Burghausen Castle - Bavara - picture by Robin Dance

I’ve taken to calling her Mayberry, this place that has gentled her way into my heart.

There’s no Andy or Barney but it’s small town and slow and her people simmer friendly and open. I know when it’s time to go for good, she’ll hold back a sliver of my heart.  How could that not happen when you live in the place fairytales are born?

Burghausen is home to the longest castle in the world, so it makes perfect sense to have a party that goes on for days.  And based on the crowds and revelry, I think every one of her 19,000 residents showed up or somehow took part in Burgfest 2012, a Renaissance Festival of Epic Proportion.

Children playing drums at Burgfest Castle festival


Burghausen Castle Festival processional

Burgfest 2012 ~ Dancing and music


Burgfest is sensory feast.

Festival eats and drinks, of course, but the scents, sights, sounds and tactile experience filled me to the overflow.  Imagine men, women and children celebrating their heritage fully committed with wild abandon.  In a storehouse of memory, this one dazzles me dizzy.

Burgfest 2012 ~ Drum processional


Steckerfische ~ literal fish (on) sticks!!

Food at Burgfest

Burgfest foods, grilled meats and sausages

Peasants at Burgfest gathering flowers

Renaissance Festival family


Their commitment to authenticity is remarkable, a romantic depiction of Medieval times.  Puppet shows, live entertainment, reenactments…all made me long to understand the language.  Then again, I understood enough.


Burgfest Castle Festival

Hand-cranked swing at Burgfest Castle Festival

Fruit and vegetable cart at Burgfest



Children of all ages had a difficult choice to make:  what festival novelties to take home.

Wooden clogs at Burgfest

Armor helmets, Renaissance Festival

Swords at Burgfest Castle Festival

Bows and arrows, Renaissance Festival (Burghausen Castle Festival)


It was all I could do not to buy Renaissance clothing (or a COOL bow and arrow)–you know me and my propensity for wearing princess dresses…. If only I had known I needed cash!  (After the fact, I realized I could have gotten a deal on period dress at Amazon.  Le sigh….)

I’ve never considered going to a Renaissance Festival before, but if they’re anything like Burghausen’s Castle Festival, attendance is just a matter of time (DO tell if you’ve been to one yourself).

Have you subscribed to blog updates yet to follow this series?  Tomorrow I’ll complete my recap of Burgfest with my favorite discovery of the day:  the thing squeezed my heart so tight I can still feel the hug months later….

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