Carnival in Cologne and Düsseldorf

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Germany’s Carnival officially begins on November 11th at 11:11 a.m. and continues to quietly and sleep mode for no less than three months. No wonder the Germans call this carnival season «fifth season».

Carnival in Cologne

Photography by PresleyJesus

Cologne Carnival:

The real climax of the carnival arrives in Drei Tolle Tage (three crazy days) whose peak occurs in Rosenmontag (Monday), day 42 before Easter. By then, in Cologne, home to the largest carnival in Europe, a big party begins on Thursday (Altweiberfastnacht) just following Tuesday (Veilchendienstag) with the burning of the carnival spirit (Nubbelverbrennung), symbolizing the Atonement the sins committed during the carnival season.

On the feast of Weiberfastnacht (women’s carnival night) to be held on Thursday before Rosenmontag, a tradition that women cut the tie of any man to be put in reach, and kiss any man they want. This day is also the beginning of about 50 processions through the city and ending with the largest and most famous, the big parade on Shrove Monday (Rosenmontag parade, the Rose Monday), where more than 10,000 people March through grouped the streets of Cologne during outages.

The most famous stop this ride is the Prinzengarde Monday, where the prince of the carnival parade along with his bodyguard, submitted in early 1800 uniforms. These guards symbolize the anti-militarist tradition of Cologne, and its functions include the disobedience of orders (rotating in the opposite direction to which they are ordered) and carrying flowers to the muzzle of their rifles at that time.

Carnival in Cologne and Düsseldorf

Photography by PresleyJesus

The first record we have of the existence of the Cologne Carnival dates from 1341, which already mentions the protagonist of the triad: Prince Carnival (called Seine Tollitt?t (His Majesty the crazy), farmer (Bauer) and virgin (Jungfrau). As a curiosity, this virgin has always been interpreted by a man.

At present, the Cologne Carnival is celebrated in hundreds of streets and private premises. During this week, «crazy» the city never sleeps. The bars stay open 24 hours and everyone dances and attending meetings or roaming the streets day and night. The tradition is obligatory disguise brand (if it is not ridiculous), keeping a narrow glass of Kölsch beer in one hand and the other many sweets (kamellen) collected from throwing from the floats. The drink is mainly flowing beer, which is made exclusively in Cologne (Kölsch), home of the best breweries in Germany.

The Düsseldorf carnival:

Düsseldorf is one of the most important carnivals around the country, vying for primacy in Cologne. Perhaps influenced by the fact that both cities are only 40 km away. It is celebrated on the same dates of Cologne, between Thursday Laurel and Ash Wednesday, just before Easter.

People looking forward to the arrival of karneval, whose origins date back to medieval times, but its glory was purchased in the seventeenth century, when they celebrated the start of winter and served as a prelude to the arrival of Lent with noise, masks and costumes. In what was then a small fishing village, winter was played by a young man covered with straw to which the people symbolically casting. That victory was celebrated with music, delicacies, dances and jokes, the origin of what we enjoy today: one of the most popular carnivals, fun and noisy in Europe.

The festival begins with what is known as «The Assault on Women at City Hall.» On that day, the women «kidnapped» (in jest) to the mayor within the city’s Old Town, and this, for release, will have to pay them with bottles of wine and a presentation in which singing and dancing. After this, women will rule the city for a full day.

Carnival in Düsseldorf

Photography by hansdorsch

All the splendor of the Düsseldorf Carnival Parade live on Carnival Monday. The parade involved about 8,000 people wearing gaudy dresses you can imagine, that parade with about 70 floats and more than a hundred horses. The event was attended by more than a million and half people, and this confirms the importance of Carnival in Düsseldorf.

Good Luck!

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