The temperature in February is not yet so high, not like the summer heat. But in February, Cologne is extraordinarily lively, because the Cologne Carnival brings people joy at this time of year! The carnival in Cologne has a long history of more than 190 years. The medieval carnival was extreme and crazy, but later, influenced by the Venetian ball form of celebration, the various customs of the carnival gradually inherited to today.
Thus, through the evolution of time, Cologne's carnival has its unique charm and romance, becoming a true national carnival. The timing of the Cologne Carnival is not fixed every year and varies depending on the timing of Easter, but Rose Monday is the highlight of the carnival every year. It doesn't matter if you're not sure of the time, because you can check the schedule in advance on the official website, and once you've determined the best time for Mardi Gras, you can buy your tickets and get ready to enjoy your carnival! The Thursday before "Rose Monday" is the official climax of the carnival; it is also known as "Ladies' Carnival". At 11:11 a.m. in the old marketplace of Cologne (AltMarkt), everyone dresses up in costumes and sings along with exaggerated makeup and hairstyles.
The opening ceremony is held at the Alter Markt every year, and it is especially important to note that, according to tradition, women are free to cut men's ties on this day, and experienced men usually change into an old tie, or buy some fun ties at the carnival supply store for the ladies' pleasure. In addition, each neighbourhood's small carnival float parade will start one after another. Rose Monday is the culmination of the whole carnival, and the whole of Cologne goes crazy for it. The slogan of the whole city is "Kölle Alaaf" (Long live Cologne)! Whether you are a friend or a stranger meeting for the first time, everyone becomes a friend and the whole city is in a carnival mood.
People wait early in the morning at the stations set up in the city to watch the parade, and a parade of floats comes by with drums and gongs, shouting "Kamella" (candy)! The floats will then scatter handfuls of candy.
The parade always includes the representative of the carnival: clowns! The animal theme is also an annual favourite; medieval knights are heroic; various seasonal popular cartoon characters are also endless, and making fun of celebrities is also one of the themes of the carnival.
Neighbourhood carnival floats
According to the organization unit and schedule of each neighbourhood, there will also be many floats parade by district, which is very convenient for people who do not want to squeeze into the city or older people who are not convenient to travel, as long as they are near their homes, they can also enjoy the carnival fun. How about it, after reading about the Cologne Carnival are you interested, believe me, going to the carnival must be one of the most unforgettable life experiences you will ever have. Because on this day you can enjoy yourself, be 100% immersed in joy with your family or friends, and celebrate with the locals, which is an excellent way to get to know the local culture.