The Narzissenfest (Daffodil Festival) is an annual flower festival held in Bad Aussee, an Austrian resort town located in the Salzkammergut lakes region. Founded in 1960, it is one of biggest annual events in Bad Aussee and a major tourist attraction.

The history of the daffodil festival began in the late 1959s. The first festival took place in Mariazell, a small city known for winter sports. However, it quickly became clear that Mariazell wasn’t the best place to hold a daffodil festival. The Ausseerland with its vast daffodil fields was deemed for appropriate for the event. Besides, an annual festival would boost the struggling local economy.

The first Narzissenfest took place on May 28–29, 1960. It was organized by the tourism committee of Bad Aussee. Since then, it has become one of major tourist attractions in the region, drawing over 25,000 visitors each year.

The Narzissenfest runs over four days in late May. It is preceded by the election of the Daffodil Queen (Narzissenkönigin) on the weekend before the festival. The Queen and her court consisting of two Daffodil Princesses preside over the festivities.

The first day of the festival features a traditional opening ceremony with folk music and a run around the lake. The main event of the second day is Maintanz, a traditional dance performed by local children. On the third day, there is a vintage car parade and a fashion show. Besides, attendees get a chance to see how floral sculptures are made for the parade.

Sunday is the main day of the Narzissenfest. It features the most important events: the City Parade and the Boat Parade. The exhibition of floral sculptures and floats that participate in the City Parade opens at 8 am and the parade itself kicks off at 11 am. It’s a spectacular procession in downtown Bad Aussee featuring elaborate sculptures and floats decorated with thousands of daffodils, marching bands, and people of all ages dressed in traditional costumes of the region. The Boat Parade takes place on Lake Altaurseersee or Lake Grundlsee, alternating from one year to the next.

Alongside parades and shows, there are many other events and attractions offered during the festival such as guided walking tours through daffodil fields, workshops, gastronomic events, garden parties, and more.


Photo: vikatw




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