Carnival Time in Vienna

Enjoy a fun carnival time in Vienna

Regardless of whether you refer to this time of the year as Fasching (as it is known in Austria), carnival, Alaaf or if you use another expression – during the carnival period, people in Vienna always celebrate properly. The start is marked by the tradition around Krapfen (doughnuts), followed by colourful carnival parades, the Bonbon Ball in the Vienna Konzerthaus and some flamboyant carnival parties.


Krapfen – a carnival tradition


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Vienna is by far the winner when it comes to the consumption of doughnuts! A Krapfen is made from dough which is deep-fried and traditionally filled with apricot jam. The literal icing on the cake, is the layer of icing sugar on top. Of course, there are now also nougat doughnuts, vanilla doughnuts or doughnuts with other fillings, there are almost no limits to a baker’s imagination.

As regards the origin of the tradition of carnival doughnuts, there are very different explanations. One reason given for the carnival doughnut custom is the nutritional value of the yeast-baked cake. Doughnuts were both cheap to produce and ‑ with about 300 calories per cake ‑ fairly nutritious. And as such, perfect for storing up some energy before fasting began in Lent. According to another story, in the last week before Lent, all the fat and remaining eggs were used up, as these could only be eaten again at Easter. On the so-called “lard Saturday”, doughnuts were baked and these had to last until Shrove Tuesday. How lucky we are that there are so many excellent patisseries and cafés in Vienna as this means that you yourself do not have to bake or do without a fluffy and delicious doughnut.


Carnival processions in Vienna


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In general, the carnival season is also considered as a fifth season. In Vienna, however, some claim that the traditional carnival custom seems to be quite extinct. This time of the year belongs completely to the glittering balls. But also here, Vienna proves its versatility! Within the Gürtel, the city centre and some districts, traditional carnival processions are very well organised.

You can, for example, attend carnival sessions in Floridsdorf and Gerasdorf. You are guaranteed a colourful programme with funny sketches, ballet interludes, guest performances or a funny, political review of the year. But also Stammersdorf, the 21st district of Vienna which is well-known for its many Heurigen, is definitely to be recommended. And the Vienna Prater is the perfect location to celebrate Fasching with a wonderful and colourful carnival procession

Carnival sessions in Floridsorf
Address: Angererstraße 14, 1210 Vienna
Date: 14th January 2023

Carnival sessions in Gerasdorf
Address: Stammersdorfer Straße 354, 2201 Gerasdorf
Date: 17th February 2023

Wiener Prater Carnival Procession
Address: Wiener Prater, 1020 Vienna
Date: 12th February 2023


The Bonbon Ball


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This is the sweetest ball of Vienna and at the same time, it is probably the most Viennese way to celebrate Fasching. What better way to celebrate carnival in Austria’s capital, the stronghold of balls, than by attending a ball? Because if not with a ball, how else could one celebrate carnival in the federal capital, the stronghold of balls? Traditionally, the Bonbon Ball always takes place on the Friday before Shrove Tuesday.

The beautiful ambience of Vienna’s Konzerthaus as well as the extraordinary show interludes make this ball truly special. One of the highlights is the election of Miss Bonbon. Furthermore, the partners of the ball are many well-known companies, some of which are well-known for their sweet products, such as Manner, Heindl, Hofbauer or Leibniz. These companies traditionally provide sweet surprises for visitors to the ball.

Our Tip: Don’t forget the dress code! For the ladies, a floor-length evening dress, for the gentlemen a tailcoat, tuxedo or black suit is mandatory.

Bonbon Ball
Address: Wiener Konzerthaus, Lothringerstraße 20, 1030 Vienna
Date: 24th February 2023 (expected)

Lambert Hofer – Hire of costumes and evening wear
Address: Simmeringer Hauptstrasse 28, 1110 Vienna


Extravagant carnival parties in Vienna


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The Viennese clubbing scene can also hold its own in the colourful carnival scene. Many large clubs pride themselves on the various carnival parties that they organise, for example the Loft, with their famous “The Faschingsfest”.

And if you need costumes, you are sure to find them in the Art for Art costume house. Here, not only can fancy dress costumes be hired for theatre or opera performances, but also private individuals can borrow the perfect costume from their large collection.

The Loft
Address: Lerchenfelder Gürtel 37, 1160 Vienna
Date: 21st February 2023

ART for ART Theaterservice GmbH
Adresse: Goethegasse 1, 1010 Vienna

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