Bavaria is a region with many traditions and customs of which its people are very proud. The Oktoberfest is probably the best known, but there are a multitude of others that guarantee as much fun and a lot of insight into the Bavarian and German way of life. For a (more) complete list of festivals and events contact www.oberbayern-tourismus.de and ask for their brochure “Veranstaltungen in Oberbayern.” This appears twice a year and has all the exact dates.
Auer Dult in Munich last Saturday April
Funfair in the Au , always lasts 9 days last Saturday July
München, Marienplatz, Schwabing, Haidhausen four weeks in Advent
There are many other Christmas markets nearby, e.g. , Nürnberg, Bad Tölz, and Salzburg to name a few. Check www.germany-christmas-market.org.uk for a more complete listing. Almost any town or community will have at least a weekend market during the Advent season.
Fackeltan z in Salzburg Beginning of Salzburg Festival
150 young dancers with torches dance in the court in front of the residence.
See above. There are also processions in Austria; in Switzerland it is a week later, with wonderful events in Basel and Lucerne.
Jousting with boats at Starnbergersee, every five years (next in 2007)
Very interesting Corpus Christi processions held in Füssen 8.00, Lenggries 9.00, and also Schliersee, Tegernsee, and Weyarn.
Medieval festival held every three years in Mindelheim.
Georgiritt – Procession on horseback on St. George'S Day End April
Auerberg/Weilheim, 10.30, also in Tittmoning and Traunstein (Easter Monday)
Medieval festival with Knights' jousting tournament
Commemoration of King Ludwig II, 9.00 in Berg
Commemorates the wedding of a Bavarian prince with a Polish princess, performed by the people of Landshut every four years (next in 2009).
Horse-drawn coaches, beautifully decorated in honor of St. Leonard, patron of horses and animals; Bad Tölz 9.00-11.00 (biggest in Bavaria), Bendiktbeuern 9.30-10.15, also in Grafing, Guntersberg (Rosenheim), Kreuth, Murnau, Peißenberg, Schliesee, Unterammergau, etc. Somtetimes on the Sunday before or after.
Horseback procession in Lenggries , Utting, etc.
Custom: Every four - five years a new maypole ( Maibaum) must be erected in a community. This is usually done by manpower with lots of Bavarian music and beer. The pole will be delivered to the community a couple of weeks before, will be painted and decorated, and is guarded all the time. Neighboring communities will try to steal the maypole before its erection; then it has to be bought back with lots of beer and a Brotzeit .
Biggest beer festival and funfair of the world, huge beer tents and lots of spectacular rides.
the first Saturday morning the “ Einzug der Wirte ” takes place, and on the following Sunday the “ Trachten- und Schützenfestzug ”; both processions will pass through the inner city. First Oktoberfest was in 1810 on the occasion of the wedding of crown prince Ludwig I.
The world famous Passion Play, with the next performance in 2010, a religious play about the crucifixion of Jesus, lasts almost a whole day. Residents of Oberammergau are the actors. Supposedly, the origin lies in the 17th century, when the people of Oberammergau pledged to hold Pasionsspiele in order to escape the Black Death.
Parade with grotesque masks and costumes; starts at 4.00 pm.
Race with big sleds and rather daring, costumed young men.
Bonfires on the mountains around Tegernsee
Known as the “fifth season,” the Starkbierfest is a beer festival where strong, dark beer should sustain you throughout the fasting period of Lent. It is celebrated at the different brewery restaurants for two weeks each. The most famous one is the Nockerberg (Salvator beer). The beer is very high in alcohol. Politicians beware: your performance of the last 12 months will be ridiculed.