If you want to inject some excitement into your summer itinerary, these amazing events in Europe need to be on your radar. See below for the best places to experience music, culture and more over the coming months.

Taormina Film Festival, Italy

26 June - 2 July 2022

Where: Taormina, Italy

What: Diving into the wondrous world of film from Taormina’s historic Ancient Theatre? Yes, please. This one-of-a-kind festival captures both the beauty of the coastal city and the art of movie-making across several riveting days, where you can listen to insights from the stars, watch premieres and more. Between big names like Sophia Loren and Gregory Peck, this festival has welcomed a whole host of celebrities over the decades since it was first established. For those interested in a front row seat to the stars, tickets are available via the official website.

Where to stay: In the 1900s, Hotel Villa Schuler was the go-to destination for wealthy wanderers like artists and nobles. It still has an incredible appeal with tourists today, not least for its remarkable views of the Ionian Sea, flawless hospitality and on-site botanic gardens. Could ‘heavenly’ be more perfectly defined?

Ansbach Rococo Festival, Germany

30 June - 3 July 2022

Where: The Hohenzollern Residence: Ansbach, Germany

What: None of the other events in Europe capture the graceful aesthetic of the Rococo period like Ansbach’s annual Rococo Festival - where people gather in historic dress to take part in exciting activities that hold a special appeal for history and culture lovers. This year, the festival’s special events include listening to a wind orchestra under starlight, enjoying a delicious picnic in the resplendent Hofgarten, and riding in gilded carriages. Ready to revel like royalty? Book your tickets here.

Where to stay: The atmosphere at Hotel Schwarzer Bock is thick with stories. Not only do the foundations of the building date back to 1100, it was a haunt once beloved by the Prince Regent of Bavaria, as well! Modern occupants particularly love the restaurant here, which specialises in heartwarming, slow-cooked fare.

Ballina Salmon Festival, Ireland

10 - 16 July 2022

Where: Ballina, Ireland

What: Think this festival is all about fish? Think again! Ballina Salmon Festival is arguably one of the most family-friendly festivals in all of Ireland. Highlights include a phenomenal fireworks display and a day devoted to the city’s heritage, which reflects on how the people of Ballina would have lived in times gone by. There’s plenty more going on throughout the week, too. Taste incredible food, dance to live street music, dip your toes into Irish culture and more during this gloriously varied event. You can keep up to date with what to expect this year here.

Where to stay: There are few things we like as much as spa-based basking when we’re on vacation. Head to the Chill Spa at Ice House Hotel for a dash of much-needed luxury after fun days at the festival, where you can take your pick of treatments from rejuvenating body scrubs to immersive seaweed baths. Time to switch off.

Klosters Music, Switzerland

30 July - 7 August 2022

Where: Klosters, Switzerland

What: It’s no secret how excited we are to be partnering with Klosters Music! This enchanting event celebrates the history of Klosters - a sleepy town that, since it was founded an estimated 800 years ago, has since evolved into a globally renowned ski resort. Travellers from around the world come to hit the spectacular slopes here, and those who time their trip right this summer will also be treated to an unforgettable musical menagerie that will transport you through time. Take your pick (or go to all) of the nine events at Klosters Music this year, which include eclectic ensembles, awe-inspiring instrumentalists and more. See the full programme and book your tickets.

Where to stay: Writers and big names in the film industry have loved coming to Chesa Grischuna Hotel since it was established, earning it the nickname ‘Hollywood on the Rocks’! With just 12 cosy rooms, this hotel is intimate escapism at its finest, complete with warm, chalet vibes and sweeping views of the Swiss Alps.

Merano Music Festival, Italy

17 August - 19 September 2022

Where: Merano, Italy

What: Those who have factored Merano Music Festival into their calendar of events in Europe to attend this summer are in for a treat. The programme is overflowing with events taking place in some of the city’s most striking buildings. Head to the art nouveau Merano Theatre to be wowed by international acts, or dress up in your finest for an evening or two at the Kurhaus, where the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and other exceptional artists await to astound you. Merano’s atmospheric churches, castles and more are also playing host to some of the festival’s much-anticipated performances - explore what’s on and book your tickets here.

Where to stay: Don’t be fooled by Hotel Castel Rundegg’s lush scenery and verdant gardens - this hotel is actually right in the heart of the city, putting you close to all of the action at this year’s Merano Music Festival! In-between shows, you’ll delight in staying at this astonishing property, in which romance hangs thick in the air. You can even reserve a candlelight dinner in their castle garden.

Spike Island Literary Festival, Ireland

2 - 4 September 2022

Where: Spike Island prison: Cork, Ireland

What: Fans of crime fiction will flock to this spookiest of events in Europe. Based within the walls of the 400-year old Spike Island prison, visitors can attend performances, workshops and talks by their favourite crime authors - which this year include Liz Nugent and John Connolly - as well as get valuable insights about the industry itself. If you’re an aspiring crime writer, the venue is truly inspirational stuff, and has housed inmates like a famous 1980s crime boss! Each event within the festival needs to be booked separately: see here for details and to snag your place(s).

Where to stay: Back over the water in the city of Cork, The Metropole Hotel - official sponsors of the Spike Island Literary Festival - awaits to treat you to next-level service in a sophisticated setting. You should especially take advantage of their food-focused experiences, which span a bar, restaurant, tea room, Prosecco lounge and ‘snug’ on-site.


Looking for more events? Here you can find our list of Festivals & Events in Europe


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