Fun Events: May in Switzerland

May is finally here in Switzerland, and let me tell you, the mountains are looking epic! ️The air is crisp, the days are longer, and guess what? There’s a ton of awesome stuff happening all over the country! From open wine cellars to different festivals- there is something for everyone!

Ready to dive in? Here’s the lowdown on some of the coolest events happening in Switzerland this May:

1st of May

Geneva: Fête de la Danse- The Dance Festival will take place from April 30th to May 5th along the Rhone River, featuring performances and demonstrations. Salsa, swing, Scottish counter-dance or Indian dance: people will be able to try out dozens of styles!

Morges: Dance festival- A local and national event that showcases the art of dance and offers a range of activities. Dates: 30.04-05.05.

Neuchâtel: Fête de la Danse- dancing festival from 01.05-05.05.

Open Wine Cellars: the Swiss-German speaking part of Switzerland will open its wine cellars doors for 3 days of wine degustation and discovery from the 27th of April to the 1st of May.

Zurich Oberland: Cheese market in Saland offering tasting of different cheeses from the region in traditional ambience. When: 09:00 – 16:00.

Lucerne: Luga serves as a hub for business, society, and culture, having been a cornerstone of Central Switzerland for over 40 years. With 450 regional and national exhibitors, offering a diverse marketplace encompassing living, dining, health, leisure, and education, making it a highly anticipated and popular event.

Mendrisio: A food and wine event, The Mangialonga. Starting from the Mercato Coperto di Mendrisio, where participants can indulge in local delights presented at various stops along the way.

Brig: Over 20 dance schools from the Oberwallis region participate in a dance festival in Brig.

Chiasso: ChiassoLetteraria – 18th edition, The International Literature Festival.

2nd of May

Winterthur: Dancing Festival with performances, shows, courses, dance films, dance battles and dances from different cultures in the old town of Winterthur. Dates: 02-05.05.

Neuchâtel: Fête de la Danse- The Dance Festival will take place from May 2nd to May 4th in Neuchâtel.

Basel: Young Stage – 15. Internationals Circus Festival in Basel. Dates: 02-06.05.

Appenzell: A Cappella Festival – A unique program with exceptional a cappella groups from all over the world. Dates: 02-04.05.

3rd of May

Zurich: The Dance Festival will take place in Zurich from May 3rd to 12th.

Yverdon-les-Bains: Dancing Festival- The Fête de la Danse is back from 03-03.03 to celebrate dance in all its forms.

BEA Bern: an exhibition for agriculture, trade and industry and the largest spring fair in Switzerland will take place in Bern till the 12th of May.

Zug: The Dance Festival- dancing will take place for several days in theaters, cultural centers, and public spaces. Whether it’s folk dance, tango, hip-hop, waltz, or contemporary dance, everyone can create their own program from the wide range of offerings, discover the work of artists, or take a step onto the dance floor themselves!

Frauenfeld: The Pink Apple Film Festival in Zurich and Frauenfeld, with around 80 queer feature and documentary films.

Sion: The Dance Festival- The program in Sion, “today & yesterday, here & elsewhere,” invites people of all ages to come together and discover open classes, workshops, demonstrations, and professional productions taking place in various venues in the city of Sion.

Brienz: Bug Car Meeting- a meeting of air-cooled VW Beetles, buses, Carmans and buggies at the Aaregg campsite on Lake Brienz.

Brig: Bike Days with many motorbikes, sales stands and attractions at in the car-free center of Brig.

Zug Sport Festival: This is a free event for all sport lovers with plenty of fun activities.

4th of May

Bellelay: Cheese Festival! The 7th Festival of the Tête de Moine – A unique and authentic traditional cheese festival.

Fribourg: The Dance Festival is an opportunity to dance all together in theaters, cultural centers and in public places.

Geneva: The Generali Genève Marathon is one of the most beautiful marathons in Europe and one of the fastest in Switzerland. The beauty of the Geneva route, with a first part in the countryside and a finish in the heart of the city in front of the famous Jet d’Eau.

Bad Zurzach: Approximately 100 exhibitors and cultural hotspots in the Zurzibiet region, with shuttle buses providing hourly transport between most exhibition venues.

Baselland: The Trail Days Baselland kick off the 2024 mountain biking season, offering a diverse program including courses, tours, an exhibitor village, shows, culinary delights, workshops, live music, night relays, and more for cyclists of all ages and skill levels at the Mountain bike Trailcenter Aesch.

Wildegg Castle: A huge seedling market opens its (castle) doors on the first weekend of May: At the large ProSpecieRara seedling market at Wildegg Castle, around 20 organic nurseries.

