Carnival in Cologne – The Locals’ guide

Kölle Alaaf (by Netgnom

Kölle Alaaf (by Netgnom

On Thursday February 12th of this year the fun begins. The fun of the famous Cologne Carnival (Karneval). If you’re in the city during those days, you’ll probably want to know where you can experience the best of this Carnival…

Carnival Songs Cologne (by Jesuspresley @

Carnival Songs Cologne (by Jesuspresley @

Luckily for you, our Cologne Spotters have supplied several great tips, ensuring you’re not wandering around in Cologne, in a costume (or worse, without one because you didn’t bother to get one), hopelessly looking for where the party’s at.

Speaking of costumes, it is essential that you’re dressed up, you have to go all out! That’s where Judith’s recommendations come in handy in her ‘Costume – What to wear article‘. Further Cologne Carnival preparation includes learning all the songs. Even if you’re a foreigner, you’ve got no excuse with Tim Steins wonderful list of classic Carnival songs. Start practicing folks (in the shower, in the subway, in your car)!

With Julia’s two part Carnival Schedule (Overview 1 and Overview 2) you can decide in advance what parades or shows you’d like to see. And if there are terms or customs you’re unfamiliar with, then take a gander at Mathias’ Kölsch article. If you’ve finished watching the parade and you’re thirsty, then Tim’s list of our Cologne locals’ favorite pubs during Carnival is a great guide towards an even better Carnival experience.

Finally, we cannot leave out the little ones! If you’re visiting the Carnival with your kids then Judith has some great recommendations for you here.

Well there you have it, a comprehensive guide to experiencing Cologne’s Carnival like a local! Keep an eye on your valuables and stay safe, but most importantly, have fun!

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Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)