was a bit pricey. Our two hot dogs cost a tenner and the fudge and pastry were slightly on the steep side. But it’s all for a good cause (Christmas).
Lincoln Christmas market is a great place to go to get in the Christmas spirit and have a nice day out. You could easily make a longer day of it or even a couple of days. The city is beautiful enough in itself and there are plenty of nice restaurants down the hill towards the city centre, as well as accommodation dotted all round the town.