We have rounded up a list of 30 festivals we want to experience before we are 30! Reckon we will get through it?
30. Winter Light Festival
Where: Kuwana City, Japan
When: October to March
Why: Titled one of the best winter light shows in all of Japan, experience a large landscape turned into a giant light spectacle. With LED light tunnels, light rivers and even a LED sunset of Mt. Fuji.
29. Snow & Ice Festival
Where: Harbin, China
When: Jan 5 – Feb 5
Why: This is the largest snow and ice festival in the world. It features carved towers and full size buildings made from giant blocks of ice.
28. Electric Daisy Carnival
Where: Las Vegas
When: June (dates change each year)
Why: This music festival draws 400,000 people for a gigantic three day electronic music festival. Thats a lot of people!
27. Rio de Janeiro Carnival
Where: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
When: February to March
Why: This world famous festival held before Lent every year is considered one of the biggest carnivals in the world, with 2 million people attending (okay, now thats a lot of people)! The non-stop party is filled with floats, colour, samba music and elaborate costumes.
26. Boryeong Mud Festival
Where: Boryeong, South Korea
Why: A cosmetics company in South Korea developed a line of products which featured mud from the Boryeong mud flats as the main ingredient. The company didn’t want to spend money on commercials, instead they created the Mud Festival so potential customers could feel the benefits of the special mud firsthand – thus, the Boryeong Mud Festival was born!
25. Chinese New Year
Where: Hong Kong
When: February (date changes each year, according to the Chinese calender)
Why: During the Chinese New Year, millions of people fill the streets of Hong Kong celebrating peace and happiness. They say it is one of the happiest places in the world to be during this time of year. Red clothing is worn to scare evil spirits and colourful dragons roam the streets. It is definitely the most impressive heritage event in the world!
Where: Sahara Desert, Morocco
When: 5 days in early April
Why: Who wouldn’t want to say they have partied in the Sahara Desert? Only 1000 tickets are available, so if you enjoy a more intimate setting this is perfect. Music is as much as the focus as art, culture and getting in touch with your mind, body and soul. For a 5 day event, $200 is a pretty good deal if you ask me!
Where: Boom, Belgium
When: June (dates change each year)
Why: This music festival has grown to become one of the world’s largest electronic dance music festivals. Each year a crazy 100,000 people flock to Belgium to dance the days and nights away!
22. Saint Patrick’s Day Festival
Where: Dublin, Ireland
When: March 17th
Why: Saint Patrick’s Day was originally a celebration of the beginning of Christianity in Ireland but has expanded into a world-wide celebration of Irish culture. And what a better place to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day than in Ireland! There are parades, costumes, music, comedy, film, drinking … and lets not forget leprechauns.
21. Ultra Music Festival
Where: Bayfront Park, Miami
When: March (date changes each year)
Why: This electronic music festival attracts over 300,000 partygoers with tickets selling out in a matter of seconds. As the years have gone by this festival has grown from a 1, 2, 3 day concert … now exploding into a full week of partying!
20. The Carnevale
Where: Venice, Italy
When: Late January to early Feburary
Why: In 1162, the Republic of Venice was victorious against an attempted invasion. To celebrate, the people of Venice gathered in San Marco Square. It became a tradition. Once a year everyone was free to do what they pleased without the guilt – thanks to the masks. Still till this day each year Venetians and tourists gather to celebrate, dressed in mask. It feels like a fairy tale that has come to life!
19. Splendour in the Grass
Where: New South Wales, Australia
When: July (dates change each year)
Why: Despite the colder weather, this three day festival attracts an international audience. Each year Splendour features an impressive international lineup. Once the festivals over why not head down to the iconic Bondi Beach!
18. Bay to Breakers
Where: San Fransisco, California
When: Third Sunday in May
Why: Originally a race to raise San Francisco’s spirits after the 1906 earthquake, Bay to Breakers has evolved into a “race” where 100,000 people dressed in costume (many not so costumed) drink and party. It is the largest mobile party of its kind!
17. Roskilde Festival
Where: Roskilde, Denmark
When: June or early July
Why: This is one of Europe’s largest music festivals, attracting over 100,000 people each year, and includes a naked run for those up for the challenge (why does festivals and nudity always seem to go together).
16. Garma Festival
Where: Northern Territory, Australia
When: Late July to early August
Why: Garma is Australia’s most significant Indigenous event. It is a celebration of the Yolngu cultural inheritance. It is aimed at sharing knowledge and culture, opening people’s heart to the message of the land. It also encourages the preservation of the indigenous Australians art and ceremonies.
15. Day of the Dead
When: October 31st to November 2nd
Why: This Mexican holiday involves people getting together to pay tribute and remember friends and family members who have passed away. This holiday dates back hundreds of years to the Aztec festival. A bit of a spooky festival you may want to spend next halloween?
