A traditional market to celebrate the Octave of Pentecost
The roots of the Mäertchen can be traced to the Octave of Pentecost, a religious holiday held to honour the Virgin Mary, who is the patron saint of both the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and its capital. Pilgrims from all over the country and the Greater Region come to Luxembourg City. While the Octave initially lasted for eight days (hence its name), it now takes place over the course of 16 days between Easter and Pentecost, starting on the third Saturday after Easter.
Originally, the Mäertchen gave fasting pilgrims, most of whom came from rural areas and rarely travelled to the city, a chance to get some sustenance while shopping in the city right after mass.
Although the Mäertchen now has more of a carnival atmosphere with its fairground games and rides, it has by no means lost its charm and appeal. Each year, thousands of visitors flock to the city centre to enjoy the food, games and hawker's stands at this quintessentially Luxembourgish fair.
Dates, times and locations
7 to 22 May 2022
Every day from 11:00 to 20:00
Place de la Constitution ("Gëlle Fra")
As a traditional market with close to 50 stalls, the "Mäertchen" offers something for everyone – food stalls, games of skill and chance, hook-a-duck, rides for children (merry-go-rounds, planes) – and an opportunity for an enjoyable outing in the heart of the capital.
Even though some of the city's most well-known restaurants will not be attending the event this year, many take-away vendors will be providing facilities for outdoor dining. This means that even the traditional "gebakene Fësch" (fried fish), along with many other dishes traditionally served at the "Mäertchen", will still be available for sit-down and take-away diners.
All the stalls on Place de la Constitution will be open daily from 11:00 to 20:00, but some vendors will be open from as early as 8:00 and remain open until 22:00.
Parents will also be glad to learn that a minitrain for children will be operating daily from 10:00 to 18:00 at Place de Paris from 15 April to 29 May 2022 – which means that it will also be open during the "Mäertchen".
Accessibility for people with reduced mobility
As in previous years, Luxembourg City has the market tested by the association Info-handicap before it opens. This assessment is used to provide information to people with reduced mobility, as well as in awarding the EureWelcome label for temporary tourism and cultural sites, which is granted by the Ministry of the Economy.
A WC for people with disabilities will also be set up at Place de la Constitution. The WCs located at Cercle Cité, the Knuedler car park and Place de la Constitution will also be open to the public until 22:30 during the Mäertchen.
If you are dropping off someone with reduced mobility, access to the cathedral and market is easier if you let them out on Rue Notre-Dame (near the cathedral). Additional reduced mobility parking spaces are provided on Rue Notre-Dame (opposite the cathedral) and at the "Klenge Knuedler" car park for the duration of the Octave.
The City of Luxembourg wishes to encourage people with reduced mobility to take full advantage of the existing services and infrastructure by providing all the relevant information about accessibility. For more information on accessibility, please visit www.eurewelcome.lu (information will be available online as of 7 May 2022) or contact the City of Luxembourg's Service intégration et besoins spécifiques (Integration and Special Needs Department) (Madeleine Kayser, Tel. 4796-4215, email@example.com).