• Rose garden in Ohlsdorf
    Rose garden in Ohlsdorf ©Hamburger Friedhöfe (AöR) 2009
  • Andechs Abbey
    Andechs Abbey ©Kloster Andechs
  • Maria Alm Pilgrimage
    Maria Alm Pilgrimage ©Berchtesgadener Land Tourismus GmbH
  • Easter cavalcade in Bautzen, Upper Lusatia
    Easter cavalcade in Bautzen, Upper Lusatia ©Marketing-Gesellschaft Oberlausitz-Niederschlesien mbH (Jörg Stephan)
  • Holy Blood pilgrimage to Walldürn/Odenwald
    Holy Blood pilgrimage to Walldürn/Odenwald ©Touristinfo Walldürn
  • Volkenroda Abbey
    Volkenroda Abbey ©Tourist-Information Waldsassen
  • Bad Kötzting Whitsun Ride
    Bad Kötzting Whitsun Ride ©Kurverwaltung Bad Kötzting
  • Kevelaer motorcycle pilgrimage
    Kevelaer motorcycle pilgrimage ©Motorradwallfahrt Kevelaer
  • Castle Frankenstein
    Castle Frankenstein ©Burg Frankenstein/Medianet World
  • St. Crescentia's Way
    St. Crescentia's Way
  • St. Bridget's Trail – Schwerin
    St. Bridget's Trail – Schwerin ©DZT/Norbert Krüger
  • Holzkirchen candle pilgrimage
    Holzkirchen candle pilgrimage ©Touristinfo Ortenburg
  • Historic Oxen Trail – Flensburg, Törning mill
    Historic Oxen Trail – Flensburg, Törning mill ©Büro Oeding, Flensburg
  • Healing gallery at Mount Untersberg
    Healing gallery at Mount Untersberg ©Berchtesgadener Land Tourismus GmbH
  • Oberammergau
    Oberammergau ©Panthermedia (Ebehard S.)
  • Vogtei sacrificial site
    Vogtei sacrificial site ©Zweckverband Mittelpunkt Deutschland, Niederdorla
  • Externsteine rocks in Horn-Bad Meinberg
    Externsteine rocks in Horn-Bad Meinberg ©Kulturagentur des Landesverbandes Lippe
  • All Saints' Church in Soest
    All Saints' Church in Soest ©Tourist-Information Soest
  • Benedict Trail – Lake Chiemsee, Fraueninsel island
    Benedict Trail – Lake Chiemsee, Fraueninsel island

Traditions and customs unite generations

Christian traditions and customs always leave visitors with memorable moments to cherish. In Germany too, there are many religious festivals and events all year round which combine tradition, customs, faith and culture.

Traditions and customs are usually dictated by feast days or festivals in the calendar and many have religious origins: carnival, Easter, Whitsun, town fairs, All Saints' Day or Christmas, to name but a few, were and still are the main festivals according to rural traditions. Pilgrimages, a feature of many religions, are a traditional journey that expresses religious devotion or fulfils a holy command. Pilgrimages were a major phenomenon in the Middle Ages and still play an important role in Christian life as a testimony of faith. Every year, the veneration surrounding St. James' grave in Santiago de Compostela attracts millions of pilgrims from all over the world along a broad network of interwoven pilgrimage routes, throughout the whole of Europe – as it has done for more than 1,000 years. The German section of St. James' Way takes pilgrims to historical towns and cities with famous art treasures such as Trier, Cologne and Aachen. Almost everywhere there are magical places associated with great deeds or miracles, witches and sorcerers, even devils and demons, and sites where sacrifices and religious rituals are said to have occurred. There are enigmatic places where pagan festivals and solstice celebrations were once held, which are often embellished with fairytales, myths, sagas and legends and impart a certain air of magic and mystery.

Traditions, customs, pilgrimages and magical places – still as fascinating today as ever.

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