Published: May 22, 2013
What beats an outdoor music concert? A free one! As summer kicks in, enjoy loads of musical performances at no cost during several weeks.
Free concerts will entertain the crowds flocking to Frankfurt’s Skyscraper Festival May 25-26 The stage by Opernplatz will rock Saturday, May 25, from 12:30 p.m., when musicians from the U.S., Cuba, Netherlands and Germany perform rock, folk, pop and funk. The English boy band Blue takes the stage at 7 p.m., followed by Nena at 9 p.m. Status Quo rocks out on the Hauptwache starting at 9 p.m. Get the full program at www.wolkenkratzer-festival.de.
Published: May 15, 2013
Dust off your cloak and curly-toed slippers because throughout Germany, the weekend of Pentecost Sunday(May 18-19) will be awash in the Middle Ages. Such events typically are held in medieval town centers, castles or picturesquely situated ruins, and feature stalls laden with wares from gems to jellies. Entertainment typically includes birds of prey demonstrations, juggling jesters and knights in battle. Some require entry fees.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber, for example, remembers its past through Monday, May 20, as soldiers in uniform, a military parade, costumed performers and a medieval marketplace evoke the year 1631. Each day of the event reflects a different facet of the town’s history, from when it was under siege to its restoration and prosperity.
Published: May 1, 2013
A great day out can feel like a miniature vacation. Those who enjoy physical activity, camaraderie, and good food and drink can find their perfect escape by assembling a group of friends and heading off to experience one of Germany's dozens of auto-free days.
From late morning through early evening, generally on a Sunday or public holiday, a scenic stretch of highway will be closed off to motorized vehicles. Cyclists, hikers and in-line skaters will find themselves kings of the road --- at least for a day. Free festivities are organized at the start and end points, as well as in towns along the way. Routes often run alongside rivers or through vineyards, and when it comes time to pause for a drink or snack, visitors are spoiled for choice by the countless stands set up by local vintners and restaurants.
Published: April 11, 2013
The chance to sample new foods is but one of countless reasons to travel. Seeking a culinary adventure? Here are a few upcoming events where you can try old standbys or discover a new favorite food.
• Stuttgart, Germany: Markt des guten Geschmacks-die Slow Food Messe.Head to Stuttgart’s Messe through Sunday to sample regional, handmade and sustainably produced goods from bread and oil to wine. A highlight of the event is a 328-foot-long table where visitors can sample the wares while they make new friends. Details at http://tinyurl.com/c9cvgpe (German only).
Published: April 2, 2013
Bureaucrats and zombies alike will be feasting on full menus as the European Union's capital hosts the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival.
The festival, which runs through April 13 in the city's Center for Fine Arts (BOZAR), showcases horror, fantasy and other films of a gory and disturbing nature. How fitting they're behind the organization of zomBIFFF Day and Night 2013, taking place Saturday, April 6.
Published: March 21, 2013
The Northern Hemisphere’s vernal equinox occurred on March 20 this year, a most fitting time of year for the opening of one of the Netherlands’ most popular tourist attractions — Keukenhof, a sprawling garden that opened March 21 for the 2013 season.
This year’s theme is “United Kingdom — Land of Great Gardens.” Visitors can enjoy a flower mosaic representation of Big Ben and Tower Bridge. This year’s edition also focuses on small-scale vegetable gardens.
Published: March 13, 2013
Most of us don’t have a spare $30,000 to spend on just the right painting to hang above the sofa. But dreams and imaginations can run wild at TEFAF, in Maastricht, Netherlands. The event, which runs over 10 days, takes place at the Maastricht Exhibition and Congress Centre through March 24.
From a modest start in 1975 and many name changes throughout the years, TEFAF, or The European Fine Art Fair, today is regarded as one of the world’s leading fairs for arts and antiques. Last year’s TEFAF attracted about 72,000 visitors, nearly half from outside the country.
Published: February 27, 2013
It might be Lent in Germany, but in Bavaria at least, there’s no prohibition on enjoying a hearty brew. When monks of the Middle Ages fasted at this time of year, they made up for the lack of food by crafting a beer almost as hearty as bread — and with nearly the same calorie count. The tradition lives on to this day, and from now until Easter, Starkbierzeit, or Strong Beer Season, can be enjoyed nowhere better than in Munich.
How to recognize a Starkbier? It has a beautiful golden-yellow color, and with a 7.5 percent alcohol content, it’s twice as strong as your average Munich keg beer. nother way to determine the nature of the brew is by its name: If it ends in “-ator” (Maximator, Animator, Triumphator, Optimator), it’s almost certainly a member of the strong beer family. The daddy of them all is the Salvator, brewed by the Paulaner Brauerei.
Published: February 21, 2013
Those short on their fill of Alpine adventure this winter can head to the ski area of Saas-Fee, Switzerland, on Saturday, March 2, for a day out that includes more than the usual skiing and boarding.
The 10th edition of the Glacierbike Downhill kicks off at 8:30 a.m., when a couple of hundred brave bikers will gather on the Mittelallalin, some 11,500 feet above sea level, to face down a steep, curving track covered in snow and ice. The race finishes in the village of Saas-Fee, at a height of around 5,900 feet. An awards ceremony takes place immediately following.
Published: February 14, 2013
The Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour makes its way through Germany Feb. 16 to March 24.
The Banff Centre, a Canadian institution promoting art, culture and education, is the organizing force behind the festival, which each fall showcases films about mountain culture, sports and nature.