Carnival in Germany is one of the most famous festivals in the world. Carnival is not a game thing for the Germans, as they form an essential part of the country’s identity. Carnival festivities are of great importance to Germany and are consideredthe craziest and happiest days, when people can dress up as their favorite character and be free.
Germany is known for having a generous amount of carnivals in various cities, regions and towns. These carnivals are diverse, colorful and interesting. However, don’t be fooled, as not all have the same characteristics. Some carnivals in Germany are colorful, full of music and sweet, while others are mysterious and archaic. There are parties for everyone, you just have to decide which one to go to.
Next, we accompany you to know the 10 best Carnivals in Germany..
Berlin is the birthplace of the most diverse carnival in all of Germany. The celebration emerged in mid-1996 as a tool to combat the xenophobia of demonstrations that occurred the previous year. The Carnival of Cultures is an instrument of respect, promotion and preservation of the culture of the communities in Berlin. Furthermore, it is a space in which people express themselves through art, music and dance. The events are held in the district of Kreuzberg, known for being one of the districts with the largest number of residents from the LGBTQ+ community. In this way, the festivities integrate various sectors of the community regardless of their sexual preference or nationality.
TheBerlin Carnival of Cultures was inspired by the Notting Hill Carnival and the Rotterdam Zomercarnival, both of which are known for their wide variety of festive elements andsocial integration. The Carnival has grown exponentially, from around 50,000 participants to more than one million. Likewise, the organization relies on the help of more than 4,000 people to assist in logistics and management.
Berlin’s Cultural Carnivals have a large number of events, of which theGreat Carnival Parade and the Street Party can be highlighted. The Street Party is a large venue where a large number of cultural and musical events take place. The Grand Parade is a macro event that integrates dozens of cultural groups from all continents of the world. In the parade, the variousgroupings perform dances and theatrical presentations that impress everyone. In addition, they featuretypical and colorful costumes, usually originating from their native country.
The Berlin Carnival of Cultures have a commitment to the environment. All products on hand are sourced from surrounding areas to reduce fossil fuel-driven transportation. In addition, the containers used for beverage and food consumption are biodegradable and have several recycling points within the venue.
The Carnival is celebrated during the month of March taking into consideration the events and manifestations that gave rise to the carnival. El Karneval der Kulturen or the Carnival of Cultures will take place from approximately May 21 to 24.
Eschweiler is located in the west of North-Westphalia, one of the 16 federal states that make up Germany. Carnivals in the town have been taking place since 1850, when the population was still 8,000. Even since then, the population performed some masked dances. However, it was not until 1933 that the first Rosenmontag was held. Since then, the carnivals have been integrating many more elements consecutively.
The Eschweiler carnivals integrate the participation of some20 carnival clubs that actively participate in the parade. These parades manage to congregate up to 300,000 people who come from different parts of the country to celebrate the festivities in the city. A good part of the events take place in the fountain of the city, since this has a great historical value of the festivities.
One of the most prominent characters in the Eschweiler Carnival is the Jeck. The Jeck, Jeckes in plural, is a representation of the jester. This character is actually one of the most popular costumes in the city. Thousands of Jeckes congregate in the streets to celebrate the Carnival festivities of Eschweiler with animosity.
Parades are definitely the main attraction at the festivities, with several of these occurring on different days. It is normal to see various satirical, humorous and mocking messages towards the political and social figures of the city and the country. The costumes are also one of the focal points, with hundreds of thousands of colorful and themed costumes each year.
The Eschweiler Carnival is a carnival that follows the conventional calendar of carnival festivities, which takes place before Ash Wednesday.
The Dieburg Carnival takes place in one of the federal states of Germany known as Hesse. Carnival has been present in thecity of Dieburg for about 500 years or so. However, festivals in a more organized and structured form have been a part of the city since 1838. That same year was when the first carnival guilds began to emerge.
The city becomes a magical colorful setting to celebrate the very special carnival festivities. Like many other cities and towns in Germany, the jester costume is a favorite of the whole society. Thousands and thousands of dummies and jesters take to the streets of the city to dance, party and eat in large numbers.
The Carnival has a good amount of events, in which they integrate each of the sectors of the city. Children and adults can celebrate joyfully with the various activities that are organized in the city. These events begin during the month of November, when they choose the princes of the children and adult categories. These carnival princes are present during all the events of the month of February and March and are the main figures of the festivities.
