Keep in mind that this is the low season so your travel dollar may go father, especially for hotels. It is also deep winter so pack appropriately for everything from snow, to freezing rain, to chill winds. If you are planning on hitting Germany's legendary ski slopes or ice rinks, add another layer.
Find out what annual events and festivals take place during your vacation in Germany.
01 of 05
Berlin's Transmediale Festival is a 30-year-old festival for contemporary art and digital culture in Berlin. It hosts a large number of exhibitions, panel discussions, performances, and video screenings.
Fitting for the exhibitions inside, it takes place in the futuristic building of the House of World Cultures.
When: January 31 - February 3, 2019
Where: House of World Cultures (John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10, 10557 Berlin)
02 of 05
The lavish Semper Opera in Dresden opens its doors to 2,500 guests every year for the most prestigious ball in Germany.
Guests arrive decked out in their finest ball gowns and tuxedos for an extraordinary night of music, live performances, and dancing. The opening act is the presentation of 100 debutantes from all over Germany.
This luxurious evening has its price, but you can also join thousands of locals and waltz under the stars at the free open-air ball. It takes place on the historic square right outside the Opera building with the events inside broadcast to the freeloading revelers.
When: February 1, 2019
Where: Semper Opera (Theaterplatz 2, 01067 Dresden)
03 of 05
Berlin's Berlinale is one of the most well-respected film festivals in the world.
For 10 days, the red carpet is rolled out at the cinema at Potsdamer Platz and neighboring theatres. Over 20,000 professionals in film including world famous stars pause and pose before entering the theatres for international premieres. Over 500,000 attendees are also welcome to buy tickets and be some of the first in the world to see the movies everyone is going to be talking about for the next year.
This is also a chance to peek behind the curtain with director and cast often available for Q&As after the screening. And even after the credits roll there is more to do. The biggest screenings are followed by the hottest parties in the nightlife capital of Germany.
When: February 7 - 17, 2019
Where: Potsdamer Platz (Potsdamer Straße 5, 10785 Berlin)
04 of 05
Though Valentine’s Day was once unheard of in Germany, it has become increasingly popular each passing year.
Exchanging cards (Valentinskarte), sweets, small gifts and/or flowers have all become accepted practice on this day. Germans are great lovers of romance and some segments of the population embrace the gift giving and special dinner out. Practice German sayings like “Ich liebe dich” (I love you).
Unlike places like the USA, this is not a holiday for children so don't expect Valentines to be handed out at school.
When: February 14
Where: GermanyContinue to 5 of 5 below.
05 of 05
No matter whether you call it Karneval or Fasching, for most of the country this festival is a big deal. Join the colorful costumed celebrations, street parades, and costume balls that take place in Cologne, Aachen, Düsseldorf and many other German cities.
The last big party before Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, everyone has the chance to dress up as a jecken (clown) and go a little wild. This is the time for excess, drinking kölsch and eating krapfen (doughnuts).
Carnival season actually starts with the planning that begins on November 11th (11/11) by the Council of Eleven, but the bulk of the partying takes place during Weiberfastnacht (Women's Carnival Day) with its ritualistic tie cutting, Rosenmontag (Rose Monday) which is parade day and Aschermittwoch (Ash Wednesday) when things finally settle down.
Cologne is the capital of Karneval with the whole city participating in the party. Over €2 million is spent on the celebrations including over 700,000 chocolates and 300,000 flowers that are handed out to the crowds at the parade.
If you miss the live events, many of the festivities are shared on national TV.
When: February 28th - March 5, 2019
Where: Most German cities. The biggest festivities are in Cologne, Münster, Düsseldorf, Aachen, and Mainz