Last Thursday it was time for the traditional Leaf Market here in Karlskrona in Sweden. A market I attend every year, including this year of course. :-) The Leaf market is the first big market of the summer season in Blekinge county, where I live, so lots of people always show up there. Also because the market traditionally take place the day before Midsummer's Eve it is a popular place to buy strawberries for the traditional Midsummer Strawberry Cake, Midsummer Flower Crowns and things for other Midsummer related events. My favourite thing to do at the Leaf Market market though is to eat Langos, a Hungarian delight that is a regular guest at summer markets in Sweden. So yuuuum! :p
Below are some (quite a lot of) moments from my visit to the Leaf Market in Karlskrona 2013. :-)
On my way to the market.
There were lots of people everywhere of course, these people were waiting for buses.
Queue to the ATM.
The Great Square, the main market area, where there were lots of market stands as usual - around 500.
So it was quite crowded, in a good way. :-)
Time to check out the Leaf Market of 2013 in Karlskrona.
A popular berry to buy here is the Bigarrå - a sort of Cherry.
But no berry is as popular to purchase at the Leaf Market as the strawberry. In fact, one big topic of discussion on this day is how much these sweet delights cost? This year the average price was about 40 SEK per 1 liter of Swedish strawberries - 6 USD, which I think was quite expensive.
Another favourite to buy is home made candy. :p
Huge lollipops! I use to love to eat these when I was a child. Mainly because they took forever to eat. Lol!
Different types of candy canes were also available to buy, super yummy as well.
Long candy strings too.
You could also do as mini Batman did, buy some crispy snacks.
But if you did not want to buy any candy you could try your luck at the chocolate wheel, I guess not many people felt very lucky that day though. Lol. ;p
Home made Midsummer crafts. :-)
So cute! But if you rather not have a flower crown in your hair on Midsummer's Eve, you could buy a colourful wig instead.
And perhaps dress up a in a bit non traditional Midsummer's Eve outfit? Like this lady. Notice that she does have a crown on her head. Hehe.
I love those funny big balloons.
Time to stop and listen to some music. :-)
Before heading down to check out the carnival area.
Where children were flying.
These looked so good! Because it was very hot outside.
Very tempting on a sweaty summer day!
But not as tempting to me as this!!!
Yay! Finally time to eat langos!!
My lango, a Cafe Opera with cheese. And it was soooooo goooood!!! :p
Aww! And you know I cannot publish a post without some of these cuties (I am of course referring to the dogs). :-) Because many people actually do bring their dogs to the Leaf Market.
And these to two were so fun to watch.
Such a weird little barking dog there.
It took a few minutes but finally they dared to sniff the little toy dogs.
Maybe I should have bought one for my doggy Lisen. Lol! Would have been fun to see her reaction.
But instead I bought her a doggy treat at the doggy stand.
One of these, an XXL pig's ear.
Here you go Lisen. :-)
Yes, she was a very happy doggy then. :-) And it took quite a while for her to eat that big pig's ear. Hehe.
So all in all I would say that I had a very successful visit at the Leaf Market in Karlskrona 2013. :p
The month of December is a month of many traditions here in Sweden, with Advent Sundays, Lucia and Christmas Markets for instance. So this Saturday I took the opportunity to visit an Old Fashioned Christmas Market for the first time this year, I always attend at least one every year. This year I chose to visit the Old Fashioned Christmas Market in the small village of Kristianopel, located in the easternmost part of Blekinge county about 30 kilometers from where I live here in Lyckeby.
Now Kristianopel was Scandinavia's first renaissance city. The city was built on orders from the Danish King Christian IV, because the area was Danish back then, and was completed in 1606. Originally Kristianopel was a fortress city surrounded by up to nine meters high walls. In 1677 Kristianopel became Swedish again and in 1679 the Swedes decided to close down the city. City privileges were withdrawn and the people were asked to move. The walls were razed in part and its stones used in the construction of Karlskrona. Today Kristianopel is above all a very pleasant summer destination with camping sites and cozy cafés. And a few times each year markets are arranged there, like this Old Fashioned Christmas Market I visited for instance.
