FAMOUS GERMAN WINE AND BEER FESTIVALS FOR 2020:
German wine and beer festivals are great occasions not only to enjoy a variety of wines and beers, but they also provide an opportunity to observe local traditions, sample local foods, as well as to mingle amongst a nice cross-section of people.
For connoisseurs of wine and beer, spring and summer are fantastic times to be in Germany. From Berlin to the Rhineland, there is a great choice of wine and beer festivals to attend.
You may prefer to conduct your wine-tasting in one of the smaller towns along the Mosel or in Rudesheim on the Rhine. Or, you may prefer wine festivals in the larger towns like Stuttgart, Hamburg, Mainz, Frankfurt or Aachen. And then there are the almighty giant beer festivals, such as Munich Oktoberfest, to keep you merry as well.
There are over 1,000 wine and beer events across Germany during the year, but here we can only mention some of the more popular ones.
2020 Beer and Wine Festivals
**Some of these dates may change or events cancelled due to Covid-19 so please always check the festival website before making your travel plans.**
Starkbierzeit 2020 – Munich’s Strong Beer Festival
March 6 – 28, 2020 (Löwenbräukeller) and March 13 – April 5, 2020 (Paulaner am Nockherberg) : This is Munich’s secret beer festival in spring. Starkbierzeit focuses on strong beers traditionally consumed during Lent.
More about Starkbierzeit…
Where to Stay in Munich >>.
Munich Frühlingsfest 2020 – Munich Spring Festival
April 24 – May 10, 2020: Munich Frühlingfest ends the spring Strong Beer Season. The fair is a scaled-down version of Oktoberfest. The fair is held in Theresienwiese – the Oktoberfest grounds.
Stuttgarter Frühlingsfest 2020 – Stuttgart Spring Festival – Stuttgart
April 18 – May 10, 2020: Stuttgart Spring Festival in Cannstatter Wasen celebrates the end of the winter season. The festival features beer tents, oompah bands, funfair, fireworks and lots of parties at night. This is the 82nd anniversary of Stuttgarter Frühlingsfest and some 250 performers, farmers and market merchants will provide a great atmosphere.
Mosel Wine Festivals 2020
From April – September, 2020: From early spring through fall, the towns along the Mosel hold “Weinfeste” (wine festivals). Local foods and wines are served and a general party atmosphere prevails. The Mosel Valley is full of vineyards that rise up the hills from the river banks. There is likely to be a wine festival in one town or another every weekend in the Mosel region.
Erlanger Bergkirchweih 2020
June 5 – 16, 2020 (tbc): This 12-day annual beer festival is a centuries-old tradition, celebrated around Pentecost and 2020 is the 265th Bergkirchweih. More than 1 million visitors come to enjoy Erlangen beer and Franconian dishes each year. The Bergkirchweih is open from 10:00 to 23:00 daily and you can then roll on to the pubs in downtown Erlangen. Erlangen’s claim to fame is that they were the first to export beer, even before Munich and Kulmbach.
‘Assmannshausen in Red‘ – Assmannshausen Red Wine Festival 2020
June 19 – 21, 2020 – Assmannshausen is famous for its Pinot Noir. On this festival weekend, wine connoisseurs get to enjoy the Assmannshäuser red wine as well as local dishes, entertainment and a huge firework.
Mendiger-Gambrinusfest 2021 – Mendig
2021: Gambrinusfest takes place every 2 years and is the biggest beer festival in Rhineland-Palatinate. For Gambrinus lovers, 2021 is the next festival year.
International Bierbörse 2020
April 30 – September 13, 2020: This looks like a good excuse to drink beer non-stop for nearly five months! Bierbörse is an chain of annual beer festivals which are held in 23 German cities. You can sample up to 1,000 different types of beer, including those from 75 countries. What’s more, this is a free event and you only pay for the beer. Bierbörse 2020 can be found in Bonn, Borken, Dorsten, Dresden, Dussseldorf, Eschweiler, Gelsenkirchen, Hamm, Hildesheim, Karlsruhe, Koblenz, Koln, Leipzig, Leverkusen, Mainz, Monchengladbach, Mülheim, Offenbach, Pforzheim, Rastatt, Solingen, Trier and Viersenburg.
