It’s that time of the year again… SkedGo’s top European events list is out!

No matter your preferred element – water, earth, air or fire – we’ve got you covered. From the most romantic to the most brutal, from the geeky to the sporty, if it’s great you can find it in our list.

Have we missed anything?
Add a comment below with your favourite European event in 2016!

 


Starting January – March

Kiruna Snow Festival
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Kiruna Snow Festival | TripGo BlogWhen: 20 – 24 January
Where: Kiruna, SWEDEN
For the lovers of cold and snow, of reindeers races, dog sleds drifts and ice sculptures. This is an event not to be missed in Sweden’s most northerly city. There are activities and games for visitors of all ages, so bring the family!

 

Carnival of Venice
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Carnival of Venice | TripGo BlogWhen: 23 January – 9 February
Where: Venice, ITALY
Party time in Venezia… Legendary, elaborate masks and costumes, music, fairy tales, gondolas and more. The most beautiful Carnival in the world.

 

Up Helly Aa
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Up Helly Aa | TripGo BlogWhen: 26 January
Where: Lerwick, Shetland, SCOTLAND
Up Helly Aa is Europe’s largest fire festival. You’ll experience an epic day full of madness, and Viking tradition (this has been celebrated since 1880) . If you’ve been looking for a reason to visit Shetland, this is it! Read this great little article.

 

Cologne Carnival (Kölner Karneval)
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Cologne CarnivalWhen: 4 – 9 February
Where: Cologne, GERMANY
Germany’s answer to Mardi Gras – a sensational event marking the beginning of Lent. Enjoy the local festivities and make sure you don’t miss “the crazy days”, the street carnival, and the huge Rose Monday parade on 8th February.

 

Dragobete
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Dragobete | TripGo BlogWhen: 24 February
Where: Bucharest, ROMANIA
Dragobete is Romania’s Valentine’s Day, deeply rooted in its mythology. This day is all about love. Boys and girls gather flowers, dance and sing, and the atmosphere is festive. So if you have someone you love, spend Dragobete with them – what could be more romantic? A little bonus: those participating in the customs are said to be protected from illness for a year.

 

Las Fallas Festival
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2015: Las Fallas, Valencia, SpainWhen: 15 – 19 March
Where: Valencia, SPAIN
An explosive crazy 5-day party of bonfires, fiesta, flowers, traditional costumes, music and satire. A highlight is also the creation and destruction of ninots (“puppets” or “dolls”) – huge cardboard/wood/paper-machè/plaster statues. And don’t miss the amazing fireworks at night!

 

Rocketwar
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Rocketwar | TripGo BlogWhen: 26 – 27 March
Where: Chios Island, Vrontados, GREECE
Once a year two Orthodox churches on a little Greek island shoot at each other with fireworks, while services are going on inside. While this doesn’t seem like the safest way to spend your Easter, it would certainly make a great memory!

 

Starting April – June

College of Wizardry
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: College of Wizardry | TripGo BlogWhen: 7 – 10 April
Where: Czocha Castle, POLAND
Harry Potter nerd? This “four-day Wizard School larp event” might be your chance to act out your dreams of being a student witch or wizard in a lovely setting. Get in early as it might book out quickly.

 

The World Sport Kite Championship (aka Cerf Volant)
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Kite Championship | TripGo BlogWhen: 9 – 17 April
Where: Berck-sur-Mer, FRANCE
Come and witness (or join) the spectacle of hundreds of kites of all colours and shapes twirling and dancing in the wind in front of the azure skies and white sandy beaches of Northern France. Great fun for the whole family.

 

2016 UEFA Europa League Final
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: UEFA Europa League | TripGo BlogWhen: 18 May
Where: Basel, SWITZERLAND
The UEFA Europa League, and in particular this match at the St. Jakob-Park, is a must for soccer fans. Grab a beer, a hot dog and your best mate, join in the songs and cheers and watch grown men chase a ball across the green.

 

The European Archery Championship
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Archery Championship | TripGo BlogWhen: 23 – 29 May
Where: Nottingham, ENGLAND
An event Robin Hood wouldn’t have missed! This is Europe’s leading archery event, in a great historic setting. Bring some merry men in tights and cheer on the champions as they shoot their way to glory.

 

Baby Jumping Festival (El Colacho)
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Baby Jumping Festival | TripGo BlogWhen: 29 May
Where: Castrillo de Murcia, SPAIN
Grown men dressed as devils jump over babies lying on mattresses in the street at this bizarre festival. The nearly 300 year old tradition is meant to cleanse the infants from evil. And of course it’s a great reason for a fiesta!

 

The Cooper’s Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Cheese Rolling | TripGo BlogWhen: 30 May
Where: Cooper’s Hill, Gloucestershire, ENGLAND
Ever wanted to chase a cheese down a really steep hill? Then you shouldn’t miss this race! Be warned though, the event is considered so dangerous for both participants and spectators that the local council advises you not to attend 😉

 

Oerol
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Oerol | TripGo BlogWhen: 10 – 19 June
Where: Terschelling, NETHERLANDS
The Oerol is a unique theater and arts festival across the whole island of Terschelling. In addition to great performances in front of stunning scenery, there is live music, visual arts and more. A refreshing event for lovers of nature and culture.

