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Celebrate one of the world's biggest carnivals in Dusseldorf

10th January 2013 Print
Rose Monday Parade

The annual one-day phenomenon called Rose Monday falls on February 11, 2013. Rose Monday is the roaring conclusion of 3 months of carnival season in Dusseldorf, which kicked off on November 11 and is now in full swing with 300 carnival events and costume balls all over town. It's a time when the city, known for its cosmopolitan character and sophisticated living (Dusseldorf ranks No. 6 on a list of global cities in quality of life - Source: Mercer's 2012 Quality of Living Survey) reveals its wild side and becomes one of the best destinations in Germany for serious party seekers in the winter.
To jump into the Carnival madness, travellers can hop on a plane at Birmingham, Leeds, London-Gatwick, London-Heathrow, London-Stansted, Manchester, Newcastle and Southampton and be in the thick of things mere minutes after landing.
The Rhine region is known as Germany's centre of carnival festivities and Carnival in Dusseldorf is one of the strongholds. The city has no fewer than 60 carnival clubs, and their members are among the 5,500 parade participants who also make up the 45 bands and 60 floats. One million people line up to watch the Rose Monday parade, shout "Helau" (the local carnival greeting), and catch the candy (called "Kamelle") that is thrown into the crowds from the floats. The parade is more than a mile and a half long.

Because of Dusseldorf's 260 bars, pubs, and restaurants in the city's historic Altstadt (Old Town), the city is also known as "the longest bar in the world." And these venues become the backdrop for the extended festivities as the parade spills into the entire city and the revellers take over.

In addition to the parade there are several street carnivals: the "Old Ladies' Carnival" on February 7, when women take over the city hall and cut men's ties off with scissors, a "Youth Procession" on February 9, a family-oriented "Carnival Sunday" on the famous shopping boulevard Königsallee on February 10, and a "Barrel Race" - yes, that's people in barrels racing - on February 10. The season culminates on Rose Monday with one million people; many dressed up in costumes and called fools, lined up to watch the exuberant Rose Monday Parade with its colourful and creative floats.

Miraculously, the city is back to its civilized self two days later, on Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins and with it the long wait until the Carnival season kicks off again the next November.

Through 2013, Dusseldorf Tourist Board is offering hotel and city specials for this and other of the city's major international events. Packages can be booked right from the website at Prices start at €49 per night per person based on double-occupancy for a 2-3 star hotel in the city centre and at €69 per person for a 4-5 star hotel. All packages include breakfast, a Dusseldorf WelcomeCard (free public transportation within city limits plus 30 free or reduced admissions to city attractions), and a city information package. Please check the website for current information.

For more information on destination Dusseldorf, visit

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Rose Monday Parade