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Designated European Capitals of Culture

    European Capitals of Culture have already been designated until the title year 2026 and they are as follows:

    • 2023: Elefsina (Greece), Veszprém (Hungary) and Timisoara (Romania)
    • 2024: Bad Ischl (Austria), Tartu (Estonia) and Bodø (Norway)
    • 2025: Chemnitz (Germany) and Nova Gorica (Slovenia)
    • 2026: Oulu (Finland) and Trenčín (Slovakia)
    • 2027: Liepāja (Latvia, pending final endorsement by national authorities)

    Ongoing competitions for future Capitals of Culture

    Competitions are running for title-years 2027 and 2028.

    2027 competitions

    In 2027, Latvia and Portugal will both host a European Capital of Culture.

    Latvia published its call in August 2020. The competition ended on 10 May 2022, with the city of Liepāja being recommended for the title.

    Portugal published its call in November 2020 and held its pre-selection meeting on 8-11 March 2022, with 4 cities short-listed:

    • Aveiro
    • Braga
    • Evora
    • Ponta Delgada

    2028 competitions

    In 2028, 3 cities will hold the title of European Capitals of Culture in the Czech Republic, France and in an EFTA/EEA country, a candidate country or a potential candidate to EU membership. The competition started in August 2021 in the Czech Republic, and in December 2021 in France and for cities from non-EU Member States.

    How to apply

    Competitions are organised at the national level with the publication of a call for submission of applications by the responsible authority (usually the national Ministry of Culture).

    This new framework was amended in September 2017 by another Decision of the European Parliament and the Council.

    This decision makes it possible for cities in EU candidate countries, potential candidates  or members of the European Free Trade Association party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area (so-called EFTA/EEA countries) to hold the title in 2021, 2024, 2028, 2030 and 2033.

    These cities are selected through an 'open competition', meaning that cities from various countries may compete with each other.

    Cities wishing to hold the European Capitals of Culture title should await the announcement of a competition in their own country, and then complete and submit a bid in response to the call for applications published.

    Select a year

    How to display the capitals