Dutch events to help you beat the winter blues
We’re all dreading the approaching dark winter days. And even though Dutch weather is full of surprises and summer often chooses to extend its charm, it’s always a good idea to fill your agenda and make sure you’ll keep yourself entertained and warm in the months to come. This is why we have put together a list of cool events that will not only take your mind off the weather but will also provide you with inspiration, fun, innovative ideas and cozyness.
2016 HUTAC Annual Conference & General Assembly: Inspire through Innovation
29 October 2016, The Hague
First up on the list is, of course, the upcoming HUTAC Annual Conference & General Assembly. Taking place on 29 October in The Hague, the event will address the innovation topic from a myriad of perspectives and will take you on an exploratory journey over the course of which you’ll get to think of innovation from new angles. You’ll gain skills that are paramount in innovating and get to brainstorm and network with your HUTAC friends. Save the date!
Netherlands Film Festival
22-25 September 2016, Utrecht
Choose from 30 brand new Dutch feature and short films and get a flavor of the Dutch independent film scene. All movies have English subtitles.
Amsterdam Music Festival
19-23 October 2016, Amsterdam
If you’re a fan of electronic music, you’ll definitely love this one. Enjoy the beats of the world’s most famous Djs and immerse yourself in a spectacular show and special effects.
Dutch Design Week
22-30 October, Eindhoven
Get a glimpse into the future at the Dutch Design Week. This is the biggest design event in Northern Europe and exhibits the innovative work of more than 2500 designers. Get ready to be inspired!
Klik Animation Festival
25-30 October 2016, Amsterdam
As the organisers say, this is a “dazzling showcase of the world’s best animated shorts and features” – “an absolute animation frenzy.” I have attended Klik three years in a row and can totally confirm this. There’s something for every taste!
26-30 October 2016, Utrecht
This is a thought-provoking festival of art, music and film and has as theme ‘Authenticity’. “Although authenticity used to be a clearly defined concept, the way something can be original or differ from its original has now shifted completely with our society of digital consumerism.” Check out this festival and you’ll look at our society through different lenses.
2-6 November 2016, The Hague
If you love music and literature, this event is for you. Crossing Border focuses on new pop music acts and literature and is one of the largest combined music and literature festivals in Europe.
Museum Night Amsterdam
5 November 2016, Amsterdam
We all know Museum Night, a night full of awesomeness when 50 museums in Amsterdam open their doors from 7Pm until 2am. Apart from being educational, Museum Night also provides you with plenty of fun activities such as live music, dance, film and special tours.
Glow Light Festival
12-19 November 2016, Eindhoven
Glow is all about fascinating and thought-provoking light installations (think of projections that seem out of this world, mixes of art and nature and virtual reality shows). For one full week, the city of Eindhoven showcases the work of some of the most creative light artists. This year the theme is ‘City and Science’ and will cover a route of 3.5 km. Look forward to a cutting-edge experience.
12 November – 5 December 2016, all over the Netherlands
If you live in the Netherlands, celebrating Sinterklaas is a must. Immerse yourself in the Dutch tradition and discover the child within you.
International Documentary Film Festival
16-27 November 2016, Amsterdam
IDFA is a renowned documentary festival that features a series of innovative, thought-provoking and creative documentaries from all around the world. The selection is mainly based on relevance to social issues. The festival is a great educational and inspiring experience.
Amsterdam Light Festival
1 December 2016 – 22 January 2017, Amsterdam
For almost two months, the city of Amsterdam will surprise you at every step with interactive and innovative light installations on water. And to make it even more exciting, you can enjoy this great showcase during a boat trip along the canals.
2 December 2016 – 1 January 2017, Maastricht
In Maastricht you can already feel the Christmas vibes starting with 2 December. This charming little town offers an unforgettable experience with its wonderfully decorated Christmas market, its ice rink and the big wheel in which you can bring a mulled wine and enjoy the breathtaking scenery. And if you’re going for the weekend, don’t miss the Christmas market in the caves of Valkenburg. It’s an equally cute and cozy experience.
Candle Night Gouda
16 December 2016, Gouda
Imagine cute little Dutch town Gouda. Then imagine it all lit by candle lights, awaiting Christmas. Yes, we’re as thrilled as you are!
17-18 December 2016, Deventer
Ever dreamt of rubbing shoulders with Dickens’ book characters? Now’s your chance! For two days, more than 950 characters from the famous books of Dickens will revive in the city of Deventer. Think Oliver Twist, Scrooge, Marley and Mr. Pickwick. As the organisers describe it, “you will smell the punch, puffed potatoes and roasted chestnuts, will see wealthy ladies and gentlemen with top hats parade in the streets; Christmas Carol Singers go from door to door. The scenery of the festival consists of historical buildings and houses, Christmas trees and thousands of little lights. Not only in the street, but also behind the windows, in the houses and in the little shops and galleries the romantic time of Dickens will revive.”
22-26 February 2017, Amsterdam
In the middle of winter, a chocolate festival indeed sounds like a delight! But that’s not all, the event also aims to raise awareness about the environmental and social economic aspects related to cocoa. Attend the Chocolate Festival and spoil your taste buds while supporting the sustainable production of chocolate! The Dutch Government has recently signed a treaty, agreeing that only sustainable cocoa will be available for consumption on the Dutch market by 2025.
26-28 February 2017, all over Limburg and Noord-Brabant
We’ve all heard of the Dutch Carnival frenzy in Limburg and Noord-Brabant and some of us might have even enjoyed its eccentricities dressed up in some ‘original’ outfit and drinking the typical ‘biertjes’ for a few days in a row. This ‘Catholic’ festival will definitely take you out of your daily routine!
Holland Animation Film Festival
22-26 March 2017, Utrecht
As winter is retreating and the much awaited spring looms on the horizon, it’s time for another shot of animation awesomeness to shake off any remaining winter blues (in case you still have any after having been so busy with the previous events). Enjoy the HAFF festival at the cool alternative cultural centre, Louis Hartlooper, in the middle of charming Utrecht.
Which one of these events piques your interest the most? What other events would you add to the list? Let us know in the comments.