Although I didn’t get to celebrate Thanksgiving in France, Christmas arrived with a bang! Starting December 1st, Angers has been covered in lights. Down every street, Christmas lights are turned on as soon as it’s dark, and Christmas music plays over speakers. The city becomes a winter wonderland!
The festivities kicked off the first weekend of December with a parade on Friday night that ended at the Chateau (castle) which had been decorated with snowflake lights. On Saturday, Santa parachuted out of a helicopter into Angers, and the Christmas Market was opened for the season!
The Christmas Market is located in the centre ville. It contains little booths which sell everything from jewelry and lamps to handmade sausages. The food and drinks are my favorite part of the market. “Vin chaud,” or hot wine, is a seasonal drink sold throughout the market. I was surprised how great it tasted! There are several different types, with spices such as cinnamon, or rum and orange peels being commonly added. However, the best thing I have tried at the market was a sandwich with sausage and hot cheese melted onto it from a cheese wheel. It was the type of sandwich you would see on Facebook and drool over! Some other fun things in Angers during Christmas is a light show that is projected onto a church steeple every weekend. They also have a large ferris wheel set up in the park.
All of these things have made Angers a beautiful place to explore at Christmas, and I’m glad I decided to study abroad in the Fall to see it.