Germany's explosive summer fireworks
Maybe they bring us back to our childhood, maybe it’s the dazzling colors or maybe it’s just that loud BOOM followed by “ohhhs” and “awwws.” No matter the reason, there’s no denying that everyone loves fireworks. Your love for these pretty firecrackers will deepen once you see them set against castle and scenic river backdrops.
Rhine in Flames
Rhine in Flames is a firework spectacular that takes place along the most scenic stretches of the Rhine River several nights this year. Illuminated riverboats beneath mesmerizing patterns of light in the sky creates a romantic and unforgettable experience for the whole family.
There’s always a traditional wine festival or similar celebration happening at the same time near each starting point that offers stands of specialty German food and local drink. Hop on a boat, or watch from the riverbank where there will be music and dancing. Fireworks start at around 10 p.m. on each of the following dates and locations: July 1 in Rüdesheim-Bingen, Aug. 12 in Koblenz, Sept. 9 in Oberwesel, and Sept. 16 in St. Goar. The event’s official website is www.rhein-in-flammen.com.
Rhine River Lights
Rhine River Lights is a special event throughout the summer that is celebrated exclusively onboard. Boats cruise down the most picturesque parts of the Rhine offering views of medieval castles and monasteries. A stopover at one of the charming Rhine-side towns, wine tastings, live music and dancing are included on this adventure, not to mention a finale of fireworks where every spot on the boat is a “front-row seat.” Go to www.rhine-river-lights.com to learn more and see various departing locations. Dates of Rhine River Lights: Aug. 5 and 26, Sept. 2, Oct. 7 and 14.
The Moselfest in Winningen (near Koblenz) is a 10-day festival ending in dazzling fireworks over the Mosel River. Considered the oldest wine festival in Germany, it’s much more than that, with an impressive and elaborate program of activities sure to keep the whole family entertained.
Cruises, theater events, 150 different flavors at the wine market, and a parade through town are just a few of the events happening Aug. 25-Sept. 3.
A fireworks show on the last day of the event called “The Mosel River in Fire Magic” (“Die Mosel in Feuerzauber”) really does say it all. Not only do the fireworks of the Mosel beautifully light up the night sky, it’s a pleasure for two senses. While the fireworks are stunning to see, the setting of the show in a canyon of the Mosel River makes for a heightened experience with the explosions echoing off the mountainside. Visit www.winningen.de for more details.
Neckar River and Heidelberg Castle fireworks
Recommended as one of the best events worldwide, the Castle Illumination and Neckar fireworks are sure to amaze this summer. Held on June 3, July 8 and Sept. 2, the event, known as the Schlossbeleuchtungen, is a long-time tradition celebrating its 404th anniversary this year. Around 10 p.m., Heidelberg Castle is illuminated with red flames, paying tribute to its history. After a few minutes, the flames die down as a spectacular firework show begins over the Neckar River. A concert of festive music offers a prelude to the show in the church of the Holy Spirit.
The best views are from the north banks of the Necker and Philosopher’s Walk. Local ships, the Old City and the castle itself are all great viewing spots as well. Read further about this event at www.heidelberg-event.com.