Stuttgarter Weindorf – Stuttgart Wine Festival 2020 – Hamburg
August 26 – September 6, 2020: Some of you may recall that this festival was cancelled last year as the Hamburg city administrators were demanding a huge increase in rent, making the festival unviable. If you’ve joined the petition calling for the preservation of this festival, hey, hey, the Hamburg Stuttgarter Weindorf is back!
Annafest Forchheim 2020
July 2020 (tbc): Forchheim Annafest (Festival of St. Anna) is an annual fair which has been celebrated since 1840. Forcheim is on the “cellar-hill” close to Bamberg and Nuremberg and each year up to 500,000 visitors descend upon its beer gardens (over 20 beer gardens and no tents here).
Kulmbacher Bierwoche 2020
July 25 – August 2, 2020: Kulmbacher is a traditional beer festival in the north of Bavaria. Just for one week in the year, master brewers of Kulmbacher brew their secret formula beer. 2020 is the 71st anniversary of this beer festival.
International Berliner Bierfest – Berlin
Unfortunately, the very popular annual Berlin International Beer Festival with its longest beer garden in the world will no longer be operating. Due to escalating costs, security and various other requirements, the organizers have decided that it’s no longer viable to run this festival.
Rotweinfest 2020 – Bacharach am Rhein – Rhine River Red Wine Festival
August 24, 2020 – Usually held on the fourth Saturday in August, this very popular one-day Middle Rhine red wine festival takes place in the market square of Bacharach, a wine town on the Rhine.
Gäubodenvolksfest 2020 – Gäubodenvolksfest in Straubing
August 7 – 17, 2020: Founded by King Max I in 1812, Gäubodenvolksfest this is the 206th anniversary of this annual event. This festival started as an agricultural event, but these days it is said to be the second largest genuine folk festival in Bavaria, with 1.4 million visitors. Held annually around mid-August, this family-friendly festival lasts for 11 days. Its seven beer tents accommodate 26,500 visitors.
Rothenburger Wine Festival – Rothenburger Weindorf 2020
August 14 – 18, 2020 (tbc): The ever-popular city of Rothenburg ob der Tauber has an added attraction in August – the Rothenburger Weindorf. This annual wine festival usually takes place in mid-August and serves over 70 wines, including the classic Franconian grape varieties like Silvaner and Müller-Thurgau. Rothenburg is one of the most beautiful German walled cities and you can enjoy food and wine in the shady courtyard of Town Hall, the Green Market and the Square of St.-Jakob’s-Church. In addition to wine, there is a variety of entertainment, such as a morning pint with Dixieland music, fashion-shows, dialect cabaret, brass band music and many more.
Ruedesheimer-Weinfest 2020 – Rüdesheim Wine Festival 2020
August 13 – 17, 2020: Always charming and picturesque, the small Rhine wine village of Rüdesheim hosts a Wine Festival that features the wineries of the region as well as food. The festival takes place on the main street and you can enjoy the beautiful views to the Rhine and the vineyards above as you sip your wine. If you feel intimidated about going into the small wine tasting rooms, this is a perfect way to get to know Rüdesheim and its wines.
Bamberger Sandkerwa Beer Festival 2020
August 20 – 24, 2020: Bamberg is a beer city and its most famous beer festival, the Bamberg Sandkerwa, takes place in the Old Town in August each year. The festival attracts some 250,000 people each year and apart from drinking beer, visitors will be entertained with live music, amusement park, the Sunday tradition of “Fishermen’s jousting” on the Regnitz River, an Italian Night, fireworks, etc.
