Nationwide Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage

Journeymen's Wanderings on the Road

The wanderings of the journeyman or the journeywoman is a tradition followed by the professions of the main construction trade and others of taking to the road after the successful completion of one’s apprenticeship and to spend several years in other regions, learning new skills and gaining new insights in the process.

Facts & figures

Crucial date: all seasons
Inscription: 2014
Domains: social practices, rituals and festive events
Where to find: nationwide (also abroad)


Conföderation Europäischer Gesellenzünfte (CCEG)
Vicepresident Friedrich Bader

Young journeymen and journeywomen, in meeting with strangers and like-minded people, are confronted with the unknown and the unpredictable, in order to continue their professional training and broaden their own personal horizons. Everyone who can identify himself as a journeyman in the construction sector, for example as a thatcher, tiler, bricklayer, joiner, concrete worker, mason or carpenter, has not yet reached the age of 30, is single, has no debts, commands the German language and is a trade union member, may take to the road in this fashion. For this purpose the journeyman joins a journeymens’ association.

With five Euros in his pocket and dressed in traditional uniform, a newly-qualified journeyman takes to the road accompanied by an experienced journeyman.

As a wandering journeyman one has a responsibility towards one’s uniform and conducts oneself in such a manner that journeymen who come after one are also made welcome. Decisive for these wanderings, in addition to the new experiences gained, is being a member of a community that maintains a network of hostels to which the travelling journeyman may always have recourse.


Wissen. Können. Weitergeben..
Deutsche UNESCO-Kommission, 2019