Europäische Kulturhauptstädte 2023
© John Stathis, Eleusis 2021

These Are the European Capitals of Culture 2023

Next year’s European Capitals of Culture are Timişoara, Romania, Veszprém, Hungary, and Eleusis, Greece. Here’s why each of them is worth a visit.

December 29, 2022

Since 1985, the European Union has elevated at least one city to the status of Capital of Culture each year. The intent is to highlight the richness and diversity of Europe's cultural heritage. The selection is made by a jury consisting of a total of 12 people who deliberate on the applicants. After Novi Sad (Serbia), Kaunas (Lithuania) and Esch an der Alzette (Luxembourg), Timişoara (Romania), Eleusis (Greece) and Veszprém (Hungary) will proudly carry the title of European Capital of Culture 2023.

Timişoara, Romania

Europäische Kulturhauptstädte 2023

Piața Victoriei, with its numerous baroque buildings, is considered the central square. © Adrian Frentescu

For centuries, this place in the Banat region has been considered a melting pot for different cultures. More than 30 different cultural groups are settled here. Timişoara was considered the most important industrial, commercial, financial and cultural center in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The city was particularly important in terms of music, literature, painting and architecture. Today, around 320,000 people live here. Almost ten percent of them are students, giving Timişoara a young, modern vibe.

Europäische Kulturhauptstädte 2023

More than 130 events and cultural venues, spread throughout the city, justify the title. © Adrian Frentescu

Event recommendations: The opening takes place from February 17 to 19. Performances by Alyona Alyona, Andrei Irimia, Joe Beving and other national artists are on the schedule at the Palace of Culture and Union Square. Another highlight will be the exhibition of Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi.

Find the complete lineup here

Hotel recommendation:

Atlas Hotel
Piața Sfântul Gheorghe 2-3, Timișoara 300085, Romania
Tel: +40 755 445 544
Price: doubles incl. breakfast from €96

Veszprém, Hungary

Europäische Kulturhauptstädte 2023

Lake Balaton, not far from Veszprém, has its own series of events lined up. © Ukran

Veszprém is one of the oldest cities in Hungary. In the Middle Ages it was even considered the most important settlement of the whole country. The city is located near Lake Balaton, which makes it popular among tourists in more recent times. In addition, there is a beautiful cityscape. The late baroque St. Michael's Cathedral, the Holy Trinity Column, the Archbishop's Palace and numerous other architectural sights attract visitors to the castle district alone. 


Traces of the Middle Ages can still be seen in many places. © Tom Fejer

Event recommendations: Veszprém is celebrating its status as one of the 2023 European Capitals of Culture with a grand spectacle on Jan. 21, 2023, featuring music, gastronomy and wine throughout the year. The program highlights include the Blues Festival (April 14, 2023) and the Veszprém Street Music Festival (July 20-23, 2023).

Hotel recommendation:

Hotel Villa Medici
Veszprém, Kittenberger Kálmán u. 11, 8200 Hungary
Tel: +36 88 590 070
Price: doubles incl. breakfast from approx. €115

Eleusis, Greece


Today, Eleusis is known as a ship cemetery and Athens suburb, among other things. © John Stathis, Eleusis 2021

The third of the European Capitals of Culture 2023 is located near Athens. It’s also known as "Elefsina." About 30,000 people live in the Athenian suburb, which was known in ancient times for its "Mysteries of Eleusis". Thousands of people from the capital came to the rites, where the rebirth of nature was celebrated every year. After its heyday in the 19th and 20th centuries, when Eleusis became famous for its shipbuilding, cement factories, port and food industry, the city faded more and more into Athen’s shadow. Yet it has numerous excavation sites and museums to offer.


Eleusis wants to break with the traditional image of Greece. © Pantelis Ladas, LDS Productions, Eleusis 2021

Event recommendations: Eleusis’s motto for 2023 is "Mysteries of Transition." The opening of the event series will take place on February 9. Brahm's "German Requiem" is already highly anticipated. David Haneke, Michael Haneke's son, is directing a film for the performance at the end of September. 

Hotel recommendation:

Lighthouse Athens, a Member of Brown Hotels
3, Marikas Kotopouli Str, Athina 104 31, Greece
Tel: +30 21 4405 6400
Price: doubles from approx. €100

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