Stuttgarter Weindorf 2020 – 44th Stuttgart Wine Village – Stuttgart
August 26 – September 6, 2020: Always very popular, the Stuttgart Wine Village is one of the largest and most beautiful wine festivals in Germany. From the end of August to the beginning of September, the Stuttgart city center (Schillerplatz, Kirchstrasse and Marktplatz) is transformed into a festive wine village. 120 wine alcoves with traditional decor offer up over 500 wines from the region, including Trollinger, Riesling, Kerner, Müller-Thurgau, Schwarzriesling, Ruländer, Schillerwein, Lemberger and Weißherbst. The Stuttgart Wine Festival is all about regional wines and the opportunity to enjoy Swabian dishes such as maultaschen, kässpätzle and ofaschlupfer in a warm and friendly atmosphere.
Aachen Wine Festival 2020
August 20 – 23, 2020: Located in North Rhine Westphalia, Aachen is an attractive Roman spa town, famous for its therapeutic waters, hot springs and 1000-year-old remains. This lovely town hosts a summer wine festival in the town center each year with over 400 wines on offer from 20 or more wineries in Rhineland Palatine. Featured wines include Riesling, Mueller-Thurgau, Kerner, Dornfelder and Spaetburgunder. Good food and wine, music and a generally great atmosphere make this Wine Festival a favorite among locals and tourists alike.
Mainzer Weinmarkt – Mainz Wine Festival 2020
August 27 – 30, 2020 and September 3-6, 2020: The Mainz Wine Market (Mainzer Weinmarkt) plays host to over half a million visitors each year. You’ll enjoy wandering through the parks and rose gardens of the town as you go about tasting wines, eating the local fare and checking out the arts and crafts stalls. There is plenty of music to suit every taste and the city is known to be particularly beautiful at this time of year.
Weinfest der Mittelmosel 2020 – Bernkastel-Kues
From August 29 – September 2, 2020 (tbc): Bernkastel-Kues Middle Mosel Wine Festival is the largest and most well-known of the Mosel wine festivals. Visitors will enjoy the brilliant fireworks display from Landshut Castle and the colourful winemaker’s procession and the crowning of the Wine Queen.
Frankfurt Rheingau Wine Festival 2020
September 2 – 11, 2020 (tbc): The Rheingau Wine Festival (Rheingauer Weinmarkt) is Frankfurt’s only wine festival with vintners from the Rheingau offering over 600 wines at the Freßgass, one of Frankfurt’s charming restaurant and fine food areas. Rieslings are the specialty wines here, reflecting the unique terroir of the Rheingau wine region.
Location of festival is “Freßgass´”, Große Bockenheimer Straße / Opernplatz.
Open Times: Daily from 11:00 – 23:00
Frankfurt Hotels in the Old Town Centre (Zentrum-Alstadt)
All Frankfurt am Main Hotels
Oktoberfest 2020 – Munich
Sad news for beer lovers – Oktoberfest 2020 has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. April 21
September 19 – October 4, 2020: Oktoberfest gets bigger and better each year and if you want to witness the traditional tapping of the first keg for the 186th Munich Oktoberfest, be at the Schottenhamel tent on September 19th.
Oktoberfest is not just about beer. The main highlight of the festival and an important must-see is the annual Oktoberfest Costume and Riflemen’s Parade which takes place on the first Wiesn Sunday.
With 14 huge tents (maybe more) to choose from, how do you decide? You’ll need to check the website of each of the tents to see which ones you fancy. Munich Oktoberfest has also gone high-tech as well. There is a free Smart Card which will help you navigate your way around the beer tents. Just scan the QR code from the Smart Card and you’ll get a lot of information on your smart phone. Munich gets pretty busy during Oktoberfest, so if you’re planning on visiting, do book your Munich hotel early.
Here’s some traditional Oktoberfest beer tents. >
See our Oktoberfest photos >
Oktoberfest Hannover 2020
September 27 – October 13, 2020 (tbc): The Oktoberfest Hannover claims to be the second-largest ‘Oktoberfest‘ in the world, after Munich. They’ll have to speak to Stuttgart about this claim! More than a million visitors attend this 17-day event at the Schützenplatz in Hannover, and its two large beer tents seat more than a thousand drinkers.
