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Celebrating Fasching: Germany's Version of Carnival / Mardis Gras

Updated: Jan 17


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

If you love Halloween 🎃, parties 🎉, and parades 🎺, you don't want to miss this! Coming up in February, this is a German cultural experience I highly recommend 💯.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Pertinent Information:


Several major cities hold large festivals and events:


1️⃣ Cologne is considered the #1 city.


2️⃣ Düsseldorf


3️⃣ Mainz


4️⃣ Munich


Other cities of note are Aachen, Frankfurt, Bonn, Würzburg, and Stuttgart! I've even had the Black Forest recommended. Local events will also be held in most smaller villages and cities.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

What is Fasching?


Fasching is a festive season marking the period before Lent, leading up to Ash Wednesday 🎊. It typically occurs in January and February, culminating on Shrove/Fat Tuesday (Feb 13th, 2024), the day before Ash Wednesday (February 14th).


It is a time for revelry 🥳, and participants often wear colorful costumes and masks and attend masquerade balls 🎭. Traditional Fasching costumes may include characters from folklore, historical figures, or imaginative and humorous creations. I've seen ALLLL kinds. They don't seem to have the same issues with "cultural appropriation" here (etc.), so as an American, you may be shocked at the costumes you will see 😅. I've seen Native Americans, "gangsters" with giant blow-up guns, and even an "Arab" with a huge gold bling necklace 📿! It is absolutely hilarious. I'm honestly here for it. If you aren't belittling other cultures or wearing garb with specific cultural significance, then it's all in good fun! Plus, remember, this isn't OUR country or culture. Who are WE to judge 🤷‍♂️!?


Different regions in Germany may have variations of the celebration, and the names for this pre-Lenten period can differ. In some parts of Germany, it's known as Fasching (this is our area), while in others, it may be referred to as Karneval or Fastnacht 💃🍾🎶. Despite the regional differences in names and specific customs, the essence of Fasching remains the same. It is a joyous celebration and festivities before the more solemn Lent begins ✝️.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

What Should I Wear?


Choosing a costume for Fasching can be a fun and creative process👘! It's a festive time, and you'll see all kinds of colorful and imaginative costumes 🌈. Below, you'll find examples of popular costume themes:


  1. Traditional German Characters

  2. Fairytale Characters

  3. Animals

  4. Fantasy Creatures

  5. Historical Figures

  6. Superheroes and Villains

  7. Pop Culture Icons

  8. Pirates

  9. Masquerade Ball Attire

  10. Circus Performers

  11. Mime or Harlequin

  12. Movie Characters

  13. Cartoon Characters

  14. Group Costumes


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Feel free to be imaginative and express your personality through your costume. Whatever you choose, make sure it's comfortable for dancing and enjoying the festivities 🕺!


Also, warm.


Make sure your costume is warm 🌡️.


It's February, y'all, and the parades and many activities are outdoors 🥶!


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Fasching parades are typically held on or around Rose Monday (Rosenmontag), the highlight of the carnival season in Germany 📅.


That's Monday, February 12th this year (2024)!


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

I attended two Fasching parades last year 🎉. One in Mainz and the other at Sankt Wendel. I don't enjoy large cities and crowds, so personally, I preferred the local parade at Sankt Wendel 👌. Mainz was a bit crazy for my tastes, but many of my friends loved it!


If you would like to join me at Sankt Wendel, I will attend again on February 11th at 2:11 pm!


Suggested Parking Lot 🅿️:

I have parked here several times.

Hopefully, it will open again!


Last year, I left early, had brunch at Café Restaurant Journal around 10 am 🍳, and then went outside to get my spot for the parade 🥁! It was the perfect schedule.


Don't worry that you won't find the parade. Just head towards the church , follow the crowds, and you'll quickly find it!


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

What can I expect?


Fun! Lots of it 🙌!


Germans love a good party, and Fasching is no exception 🎊.


They will throw candy 🍬 and items into the crowd (bring a bag), and many of the floats in the parade will be mobile mini parties themselves. Music 🎶, dancing 💃, and, of course, lots of drinking 🍺!


Speaking of drinking, bring a cup! As they walk by, many will have alcohol, and they are often willing to share 🥂!


I'm a little old for that personally. All it sounds like to me is a major hangover 🤕🍻🙈.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

In the smaller villages, this will be a way for the local clubs and businesses to advertise, such as this cheerleading group above 🔼.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Mainz is known for its parades being quite the political affair 🏛️.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Nothing is off the table.


Look at this incredible Star Wars-themed float 😮!


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Outfits can be quite the thrown-together hodgepodge. These gentlemen bought hats, strapped a crateful of beer to their backs, did a little face paint and patches, and called it a day 😄!


Love it 👏.


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

Onesies seem to be very popular.


Probably because they are warm 🧥.

Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

The one thing you can tell is that everyone is having a grand time 😃.


What are you waiting for?


Make plans now 🗓️!


Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

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Fasching in Germany German Carnival Fasching Traditions Karneval Celebrations Rose Monday Parade Fasching Costumes Carnival Events in Germany Fasching Dates German Fasching Festivals Cologne Karneval Düsseldorf Carnival Mainz Fasching Fasching Season Carnival Music Germany German Fasching Masks Fasching Street Parties Fasching Cultural Heritage Rhineland Karneval Fasching Street Parades German Carnival Celebrations

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