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)

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

Through January 6:  Christmas Garden Berlin (light show in Berlin Botanical Gardens; also held in Dresden and Stuttgart)

January 25–February 3:  CTM Festival, Berlin (electronic / experimental music and art)

January 26–February 3:  Montgolfiade Hot-Air Balloon Festival, Lake Tegern (east of Oberammergau, in Bavaria)

January 27:  Remembrance Day for the Victims of National Socialism

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 7–17:  Berlin International Film Festival (a.k.a. "Berlinale")

April 12–May 5:  Thuringian Bach Weeks, Erfurt

April 18–22 & 26–28:  FestungsLeuchten, Koblenz (sound-and-light show along the Rhine at Ehrenbreitstein fortress; fireworks show on final evening)

April 19:  Good Friday (Karfreitag)

April 20–22:  Ostermünde, Travemünde (beach bonfire and other Easter-themed celebrations near Lübeck)

April 20–May 12:  Spring Festival, Nürnberg (rides and costumes in Luitpoldhain park)

April 21–22:  Easter Sunday and Monday (Ostersonntag and Ostermontag; closures)

April 26–May 12:  Spring Festival, Munich (Frühlingsfestival, the "little sister of Oktoberfest")

May 1:  May Day (maypole dances; closures)

May 11–18:  Green Sauce Festival, Frankfurt (street music, green-sauce sampling)

May 16–June 10:  Dresden Music Festival (classical music performances)

May 22–31:  Fressgass' Fest, Frankfurt

May 24–June 23:  Mozartfest, Würzburg

May 29–June 10:  Weindorf wine festival, Würzburg

May 30:  Ascension Day (closures)

May 31–June 16:  Handel Festival, Halle

June 7–10 (likely):  Meistertrunk Show, Rothenburg (historic play and market, medieval costumes, Biergarten parties)

June 7–10:  Carnival of Cultures, Berlin (street parade on Sunday)

June 9–10:  Pentecost (Pfingsten) and Whit Monday (Pfingstmontag; closures)

June 14–16:  Luther's Wedding festival, Wittenberg

June 14–23:  Bach Festival, Leipzig

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

June 20:  Corpus Christi (Fronleichnam, closures in southern and western Germany)

June 21–23 (likely):  Elbhangfest, Dresden (music, dance, wine)

June 26–July 21 (likely):  Tollwood Summer Festival, Munich (concert series, art, street theater)

June 28–30 (likely):  Oberlindenhock, Freiburg (street food, live music)

July 4–8 (likely):  Classic Open Air, Berlin (music on Gendarmenmarkt)

July 4–9 (likely):  Freiburg Wine Festival (local wines, live music)

July 5–21:  Kiliani Volksfest, Würzburg (county fair–type folk festival)

July 12–21 (likely):  Kinderzeche, Dinkelsbühl (traditional dancing, parades)

July (3 weekends): Kaltenberg Knights' Tournament (huge jousting festival, near Munich)

July 13:  Kölner Lichter, Cologne (fireworks and music)

July 19–21:  Melt Festival, Gräfenhainichen (electronic music and indie rock, near Wittenberg)

July 19–August 4 (likely):  Sommerwerft, Frankfurt (theatre and arts festival)

July 21:  Klassik Open Air, Nürnberg (series of free classical concerts and fireworks in Luitpoldhain park)

July 25–29 (likely):  Schlossbergfest, Freiburg (music festival on Schlossberg hill)

July 26–28 (likely):  Bardentreffen Nürnberg (world music festival)

August 2–4 (likely):  International Beer Festival, Berlin

August 3:  Klassik Open Air, Nürnberg (series of free classical concerts and firewords in Luitpoldhain park)

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

August 14–18 (likely):  Weindorf wine festival, Rothenburg ob der Tauber

August 22–26:  Wine festival, Cochem

August 22–26 (likely):  Sandkerwa Bavarian folk festival, Bamberg

August 23–25:  Museumsuferfest, Frankfurt (music, food, culture)

August 23–September 8:  Fall Folk Festival, Nürnberg (rides and costumes in Luitpoldhain park)

August 28–September 6 (likely):  Rheingau Wine Festival, Frankfurt

August 30–November 3 (likely):  Ludwigsburg (Baden-Württemberg) Pumpkin Festival

September 4–14 (likely):  International Literature Festival Berlin

September 6–8:  Medieval festival, Selb (on the Czech border, northest of Nürnberg)

September 6–8 (likely):  Reichsstadt Festival, Rothenburg ob der Tauber (fireworks)

September 20–October 13 (likely):  Berliner Oktoberfest

September 21:  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 21–October 6:  Oktoberfest, Munich (a.k.a. Wies'n)

September 26–October 5 (likely):  Filmfest Hamburg

September 27–October 13 (likely):  Cannstatter Volksfest (Oktoberfest in Stuttgart)

September 27–October 13 (likely):  Berlin Leutchtet (festival of lights)

October 1–14 (likely):  Wine harvest festival, Neustadt an der Weinstrasse

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

October 11–13 (likely):  Onion Market festival, Weimar

October 16–20:  Frankfurter Buchmesse (huge book fair and publishers' convention)

October 18–31 (likely; weekends):  Halloween in Frankenstein Castle (near Darmstadt)

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

October 31–November 3:  Jazzfest Berlin

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

November 21:  Repentance Day (closures in Saxony)

November 22–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 Christmas Garden Berlin (light show in Berlin Botanical Gardens)

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)