Where: Indio, California
When: April (dates change each year)
Why: Each year this music festival boasts the biggest names in music! People don’t go just for the music, many A-Listers show up to enjoy the day also, plus who wouldn’t want to spend the weekend camping in the desert with their friends?
13. Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
Where: New Mexico, USA
Why: This nine day festival paints the New Mexico skyline with colourful hot air balloons. Over 750 balloons are flown during the festival, making it the largest hot air balloon festival in the world!
Where: Mayrhofen, Austria
When: April (dates change each year)
Why: Held in a ski resort in Austria, this festival focuses on snowboarding as much as on music. You can party in an igloo village, take a dip in one of the 50 heated pools and saunas whilst admiring the alpine scenery.
Where: Crimean Peninsula, Ukraine
When: Six weeks through July and August
Why: This festival isn’t your standard 2/3 day event … KaZantip stretches over a whopping 6 weeks throughout the Ukraine summer! Most pop in for a day here and there or a week, but those who feel up to it could attempt to complete the six week challenge. When arriving you are known as a “paradiZer”, the festival declares itself a “virtual republic”, it is held on 60,000 square metres of land and the music is on 21 hours a day, every day! Could you handle it?
10. Full Moon Party
Where: Haad Rin Beach, Koh Phangan, Thailand
When: Whenever there is a full moon!
Why: Located at the island’s nightlife capital, this is the ultimate travellers get together. Imagine a crowd of party animals, on a tropical island, mixed in with A-list DJ’s.
9. Wanderlust Festival
Where: Squaw Valley, California
When: July (dates changes each year)
Why: Beginning in 2009, the Wanderlust Festival combines yoga, music and food. You are bound to leave this festival beaming with happiness.
8. Glastonbury Music Festival
Where: Pilton, UK
When: June (dates change each year)
Why: Who would of guessed this classic dairy farm in the middle of nowhere would become home to this mammoth festival known world wide! Tickets sell out in a matter of minutes so you need to get onto this festival fast. You will spend your day listening to bands pumping out amazing music along with many other things to do, such as an oxygen tent .. weird?
7. Mardi Gras
Where: New Orleans
When: Tuesday before Ash Wednesday
Why: Along the streets of New Orleans get involved in a crazy party full of masks, costumes and beads… lots and lots of beads! The Mardi Gras’ reputation precedes itself! If you want to party like there’s no tomorrow, Mardi Gras is where it’s at!
Where: Munich, Germany
When: Late September to the first weekend in October
Why: This 16-day festival gets 6 million people from around the world attending the event each year. The event is all about beer, beer … oh, and did I mention? beer! You will be surrounded by traditional huge jars of frothy goodness while beautifully dressed women serve them to you. In 2013, more than $96,178,668 worth of beer was served every day during the festival!
5. Lantern Festival
Where: Pingxi, Taiwan
When: February (dates change each year)
Why: Imagine witnessing thousands of sky lanterns light up the night sky. There is nothing more surreal than a sky covered with thousands of floating lanterns. These lanterns were originally released to let others known that the town was safe, decorated with wishes and images by the person releasing it.
4. La Tomatina
Where: Buñol, Spain
When: The last Wednesday in August each year
Why: This festival is held every year … purely for fun! In 1945 a few locals began throwing fruit and veggies during a parade, and La Tomatina was born. Nowadays, participates throw tomatoes at each other and ride down tomato covered slides.
3. Burning Man
Where: Black Rock Desert, Nevada, USA
When: August to September (dates change each year)
Why: Burning Man is where humans go to shed themselves of the conventions of society. 48,000 people attend this annual event in Nevada’s Black Rock desert to create art and express their individuality. It gets its name from the ritual burning of a large wooden effigy, set alight on the Saturday evening. It is claimed that Burning Man needs to be experienced to truly understand how amazing it is. It is described as an experiment in community, art, radical self-expression and self-reliance.
2. Holi Festival
Where: India, Nepal, Sri Lanka
When: March (dates change each year)
Why: Also known as the Festival of Colours, it is an ancient Hindu religious festival. It is held to celebrate the end of winter and the beginning of spring, which I believe is worth celebrating! Anyone is invited and it is fun, safe … and FREE! (just don’t forget your dye)
1. Holy Ship!
Where: Departs from Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and sails The Caribbean
When: January (dates change each year)
Why: This new festival only began in 2012 and already has a crazy fan base. Who wouldn’t go crazy over the idea of a three day luxury liner cruising the Caribbean, a number of dance music’s biggest names on board spinning the decks and to top it off, a beach party at a private island in the Bahamas! This year Holy Ship! sold out in 28 hours and left a 10,000 people long waitlist – imagine how quickly it will sell out next year!
Which festival would be number 1 on your list?
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