Carnival in Portugal

I always liked Carnival (in Portugal), the costumes, the music, and the parades. It is a very fun celebration when, basically, no one cares what you are wearing. Back home, we have a big parade with samba dancers (like the traditional Brazilian ones) and funny costumes, and most of the time there are sarcastic and critics of many situations happening in the country. 

I’ve heard that the big carnival parades in Germany can also be very critical, and I was hoping I could visit Köln or Mainz to see them. Unfortunately, I couldn’t visit those cities for the carnival, but I saw the big parade, with 99 groups, in Dieburg. 

Dieburg Carnival parade
Dieburg Carnival parade© Elisa

Fassenacht in Germany

To be honest, I didn’t have so many expectations for the Fassenacht in Germany. Also, Dieburg is a really small town, so it lowered my expectations even more.

But then I went, bought a Wurst and a drink, and waited for the 99 groups. There were lots and lots of people, I didn’t even know there were so many people in Dieburg. Everyone was cheerful, and everyone wore a costume. I did not have a costume, and I felt out of place, but I felt so happy just to see the other people having fun with their cute and funny costumes. 

Then the parade started, and I loved to see every group! And there were also bands playing!! Some groups even had a huge car with people dancing on top of it. The groups were so creative, and we could see that they spent some time and effort on creating their costumes. Everything was so well done!

There were mermaids, vikings, ghostbusters, genies from the bottles, and so much more fun and creative costumes!

The best part? They were throwing candy at us. Yeah, yeah, the candy was for the children… but I couldn’t help but catch some for myself, the kids had enough of them!

Something else that was new to me was that we needed to scream something at the groups that were passing. They would scream „Dieburg!“ and we need to scream „Äla!“, and it changes from city to city. But it’s so fun to scream it! Although standing and screaming the same thing over and over again can be tiring. 



Something else that really surprised me (one year and a half in Germany, and still these things surprise me), is that five minutes after the parade finished, they were already cleaning the streets. The people who lived near the street needed to clean the sidewalk in front of their houses, and then there was the city car cleaning the roads. I found it so efficient and important, because the streets were really dirty!

Cleaning car
Cleaning car© Elisa

Fun times

So, overall, it was a great experience! I loved to see how people celebrate this day in a small town of Germany, and I had so much fun!

But next year, I definitely need to check the Köln Fassenacht, with a costume!

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