What’s on in Germany: August 19 – 25

This week's highlights: Pop in Cologne, Argentine stories in Frankfurt, dragonboat races in Hamburg and a palace festival in Potsdam.

What's on in Germany: August 19 - 25
Potsdam Palaces night! Photo: DPA




Come on out and bring the kids… on second thought, maybe not. People familiar with Berlin will not be surprised to learn that the Fuckparade is a grassroots demonstration that mixes partying and politics. Participants are welcome to bring their own drums and boom boxes to help speak out against the creeping corporatization and “Disneyfication” of their beloved city.

Price: Free

Location: Leipziger Platz to Revaler Strasse

Times: August 21, 2pm

More Information: F**kparade Website


International Stadium Festival (ISTAF)

Berlin’s enormous Olympic Stadium was host to more than a few subpar sporting events this year as Hertha Berlin, the city’s Bundesliga representative, compiled the worst record in the league. Luckily for sports fans, the 69th International Stadium Festival is taking place in the same stadium this weekend. Come see the world’s best track and field athletes compete. You might even see a few new world records set.

Price: €9 – €39

Location: Olympic Stadium

Times: August 22

More Information: ISTAF Website


Tanz im August: Berlin International Dance Festival

This annual showcase brings artists from all over the world to the Hauptstadt to showcase the latest developments in contemporary dance. This year’s festival will feature works from fifteen different countries. Many of the dancers hold workshops all over the city for aspiring dancers – or those who are just plain interested.

Price: €5.50 – €14.14

Location: Various locations

Times: August 19 – September 3

More Information: Tanz im August Festival Website



Cologne on Pop

Not just a festival for music lovers, the Cologne on Pop Festival features lectures and workshops during the day for musicians and industry professionals, while offering a host of live concerts after happy hour. A must for anyone interested in or looking to break into the music industry as well as music lovers in general. This year’s festival features acts such as Caribou, Booka Shade, The Go! Team, Timid Tiger and more.

Price: Information immediately unavailable

Location: Various locations

Times: August 23 – 28

More Information: Cologne on Pop Website



Dresden City Festival

Fans of German history have always flocked to the state of Saxony. For centuries, Saxon kings and queens ruled the eastern part of modern Germany, and set the stage for the eventual unification of the country in 1871. Dresden has always been at the centre of Saxony’s rich cultural heritage, and the annual Dresden City Festival is a celebration of the city’s unique history. Enjoy music, art, and children’s entertainment, plus don’t miss the tour of the Elbe River via paddle steamer.

Price: Free

Location: Various locations

Times: August 20 – 22

More Information: Dresden City Festival Website



Artists from Argentina: Tales of Resistance and Change

One of the largest and most interesting countries in South America, Argentina, has experienced an incredible amount of progress and challenge in the new millennium. The Frankfurter Kunstverein has taken notice and is featuring an impressive collection of Argentine art from the last ten years. The works range from political pieces to abstract expressions and even offer novices a great picture of the contemporary struggles and successes in Argentina.

Price: €6, students €4

Location: Kunstverein

Times: August 20 – October 31, Tue – Sun, 11-7pm

Phone: (0) 69 2193 140

More Information: Kunstverein Website




Hamburg’s rock music scene is legendary. Many bands have polished their chops in the bars and clubs along the Reeperbahn, most notably the Beatles. Rock fans can come out to the Rathausmarkt Square in front of City Hall this weekend for the Rockspektakel, a free festival that lasts all weekend. Since 1988, the festival has hosted up-and-coming bands from around the country, rain or shine. Who knows? Perhaps fans this year will witness the next rock supergroup.

Price: Free

Location: Rathausmarkt

Times: August 20 – 22

More Information: Rockspektakel Website


Dragonboat Festival

In the mood for some outdoor sporting fun? Come see over 100 teams race at the Binnenalster Lake in Hamburg. The Dragonboat Festival features a number of exciting races throughout the entire weekend. Those who need a break from the action can enjoy a variety of food stands, shows, children’s entertainment, and Asian ceremonies where one can learn more about the dragonboat tradition. Grab a spot on the Neuer Jungfernstieg for one of the best views of the races.

Price: Free to watch

Location: Binnenalster

Times: August 21 – 22

More Information: Dragonboat Festival Website



Fireworks Competition

Hannover’s appropriately-named Grosser Garten (Large Garden) is the sight of its summer fireworks competitions. Groups from five different countries come together to show off their pyrotechnic skills and wow audiences under the summer sky. Spectators can also enjoy a wide variety of food and drinks, classical music, and theatre performances.

Price: Prices vary

Location: Grosser Garten

Times: August 21, times vary

Phone: (0) 511 168 44543

More information: Herrenhäuser Garten Website



Potsdam Palaces Night

Potsdam is known for its stunning Baroque palaces and beautiful gardens. It even gained recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1990. There is no better way to experience the magic of Potsdam than on Potsdam Palaces Night, when the buildings and gardens are open late and lit up with lights throughout the evening. Enjoy classical music as you stroll through Park Sanssouci, and find a spot in the grass to enjoy the evening-ending fireworks spectacular.

Price: €52 (under 14 free)

Location: Various locations

Times: August 21

More Information: More Information: Potsdam Palaces Night Website



Stuttgart Wine Village

Although best known for its beer, Southern Germany offers a wide variety of delicious wine. The Stuttgart Wine Village is one of the largest wine festivals in Germany. Some of Baden-Württemberg’s best and biggest wineries come together for this annual twelve-day festival. Come and sample some of Germany’s established favorites such as Spätburgunder or Riesling, or try something new from one of the many wine stands in the village.

Price: Free

Location: City centre

Times: August 25 – September 5, 11am-11pm (Thu & Sat until 12am)

More Information: Stuttgart Wine Village Website

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Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.