The Swiss Carnival occurs on different dates around Switzerland and is known as the fifth season of the year! Enjoy and have fun! 🙂 *Update due the COVID 19 the Swiss Carnival in Zurich/Lucerne has been canceled in 2020/2021.
Fastnacht in Basel
Basel Carnival is part of the city’s identity – culturally speaking, it is at the heart of its creative energies and represents three days when the city goes wild. Owing to its uniqueness and quality, it has been added to the UNESCO intangible cultural heritage list. Dates 2021 – 22 – 25 February.
Fasnacht in Lucerne
Key carnival facts
From 20. February till 25. February 2020
The Lucerne Carnival is unlike any of the other carnival customs in Central Switzerland.
The Urknall «Big Bang» occurs in Kapellplatz at five in the morning of Schmutzig Thursday.
The first Lucerne parade (the Fritschi) starts at 2 p.m. at the Luzernerhof.
The final parade (the Wey) takes place the following Güdis Monday. This also starts at 2 p.m. at the Luzernerhof.
The giant Monstercorso parade takes place the following day on Güdis Tuesday. That starts at 7.30 p.m. in Bahnhofstrasse.
Carnival Programme 2020
Thursday, February 20 | Dirty Thursday
5.00 am When the Fritschi father and his escorts come to town and wave to the crowd assembled outside; a loud boom marks the beginning of Carnival.
7.30 am – 11.00 am Carnival bands at Weinmarkt.
From 8.30 am, Walk with brother Fritschi and his escorts through the old town.
11.30 am Carnival bands march through the old town.
Route: Burgerstrasse – Schnyderbücke – Rössligasse – Hirschenplatz – Weggisgasse – Grendel – Kapellplatz – Kapellgasse – Weinmarkt.
2.00 pm Carnival parade featuring big bands, costumed groups, and decorated floats.
Route: Schweizerhofquai – Kapellplatz – Fritschibrunnen – Seebrücke – Bahnhofplatz – Pilatusstrasse –Viktoriaplatz – Winkelriedstrasse – Helvetiagärtli.
3.00 pm-midnight After the parade, all the bands wander through the city or in the restaurants playing their hearts out! Special concerts take place in the Passage Buobenmatt and music concerts of the «Vereinigte» in front of the Jesuit Church and on the Mühlenplatz (Stage).
6.30 pm Carnival bands march through the old town. Route: Burgerstrasse – Schnyderbrücke – Weinmarkt.
Friday, February 21 | Strange Friday
12.00 noon – 6.00 pm Carnival musician concerts at Hotel Schweizerhof.
Saturday, February 22 | “Rüüdige” Saturday
Masked revelers and bands meet in bars and restaurants to play music.
1.30 pm – 11.00 pm Fidelitas (Mask-lovers Society) Carnival Party, Unter der Egg.
1.30 pm – 5.30 pm Seniors Carnival, Grand Casino Luzern.
12.00 noon – 10.00 pm New: LFK (Lucerne Carnival Committee)-Buobenmattbeiz.
Sunday, February 23| “Urchige” Sunday
2.00 pm Carnival bands march through Littau
Fasnacht in Zug
Ever since the Middle Ages, the people of Central Switzerland have been celebrating «Fasnacht,» which takes place before the Fasting Season. It starts on Shrove Thursday and ends six days later in the early morning hours of Ash Wednesday.
In Zug, the Fasnacht starts with a loud bang early in the morning, and the whole days consist of lots of noise, music, a parade with fantastic costumes, and a pleasant atmosphere – all in all, a fabulous day for everybody!
Program Thursday, February 20.2020
05.00 h – Wake up call at the Landsgemeindeplatz. Free bus ride if you arrive from within the canton (see itinerary p.16), free croissant and coffee.
06.00 h – Family breakfast – alcohol-free breakfast in the Rathaus at Fischmarkt offered by the Zuger Chesslete Society.
09.00 h – Start of the Metalli-Guggete, Guggenmusic concerts in the Metalli Shopping Center
10.00 h – Face painting on the Bundesplatz (Just for KIDS).
11.30 h – Risotto lunch on the Bundesplatz offered by the local businesses accompanied by the Guggenmusic.
14.30 h – Traditional parade with lots of themes and colorful costumes (see program p 6) BIG CONFETTI BATTLE on the Bundesplatz.
16.00 h – Children’s Fasnacht on the Landsgemeindeplatz with many attractions and a
concert by «Zwirbelwind». More information pages 18/19.
16.30 h – After-work Welcome Concert at the Bahnhof or 17.00 h in the «Freiruum» with many „Guggen“!
From 20.00 h Chesselwy in the Old Town: Guggen Music on three different stages until 02.00 h, many Tents, Bars and Restaurants are open until the early morning hours! Complementary buses at 1, 2, and 3 a.m. (see the plan for Bars p 12/13, see the plan for buses p 16).
How can I support Chesslete? The Zuger Chesslete is organized by a nonprofit organization. All members are volunteers. This event is possible only through financial contributions from private individuals. How can you support them?
1. Buy a Button! You may purchase them beforehand at the Zug Tourism Office at the train station or on the day of the parade.
2. You may become a sponsor and contribute to the following account at the Zuger Kantonalbank, 6301 Zug. Information: Vereinigung Zuger Chesslete, 6300 Zug. Konto: 00-719.170-07; IBAN: CH30 0078 7000 0719 1700 7 Reason:Sponsor
3. Or you may choose another way of contributing, please contact (they speak English): firstname.lastname@example.org
Fasnacht in Zurich
Program February 28 – March 1, 2020
With its “Guggen” marching bands, parades, and bars, the ZüriCarneval gives rise to an exuberant ambiance in the city.
Hirschenplatz, in the heart of the Niederdorf quarter, is the site of the “Minera Guggestadl”. Over three days, in a heated marquee, various “Guggen” bands – mostly brass ensembles playing well-known melodies very loudly and intentionally out of tune – perform their repertoire of the Caribbean and Latin American music, while at the Münsterhof, visitors can celebrate to the sounds of New Orleans jazz.
Another highlight in the carnival parade, a fascinating street show in the heart of downtown Zurich. The Parade takes place on Sunday, March 1, at 2.30 pm.
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