The Land of Christmas Trees is situated in Central Alsace. Why the nickname "king of the forest"? Its origin surely goes back a long way... Indeed, the Humanist Library in Sélestat contains the first written reference to the sale of Christmas trees, dating from 1521. Later on, this conifer would come to be decorated with ribbons, red apples, coloured paper, sweets and cakes. It was in the 17th and 18th centuries that it began to be lit up with carefully placed candles. In the 19th century the hand-painted blown glass bauble replaced the traditional red apple, but the Christmas Tree, once venerated in pagan festivals, has become a constant feature of Christmas and remains one of the emblems of this religious festival. In the heart of the villages of Central Alsace, his majesty comes in a myriad of hues !
The Land of Christmas Trees is also full of other treasures. Not least among them the spice bread delicacies made at the Maison du Pain d'Epices in Gertwiller since 1806! This deliciously soft treat is still made by the traditional artisanal method. There is even a museum telling its story.
It is the time of the preparations of the “Wihnachtsbredeles” small cakes of Christmas and other greedy specialities which each housewife puts a point of Read more