Decorated cows for the Almabtrieb, Tannheimer Tal, a valley in Tyrol, Austria
© Hans Lippert/Alam
When the cows come home
These well-dressed cows are celebrating their annual return from high Alpine pastures to the towns and villages where they'll spend the winter. Known as Almabtrieb, the tradition is held in late autumn throughout the Alpine regions of Europe and here in the Austrian state of Tyrol, more than 100,000 cows make this seasonal migration. Traditionally, cows are bedecked in towering headdresses and flowered wreaths, collars with fine embroidery or heavy bells.
Usually, locals and tourists join in the celebrations. This year however, the Covid-19 pandemic means the cattle drive will be closed to the public. Instead let's raise a glass of milk - or schnapps - to remember a centuries-old tradition and to mark the passing of another summer.