Thursday 19 December 2019. Baden-Baden, the wonderful old spa town discovered by the Romans and beloved of mid-19th century socialites, was shrouded in mist the morning of our visit in mid-December 2019. It was a sublimely beautiful spectacle. We had come on a day trip from Gengenbach – just a 40-minute train ride away – to walk along the Lichtentaler Allee, Baden-Baden’s famous avenue, which takes one from Lichtenthal Abbey to Baden-Baden’s Kurhaus along a path that largely follows the course of the Oos river. From Baden-Baden train station we took bus 201 to the abbey and began our walk, the bare trees of the parks and gardens lining the route starkly beautiful in the mist. As we came closer to the centre of town the large houses along the riverbank, some with private bridges, ceded pride of place to grand public buildings, and the route grew busier. After an hour or so we arrived at the centre of town – where the Kurhaus and casino are located – to find a marvellous Christmas market taking place and a display of beautiful, hand-carved nativities in the adjacent Trinkhalle.