Read this in: German
As soon as you turn on the TV in Germany at the moment, you can see it all over the place: The fifth season is raging in the Rhineland and elsewhere. Only we here in northern Germany get less with the carnival season. In fact, there are carnival clubs, but they often stay with each other and are barely visible to the public. Not so a state of emergency as in Cologne, Mainz and other cities. With us it is also carnival and after elementary school you disguised with us not even more, as I had to find disappointed in the fifth grade.
However, I am born in Cuxhaven in Northern Germany and there I have often noticed a by-product of the carnival – the carnival refugees. They are very often at the low low season rates then like the water and happy to come every year. But love Carnival refugees, there is so much more than just the beach of Dehnen, Döse and Sahlenburg in Cuxhaven! Here are a few suggestions where you can find peace in the fifth season.
Cities which seem to be boring
I remember well that last year I brainstormed on a press trip about the fact that I would soon like to write blog posts about Hildesheim and Hann Münden, both in the South of lower saxony and they said: What do you want there? It’s boring there!
I think that cities that some would call boring also have a big advantage: you have little distraction. In my studies in Göttingen, I met people who were downright depressed because they were not able to attend any cultural events that were interesting or relevant to them in the relatively small city. I grew up in the village myself. There culture is in short supply. From time to time, drama groups or amateur groups play. Or even Low German theater. But more then just not and trains usually go from Hamburg to Cuxhaven, even today, that a visit to the Hamburg theater or musical is not without an overnight stay.
That’s why Hann- münden was always something of a refuge for me during my life in Göttingen, when the cover fell on my head again and again. Other people may prefer the urban life, but here it is cozy, almost fairytale in architecture, and you can walk, if you want to exercise, stroll around the city and go to this wonderful café in an old church or the whole Discover other shops in the medieval buildings, as I hardly know them from the north.
HannMünden is just the right balance between tranquility and not so rural that you get bored quickly as was the case with me and Witzenhausen often. After Witzenhausen you drive a maximum of 2x or 3x or buy cherries. After HannMünden one drives again and again.
For me personally, this city in central Germany is one of the places that is an insider tip at any time of the year. I do not know how Marburg does it, but it’s never crowded. Marburg is an island of tranquility and even if good weather is unpredictable, so far I had never had an experience in my double-digit travels there where I would say it messes up the whole holiday. Many carnival refugees pull it to the sea, but it does not always have to be ocean, especially in late winter or storm is the rather forgiven Liebesmüh. Even though we are experiencing a great start to spring, there is even more to the sea than the small town on the Lahn can be quite charming. Parks, a little mountainous, water, even a Späti directly on the campus – here you will find everything your heart desires.
Basically, it’s a similar case here as Hann Münden, just that it’s more than just a small town – here you can also go shopping to your heart’s content and also have a good selection of cultural events, if a hiking or sports activities or strolling not alone irritates. Marburg is only a stone’s throw away from the Rhineland and can be reached by train in a sustainable and fast way. The selection of hotels in the city is good and comfortable. A short trip there so nothing is in the way!
The Hanseatic city is ideal for those who want to explore the north a bit and Hamburg and the jetties at the weekend are too full. Even the Holstentor is sometimes overcrowded, but Lübeck is a city where you can always find corners to linger. As a current part-time student, I have the great fortune of having friends in this city and being able to travel there for free, so outside the fifth season, I use this opportunity. It’s not too far to the sea either. But even more attractive is the large offer of beautiful cafes. And not to forget marzipan! Every person in the north knows that Lübeck is the marzipan stronghold.
But fortunately, it’s not just about marzipan. Anyone who likes to paint like me will find tole motifs for Urban Sketchen watercolors (in my case) or for taking pictures. And to be honest, the Lübeck-based Klinker Romance also has the great potential for me to achieve great maturity. Because all these beautiful corners are also very good for shooting photos with people on it. So it’s a pity that you always find the three same Alster motifs from Hamburg in many accounts nationally or internationally with reimretuschierten swan, as if they were repetitions of a well-known nerd series on a private channel. In Lübeck, however, there are many corners for photos that are very impressive, but at the same time fresh and unused.
Yes, we all want to go to Berlin, but have you ever had a nice day in Potsdam? Often you feel like in Paris or Versailles. Nevertheless, you have the big and vibrant Berlin nearby. Above all, the splendid buildings and extensive parks always make me want to leave the Berlin bustle. Because if I have to drive many hours within Berlin, why not enjoy the time off in a city that offers much less hustle and bustle and where the soul can breathe?
My first time in Potsdam I associate with a terrible school trip at the end of my secondary school 1. The teacher was young and had the schedule much too narrow, we had no free time and our hostel was on a lake near Potsdam, where we constantly from wild boar were attacked. At that time I found the driving through Grunewald down to the green Brandenburg really bad. But if I work in Berlin for a week or two today, then it’s this train ride that tells me that I can switch off now.
