With the bright winter sun rising over frozen canals, winter is one of the most beautiful seasons to see your favourite European cities. And while the long summer days of lazing at the best of the festivals may be over for this year, the colder months bring a whole host of exciting events with them. From awe-inspiring illuminations in Amsterdam to curious literary themed carnivals in France, there’s a full programme of activities to keep the whole family entertained throughout the iciest of seasons.
It’s time to grab your sunglasses and head to this treasured spot in France where the stars shine almost as bright as the sun. A holiday in Cannes is a true slice of luxury, whether you’re enjoying outdoor screenings during the film festival or taking a break to the glamorous spot at any other time of the year. The city’s beautiful coastlines and sprawling beachside cafés are perfectly mixed with majestic casinos and glitzy bars for an evening’s entertainment, so you can relax in style throughout your stay. Here’s how to holiday like a star in Cannes.
Did you know that St Patrick’s Day is one of the most widely celebrated national holidays in the world? Every year on March 17th, people across the globe throw on their finest green garments and glug rich, velvety Guinness in a nod to Irish culture. In previous years, the London Eye has been illuminated green and the Chicago River tinted emerald in homage to Erin’s Isle but, of course, the festivities are always at their peak in Dublin. Here’s a guide to the good stuff going on in Ireland’s capital on St Patrick’s Day 2017. Erin go bragh!
If there’s one thing Germany is known for – arguably above all – it’s beer. The nectar of the gods is an integral part of the nation’s culture, and its population is ranked third in the world in terms of beer consumption – with only Austria and the Czech Republic ahead. From Munich to Hamburg, lively folk festivals see locals and visitors alike dressed in traditional lederhosen, listening to oom-pah bands and enjoying a Germanic brewski. With so many fiestas devoted to the humble hop, these exciting events are without a doubt some of the best beer festivals Europe has to offer. Even if you don’t know your Weißbier from your Schwarzbier, take a look at some of our favourite beer festivals in Germany to inspire your own barley infused adventure.
Exhilarating, wild and pleasingly unpredictable, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival is a one-of-a-kind spectacle in the world of live entertainment. The event is the pride of the Scottish capital, renowned as the largest arts festival on earth, and there are over 50,000 performances of more than 3,000 shows taking place in over 300 different venues across the city. To help you make the most of this rich celebration of life, check out our Edinburgh Fringe guide for some top tips for planning your visit.
The European music festival scene has some unforgettable experiences to offer, attracting visitors from across the globe who come to listen to amazing live music and soak up all-round good vibes. Here are four of the best weekender events coming up across the continent over the next few months.
Each May, the streets of Brussels are filled with the sweet sounds of music. 2016 is the 21st year of the Brussels Jazz Marathon, and a host of big names from the local and international scenes are set to perform. Commencing from Friday 20th May, five open air stages will pop up in the Belgian capital’s most iconic locations to showcase the best emerging and established artists in jazz, world, Latino, funk and blues, with many of the city’s clubs, bars and cafés putting on more intimate concerts too.
Between 23rd and 26th June 2016, the city of Calais will be invaded by enormous machines that run, climb buildings and even breathe fire. No, it’s not War of the Worlds. This spectacular four-day show actually sees two giant mechanical beasts made of wood and metal visit the city: the dragon horse Long Ma and the spider Kumo. Check out our guide to find out why you need to add the Long Ma festival to your Calais itinerary this year.
Along with wooden clogs and fields of budding tulips, the windmill is a true symbol of the Netherlands. Each year, visitors from around the world escape to the Dutch countryside for a glimpse of the many majestic sail-adorned buildings that have become the nation’s pastoral landmarks. To acknowledge the cultural importance of windmills across the country, the Netherlands will celebrate National Mill Day on the weekend of 13th-14th May 2016, an annual festival that sees 950 wind and watermills open their doors to visitors. To help you explore some of these iconic constructions, we’ve chosen some of the most beautiful windmills near Amsterdam that you can explore yourself.
On the 27th April this year, the Netherlands celebrates the annual King’s Day Festival with crowds of people wearing the national colour of orange and gathering in public spaces across the country. Known by the locals as Koningsdag, this nationwide event is held in honour of the incumbent Dutch monarch, which has been King Willem-Alexander since 2013. While the revelry can be experienced across the country, nowhere is the merrymaking bigger than in the capital. With street sales, boat parties and more, check out some of the best things to do on King’s Day in Amsterdam.