Skip to content

Knights' Tournament 14-16 June 2013

Traditionally over the third weekend in June the the Maximillian Knights' Tournament (Maximilian Ritterspiele) take place in the city of Horb am Neckar at the eastern border of the Black Forest. The little town is the scene of one of Europe's biggest medieval spectacles: About 40.000 visitors from all over the region travel annually to experience knights mounted high on horses, the big medieval market and a wide diversity of other attractions like jugglers, minstrels, camp life and the festival parade.

The tournament site will once again take on a central role at the 17th Horber Ritterspiele from 14 to 16 June 2013. Additionally to the big tournament shows, there will be something happening the whole time in the tournament ring on both Saturday and Sunday thus making it even more attractive for visitors - with several smaller tournaments, exercises, stunt displays, exhibition fights and other performances. Taking place parallel is the large medieval market in the alleyways and streets around the centre of Horb and up to the market square. "Hawking" their wares are about 200 traders and craftsmen, including soap boilers, calligraphers, glass painters, armourers, wood carvers, elixir purveyors, leather braiders and many more. In between are enticing stands with a feast of foods and all sorts of thirst quenchers - from knight's beer to mead. Amongst the colourful folk at the Horber Ritterspiele are also jugglers and minstrels, fire-breathers, stilt walkers and drummers, artistes, medieval music groups and there's the medieval camp giving visitors an authentic insight into what life was like 500 years ago. And naturally for the younger fans of knights, there's also the children's Knights' Tournament in the castle gardens.

The colourful goings on, which catapults Horb back to medieval times for the duration of the June weekend, is based on an historical event. In 1498, King Maximilian, later the German Emperor, signed, for the state of Württemberg, the agreement governing the successor to the throne in front of the Horb town hall. He disempowered the inept Duke Eberhardt and enabled southern Germany to blossom economically in the years afterwards - from today's point of view it was the begin of a democratisation process. And a good reason to celebrate the historical event with a festival - especially as Maximilian was a fervent fan of knights' tournaments. The signing of the agreement is re-enacted in Horb's historical town centre on Sunday. Immediately afterwards, kings and dukes, nobles and commoners, dancers, jugglers and trumpeters all go on an impressive celebratory parade through the centre of town to the tournament showground where King Maximilian presides over the trials of strength and skill.

Official website -> http://www.ritterspiele.com

  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Black Forest photo galleries

screenshot photo gallerySee the new photo galleries on our homepage black-forest-travel.com! Photos in high quality and high resolution from all over the Black Forest.

You will find great images e.g. from Baden-Baden, Karlsruhe, the Black Forest High Road or Lake Titisee, or in the gallery 'top events' photos and info e.g. about the Black Forest carnival, ski-jumping, paraglider's competition, carpets of flowers, the sheperd's race and markets of all kind.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Festival in Schonach in the Black Forest

processionThe traditional festival in Schonach in the Central Black Forest began today (5th September 2009) with a grand festival procession. The procession set off for the festival marquee at 3 pm sharp, where the festival was officially opened at 3.30 pm with the tapping of the keg.


tapping of the kegThere will be plenty of music and high spirits in the large festival marquee from today until Monday evening with something to suit all tastes. Party music on Saturday evening, traditional oompah music and folk music on Sunday and Monday as well as entertainment in local dialect.

There is a large fun fair next to the marquee with a chairoplane, dodgems, a merry-go-round and all kinds of sweet temptations.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Charcoal Pile Festival in Dachsberg, Germany

charcoal pileA very special event took place once again this year in the small community of Dachsberg in the southern Black Forest: the Dachsberger Charcoal Pile Festival. The charcoal pile at the forest sports ground in the district of Wolpadingen smoked from the 25th July to the 9th August 2009, and a great deal of entertainment was on offer at the same time.

The Markgräfler Bergturnfest gymnastic festival and the jubilee weekend of the Dachsberg traditional costume band with its regional music festival had already taken place on the first two weekends. The climax was the folklore day on Sunday the 9th of August with plenty of music, a national park market and demonstrations of old Black Forest handicraft trades. The charcoal pile will be opened on 21st/22nd August, and the charcoal offered for sale on 22nd August.

In the Dachsberg charcoal pile, charcoal is produced in the traditional manner from approximately 20 steres (cubic metres) of beechwood in approx. 4 weeks (2 weeks just for cooling). The charcoal stack is watched around the clock by the charburners during this time (the shelter can be seen on the left in the top picture, the charburner is clearing the smoke holes in the bottom picture). The charburners also enjoy answering visitors' questions and providing expert information about the composition of the charcoal pile and the history of charcoal burning in the Black Forest.

charburnerCharcoal burning was an important industry in the Black Forest for a long time. The charcoal was mainly required for ironworks and glass manufacture. Increasingly larger quantities were needed, which meant that vast areas of the Black Forest were bare and not covered by dense forest as they are today. Coal was increasingly used in industry from the 18th century, so that the trees grew back and the forest could recover.

Incidentally, the community of Dachsberg is set in a beautiful location on a plateau in the Hotzenwald Forest, the southernmost part of the Black Forest. Well-known places in the area include St. Blasien and Todtmoos. Lake Schluchsee, Lake Titisee and Feldberg Mountain are also not far away.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook