Essen is known as a shopping city through out the Ruhr Region and was the “European Capital of Culture” in 2010 but actually the city center is not the nicest place buildingwise.
But come christmas Essen turns into the city of lights with lots of light installations to a special topic or guest country. This year the country is France so blue, white and red dominate the lightning.
But the best thing about the christmas market from my perspective is that it is super easy to reach. Drop out of Essen main station and you are right at its start. And from there it winds its way through the main shopping area so you can do your christmas shopping and make a hold at a “Glühwein”-Stand (mulled wine) every now and then.