Spring Festivals in Germany are an ancient tradition, started by some of the country’s very first generations. In Eisenach, on the western edge of Thuringia, you’ll find the biggest version that the region has to offer. Here, the festival marks the expulsion of Winter, and begins with an enormous parade through the streets, with over 1,200 participants on floats and carriages, watched by around 70,000 spectators. Summer and Winter debate and argue, until finally the matter is settled and Winter (in the form of a straw doll) is ceremonially burned. The festival features competitions, fairground rides, and a carnival, as well as food stalls, beer tents and children’s activities. A great opportunity to see one of Germany’s oldest and most important cultural traditions up close.

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