As the days get shorter, my thoughts are turning to the festive season. There’s quite a bit happening in and around Saint-Chinian, and things kick off with the Cracker Fair at the Abbaye de Valmagne. The Cracker Fair is a two-day Christmas market on November 23 and 24, 2019, where you can find all your presents and more. I’ve visited this Christmas market before (and I have written about it here) and will be heading there again this year!
Hot on the heels of the Cracker Fair comes the Christmas market in Saint-Chinian on December 1, 2019. The market takes place in the Salle de l’Abbatiale (the former abbey church), the cloisters and in front of the town hall building.
Larger towns such as Montpellier and Carcassonne have Christmas markets which run for most of December. The one in Montpellier (pictured below) runs from November 28 to December 28, 2019, and the one in Carcassonne is open from December 6, 2019 to January 5, 2020.
In the run-up to Christmas, stocking up on festive provisions is important! The Foire au Gras, literally translated to “Fat Fair”, aims to fill the need for foie gras, duck fat and other poultry products. Coursan holds such a fair on November 17, 2019; in Castelnaudary you can buy similar goodies on December 1, 2019; Limoux holds a Foire au Gras on December 23, 2019, just in time for Christmas!!
Truffles are also essential for a Christmas feast, so the truffle markets start just in time for the festive season. You can find fresh truffles in Moussoulens on December 14, 2019, and in Talairan on December 21, 2019.
For those wishing to stock up on wine in time for Christmas, some of the Saint-Chinian winemakers are holding an open day on December 8, 2019! For more information visit this site.
I’m saving the best for last – the highlight of the run-up to Christmas in Saint-Chinian!! On December 11, 2019 at 6pm, there’ll be a concert in the parish church! The chorus from the Montpellier opera house will be singing a programme of French music and ‘hit tunes’ from various operas! Full details can be found here.