Things to Do

Tour More Embassies at the European Union Open House This Weekend

Plan your day with this map, and our picks of the embassies we're most excited to visit.

Photograph by /Flickr.

Miss out on all the embassy bustle on Saturday? You’re in luck: more than two dozen additional embassies will open their doors this weekend as part of the European Union Open House.

The annual event always falls on the first Saturday after May 9, or Europe Day, which honors the continued peace and unity between the continent’s countries. Celebrate the day on this side of the Atlantic with cultural samplings, including food, drink, music, dance, and crafts, at the participating embassies, from 10 AM to 4 PM. You might think of it as “round two” to last weekend’s popular embassy tours.

Lines can get long! Photograph by Italy in US/Flickr.

Just like last weekend, expect large crowds and long lines that can stretch into 30-minute waits or more. Our advice: pack water, wear comfy shoes, and bring friends or a book, along with a healthy amount of patience—the event is free to the public, after all. It also helps to start early and pick two or three “must visit” embassies.

Here are some we’re excited about:

For hopheads

The Czech Republic drinks more beer per capita than any other country (including its famously beer-loving neighbor Germany). To see what Czech beer is all about, head to its embassy (3900 Spring of Freedom St., NW) for some savory brew paired with Czech food. While there, learn about Czechia’s automobile and racing industry and enjoy live music.


For cyclists

See for yourself why a bicycle is, as the Danish saying goes, “a Dane’s best friend” at the Embassy of Denmark (3200 Whitehaven St., NW) where visitors will be able to experience riding a bike through Copenhagen via virtual reality glasses. After your leisurely “ride,” try some open Danish sandwiches and learn all about the cozy, Danish lifestyle of hygge.


For a bit of everything

Hungary is promising a bit something for everyone its embassy (3910 Shoemaker St., NW) this weekend. Experience the unique Hungarian-born sport of teqball (think ping pong but with a soccer ball), try your hand at folk dancing, and finally figure out how to solve a Rubik’s cube, which originated in the country. Also there: learn about two Hungarian dog breeds, the Vizla and Puli, via a dog show and make your own gingerbread love letter.


For the adventurous

Outdoor adventurists can live vicariously through the stories of three Polish travelers this weekend, as they share memories from their mountain, polar, and kayak expeditions at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland (2640 16th St., NW). While there, you can also meet an artistic robotic dog and try some Polish sweets.


For those who hate lines

To experience three countries without waiting in three different lines, head to the Embassy of the Netherlands (4200 Linnean Ave., NW), which is co-hosting with its neighboring countries, Belgium and Luxembourg. Enjoy an interactive light experience, learn about the first-ever zero-emission solar plane, play outdoor games, and hang out with Belgium’s famous blue celebrities, the Smurfs. There will be food and drink too.

Plan your European walking tour using the map below:

Jessica Ruf
Assistant Editor