Stuttgart Beer Festival 2020 – Canstatter Volkfest – Stuttgart
September 27 – October 13, 2020: This Stuttgart Beer Festival is second only to the Oktoberfest in Munich in terms of size. It began in 1818 as a harvest festival following a famine and has since been taking place at the end of September every year. These days, it provides two weeks of fun with oompah bands in traditional costume, lots of beer inside the marquees and entertainment
Hamburg Winter Beer Festival
It’s on from the November 8 – December 8, 2020 and you get the chance to visit the Hamburg Dom funfair too! Lots of beer tents, plenty of food and it’s on Heiligengeistfeld, next to the Reeperbahn in St Pauli. The funfair is one of the biggest in Germany.
A visit to Germany is not complete without attending a Wine or a Beer Festival. There is plenty on offer so it’s necessary to plan well in order to get maximum coverage.
Did you find the wine and beer festival you were looking for? Do let me know.
If there are any other significant festivals you would like to see on this list, let me know and I’ll see what I can do.
You can search for hotels, read hotel reviews and book Germany hotels here.>
Food and wine tour
Bavarian Beer and Food tour
Arthur Robbins says
Hi Helen, I have visited several other wine festivals. Deidesheim and Boppard were really enjoyable, because they were much smaller, but Bad Dürkheim (the Würstmarkt) should be mentionned, as it is reportedly the largest in Germany. I did not find it as enjoyable as the smaller ones, because of the commercial nayure of it ( I was there in 2017). Cheers. Arthur Robbins(Australia)
Helen Page says
Thanks for your wine festival intelligence. I will look to include Bad Dürkheim next year if they update their information. I agree with you that ‘largest’ doesn’t necessarily equate to best. Last year we went and checked out the Stuttgart Christmas market which was huge, but it lacked atmosphere.
Do let me know if you find any other interesting festivals.
All the best for the holiday season.
Teresa Konrad Rush says
I will be in Darmstadt Sept 21-23, and am interested in festivals in the area (especially something small and local). Can you help?
Helen Page says
The Darmstadt Autumn Fair runs from September 21 to October 3. It starts at 1:30 pm on September 21 on the Messplatz, north of the city centre. The tourism people would be able to give you more information but it seems that there are plenty to see and do in Darmstadt itself for your three-day stay.
See the Darmstadt tourism website Here.
david sirabella says
I really enjoy your website. I have lived in Germany for almost 20 years and do go all over the country for the different types of fest. I check into your website to see if I have missed anything.
However, I can not find anywhere on the internet that the Bamberger Sandkerwa Beer Festival was cancelled this year. I did look at the fest website and the city site and did not see mention of a cancellation.
Tony Page says
Glad you find our site useful!
Many thanks for drawing our attention to this. You’re right, the Bamberger Sandkerwa was cancelled last year, but it is on this year, thank goodness!
We have corrected this in the post, sorry about that, it was an oversight.
Hope you enjoy it, wish we could be there…
Hi there. Really want to come to a German beer festival. Do you have any around the dates in match 2017 please.
Hi there. Looking for beer festivals in Mar have 2017 to take my brother away. Do you have any dates or information on beer festivals around this time please.
Helen Page says
Apologies for not replying earlier. We’re presently travelling around Scandinavia at the moment and our program’s quite hectic.
In regard to your query about beer festivals in March 2017, the first big beer festival of the year is Starkbierzeit, the strong beer festival that starts in Lent. Lent in 2017 starts on March 1 and ends on April 13. The link below provides a bit more information about Starkbierzeit.
If you’ve not visited the beer houses in Munich, the Hofbrauhaus, Löwenbräu Keller and the Augustiner Keller all have great atmosphere even if there’s no beer festival on.
After Lent, the next big beer festivals are linked to Frühlingsfest, the spring festivals. Usually, the beer festivals don’t put out their dates till later in the year.
