There’s a lot going on in Delft. How does a theatre festival, a museum night, restaurant week and open monument day sound? With most of free or extremely affordable, there’s no excuse to not get cultured.
A night out was never this much fun. Every year, on Museum Night, museums and art galleries across the city stay open late into the night. A number of cultural performances – plays, live music, painting – are organised around Delft. The ticket for the night is usually a blinking button, last year it was in the shape of a clover and the year before that a star.
When: October 24
Entry: Around €10
Heritage Day is celebrated across the Netherlands every September. Over 4,000 historical buildings and sites are open to the public and free. The theme for Open Monument Day in 2014 is Op Reis (Traveling.) In Delft, over 35 buildings, including the Town Hall, are open and there are also tours, lectures and performances in several of them. Started in 1987, around 900,000 visitors have recorded at recent editions of the event.
When: September 13 – 14
Based on Edinburgh Festival Fringe, one of the world’s largest art festivals, Delft Fringe began in 2011. Celebrating theatre in the fringes of society, all performances take place at unexpected venues. Previous editions have seen performances at libraries, ateliers, cafes, shops and even a church. Held across sixty locations, there are over 100 performances, including improvs, musicals, street plays, stand-up comedy and other genres. Most performances are free, but the artist may send a hat around for optional tips.
When: June 5 – 8
Entry: Free (for most events)
Started in 2002, Festiberico is a film festival that celebrates great Portuguese and Spanish films. Featuring classics, alternative cinema and award winning films from film festivals, the filmmakers are also present at some of the screenings for a discussion with the audience. Hosted by Lumen Delft, the festival is about more than just films, and with food and music added to the mix, it’s an important showcase for Portuguese and Spanish culture.
When: March 20 – 30
Tickets: €8.50 per film for students
The annual Evening of Lights is one of the most magical nights of the winter. A giant Christmas tree is lit in the Markt, marking the start of festive season. Carollers perform all across the city, while visiting bands perform live on a stage at the Markt. The town is lit up with decorations and food stalls line every corner. Enjoy steaming glühwein (mulled wine) and hot poffertjes (little pancakes.)
When: Second week of December
Top scientific minds, artists and innovators from the Netherlands get together for a day of inspiration at TEDxDelft. Started in 2011, TEDxDelft also has a number of side events and salons in the months running up to the main event. Speakers in 2013 included Rutger de Graaf, the director and co-founder of DeltaSync and Gerwin Smit who spoke about developing the lightest ever prosthetic hand.
When: February 2015
Tickets: €25 for students/€50 for non-students
National Restaurant Week
If you’re a foodie, you should probably save up for this. For one week, restaurants across the Netherlands offer discounted menus and pre-fix menus for cheaper rates. You could get a 3-course dinner for €27.50 and lunch for €22.50 at a top restaurant. Over 1,000 restaurants are part of Restaurant Week.
When: March 7 to 23