Cama: The MisoXperience festival brings together outdoor sports enthusiasts for a celebration dedicated to their passion.

5th of May

Gruyères: The cheese festival in the medieval town of Gruyères is a wonderful opportunity to visit the beautiful place. You can combine it as well with a visit at the castle or the chocolate factory.

Vaduz: The SlowUp event- in the regions of Werdenberg and Liechtenstein. From 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, participants can traverse 44 kilometers of main and side roads on bicycles, roller skates, or other slow-paced modes of transport, while the streets will be closed to cars.

Thurgau: Schwingfest- The Thurgau Cantonal Swiss Wrestling Festival returns to the lakeside.

Bad Ragaz: Traditional procession of the May Bears, Schnellners and beggars to drive out the winter in Bad Ragaz.

6th of May

Kambly Trubschachen: Celebrating the classic Swiss biscuit with a diverse program including: Pretzeli baking over an open fire, a bouncy castle, face painting for kids and more.

8th of May

Lausanne: Luna park in Lausanne- Every year, the Bellerive area is invaded by dozens of carousels for the pleasure of the children and the parents. When: 8th of May till the 2nd of June.

Bulle: Amateur theater – offering theater enthusiasts a diverse array of original projects and performances in French, dialect, and French sign language, alongside engaging open-stage moments for audiences to enjoy.

9th of May

Valais Open cellars: During 3 days from the 09.05-11.05 the winegrowers invite you to their wineries between 11:00 and 18:00 and let you taste the fine Valais wines.

Fantasy Basel: The Swiss Comic Con with more than 77’000 m2 is the biggest Convention for Film, Game, Comic, and Cosplay fans in Switzerland. Dates: 09-11.05.

Locarno: The Strawberry Festival in Locarno receives a great deal of public attention every year. Visitors fill the Piazza Grande to taste the delicious strawberries prepared in many different ways and also to attend the collateral events taking place on the stage.

Zurich: The Airport Run is part of the ZKB Zürilauf Cup series, welcoming participants of all ages from the Kids Run to the main category covering 17 km, offering diverse runs across scenic routes in forests or countryside fields throughout the year.

St. Gallen: The Ascension Run in St. Gallen offers a variety of races, including a marathon distance race for the first time, along scenic routes starting from the St. Gallen Stadium, with special events planned for Auffahrtslauf Kids to commemorate this milestone celebration.

Zurich: The “World Press Photo 2024” exhibition presents the world’s best press photographs from the past year. Around 3800 photographers from 130 countries submitted over 61,000 images for the current edition of the competition. Dates: May 9th till June 9th.

10th of May

Ascona: Jazz Night- The spirit of Ascona can be experienced through live music in a wide range of jazz genres.

Solothurn: The largest multilingual literature festival in Switzerland. From Friday to Sunday after Ascension Day, Solothurn becomes the literary meeting point of Switzerland with more than 80 authors and translators from Switzerland and abroad.

St. Gallen: The street festival “Aufgetischt!” will turn St. Gallen into a vibrant showcase for contemporary street art. Over two days, artists and musicians from around the world will present their high-caliber shows at alternating locations in and around the historic Abbey district.

11th of May

Ticino: Open wine cellars days between the 11.05-19.05 where you can become familiar with the Wine Makers of the region and their secrets.

Bellinzona: Medieval entertainment at the Fortress of Bellinzona. The “Spada nella Rocca” group will be conducting medieval re-enactment activities from 10:00 to 17:30 in the atmospheric inner courtyard of Castel Grande.

Aproz: The Hérens national cow fighting championships select the queen of Valais fighting queens.

Lugano: Ladies Run Ticino- On Sunday, the only all-female run in Italian-speaking Switzerland, returns to Lugano.

12th of May

Bischofszell: A curious tradition of Mammoth raft race– A tradition of over 40 years on the Sitter and Thur connects and anchors the extraordinary spectacle for rafters and spectators in the region. The event will take place on the 12th depending on the weather.

Aarau: The Aarauer Schachen horse races are a longstanding tradition with nearly 30,000 visitors. Characterized by lively camaraderie, engaging conversations, and the excitement of betting, making it one of the biggest events in the city and a key highlight of Aargau.

15th of May

Winterthur: The Afro-Pfingsten Festival transforms the whole of Winterthur into an intercultural meeting zone during Whitsun. Whether with concerts, markets, workshops, art, film, parties, readings, the Family Day and much more – the diversity of Afro cultures is celebrated together! Dates: 15-22.05.

16th of May

Zug: National Horse Show- The most popular show jumping event of Central Switzerland is hosted once a year in the heard of Zug. Dates: 16-20.05.

