Watch the cows come home in Bavaria’s Allgäu region

The cows come home in Luftkurort Pfronten Sept. 10, 2016, Almabtrieb. Photo by Lauren Jelle

Take a trip to Bavaria’s alpine region of the Allgäu to join in an age-old rural tradition celebrating the return of the cows known as “Viehscheid.”

About 50,000 cows in Germany spend their summer in the mountains enjoying the warm weather, and fresh vegetation. In September, they begin to return home to their owners in style adorned with fresh flowers and large decorated cowbells.

Watch the making of the traditional cowbells here:

The Viehscheid is the yearly highlight for the locals who dress up in their traditional costume and together with thousands of visitor’s witness the cows arrival back to the valley. At the event, visitors can also try the local foods; dance to live music and enjoy festivities inside the large beer tent.

These traditions are celebrated in areas of Switzerland and Austria as well.

For information on events in Bavaria visit these websites, (English) and Viehscheid  (German only).

View more photos from 2016.