Dieburg Carnivals follow the traditional carnival calendar, taking place between the months of February and March. Although Dieburg Carnival holds some events in the month of November, the carnival reaches its peak on Monday and Shrove Tuesday.
Carnivals are held in the city of Braunschweig, also known as Brunswick, located in thecentral region of Germany, belonging to the state of Lower Saxony. Carnival has been present in Braunschweig for more than 700 years. Originally, the carnival held a celebration known as Schoduvel, which consisted of a sort of ritual to drive away evil spirits. During the Schoduvel the people made a great deal of noise, wore masks and behaved strangely to drive out evil spirits.
During theCarnival festivities, the lion city, as Braunschweig is known, celebratesthe arrival of spring through costumes and various activities. Some of the costumes that are constantly repeated is thebear costume. This character wears a dress made of straw and wooden mask. This bear represents the Schoduvel, which in turn represents cold, winter and even death.
The parades in Braunschweig are utterly impressive. More than 100 themed floats take part in the main parade. In addition, around 5,000 people enliven the streets with costumes and music. All these elements comprise green and spring colored designs, in this way the city says goodbye to winter to make way for the warm and colorful spring.
Braunschweig Carnival has some events that take place during the month of November; however, it is not until February that the festivities come alive. TheGrand Carnival Parade takes place on approximately Monday, February 14.
The city of Aachen is the birthplace ofone of the most important and popular carnivals in all of Germany. The city is located in one of the16 federal states of Germany known as North Rhine-Westphalia. Carnival in the city has been taking place since the 18th century. Initially, the carnivals were based on mockery towards the French occupiers, so the townspeople wore costumes resembling soldiers’ uniforms and performed silly antics and walked in a graceful manner.
Although centuries have passed since its first celebration, Aachen still has that mocking and satirical element that characterizes its carnivals. Every year, political figures are mocked at the festivities. The designs of the floats and costumes feature elements that refer to public figures of the city and the country. Usually these figures are not at all flattering, but still they are small graceful and funny gestures that hurt no one..
The carnival in the city of Aachen is probably the most anticipated festival of the whole year. The streets are filled with funny characters and floats. The parade is by default one of the most anticipated events of the whole celebration. Dozens of beautifully crafted floats cross the streets of the city;throwing candy, chocolates and sweets into the crowd. In addition, the celebration features a generous amount of dancers, musicians and tons of delicious traditional food.
The Aachen Carnival takes place during the traditional carnival calendar, prior to Christian Lent. PEthe Aachen Carnival will be held from approximately February 11 to 15. In addition, a preliminary ceremony is also held on November 11 at 11:11:.
Munich Carnival is one of the biggest, most impressive and best-known carnivals in the whole country. Munich is the capital of the state of Bavaria, located in the south of the country. The carnival is a pagan celebration that has been present in the city for centuries. The first recorded carnival event in the city was a masked dance held in 1897.
During the festivities,the carnival in Munich is known as Fasching. The Fasching is filled with fun celebrations, colorful costumes, music everywhere andfunny floats. One of the most iconic events of the festival is the Tanz der Marktfrauen or Market Women’s Ball, which involves a huge celebration wherethe women dance, sing and celebrate. Also, the carnival has a royal court, including Prince and Princess of Carnival who are chosen at an event held in November.
The Munich Carnival is a unique celebration of its kind. In addition, represent one of the most important events of the city, functioning as an identity celebration for citizens. Munich is undoubtedly one of the cities where the carnival is taken to the limit, where everyone wants to party and have a good time.
Like many other carnival celebrations, the Munich carnivals take place before Christian Lent. Which means that the carnival in the city takes place between the months of February and March.
Mainz has one of the most unique carnivals in all of Germany. The city of Mainz is located in the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate or Rhineland-Palatinate. The city lies on the rings of the Rhine River. Carnivals have been held in the city since the beginning of the 19th century. Back then, the carnival was held as a form of protest against the French troops who had occupied the city. Although centuries have passed since then, the carnivals in Mainz still maintain this satirical theme towards the public people of the country.
Mainz Carnival is probably the celebration with the strongest humor of all. Almost the entire event revolves around humorous and satirical elements towardspublic personalities, politicians and celerities. However, the carnival also offers spaces for different sectors of society to enjoy the festivities.
