With the weather hotting up and the evenings growing ever longer, the open road calls to many a fan of two wheels. A huge number of cycling races take place across Europe during the summer and early autumn months, so if you’re gearing up for the finale of the Tour de France you should definitely check out these other events in the calendar. Whether you’re a keen cyclist looking for a place to race, or a fan who simply wants to witness these world class athletes in training, these lesser-known cycling events provide stunning views, exciting terrain and a buzzing atmosphere for spectators.
America might have founded the first events back in the 1960s, but fast forward to the present day and Europe has a firm grip on the festival baton. The UK alone hosts approximately 500 festivals each year, and the incredible roster of European events continues to evolve every summer. Attending a classic festival or boutique weekender has long been a rite of passage, wherever you hail from on the continent. From hip hop legends in Holland to cutting edge electro in Belgium, there’s a festival for everyone. Here’s the best of what’s coming up in 2017.
On 31 July 2017, events in Belgium will commemorate 100 years since the start of the Battle of Passchendaele – a series of attacks on Ypres in the country’s Flanders region. With 450,000 casualties by its end on 10 November 1917, this particular campaign is known not only as one of the bloodiest of World War I, but also one characterised by bravery – fourteen Victoria Cross medals were given out on the first day alone.
To honour its centenary year, each nation involved will be holding special tributes, and Belgium itself is holding a series of events too. With the Flanders region less than an hour away from our Zeebrugge port, travelling with your car will give you the best access to see it all. Our guide to the schedule follows below.
This summer’s festival season is well and truly upon us, and fields all across the country will soon be filled up with people wanting to camp, sing and dance to some of the world’s best music. If you’re looking for something different though, continental Europe could offer something totally unique. Celebrating the weird and the wonderful – from bathtub sailing in Belgium to onion festivals in Germany, read on for our guide to some of Europe’s most unusual events.
While the term refers to pieces composed between 500 and 1600, early music is far from being stuck in the past. In fact, today’s early music scene – spanning medieval, renaissance and baroque genres – is thriving, bringing together a huge number of instruments in harmonious and immersive performances. A number of talented musicians are taking to the stage this year for concerts in York, as well as Bruges and Leuven in Flanders. Continue reading Early music events: Flanders, Bruges and more
Want to try something new over the school holidays? All the sights without the crowds, all the fun without the queues; the southernmost region of Belgium is an untapped gem perfect for a stress-free family holiday. Wallonia’s symbol is a red rooster – you’ll see it adorning buildings and flags across the region – and you’ll feel naturally compelled to rise bright and early for long days of inspirational activities wherever you wander. Here are some of the very best things to do in Wallonia for the whole family.
Tradition lies at the heart of Wallonia, from its Renaissance-style architecture right down to its rich local produce. The French-speaking region of Belgium may not be a well-known holiday destination, but with a range of activities on offer, it’s a true hidden gem that oozes old world charm. With multiple museums, historic sites and more than 1,500 castles to explore, you’ll find plenty to pack in, and all in a picturesque countryside setting.