Festivals and traditions

Carnival is celebrated properly in the Grand Duchy

According to TNS Ilres, two-thirds of the population of the Grand Duchy takes part in carnival!

21-carnavalFuesgecken (carnival revellers) take advantage of this crazy time of year to dress up, party, and eat all sorts of carnival treats. Throughout February and March, particularly on Fuessonnden (carnival Sunday) and Fuesméinden (carnival Monday), various Luxembourgish associations organise a host of festive events throughout the country.

In the Grand Duchy the main events attended by carnival revellers are the cavalcades - noisy processions in the street. Hardly surprising, since the tradition goes back to 1870. The best known cavalcades are those in Diekirch, Schifflange, Remich, Pétange, and Esch-sur-Alzette.

During the carnival festivities, almost half the Grand Duchy's population also takes advantage of this crazy time of year to enjoy tasty carnival doughnuts and other local specialities, including

  • Verwurrelt Gedanken (scrambled thoughts - knots of pastry sprinkled with icing sugar),
  • Nonnefäscht (nuns' farts - doughnuts sprinkled with icing sugar),
  • Täertelcher (doughnuts),
  • Maisercher (mouse-shaped doughnuts) and
  • Stretzegebäck (small cakes made of pastry that is scalded before being baked).

The end of the carnival season

Äschermëttwoch (Ash Wednesday) marks the end of the carnival season, and the end of winter. On this day, a straw dummy - usually male and called the Stréimännchen (except in leap years, when the dummy is female and called the Stréifrächen) – is carried through the streets in Remich, accompanied by the local marching band. At the end of the procession, the dummy is attached to the bridge over the Moselle and burned, symbolising the dispersion of the evil spirits of winter and celebrating the arrival of spring.

Unlike its German neighbours, the Grand Duchy continues celebrating carnival until the fourth Sunday in Lent, called Bretzelsonndeg, when there are traditionally a number of Kapesëtzungen, masked balls, and cavalcades (one example being the Pétange cavalcade) held in March each year.


(article written by the editorial team of the portal luxembourg.lu)

  • Updated 23-02-2017