Düsseldorf: Open-Air Events Galore!

The first foreign country I ever visited was German. There I learned it’s impossible to skateboard down cobblestone streets (I’m waiting for Tony Hawk to prove me wrong), and that some of the best concerts of 1988 were being held in Germany. I spent time going from town to town and while there, found out that even in early spring, as well as throughout the year, the town of Düsseldorf liked to celebrate outdoors.

Starting with Carnival in February, when a million revelers in costumes march through the city during the Rose Monday Parade (to scare away the winter spirits), to the “Biggest Fun Fair on the Rhine,” one of Germany’s top outdoor festivals delivering all the joys of a German fest during over ten days during the summer. Even more amazing, and one on my travel bucket list, is the Christmas market, a four-week-long holiday shopping and culinary extravaganza, where the whole city transforms itself into one giant outdoor festival site.

Dusseldorf Christmas Market

Düsseldorf is located on the Rhine River at the center of the Rhine Ruhr area, a bustling network of 53 connected cities with 18 million residents within a 40 mile radius. Size-wise, Düsseldorf is 35% of the EU’s total population (148 million) in a 300 mile radius. Add to this the city’s No. 6 ranking on a global list of cities with the highest quality of living (source: Mercer’s 2013 Quality of Life Survey), and you understand the strong pull the city has on international visitors for its year-long open-air event schedule.

Düsseldorf’s 2014 Open-Air Event Highlights:

May 17: Japan Day (Japanese cultural festival)

June 6-8:  Düsseldorf Jazz Rally

June 27:  Opera for All (premier shown on giant outdoor screen)

July 4-6: France Festival (French cultural festival)

July 11-20: Biggest Fun Fair on the Rhine

August 2-3: Barockfest at Benrath Castle

August 8-17: Asphalt Festival (Summer festival for theater and music)

August 22-24: Gourmet Festival (A Foodie’s delight)

September 6: Chinafest (Chinese cultural festival)

November 11: “Hoppeditz Awakening” (Carnival season kick-off)

November 20-23: Christmas Market

Düsseldorf’s tourism office is offering hotel and city specials for many of the city’s events throughout 2014.  Packages, called “Düsseldorf à la Card” can be booked right from the tourism office’s website. To learn more about Dusseldorf and all it has to offer, visit www.visitduesseldorf.de.

Disclaimer: This wasn’t a sponsored post. But if you want to send me to Germany, I’ll be more than happy to share my travels!