And the Christmas Market in Kristianopel was indeed a charming, cozy and a joyful market to attend. There were lots of home made local goodies for sale as well as other traditional Swedish Christmas Market treats and fun events going on. And because it snowed quite heavily the entire time I was there it truly did feel like I was at a genuine Christmas Market. Our visit to the local village's parish house for "fika" - coffee and cookie buffet also made the already present Christmas spirit shine even brighter over my first Christmas Market visit this year. So I had a great time indeed. :-)
Of course I brought my camera to document this lovely visit. ;p So below are some photos from My Visit To The Charming Christmas Market In Kristianopel this Saturday.
In Kristianopel on our way to the Christmas Market.
Christmas Market entrance - yay!
Not the biggest one perhaps, but certainly the coziest. :-)
But these flames burned quite persistently through the snow.
Christmas carols performed by the local church choir.
Hot dogs for sale.
And, ehum, freshly baked Lucia Cats. The men over there remarked to this lady that the Lucia Cats looked a bit burnt, she replied that the oven was too hot. So not her fault in other words. Hehe. ;)
Gossip at the fish stand.
Where fried herring sandwiches were for sale.
As well as different pickled herrings. The pickle flavours from the left were; onion, dill and pear.
Different locally made goats cheeses.
Here we have locally and home made Cheese Cake and Farm Crisp Bread for sale.
Freshly baked bread from stone ovens.
This lady explains about the many, many different flavours of honey she has for sale there.
Some of the flavours of honey in this stand were; Saffron, Pistachio, Cardamom, Ginger, Passion Fruit and Acai Berry. Wow! I had no idea you could flavour honey in so many ways.
In one of the barn rooms I found these celebrities. :p (Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus of course.)
Not quite as famous as the previous couple, lol, but here I am trying to warm my fingers over the little fire there. Greetings from Kristianopel! :p
My little pony.
Such a cutie! Because of course at any market there has to be a pony for children to ride.
On our way to the local parish house for some "fika" - coffee and cookies. :p
The local parish house.
Yuuuummy!!! For just 50 Swedish Kronas, about 7.50 USD, we could eat as many of these goodies and drink as much coffee
as we wanted. A true bargain! Because everything I tasted was so delicious! All these cookies had been made by ladies in the village - so excellent job ladies!!!
My (first) plate of deliciousness. :p Which consisted of a Lucia Cat, a Christmas Ham Sandwich with mustard, a cookie called "Drömmar" - Dreams, an Almond Cake with cream and strawberry jam and some carrot cake.
And we were not the only ones enjoying this cookie heaven.
While we sipped on our coffee and devoured cookies the choir ladies had found their way here and sang songs while photos from the olden days in Kristianopel were on display on this big screen.
All this together created a very lovely and Christmassy atmosphere in the parish house indeed. :-)
But after a while it was time to leave.
Bye, bye Kristianopel.
Getting ready to drive home.
And I was very happy I did not have to drive in this weather...
So, my first ever visit to Kristianopels Old Fashioned Christmas Market will most likely not be the last - mainly because of that amazing cookie buffet! :-)
(Side note, I have had extreme anxiety because I have not been able to post in over a week! The simple reason for that is that I have been swamped with work and other every day life related chores. My deepest hope is that I will have time to post more frequently this week though. Yikes! I really do not like falling behind with posts, visit backs and replies to comments. It feels like I am neglecting my best friend or something... Not a good feeling. But I do hope you all understand, it is after all December.)
Today it was time for my favourite traditional market in Karlskrona, the Leaf Market. A market that has been around in Karlskrona for more than 200 years. It is also a market that I have attended almost every year of my life. So this morning I woke up eager to go in to town and continue this lovely tradition. And naturally I brought my camera with me and took lots of photos! Below are some of them.
Now the Leaf Market is one of the first big markets of the summer season in and around Karlskrona, so every year lots of people make their way in to town to stroll around there for a while.
More people heading towards the Great Square, where most of the over 500 market stalls are placed. And which is actually one of the largest squares in Europe's northern regions.
View over the Great Square and Leaf Market in Karlskrona.
View from the opposite side of the square.
Originally the Leaf Market was when farmers went into town to sell shrubs and flowers, which were used as decorations around farms.
Flowers are still popular to buy at the market today.
Even bumble bees check them out. (I think it is a bumble bee?)
Another popular flower decoration at the Leaf Market is the Swedish traditional Midsummer Crown.
Because the Leaf Market is held the day before Midsummer's Eve, many people buy them here.