Hope the above helps a little in your planning.
hello we would like to go to a beer fest in the first week of October we will be in Venice at that time and would rent a car to go to the small towns near the boarder for this if there are any at that time thank you. Sharron
Helen Page says
In the first week of October you have the final days of Oktoberfest which ends on October 4th. The Stuttgart Beer Festival, second only to the Oktoberfest in Munich in terms of size, is on till October 11th. If you don’t fancy driving to Munich or Stuttgart, you can always hop on the train.
Apart from these two famous beer festivals, I’m not aware of any small town festivals that’s on the German/Italian border.
In Worms, Germany there was a spring or fall festival, not sure which.
It was a wine festival called Fasching, not sure of the spelling.
It lasts two weeks and for that period many normal matters of self-control and looking at the grass on the other side of the fence, were allowed to roam in any direction totally guilt free and without remorse.
Great wine in that valley, I miss it still.
Helen Page says
Fasching is a pre-Lent festival that is celebrated in Roman Catholic areas of Germany. It is the German equivalent of the “carnival” season. Officially it starts on the 11th day of November at 11 minutes after 11 am and ends on Shrove Tuesday.
The festival has its origins during medieval times when people lived under very harsh rules, but during Fasching you were allowed to live it up and even mock the people who ruled.
Most German towns have their own Fasching celebrations and you happened to be in Worms where the wine was flowing.
Franklin D Bamsey says
My question is, what the dates the Fruhlingsfest will be held in 2015? Thank you in advance for this info.
Helen Page says
2015 Munich Fruhlingsfest dates are not yet available. Try checking the Muenchen.de website again later in the year.
Franklin D Bamsey says
Would like to no when the Fruhlingsfest in Munich is scheduled on what date?
Helen Page says
According to the Munich city website, the Munich Fruhlingsfest is on this weekend.
What about the first week of November?
Thanks a lot
Congrats for the page
Tony Page says
Only starts on Nov 8th, Fernando, but the Hamburg Winter Beer Festival (see above) is a really big deal in the north. Go on a Friday and they have fireworks at 10:30pm!
thanks for the great overview. I wonder if you could point me to a wine/beer festival – if there is one – around Stuttgart on Nov 4, 2012. Yes, I know it is quite late in the season… but perhaps you know of something. I know that there is a smaller event in St Martin – but it is a bit farther away andf besides we were there last year…
Any tip would be appreciated!
Helen Page says
I’ve been asked by others before about November wine and beer festivals, but I have not been able to find any.
I’ve sent an email to the Stuttgart Tourism authority to ask them and if I get a response from them I shall let you know.
Great to know that our site is being found in Moscow!
Glad to know about such attractive festivals which i have not acknowledged before. olavie
Helen Page says
Thanks for your query on beer fests. Your visit to southern Germany unfortunately falls outside of the big organized beer festivals season. The only one that I’m aware of is the Munich Spring Festival. If you’re in Munich on May 2nd, you’ll just make it to the last day of the Munich’s Frühlingfest.
Munich’s Frühlingfest ends the spring Strong Beer Season. The fair is supposed to be a scaled-down version of Oktoberfest. This year the fair will be held in Theresienwiese – Oktoberfest’s grounds.
See Munich Spring Festival website: http://www.muenchnervolksfeste.de
The following link provides some information about the Bavarian Beer calendar. “There are no organized beer fests during the summer, simply because there is no need for one.” I’m sure you’ll enjoy lots of beer in the many beer gardens.
It’s a shame you’re not in Germany during Oktoberfest as it’s the 200th anniversary this year.
Enjoy your travels to southern Germany. If you find any nice beer gardens, we would love it if you could share your discoveries with other readers.
odia dennis prince says
good day to you and how is you life and the country in general, hope fine.
kindly help me with the e-mail of the coming festival in germany in august 2001.
i will be on vacation by august ending and want to use the opportunity to visit your country.
you can send me sms thru my phone number. +2348026150235 or +2348099525215
expecting to hearing from you soon
thanks and God bless.
yours in the Lord
Odia D. P
Helen Page says
Odia, above post gives the dates of all festivals if they are available – August included.