Usedom and Rügen
I was born shortly before the turn. For me, it was always so that I can choose between the North Sea and the Baltic Sea in his vacation planning and especially my parents moved with us children to the Baltic Sea, because we had the North German Wadden Sea right outside the front door. Back in the mid 90’s these holiday areas were really exciting and for me the piers of Benz and Ahlbeck have never lost any importance. Especially Usedom is one of my longing places. I was rarely swimming there – for me, the promenade, the strolling and the enjoy the great weather. Mobile, no camera with and just be in the moment. Unfortunately, I must confess that reaching this destination by rail is a bit of a hassle. If the train connection were better, I would probably switch off more often once a weekend on Rügen or Usedom from the digital permanent presence in the current university and working life.
Not so easy to get to these places
So if you do not want to plan half a day’s trip to get there first, I recommend the car, even if your are not from Germany. It is in this blog post about escaping carnival. And from the southern Rhine areas to the Baltic Sea, it’s just a stretch. Even if it hurts me as a sustainability fan a bit in the soul But I’m from the Cuxhaven region. Here it is not impossible to arrive by public transport, because we have Hamburg very close. But I know my Pappenheimer. And I commute a lot between Hamburg and Cuxhaven or Bremen and Cuxhaven and use both routes regularly. As you catch a lot of what the tourists from North Rhine-Westphalia or other parts of Germany so keep from getting there. But in this part of Germany it’s a general thing that it’s hard to reach your destination in short time when you are traveling by train. That is my experience.
Is traveling the right thing to escape?
Even as a carnival refugee, it does not have to be a world tour. As a pregnant woman, as a family with small children or even if you have family members in need of care, traveling is not that easy. Each of us has a phase in life, as long journeys are not possible. For me it is also the shuttle between the cities of Hamburg, Oldenburg and Cuxhaven, which I take on a daily basis, which brings me a bit into a mood of frustration. More train rides? Even more at terminals? No thanks! Therefore, at the moment I drive only on the sparse days with free time to Bremen or stay in Oldenburg, Cuxhaven or wherever I am. At the moment I sometimes even think about parking my sleeping bag in the studio, just to experience a nice sunrise at the external truck instead of 3 to 6 hours train journey between 2 working days. And no, in the north, as I said, no carnival, the break makes. The biggest carnival parade I know takes place in Bremen. And I miss this move every carnival again.
Not only traveling can be fun
And there’s so much more out there than just the tips a blog or Pinterest gives us. You do not have to travel around the world for carnival. Often it is the Caf’és at the end of the street, the new cultural center or an undiscovered street just around the corner more exciting than many a short trip across Europe. A warm drink in a cozy place with raining rain or a nice walk on the water in the most beautiful sunshine and mild weather – whether Alster, Weser, Spree or Rhine – can be so much more fulfilling. I am aware that traveling today is a status symbol as it has been for decades. Many people in my environment do not travel at all or maybe every three years to an island in the North Sea or the Baltic Sea, because just a home or the financing of children has priority. The digital society spurs on being always “there” – whether skiing holidays in snow, while there was hardly any snow in the north or just a flight to the beach in dull weather, hip city trips in the summer …
Every place is a good place
Any place can be a beautiful place and a great time anytime. What’s the use of the best trip around the world when you’re hanging on your phone all the time? Rather, you can focus on the moments that can not be captured with a smartphone. Turn off your phone, clear your head and just be in the moment.
At the moment, traveling is not, but if I simply put my work to the Outer Alster or just go for a walk in the afternoon after a workshop, perhaps with ulterior motives, travel tips or future photo locations, that gives me much more strength and relaxation as many a journey that would mean extra stress for me.
Who is not deterred by the theme of Carnival, for which there is of course a way to get started. For example, I like the side of the city of Cologne, which also gives good information on carnival. There you will also find good opportunities to directly find an event that suits you. Thus carnival for tourists is also possible without a lot of local knowledge.
Also, if my personal roots are a bit in the north and very deep south of Germany, many of my relatives live in North Rhine-Westphalia and the relatives from Cologne always say: “You can always come to visit us, just not in this one week.” That’s why I personally probably never have been able to connect to the Rhenish Carnival, because I know only the meetings from television and relocations, which then dominate mainly public service broadcasts in many parts of Germany, while in the north life is normal goes.
However, I really appreciate Cologne as a city and would personally choose this city if I come from another part of Germany or from abroad and want to get to know the carnival. I think it is similar to the first holiday in Majorca: You love it or you hate it, the shades in between you will rarely find. But who likes party, for the Cologne Carnival is certainly a great way to celebrate a little in the long dry spell between New Year’s Eve and the Easter holidays and to costumes without having to have a bachelor party.