There are plenty of reasons for a visit to Groningen at any time of the year, but during winter Groningen is even more fun with so many events taking place during this season. We have listed ten reasons for you to come to Groningen this winter, including the largest Rodin exhibition to have ever been held in The Netherlands, the various charming Christmas markets in and around the city and the annual Eurosonic Noorderslag music festival.
Be inspired by the to-do list and come enjoy Groningen this winter.
1. Rodin - Genius at Work
1. Rodin - Genius at Work
19 November through 30 April – With over 140 sculptures and 20 works on paper, this winter the Groninger Museum will feature the largest exhibition of the popular artist Auguste Rodin to ever have taken place in The Netherlands. The exhibition features the magnificent works by the greatest and most influential sculptor of the modern era, as well as the remarkable creative process behind it. In addition, every Friday evening the Groninger Museum will hold an interesting programme to further examine the Rodin exhibition.
16 through 18 December – During the weekend of 16 through 18 December, the WinterWelVaart event will take place for the tenth time. The nautical history will be brought back to life in a festive way both on board the lovely illuminated vessels and at the Christmas market on the quay. Have fun with an extensive musical, theatrical and art programme in the fairy-like backdrop of the Hoge and Lage der A while enjoying a wintry drink and snack. Appingedam (10 December) and Winschoten (28 December) are the hosts of the Lutje WinterWelVaart – the little sister of WinterWelVaart.
3. Grote Markt ice rink
26 November through 6 January – Put on your skates at the most fun ice rink in The Netherlands. The Grote Markt will be transformed into a magnificent winter paradise with the theme of Frozen. Everyone can put on their skates and enjoy some delicious glühwein or drinking chocolate.
4. World Press Photo
18 November through 11 December – This exhibition features the award-winning photos of the World Press Photo, an international press photography contest in which about 6000 professional photographers participate. The exhibition provides visitors with an impressive glimpse in the daily life of people from various cultures. This exhibition has been an annual event in Groningen since 2004. This year the characteristic Synagogue in the friendly Folkingestraat shopping street will function as the temporary museum of World Press Photo.
5. Santa Run
Saturday 17 December – If you have always wanted to run in a Santa costume or watch hundreds of men and women dressed as Santa run through Groningen city centre, this is your chance during the Santa Run. With is decorated streets, music by the route and a red parade of Santas, the Santa Run is probably the most memorable run in Groningen.
6. Eurosonic Noorderslag music event
11 through 14 January – With a line-up of over 350 bands from 31 European countries, Eurosonic Noorderslag is among the best places to discover new music. Promising musical talents come to Groningen in masses while for four days the city transforms into a music Valhalla, dominated by musicians and music fans. If you are unable to obtain tickets, never mind, because there are many free performances in addition to the concerts for which a ticket is required.
27 December through 8 January – The Christmas holidays are the ultimate time to take your children to the theatre, when the Stadsschouwburg municipal theatre and the Grand Theatre will be transformed into a real children’s paradise during the Wintervuur festival, with numerous fun theatre performances, concerts and other activities. Consider the My first festival – the music festival for the littlest ones featuring Gers Pardoel and others, or visit the touching performance Onbekend land by the Het Houten Huis.
8. IFFR in Groningen
1 through 5 February – During this pocket edition of IFFR, which lasts five for days, the Groninger Forum cinema shows a selection of the magnificent films of the International Film Festival Rotterdam. The film selection includes highlights from the IFFR, special cinematographic surprises and new international films. Visit the IFFR website for an overview of all the films.
9. Christmas markets in the city and environs
December – Where will you be doing this year’s Christmas shopping? In December special Christmas markets will be held throughout the province of Groningen. Be sure to visit the Christmas market in the Martini Church, visit the Swedish Christmas market in the former Suikerfabriek factory or enjoy all the Christmas splendour at the old Dutch Christmas market at the Landgoed Fraeylemaborg country estate. Visit the website for an overview of all the Christmas markets.
10. Huge variety in the winter programme
December through January – Shoppers are treated to extra fun and friendliness around the holidays when the city centre is transformed into a wonderful backdrop for various activities and events, from music performances to ice sculpture demonstrations for all ages. Visit the website for the complete overview of winter activities.
Just a one-hour flight from Southend, Copenhagen and Gdańsk
As you may have read, Groningen has plenty of fun events scheduled for this winter; all of which are just a one-hour flight from Southend, Copenhagen and Gdańsk. So what are you waiting for? Book a flight and spend this winter in the magnificent city and province of Groningen.