La Chaux-du-Milieu: Corbak Festival- Set up in 1993 by a group of friends whose aim was to breathe new life into a region that is rather “off the beaten track”, this festival has grown in size over the years, but has stayed small enough to keep the human touch and to feature an unusual program that showcases new discoveries.

Rougemont: Festival La Folia is a cornerstone in the calendar of early music aficionados. With timeless melodies at concerts held amidst the splendid settings of the Rougemont church and the Château-d’Œx Temple. Dates: 16-20.05.

17th of May

Ascona- Street Artists Festival: In the picturesque setting of Ascona, the artists offer a varied program: mimes, theatre, dance, jugglers, tightrope walkers, fire breathers, musicians, clowns and much more.

Fribourg: The Street food Festival in Fribourg offers food with over 45 food stalls. Dates 17-19.05.

Weggis: Riviera Latina Festival- The salsa open-air festival with an exciting atmosphere every year with live concerts, DJs, shows, children’s program, entertainment and an unforgettable Latino Village. Dates: 17-19.05.

Lugano: City of Lugano Concours d’Elegance for vintage cars. An international event whose ambition is to become one of the main European events dedicated to vintage vehicles.

Faido: Cantonal Music Festival- four days of festivities from May 17th-21st in the area of the school center, which will be transformed into the Oasis of Music for the occasion. As many as 31 bands will perform for a total of more than 1500 musicians.

18th of May

Vaud: Caves Ouvertes Vaudoises will take place on the 18th and 19th of May. The six Vaud wine regions invited you to their wineries! From Chablais to La Côte, via Lavaux, Côtes de l’Orbe, Bonvillars and Vully, more than 200 winegrowers are waiting for your visit.

Lausanne- Miam Festival: This festival include food trucks from the region that will present their specialties from all over the world. Along with music and entertainment. When: 18.05-20.05.

Bern Grand Prix: One of the most important running events in Switzerland. Began in 1982 with 3,139 registrants and developed into a street run with over 30,000 participants.

Baden: The Blues festival- offering great music, fine cuisine, an inviting atmosphere, and headlined by none other than Robert Cray, this event promises to delight audiences with top-notch performances from both local and international acts. Dates: 18-25.05.

Geneva: Gonet Geneva Open ATP 250- The organization of a new Grand Tournament of Tennis in Geneva. Dates: 18-25.05.

19th of May

Ballenberg: International Museum Day- A Sunday dedicated to our annual theme, “On the move across the world”. Personal guided tours are set to animate the stations along the annual themed trail, with our Fairytale Sunday narrators bringing migration stories to life.

Rigi: The Steam Train Rigi Historic XXL – a ride on Europe’s first mountain railroad that has been running from Goldau to Mount Rigi since 1871.

20th of May

Schaffhausen: The Jazz festival with various bands performing on stages throughout Schaffhausen for four days. Dates: 20-25.05.

22nd of May

St. Gallen: St.Galler Kinderfest- The St. Gallen Children’s Festival is an urban folk festival. Schoolchildren from the town’s schools parade through the town in festive costumes to the Kinderfestplatz, where they perform various shows. More than 30,000 people gather on the large meadow on the Rosenberg high above the town. Dates: 22-26.05.

Vevey: The Spring Classic Festival- Classical concerts featuring orchestras, chamber music ensembles and soloists will take place at the Salle del Castillo. The festival is open to the general public.

23rd of May

Zurich: CYCLE WEEK, the national bicycle festival, encompasses the entire world of bicycles. The festival shows new trends and developments, but also everything that has been tried and tested and is dear to bicycle fans. Dates: 23-26.05.

24th of May

Lucerne: The Lucerne Regatta is THE international rowing regatta in Switzerland. The “Lake of the Gods”, as the Rotsee in Lucerne is also known, brings together the rowing elite from all over the world. Dates: 24-26.05.

Murten/Morat: Bise Noire Surfclassic- Beach event. With Windsurf & Kitesurf Regatta, SUP Race, Wing surf Demo, Beach volley Open, Expo and Surfboards, Bistro, and Saturday Night Party—all part of the BISE Noire Beachopen. Dates: 24-26.05.

Estavayer-le-Lac: LudiMania’k- For a weekend, the medieval town of Estavayer-le-Lac becomes the largest open-air playground! An entire weekend devoted to fun and discovery awaits players from 3 to 13 years old.

Hallau: The Open-air Hallau is taking place on May 24th & 25th in the pretty vineyard of Hallau. With music, delicacies and good mood.

Altdorf: The House of Folk Music invites you to the folk music festival in Altdorf from May 24th to 26th for 3 days of folk music from all parts of Switzerland.

