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Basel Carnival 2018 - UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage

Fasnachts Comité

In December 2017, UNESCO included the Basler Fasnacht carnival in the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. The 2018 Basel Carnival, the “three most wonderful days of the year” will take place from 6 to 8 March. Lasting for 72 hours, from Monday morning 4.00 a.m. to Thursday morning 4.00 a.m., the carnival is a truly memorable experience for big and small! The soundscape will be provided by piccolos, drums and traditional Gugge music while colourful costumes and masks will dominate the townscape.

The Morgestraich march, which traditionally kicks off the Basel Carnival, will take place on Monday morning at 4.00 a.m. All lights will be extinguished throughout the town – with the exception of the small lanterns attached to the heads of the drummers and piccolo players marching through the city centre.

«The processions»
Starting at 1.30 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday, around 12,000 carnival revellers in costumes and masks will present their themes on the processions. Equipped with drums, piccolos and “Gugge” instruments as well as lanterns and countless bizarre accessories, they will follow the procession route on foot, floats and chairs, handing out slips of paper tossing barbs at different events and personalities in the local Basel dialect. Among many other things, the floats will distribute confetti, oranges, touch me nots, roses and sweets.

«Gugge» concert
Tuesday evening will be mostly dedicated to Gugge music. From 7.30 to 11.00 p.m., traditional Gugge concerts at Marktplatz, Barfüsserplatz and Claraplatz will enchant thousands of fans with deafening, discordant and mercurial arrangements.

In the evening hours and on Tuesday afternoon, big and small piccolo and drum formations, masked individuals and Gugge musicians roam the alleyways of the old town as they please. At a leisurely pace, visitors can follow their favourite formation to the sound of traditional or new compositions.

On Monday and Wednesday evening, over 100 Schnitzelbank singers will perform in various cafes and bars. Singing in the local Basel dialect, groups, solo singers and duos poke fun at political grievances and events of the last year.

«How to get there»
Take the train! If you are dependent on the car, leave it at a car park in the outskirts of town. The Basel public transport company will be offering an ingenious special tram and bus schedule during the Fasnacht days.

Date & Time

19. February 2018 -
21. February 2018

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