The carnivals are completely packed withfun events for everyone. Children can enjoy the festivities with the different activities and workshops with masks, costumes and music. On the other hand, adults participate in the big carnival events and parades. The main event takes place onMonday of Carnival, better known as Rosenmontag. During the event, the streets are filled with thousands of people. In addition, some particular big-headed charactersalso make a presence in the streets, strutting through the streets.
This celebration is held on the traditional dates of the carnival, so it takes place between the months of February and March.
The city of Düsseldorf is the epicenter of one of the most epic carnivals in the entire country. Düsseldorf is located in one of the federal states of Germany known as North Rhine-Westphalia. Carnival in the city has been present since the year 1360. However, it was in the 19th century when the festivities took on much more strength, first held on Rosenmorgen in the year 1813. Since then, the carnival has positioned itself as one of the most important and recognized throughout the country.
Carnival is celebrated in the various streets, squares and avenues of the city; however, it is in the historic center where it acquires much more strength. Thousands of people from all over the country and Europe come to the streets to celebrate. Likewise, there are also a good number ofevents taking place on the banks of the Rhine River. People dance, sing and party while watching the river from a distance.
One of the main events is the Weiberfastnacht. The event consists of a huge women’s demonstration. Thousands of women leave their husbands and children at home, put on their bestfantastic and colorful costumes and go out to party in the streets. Every corner of the city becomes a greatmusical stage for thousands of women who dance, sing and celebrate. Another of the most important events is the Rosenmontag, held on Carnival Monday. During the day, tens of floats and thousands of people take to the streets of the city in a celebration of costumes, color, music and celebration.
The Düsseldorf Carnival is held before Christian Lent, which means that it takes place between the months of February and March. The Düsseldorf Carnival will be held from approximately February 11 to 17.
The Black Forest Carnival is probablythe most unique and interesting celebration of all carnival festivals in the country. The event takes place in various locations in southwestern Germany. Due to the nature of the region, dense wooded vegetation, the whole area is known as “Black Forest“. Thestate of Baden-Württemberg covers most of the area, but it is also shared with other adjacent states. Carnival has been present in this region since theMiddle Ages, although it was refined over time to its current form.
Black Forest Carnivals are nothing like the rest of the country’s celebrations. These are, in fact, somewhat dark and mysterious celebrations, as they feature elements such as somewhat disturbing and terrifying masks. During carnival, several villages do not wear funny colors or clown costumes, but instead put on masks of witches, demons and scary animals. All this due to the belief that these masks can chase away the evil spirits of winter and make way for spring.
Despite having completely different elements, theBlack Forest Carnival still features parades and events characteristic of the festivities. During the parade, hundreds ofcarnival groups take to the streets with theircharacteristic masks. Some of these characters perform jokes, hit with balloons or oblige spectators to perform challenges. If you attend this carnival, you’d better stay away from the border line so as not to be the butt of the pranks.
Because Selva Negra occupies several locations all of which are independent, it is difficult to determine an exact date, with some villages starting the festivities earlier. However, the carnivals always take place between the month of February and March and culminate before Ash Wednesday. Some villages extend the festivities after that date.
The Cologne Carnival is among the biggest, most popular and most famous carnivals in the whole country. The celebration takes place in the city of Cologne, onthe banks of the Rhine River in western Germany. The carnivals have a long history in the city, as they have been part of the traditions since the Middle Ages. However, in their beginnings they were stillprimitive festivals, which evolved into their present form.
Cologne Carnivals are a complete marvel, full of events, celebration and music from beginning to end. The characteristic motto of the celebration is “Los Días Locos“. For this reason, the entire population wears crazy and colorful costumes. The most repeated costume at parties is the clown costume. However, there are no rules at carnivals and you can dress up as anything you want. After all, carnival is the happiest time of the year.
Every year, carnivals choose a particular theme with which they develop the festivities. The carnival features the theme of “Nur zesamme sin mer Fastelovend“, which in English would be “Only together are we carnivals“. Each year, the carnival features a host offestive and joyous events, some even starting in November. However, it is not until theThursday before Shrove Monday that the city is completely transformed for parades, dances and shows..
Technically, Carnival begins on November 11 at 11:11, at which time the opening ceremony of the carnivals takes place, but it is not until February that the real festivities begin. The Cologne Carnival will be held from approximately February 11 to 17.