Nidau: The Nidau Stedlifest is a cheerful spring festival that is ideal for the whole family and attracts both locals from Nidau and visitors from the surrounding area.

Cornaux: The Corn’Rock Festival is a local event, which favors regional bands, artists, and businesses. The atmosphere of the festival is family friendly and everyone is welcome.

Interlaken: The Street food Festival in Interlaken Ost- A culinary experience with 45 stalls, themed bars and live music.

Courgenay: The Dritchino open air music festival takes place on May 24th and 25th.

Bad Ragaz: Airport Festival- A mix of exhibition, chilbi (fair) and music festival.

25th of May

Geneva: Open wine cellars- As the third largest wine-growing canton in Switzerland, Geneva occupies a special place with its three wine-growing regions. And on Saturday over 70 wine cellars in the canton will open their doors to visitors!

Geneva: The night of the museums is back in Geneva! with a super fun program as usual. Ticket price is 10.- CHF for adults and FREE for under 18 years old.

Fribourg: The Night of the Museums offers you numerous activities and discoveries in more than 20 museums and institutions in and around Fribourg.

Montreux Riviera: The night of the museums- Visit 10 museums free of charge and take part in a wide range of activities.

Bellinzona: The Bellinzona Castles & GO- the medieval race! Drawbridges, secret passages, crenellated paths, forests, fine neighborhoods and medieval town canter. If you like running or walking, there is a new race for you in town.

Arbon: Classic cars fans from all over Switzerland and nearby countries gather on the Quai grounds and at Arbon railroad station. With a fun program and a total of around 3,500 vintage cars, motorcycles, boats, trains and planes.

Erlach: The Erlach Festival- Erlach boasts a vibrant cultural scene, with its castle, lake, and charming performance spaces providing the perfect backdrop for a diverse cultural program.

Martigny: Gospel Air Festival – The festival offers choirs from French-speaking Switzerland and neighboring countries the chance to present their repertoire in a convivial and festive setting.

Lenzburg: The Lenzburg run- Popular run with various categories around Lenzburg.

26th of May

Winterthur: The Winti Marathon is a family event with a great route and atmosphere. From the marathon to the 5 km run, everyone will find the ideal distance, from beginners to ambitious runners.

Schaffhausen: The SlowUp Schaffhausen-Hegau event- the 38 km circular route takes you through historic towns and villages as well as beautiful natural surroundings.

29th of May

Spiez: Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour Futures- 28 men’s and women’s duos from around 25 nations will fight for the prize. The tournament takes place in Spiez Bay (Center Court) and in the Thun lido. Admission is free.

Zurich: Unique concert evenings in the historic inner courtyard- With six shows over five days, Unique Moments returns to the historic courtyard of the Landesmuseum Zurich in early summer from May 29th to June 2nd.

30th of May

Basel: The Groove Now Blues Weeks Basel have developed into one of the most important blues festivals in Europe since 2010. The festival exclusively presents the best and most exciting international contemporary blues and soul musicians – primarily from the USA.

St. Gallen: Longines CSIO – The official show jumping tournament of Switzerland.

Fribourg: In Fribourg, Corpus Christi is a big celebration. Featuring a Mass at 9 a.m. followed by a procession at 10:30 a.m., starting from the College St-Michaels courtyard, passing through various streets, and concluding at the Cathedral’s porch.

Vevey: The Vibiscum Festival- Music, emotion and conviviality: these are the key ingredients that make up the fledgling Vibiscum Festival. In a dreamlike setting, right on the shores of the lake.

Lugano: The Festival Poestate is the first for historicity and most important literary festival in the canton of Ticino.

Ettiswil: The Voices Festival – For two decades, the focus has been on celebrating the rich array of vocal expressions, with artists from both national and international stages lending their voices to enchant audiences over the course of four days.

31st of May

Arbon: PADL Festival- The kayak and SUP event from May 31st – June 2nd at the Arbon lido.

Lausanne: The Wake up and run is a non-timed 5km running that takes place at 05.30 a.m. in the canter of 15 Swiss cities and which is followed up by a take-away breakfast including regional products.

Avenches: The Avenches Open Air festival is all about festive rock music and atmosphere. Dates: 31.05-01.06.

Brienz: Single axle race- At this race, single axle are used not for work as usual, but for a race.

Buochs: The AHOI is a free event for the local and regional population. A weekend with great music acts such as “Linda Elys” or “Pedestrians” and delicious food stands.

Solothurn: Mozart Festival Solothurn Salzburg- Brilliant virtuosity from the Salzburg master.

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