Best Festivals In The World 10 Unusual Celebrations And National Customs

Best Festivals In The World: 10 Unusual Celebrations And National Customs

Festivals are a time of celebration, a time to come together and enjoy the unique customs and traditions of different cultures. From colorful parades to mouth-watering food, festivals bring people together and create lasting memories. While some festivals are well-known, others are hidden gems waiting to be discovered. In this article, we’ll take a look at the 10 best festivals in the world, each with its own unusual celebrations and national customs.

1. Carnaval de Barranquilla, Colombia ๐ŸŽญ

The Carnaval de Barranquilla is one of the most colorful and lively festivals in the world. Held in the coastal city of Barranquilla, Colombia, the festival celebrates the country’s African, Indigenous, and Spanish heritage. With vibrant costumes, lively music, and dancing, the festival is a feast for the senses.

What is the history behind the Carnaval de Barranquilla?

The Carnaval de Barranquilla has its roots in the pre-Columbian era, when indigenous people celebrated the transition from the dry season to the rainy season. Later, it was combined with European traditions and African rhythms brought over by slaves. The festival was officially recognized by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2003.

What are some unique customs and traditions of the Carnaval de Barranquilla?

One of the most unique customs of the Carnaval de Barranquilla is the Battle of Flowers, where people throw flowers at each other. Another is the Marimonda, a character dressed in a mask and colorful costume that represents the city’s aristocracy.

2. Holi, India ๐ŸŒˆ

Holi, also known as the Festival of Colors, is a Hindu festival celebrated in India and Nepal. The festival marks the arrival of spring and the victory of good over evil. People celebrate by throwing colored powder and water at each other, dancing, and feasting.

What is the history behind Holi?

The origins of Holi can be traced back to ancient Hindu mythology, where it is believed to celebrate the love between Lord Krishna and Radha.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Holi?

One of the most unique customs of Holi is the Holika Dahan, where people light bonfires to symbolize the burning of evil. Another is the Lathmar Holi, where women playfully hit men with sticks.

3. La Tomatina, Spain ๐Ÿ…

La Tomatina is a tomato fight festival held annually in the town of Buรฑol, Spain. Participants throw tomatoes at each other, turning the streets into a sea of red.

What is the history behind La Tomatina?

The origins of La Tomatina are unclear, but it is believed to have started in the 1940s or 1950s. Some say it was a food fight between friends, while others say it was a protest against politicians.

What are some unique customs and traditions of La Tomatina?

One of the most unique customs of La Tomatina is the palo jabรณn, where a greasy pole is set up with a ham at the top. Participants try to climb the pole to grab the ham, while being pelted with tomatoes.

4. Obon, Japan ๐Ÿฏ

Obon is a Japanese Buddhist festival held annually in August. The festival honors the spirits of ancestors, who are believed to return to the world of the living during this time.

What is the history behind Obon?

The origins of Obon can be traced back to Buddhist beliefs and Japanese folklore. It is believed that during Obon, ancestors return to the world of the living to visit their families.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Obon?

One of the most unique customs of Obon is the Bon Odori, a dance performed in honor of the ancestors. Another is the Nagashi Somen, where thin noodles are floated down a bamboo chute and eaten by participants.

5. Dia de los Muertos, Mexico ๐Ÿ’€

Dia de los Muertos, also known as the Day of the Dead, is a Mexican holiday celebrated on November 1 and 2. The holiday honors the dead and is a time for families to come together and remember their loved ones.

What is the history behind Dia de los Muertos?

The origins of Dia de los Muertos can be traced back to pre-Columbian times, when indigenous people celebrated the dead. It was later combined with Catholic traditions during the Spanish colonization of Mexico.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Dia de los Muertos?

One of the most unique customs of Dia de los Muertos is the ofrenda, an altar set up in honor of the dead. Another is the calavera, a skull made out of sugar or chocolate that is often decorated with colorful patterns.

6. Songkran, Thailand ๐ŸŒŠ

Songkran is a Thai holiday that marks the Thai New Year. The festival is known for its water fights, where people throw water at each other to cool down from the hot weather.

What is the history behind Songkran?

The origins of Songkran can be traced back to ancient Hindu mythology, where it is believed to mark the beginning of the solar year. It was later adopted by the Thai people as a way to celebrate the end of the dry season.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Songkran?

One of the most unique customs of Songkran is the Rod Nam Dum Hua, where younger people pour scented water over the hands of their elders as a sign of respect. Another is the Miss Songkran beauty pageant, where contestants dress up in traditional Thai costumes.

7. Oktoberfest, Germany ๐Ÿบ

Oktoberfest is a German festival that celebrates beer and Bavarian culture. The festival is held annually in Munich and attracts millions of visitors from around the world.

What is the history behind Oktoberfest?

The first Oktoberfest was held in Munich in 1810 to celebrate the marriage of Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese. It was so successful that it became an annual event.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Oktoberfest?

One of the most unique customs of Oktoberfest is the Ein Prosit, a toast that is sung every hour to celebrate the festival. Another is the Dirndl and Lederhosen traditional costumes worn by festival-goers.

8. Yi Peng, Thailand ๐ŸŽ†

Yi Peng is a Thai festival that celebrates the full moon. The festival is known for its lanterns, which are released into the sky as a symbol of letting go of worries and problems.

What is the history behind Yi Peng?

The origins of Yi Peng can be traced back to Buddhist beliefs and Thai folklore. It is believed that releasing lanterns into the sky is a way to pay respect to the Buddha.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Yi Peng?

One of the most unique customs of Yi Peng is the khom loi, a floating lantern made of paper and bamboo. Another is the krathong, a small float made of banana leaves that is released into rivers or lakes.

9. Kumbh Mela, India ๐Ÿšถ

Kumbh Mela is a Hindu festival held every 12 years in India. The festival is one of the largest religious gatherings in the world, with millions of people coming together to bathe in the holy waters of the Ganges river.

What is the history behind Kumbh Mela?

The origins of Kumbh Mela can be traced back to ancient Hindu mythology, where it is believed to mark the time when the gods and demons fought over a pot of nectar that would give immortality.

What are some unique customs and traditions of Kumbh Mela?

One of the most unique customs of Kumbh Mela is the Shahi Snan, a royal bath taken by sadhus, or holy men, on special days during the festival. Another is the Akharas, groups of sadhus who compete in physical and intellectual challenges.

10. Up Helly Aa, Scotland ๐Ÿ”ฅ

Up Helly Aa is a Scottish festival held annually in the town of Lerwick,