Actually, many people wear them here as well. ;p
Some people even wear old traditional Swedish outfits at the market. (Though I do think these folks were part of a Swedish traditional Midsummer dance performance earlier, or later.)
Strawberries are a crucial part of the Midsummer's Eve celebration, therefore they too are very popular to buy at the Leaf Market. The reason strawberries are so important is because we Swedes must have our traditional Strawberry Cake on Midsummer's Eve, or else it will be ruined - seriously!
And in the left corner here are another popular berry at the market, in Swedish they are called Bigarrå - which is a sort of Cherry.
This was a new one. Lol! Looked quite yummy though. :p
Of course strolling around at the Leaf Market makes you hungry. And one popular sandwich to eat here is the Herring Sandwich. I have actually not tried it, so I am not sure about everything that is on it. But it is pan fried fresh herring on dark bread though, that I know.
Lines to the Herring Sandwich stall.
I, however, prefer to eat this when I am at markets - Langos! :p A Hungarian dish which consists of fried bread with different toppings.
Yum!!! (I know I include this in every market post I publish - but it is so gooood!!). Hehe.
There were of course a ton of other things to see, try and buy here.
Home made cheesecake.
Different sausages, like moose, wild boar, eel and reindeer sausage...
Home made Apple Juice from Karlskrona.
And candy in all shapes and sizes of course.
There were also lots of handcrafts here, like these typical Swedish wooden butter knives.
Not so typical Swedish wooden butter knives. Lol!
Cute wooden trolls.
And Swedish wooden Midsummer Poles.
Although I did not bring my dog Lisen to the Leaf Market, I do always buy her a treat from this dog stall.
They have lots of dog treats to choose from.
I usually buy a giant pig's ear, but they did not have those this year. So I bought her a pig's tail instead.
Though Lisen looked a bit suspicious, she did enjoy her treat nevertheless. Lol!
And I enjoyed my visit to this year's Leaf Market - ahh! Great weather, a delicious Lango and lots of fun things to do and see. A very succesfull day indeed.
:-) Now I look forward to a yummy and lovely day tomorrow, Midsummer's Eve. Unfortunately we are predicted to have rain though, all through the weekend as well. Hopefully that is an incorrect prognosis... Either way, I do want to wish everyone a very happy Midsummer's Eve! Regardless of the weather. ;p
Today we celebrate the second Advent Sunday of four here in Sweden. So I thought it was a perfect day to visit a traditional old style Christmas market nearby. More specifically the Christmas market I visited was located at a big farm called Bubbetorps Farm, about 5 kilometers from where I live. Now of course I brought my camera, and I took A LOT OF photos! Lol!
Below are some of the photos I took at Bubbetorps Farm Old Style Christmas Market earlier today.
There were a lot of super cute animals at the Christmas market! Like these adorable donkeys.
Who were very popular indeed!
As was this lovely little pony.
Some a bit more unusual animals I saw at the farm were these cool alpacas.
Who seemed pretty relaxed.
I also saw these wonderful horses in action while I was there.
Ahh, some good old style transportation.
Dogs were of course also allowed to visit the Christmas market. And I just thought this one had the kindest eyes, such a beautiful dog indeed.
Hey Mr...ehum Bzzz Bee. Well, he was a nice bee who offered everyone a taste of his Swedish honey.
We were all also very welcome to taste these different cheeses at the Christmas market.
As well as cold smoked and cured salmon.
Even bites of cured moose beef (left) and deer sausage (right) were offered at the Christmas market.
There were also a lot of sweet Christmas goodies for sale, like these ones!
Though I think they were almost too pretty to eat... well, almost! Hehe.
I would not have been able to wait until Lucia, December 13th, to eat these pretty ginger bread cookies!
Candied apples were also for sale at the Christmas market. ALMOST a healthy snack. :p
Just like candied almonds. :p
Huge Christmas tree!
Where perhaps these cute Christmas goats came from?
Lady Santa was keeping a watchful eye over the Christmas market.
And inside Lady Santa's house, Christmas inspired handicrafts were for sale.
God Jul - Merry Christmas!
Fire barrels were placed all around the farm so you could keep warm.
But, after a couple of hours it was finally time for me to go home.
So farewell Bubbetorps Farm Christmas Market! I had a great visit, and perfect weather too! Thank you!