The Baumblütenfest (literal translation: festival of the tree blossoms) is a festival that takes place annually in the small town of Werder (Havel), very close to Potsdam and 45 minutes from Berlin. The name was given because it takes place at the beginning of Spring, but doesn’t suit the festival so much. Instead, maybe it should be called something like ‘festival of the sweet wine’. 😛
In this free, open-air street festival, people who live in Werder sell their own home-made wine, a very sweet and liqueur-like wine, right outside their houses. So you walk along the town streets and eventually stop in front of houses to try out and purchase some of the home-made wine. There are several flavors available, usually wild berries: strawberry, blackberry, raspberry, blueberry, amongst many others. Prices in general are 2 euros per cup and 7-9 euros per bottle.
The town is taken over by young people, lively and cheerful from the wine. For safety reasons, it’s forbidden to walk around with glass bottles, so you’ll only find beer in specific places. The wine is super sweet, which really disguises the actual amount of alcohol. And since the combo ‘people + alcohol’ may eventually cause some trouble, there are police officers watching over throughout the whole town.
The town is also full of tents selling street food, some spread out stages with live music, and even an amusement park with a Ferris wheel and other rides. And going up a street from the main square will lead you to the top of a hill, where you’ll find a big open-air area, with a stage, a Biergarten and a nice view of the surroundings.
I’ve already been to this festival in 2 consecutive years and plan to keep attending. The best thing about it is that everyone there is happy and laid-back (of course, the wine helps, haha). It’s a really cool and fun vibe
(which sometimes can be rare in Germany). A great option for those who don’t dislike crowds and want to enjoy the start of the warm and sunny weather outside.
When: the Baumblütenfest lasts for 1 week, including the weekends before and after, always at the end of April / beginning of May. In 2016, it goes from April 30th to May 8th.
How to get there: by taking a regional train RE1 from Berlin and getting off at the station ‘Werder (Havel)’. Price of the transport ABC ticket (each way): 3,30 euros. In Berlin, the train leaves from the main stations, such as Hauptbahnhof, Friedrichstr., Zoologischer Garten and Charlottenburg.