 

Baku European Grand Prix
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Baku European Grand Prix | TripGo BlogWhen: 19 June
Where: Baku, AZERBAIJAN
After a three year break, the European Grand Prix is back! Watch the best European race car drivers battle it out on the 6km track through the streets of the City of Winds. The city itself – officially called “The Walled city of Baku with the Shirvanshah’s Palace and Maiden Tower” – is a UNESCO World Heritage site, well worth a visit any time.

 

Calcio Storico Fiorentino
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Calcio Storico | TripGo BlogWhen: Final on 24 June
Where: Florence, ITALY
It’s called historic football, but those 50 minute matches on Florence’s dirt covered Piazza Santa Croce are brutal. Some say this is the most violent sport in the world. Without any safety gear, the 27 players on each side use any(!) means to get the ball into the goal. A spectacular event for those who like it rough! Click here for some great images.
 

Starting July – September

Le Tour de France
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Tour de France | TripGo BlogWhen: 2 – 24 July
Where: FRANCE & nearby countries
Catch a glimpse of the world famous cycling race, from Mont-Saint-Michel via the Pyrenees and the Alps to the Champs-Élysées in Paris. You can find some more information and a 3D view of the route here.

 

The Lady of the Lake Festival
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Lady of the Lake Festival | TripGo BlogWhen: 15 – 24 July
Where: Irvinestown, IRELAND
Lady of The Lake pageant, truck convoy, sheep dung spitting contest (yep that’s right), music, sporting competitions, art exhibitions,… Get enchanted and savour a bit of Irish party madness in this small town in Northern Ireland.

 

Festival of Near-Death Experiences (Fiesta de Santa Marta de Ribarteme)
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Festival of Near-Death Experiences | TripGo BlogWhen: 29 July
Where: Las Nieves, SPAIN
Witness a procession of people carrying their loved ones, who had a close brush with death in the past year, in open coffins through a little town in North Western Spain. The march is to thank the Saint of Death for their survival. Tough luck for those without family and friends – they have to carry their own coffin! Meanwhile, the spectators enjoy a fiesta with fireworks, street food and music. Here’s some more info and a video of the party.

 

Puck Fair
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Puck fair | TripGo BlogWhen: 10 – 12 August
Where: Killorglin, IRELAND
A festival that has a king – a wild mountain goat. Watch the coronation ceremony and parade, and enjoy the free live music, stories, workshops, fireworks and horse fair at Ireland’s oldest fair. By the way, it’s goat friendly: the organisers ensure the goat is having a good time too!

 

Air Guitar World Championships
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Air Guitar Championship | TripGo BlogWhen: 16 August
Where: Oulu, FINLAND
So you’ve always dreamed about being a rock star, but just haven’t had time to practice those guitar skills? Fear not, your chance is here! Give yourself a cool name, fix up your hair, makeup and costume and enter that competition.

 

Green Man Festival
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Green Man Festival | TripGo BlogWhen: 18 – 21 August
Where: Brecon Beacons, WALES
Dance, sing, eat and drink, connect, wander and explore. Renowned for its non-corporate, ethical approach, the Green Man Festival has won several awards including ‘Best Medium Sized Festival 2010’. Acts are predominantly Alternative, Indie, Rock, Folk, Dance and Americana music.

 

The International Birdman
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: International Birdman | TripGo BlogWhen: 20 – 21 August
Where: Worthing, ENGLAND
We couldn’t go past this one: a competition of humans attempting to fly off the end of a pier. Some of the flights are over 100 metres – but to us the best part is watching a bunch of ridiculously dressed people getting a good soaking when they plunge into the sea.

 

Notting Hill Carnival
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Notting Hill Carnival | TripGo BlogWhen: 28 – 29 August
Where: London, ENGLAND
This is Europe’s biggest street festival. Traditionally a celebration of the Caribbean communities in London, it includes great music, lots of dancing and colourful costumes.

 

La Tomatina
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2015: La TomatinaWhen: 31 August
Where: Buñol, Valencia, SPAIN
The original tomato fight – a whole hour of tomato throwing madness. It is recommended to use goggles and gloves if you want to join in the fun, and for girls to wear a bikini underneath. Although the actual food fight happens on the morning of 26 August, dancing, parades and fireworks are happening all week. Plus, the biggest and most impressive paella “cook-off” in the world!

 

Starting October – December

Tarragona Human Tower Competition (Concurs de castells de Tarragona)
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Human Tower Competition | TripGo BlogWhen: 4 – 5 October
Where: Tarragona, SPAIN
They’re not just human pyramids, they’re human towers! And they’re competing for the title of the best. This is an art form – “a dance, based on order, method and ritual”. Tip: Buy your tickets early. Curious? Some more info and a video of the 2012 event are here.

 

German Christmas Markets
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Christmas Markets in GermanyWhen: Late November – 24 December (dates vary by city)
Where: All over GERMANY
Germany has some wounderful Christmas markets set in spectacular locations. Check out the mulled wine and German sweets, and enjoy the Christmas atmosphere. Some of the best are in Aachen, Dresden, Nuremberg and Rothenburg.

 

Hogmanay
Your best excuses to travel to Europe in 2016: Hogmanay | TripGo BlogWhen: 30 December 2016 – 1 January 2017
Where: Edinburgh, SCOTLAND
This is one of the largest New Year’s parties in the world, in one of Europe’s most beautiful cities. Dive in and savour the street party, torch procession, live music, films and more over 3 days. Tip: dress up and join in the ‘Stoats Loony Dook’ to welcome the new year and raise funds for charity (ticket holders only)!

 

 

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