‘Tis the season and Christmas markets are popping up all around the world! It’s only fitting that we take a road trip to Nazareth, Israel, the place of Jesus’s childhood, to see how they embrace Christmas Markets in Nazareth.
Israel, the land of milk and honey, is also historically the land where Jesus once walked. So it’s a perfect match, visiting the Christmas Markets of Nazareth.
Every year the city holds a huge Christmas celebration, beginning with the lighting of the tree ceremony. Free concerts, tinsel and of course Christmas Market booths make their appearance throughout the week of Christmas. Santa is even there to grant Christmas wishes and lots and lots of yummy Middle Eastern Food.
The Christmas Markets in Israel aren’t exactly like the ones in Europe, so don’t be surprised if things are seemingly different. They take on more of a “Middle Eastern” flair than a European one.
If you’ve ever experienced the Christmas Markets in Germany, you know that Gluhwein is a big attraction. For those who haven’t experienced the glory of gluhwein in person, it’s pretty much an acquired taste. (Read all about my first experience, here.) And the same goes for Sahlab.
Sahlab is the warm drink you’ll find at the Christmas Markets in Nazareth. Originating in Lebanon, it has become a popular frothy winter drink in Nazareth too. Made from the thickening of whole milk, starch (the sahlab), sugar and rosewater, it’s then combined with a cinnamon garnish on top for that holiday taste. Just like Gluhwein, Sahlab is a drink that must be tried during the holiday season.
So if you’re looking for some holiday cheer in the Jewish Land, head up to Nazareth for the day for some warm sahlab, falalfel, hummus and shwarma, and a bit of Christmas cheer!