Amazing Festivals for your Bucket List
The holidays are a very stressful time for everyone and an exceptionally hard time for some. So, until the New Year I’ll be posting a Holiday Happiness post each day to try help folks out who are struggling. As always you can reach out to me at Happinesskane@aol.com for a kind word or someone to listen. ~ Rev Kane
Today I decided to take a tour around the web to create a list of festivals for my bucket list. I’m happy to say I’ve attended a few of them already. What you won’t see are the standards, St. Patrick’s Day, Chinese New Year, New Year’s Eve in Sydney Harbor, those are more holidays than festivals. I also left off all of the various food festivals and music festivals like Glastonbury, The Electric Forest and Coachella, those lists will come another time. Here’s the list, check them out, enjoy and have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane
The first festival I have to include is one I’ve attended many times, the Burning Man Festival held in the Nevada desert each year at the end of Summer. A brief description will not do, so links to several pieces about the festival.
The festival we know as Mardi Gras in the United States is also known as Carnival in Brazil. If you’ve never done a Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans you really need to, it’s wonderful and no, I’m not talking about Bourbon Street. As a matter of fact, if you want to party on Bourbon Street I’d recommend anytime except Mardi Gras. My favorite part of Mardi Gras are the parades, I love them, lot’s of happy people having a good time, trinkets and prizes being tossed from amazing floats, it’s a really wonderful atmosphere.
Alternately, you should check out Mardi Gras in Mobile, AL the oldest Mardi Gras celebration in America. I’ll be taking my own advice and will be attending this years festivities in the city.
Finally Carnival, most well-known for the celebration in Rio is the Brazilian form of the holiday. I spent some time in Brazil and unfortunately never made it to a Carnival celebration, however I did get a great tip. Brazilians told me to skip Rio and to go instead to the Carnival celebration in Salvadore de Bahia, so that would definitely be worth exploring, smaller crowds, fewer pickpockets and probably less expensive.
Diwali is the Hindu Festival of Light and has interested me for sometime now, mostly as a photographer because I’ve seen so many amazing shots from India of whole cities lit up at night.
Dios de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a festival I love, I’ve come to enjoy it more than Halloween. My hope in the next couple of years is to go celebrate in the Oaxaca region of Mexico where some of the most elaborate celebrations take place.
Up Helly Aa is billed as Europe’s largest fire festival, it is in fact a festival started in the 1880’s and a celebration of the Viking Heritage of Northern Scotland. This festival is very much on my bucket list.
Holi is another Hindu festival that occurs in places like India and Nepal and has recently been slightly co-opted in the US in so-called color runs. The festival includes a big bonfire the evening before and an all out free-for-all color battle the next day in the streets, all in good fun of course.
Harbin Ice and Snow Festival in China is the largest ice and snow festival in the world and it lasts a full month. The images are utterly spectacular all of the buildings below are built from ice blocks and lit up, amazing.
Yi Peng Lantern Festival, Chiang Mai, Thailand is a Buddhist festival where thousands of lanterns are launched into the sky, each one carrying a wish. Seems like a great thing to tie into a larger trip in Thailand.
Floating Lantern Festival Honolulu, would you rather launch your lantern on the ocean and stay a little closer to home, well then this may be your festival.
Albuquerque Balloon Festival, what is there to say, The Big Q, Southwestern weather and cuisine and more hot air balloons than your brain can process.
Winter Light Festival Japan, this four-month long festival celebrates light, color and flowers. It seems like a photographers paradise.
Rouketopolemos Rocket War (Greece), an Easter Celebration rocket war in Greece, sounds like a great place to hang out and watch two church parishes literally try to ring each other’s bells with homemade rockets.