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g German Culture Site

BellaOnline's German Culture Editor

Germany´s Seasonal Attractions

From Christmas and Carnival to Oktoberfest, throughout the year there is always one event or another taking place somewhere in Germany, and they are often been based upon generations of tradition.

Carnival in Cologne, Women´s Thursday star
Carnival in Germany began in ancient times, with masked Teutons making as much noise as possible to chase away the evil spirits of winter. And in the Cologne area it now begins with ´Weiberfastnacht´, where women take over the streets and no necktie is safe.

Carnival in Germany star
It is known as Karneval, Fastnacht or Fasching depending upon the region, and the ways of celebrating it are also very different, but the basic idea of feasting, fun and organized chaos before Lent remains.

Germany´s Traditional Christmas Markets star
Famous the world over ´Weihnachtsmarkte´ are an essential, enchanting and unforgettable part of Germany´s holiday season for tourists and Germans alike. Throughout the entire country Advent in Germany signals the opening of the traditional, and atmospheric, Christmas markets that take place everywhere from cities large to villages small.

Munich´s Oktoberfest star
A huge, historic, country fair, the world’s largest Volksfest. The Oktoberfest started as a horse race to honour a royal wedding and over 200 years later, although it has moved with the times, it remains an annual festival of traditional Bavarian exuberance, draught beer and beer garden food.

Oktoberfest in Munich, 15 Fast Facts star
Albert Einstein once worked there as an electrician, an intoxicated dachshund was delivered to Lost and Found, it uses enough electricity to give 52 years of power to a home for four, and emigrants from Germany have taken it all over the world, but Oktoberfest began over 200 years ago in Munich.

Sylvester and The New Year in Germany star
Sylvester, Germany´s celebration of New Years Eve, is a mixture of ancient and relatively modern tradition, based in part on customs from the country´s Pagan past and all designed to ensure that the coming year will have the best chance possible of becoming a vintage one.

The Oberammergau Passion Play star
The beautiful alpine village of Oberammergau, is renowned for its houses painted with ‘Lueftlmalerei´, typical Bavarian religious or fairytale pictures, and for the Passion Play which has taken place there for over 300 years.

Walpurgisnacht, May Day and Maibaum in Germany star
May 1st, May Day Celebrations, in many parts of Germany are filled with Maypoles and Mayhem, chasing away the winter and marking the beginning of summer. It is a long way from May Day parades with soldiers, rifles and tanks in former communist countries, including what was ´East Germany´.

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