The buzzing city of Leeuwarden
Leeuwarden has hosted many festivals and blockbuster-events, from the Giants of Royal de Luxe and the fire masters of Compagnie Carabosse to the open-air spectacle of Theater Tol: Tolworld. Awarded European Capital of Culture 2018, Leeuwarden retains a strong identity, including its own language and heritage. This is reflected in the many cultural festivals the city is hosting this year.
From sunny summer festivals to magical winter events, the city is a cultural hotspot all year round.
We kick off this season with the Fries StraatFestival, where you will experience all sorts of music and street theater at unique locations throughout the city centre. This festival is followed by Ljouwert Culinair, a delicious foodtruck festival, CityProms (classical music and open air festival), Into the Grave (one of the biggest metal festivals in the Netherlands, located in the heart of the city centre) and the all summer long, freely accessible Prinsentuinconcerten (music in city park the Prinsentuin). Top this off with parties such as Tuinfeest Festival (elektronic music), Bevrijdingsfestival during Liberation Day and King's Day and you'll have a summer you won't easily forget. Check the online agenda for all festivals and events in Leeuwarden!
But the festival vibes don't end when summer ends. When fall arrives the city has a jam-packed cultural agenda, with major festivals and magical events. From Explore the North, a multidisciplinary festival throughout the city, and the Northern Film Festival to Decemberlicht (light art in unique locations throughout the city centre) and spectacle musical De Tocht, about the famous 11-City Tour on ice.
Since Leeuwarden is the capital of Fryslân, you really can't skip visiting the region, where more cultural festivals take place. From various locations, a short ferry crossing takes you to the Wadden Islands (UNESCO World Heritage), where unique festivals take place on the islands. Such as Oerol (Terschelling), MadNes (Ameland) and Into the Great Wide Open (Vlieland).
Arcadia is a 100-day arts festival in the province of Fryslân, featuring Dutch and international artists. Arcadia returns every three years, with the next edition in 2025.