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Upcoming Holidays and Festivals in Germany

Hofbräuhaus musicians, Munich, Germany
The spirit of Oktoberfest lives on year-round in Munich's beer halls.
  • Before planning a trip around a festival, verify the festival dates on the festival's website or with a local tourist information office. For more information about these and other events, visit the official tourism site for Germany.
  • This list includes major festivals in major cities, plus national holidays observed throughout Germany. Many sights and banks close down on national holidays — keep it in mind when planning your itinerary. Note that this isn't a complete list; holidays can strike without warning.
  • See upcoming holidays and festivals across Europe


January 1:  New Year's Day (closures)

Through January 5:  Christmas Garden Berlin (light show in Berlin Botanical Gardens; also held in Dresden and Stuttgart)

January 6:  Epiphany (Heilige Drei Könige, volunteers dressed as Three Kings go door-to-door caroling and collecting for charity; some closures)

January 24–February 2:  CTM Festival, Berlin (electronic / experimental music and art)

January 27:  Remembrance Day for the Victims of National Socialism

February 5–20:  Montgolfiade Hot-Air Balloon Festival, Lake Tegern (east of Oberammergau, in Bavaria)

February–March:  Fasching/Fasnacht (carnival season, balls, parades in the days leading up to Ash Wednesday; Cologne's huge Rosenmontag parade is March 4)

February 20–March 1:  Berlin International Film Festival (a.k.a. "Berlinale")

April 3–April 26:  Thuringian Bach Weeks, Erfurt

April 10:  Good Friday (Karfreitag)

April 10–13:  Ostermünde, Travemünde (beach bonfire and other Easter-themed celebrations near Lübeck)

April 11–26:  Spring Festival, Nürnberg (rides and costumes in Luitpoldhain park)

April 12–13:  Easter Sunday and Monday (Ostersonntag and Ostermontag; closures)

Late April:  FestungsLeuchten, Koblenz (sound-and-light show along the Rhine at Ehrenbreitstein fortress; fireworks show on final evening)

April 24–May 10 (likely):  Spring Festival, Munich (Frühlingsfestival, the "little sister of Oktoberfest")

May 1:  May Day (maypole dances; closures)

May 9–16:  Green Sauce Festival, Frankfurt (street music, green-sauce sampling)

May 12–June 12:  Dresden Music Festival (classical music performances)

May 20–29:  Fressgass' Fest, Frankfurt

May 21:  Ascension Day (closures)

Late May–early June:  Mozartfest, Würzburg

May 29–June 7:  Weindorf wine festival, Würzburg

May 29–June 1:  Carnival of Cultures, Berlin (street parade on Sunday)

May 31–June 1:  Pentecost (Pfingsten) and Whit Monday (Pfingstmontag; closures)

Early June:  Handel Festival, Halle

Early June:  Meistertrunk Show, Rothenburg (historic play and market, medieval costumes, Biergarten parties)

June 11:  Corpus Christi (Fronleichnam, closures in southern and western Germany)

June 11–21:  Bach Festival, Leipzig

June 12–14:  Luther's Wedding festival, Wittenberg

June 19–21:  Stadtteilfest Bunte Republik Neustadt, Dresden (huge counter-cultural block party celebrating the Outer New Town's tongue-in-cheek status as an independent republic)

Late June–late July:  Tollwood Summer Festival, Munich (concert series, art, street theater)

June 26–28:  Elbhangfest, Dresden (music, dance, wine)

June 26–28:  Oberlindenhock, Freiburg (street food, live music)

July 1–6:  Freiburg Wine Festival (local wines, live music)

July 2–6:  Classic Open Air, Berlin (music on Gendarmenmarkt)

July 3–19:  Kiliani Volksfest, Würzburg (county fair–type folk festival)

July 17–26:  Kinderzeche, Dinkelsbühl (traditional dancing, parades)

July 10–26 (weekends):  Kaltenberg Knights' Tournament (huge jousting festival, near Munich)

July 17–19:  Melt Festival, Gräfenhainichen (electronic music and indie rock, near Wittenberg)

July 17–August 2 (likely):  Sommerwerft, Frankfurt (theatre and arts festival)

July 18:  Kölner Lichter, Cologne (fireworks and music)

July 18 & 26:  Klassik Open Air, Nürnberg (series of free classical concerts and fireworks in Luitpoldhain park)

July 31–August 2:  Bardentreffen Nürnberg (world music festival)

August (3 days):  International Beer Festival, Berlin

August 12–16:  Weindorf wine festival, Rothenburg ob der Tauber

August 15:  Assumption (Mariä Himmelfahrt, closures in Bavaria and Saarland)

August 20–24:  Sandkerwa Bavarian folk festival, Bamberg

August 21–23 (likely):  Museumsuferfest, Frankfurt (music, food, culture)

August 21–September 6:  Fall Folk Festival, Nürnberg (rides and costumes in Luitpoldhain park)

August 26–September 4 (likely):  Rheingau Wine Festival, Frankfurt

August 27–31:  Wine festival, Cochem

September 4–6:  Medieval festival, Selb (on the Czech border, northest of Nürnberg)

September 4–6 (likely):  Reichsstadt Festival, Rothenburg ob der Tauber (fireworks)

September 9–19 (likely):  International Literature Festival Berlin

September 18–October 11 (likely):  Berliner Oktoberfest

September 19:  Rhine in Flames festival, St. Goar (fireworks; nearby towns on the Rhine host the Rhine in Flames earlier in the year; check online for dates)

September 19–October 4:  Oktoberfest, Munich (a.k.a. Wies'n)

September 24–October 3:  Filmfest Hamburg

September 25–October 11 (likely):  Cannstatter Volksfest (Oktoberfest in Stuttgart)

October 2–12:  Wine harvest festival, Neustadt an der Weinstrasse

October 3:  German Unity Day (Tag der Deutschen Einheit; closures)

October 7–18 (likely):  Berlin Leutchtet (festival of lights)

October 9–11:  Onion Market festival, Weimar

October 14–18:  Frankfurter Buchmesse (huge book fair and publishers' convention)

October 23–November 8 (weekends; dates likely):  Halloween in Frankenstein Castle (near Darmstadt)

October 29–November 1:  Jazzfest Berlin

October 31:  Reformation Day celebration, Wittenberg (and closures in some Protestant areas)

November 1:  All Saints' Day (Allerheiligen, closures in southern and western Germany)

November 6:  Leonhardifahrt, Bad Tölz (traditional Bavarian religious procession in spa town south of Munich)

November 9:  Night of Broken Glass Remembrance Day; anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall

November 11:  St. Martin's Day (Martinstag) and official start to Karneval season (colorful costumes and revelry in Cologne)

November 13–January 6 (likely):  Christmas Garden Berlin (light show in Berlin Botanical Gardens; also held in Dresden and Stuttgart)

November 18:  Repentance Day (closures in Saxony)

November 24–December 31 (likely):  Tollwood Winter Festival, Munich (music, circus, and cultural events performed on Oktoberfest fairgrounds)

December:  Christmas markets throughout Germany, particularly in Nürnberg, Munich, Rothenburg, and Freiburg, and Berlin

December 6:  St. Nikolaus Day (parades; kids get gifts from St. Nick)

December 24:  Christmas Eve (Der Heilige Abend, when Germans celebrate Christmas)

December 25:  Christmas Day (closures)

December 26:  Boxing Day (closures)

December 31:  New Year's Eve (Silvester; fireworks, particularly big in Berlin)