Riga Latvia – European Capital of Culture 2014


Riga, Latvia, will be a European Capital of Culture in 2014. The title for the city’s cultural programme is Force Majeure which signifies a mighty force, both unexpected and foreseeable, accumulated through global and individual obstructions and problems. The aim is to strengthen the blief that culture can change the lives of people and cities for the better.



The programme has six main chapters:

Freedom Street focuses on issues of power and freedom and is rooted in the fact that 2014 will mark 100 years since the beginning of World War I.

  • Survival Kit offers synergy of ancient skills with modern knowledge across a variety of cultural forms.
  • The Road Map invites everyone to discover the unknown Riga and think about city development issues.
  • Amber Vein seeks to showcase the historial Amber Route through the Baltic Sea down to the Black Sea.
  • Thirst for the Ocean focuses on the human striving for intellectual and spiritual values and wisdom.
  • Riga Carnival will give everyone the opportunity to forget the ordianry and mundane, instead providing a time and place to rejoice and mingle.

Throughout the year there will be several book exhibitions, solo concerts by global music stars born in Latvia and an open-air concert in high summer, operatic performances including two original pieces, historic exhibitions of art, theatrical plays focusing on relationships and power, the traditional June solstice celebration – Jāņi, the World Choir Games, documentary films, the launch of creative quarters and a science festival.

For more information on Riga’s Capital of Culture programme go here.

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Berlin’s Christmas Markets

Several Christmas markets pop up throughout Berlin.

In Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf

Weihnachtsmarkt an der Kaiser Wilhelm Gedächtnis Kirche

25 November 2013 – 1 January 2014

Weihnachtsmarkt vor dem Cchloss Charlottenburg

25 November 2013- 26 December 2014

In Frohnau

IX Kunsthandwerklicher Weihnachtsmarkt Frohnau

7-8 December 2013

In Mitte

Berliner Weihnachtszeit

25 November – 29 November 2013

Weihnachtsmarkt auf dem Alexanderplatz

25 November 2013 – 6 January 2014

Weihnachts Zauber Gendarmenmarkt

25 November – 31 December 2013

Winterwelt am Potsdamer Platz

3 November 2013 – 4 January 2014

Brilliant Xmas Season 2013 @ Sony Center

30 November – 1 January 2014

Weihnachtsmarkt am Opernpalais

25 November – 26 December 2013

In Neukölln

Alt-Rixdorfer Weihnachtsmarkt

6 – 8 December 2013

In Prenzlauer Berg

Adventsökomarkt Rund um den Kollwitzplatz

1 – 22 December 2013

Lucia Weihnachtsmarkt im Hof der Kulturbrauerei

25 November – 22 December 2013

In Spandau

Spandauer Weihnachtsmarkt

25 November – 23 December 2013

There’s also more markets throughout the city, these are the ones with confirmed dates.


It’s Time to Think About Tallinn

The annual European Capital of Culture Award has done wonders for tourism in cities across Europe including Istanbul which received the award last year.  This year’s winner, Tallinn, is particularly special, as Estonia celebrates its 20th anniversary of Soviet independence.  To celebrate both the award and the country’s independence Tallinn will be hosting daily art, music, literal and cultural exhibitions throughout the year.

During the year an impressive 251 different events are planned, with one large festival each month, including the Jazzkaar jazz festival in April, Tallinn Old Town Days in June, the Youth Song and Dance Celebration and Tallinn Maritime Days in July, the Birgitta Festival for opera in August and the Black Nights Film Festival in November.  This, the largest cultural event in the history of Estonia, will attract some of the world’s biggest names in art, literature, music, film and culture.

Tallinn Old Town

Tallinn has chosen for its Capital of Culture theme `Stories of the Seashore’, to tell the story of Tallinn and Estonia’s spiritual and cultural associations with the seashore, as the city continues to re-open the city to the sea.  As part of the seashore development the new Estonia Maritime Museum will open in July in the re-developed vast concrete sea-plane hangars, located on the coast to the west of Tallinn centre.  The route to the museum will be along a specially marked walkway, enabling visitors to walk the one kilometre route from the city to the Museum.

A full programme of events has been scheduled and information about the daily events in the city can be found at www.tallinn2011.ee with a `What? When? Where?’ event planner and search engine to help visitors plan the date and itinerary of their visit to Tallinn.

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Slovene Wine & Culinary Festivals

The 12th annual Festival of Slovenian Wine will be held on November 19th-20th 2009 in conjunction with a culinary festival.

The Slovenian Wine Festival is the leading wine event in Slovenia. This popular event allows wine producers to display their products and guests to enjoy a day of wine tasting, meeting the wine-makers and hearing about how the wine is produced. Over 150 exhibitors will be showcasing a variety of wines and vintages from all of Slovenia’s wine regions.

Slovene Wine Festival 2008
Slovene Wine Festival 2008

The festival will take place at the Grand Hotel Union and Hotel Slon in Ljubljana, with the culinary festival sharing the same venues. At the food stalls, visitors will be invited to sample Slovenian food including a wide variety of cheeses, prosciutto, cured meats, bread, honey, oils, truffles, chocolates and much more. Chefs will also be on hand demonstrate their creativity with delicious Slovenian recipes.

Slovenia Culinary Festival 2008
Slovenia Culinary Festival 2008

For more information about the festivals visit www.slovenskifestivalvin.si

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