Amiens Christmas Market: November and December
Located in the centre of the city, the "Winter Scents, Amiens Christmas Market" is one of the largest Christmas markets in northern France. The streets in the town centre are transformed into a Christmas Alpine festive scene, where you can wander the pedestrianised streets and enjoy the lovely festive atmosphere.
There is also an open air ice rink, merry-go-rounds, singers and shows. A must is the "Cathedral in Colour" when the west wall is bedecked with bright colours revealing its medieval splendour from 1st December to 1st January.
Annually, usually from around third week in November to end of December
Christmas 2014: From November 21 to December 28
Monday: 2:00 pm to 7:30 pm
Tuesday to Sunday: 10:30 am to 7:30 pm
What to buy: Over 135 Wooden chalets sell a choice that is different from most Christmas markets, because as well as the more traditional goods there are stalls selling luxury items like kitchenware, fine crystal and hand-made glass, as well as Angora sweaters straight from the farm, specialist beauty products and fabulous baskets that come in all shapes and sizes.
What to pay: Various
this should be a warning or danger tip, the patisseries are far too tempting here, we parted with a large sum of money for a box of 6 of the most fabulous cakes and ate them back in the UK that night with a cup of tea, how lucky we didnt attempt to eat them in Amiens ! or we would have been compelled to go back and buy more and more
What to buy: cakes, pastires, chocolates.... in fact anything filled with cholesterol and calories
What to pay: our mixed box of cakes cost 12 euro, it was worth every cent
Carrefour: Wine Buying
Carrefour is a chain of budget supermarkets in France. The one that was near me in St Pierres des Corps was right in the heart of the Loire Valley, hence it stocked all the local wines.
You'll find all sorts of stores within the complex, restaurants, jewellers, shoe shops, clothes shops etc etc, like most big shopping malls.
What to buy: I was going for wine, but of course the cheeses are fantastic, the olives and olive oil are cheaper than the UK, I bought all sorts of stuff exclusive to France, Savon de Marseilles, (Marseilles soaps, perfect for delicate skins) dried sausages, my favourite showergels, pate, biscottes, Langue de Chat biscuits...
My advice, if you are camping or just wanting to drink some wine inside your hotel room, buy a local bottle and remember to take a bottle opener! They were practically giving the Bordeaux wines away, buy five bottles and get one free. Buy one box and get one free.
Good years are 2003, 2004.
What to pay: in Euros, of course... jam 1.46, biscottes 1.59, langues de chat 1.46, pain grille 2.12, Touraine Gamay red wine 2.45 each, Pouilly fume 7.90 each, Sancerre 7.99 each, 5 litres vin rose 4.95.
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