No matter in which part of the world you stay, but these famous festivals are capable of bringing people from around the globe together and engaging in elaborate celebrations. While these festivals are major tourist attraction, they are something which will make you add numerous clicks in your travel photography album.
Take out that DSLR and go click click click !
Cherry Blossom Lantern Festival, Japan
One of the most popular festivals in the country of Japan where cherry blossoms are celebrated in every part of the country. This is a large spectator event which memorializes 3,000 cherry trees from Tokyo to Washington DC and celebrating the friendship between USA and Japan. Today it is celebrated for four weekends and welcomes around 1.5 million people to the beauty of the nature.
Time of Celebration : End of March and Start of April.
San Fermin, Running of the Bulls, Pampalona – Spain
The San Fermin fiestas are celebrated every year and are known around the glove for the running of the bulls. Celebrated in the honor of San Fermin, this festival majorly involves partying and fun now. The runners roll their newspapers and chant to an image of San Fermin. The run usually lasts between three to four minutes only. Racing with the bulls is a highly risky enterprise and shouldn’t be done for fun.
Time of celebration : 6 July – 14 July
Mardi Gras Carnival, New Orleans
Mardi Gras is the last day of the carnival season and this is the most popular time to visit New Orleans. Elaborate parades organized by social groups known as Krewes will catch your sight like anything. Float riders traditionally toss things like colored beads, plastic cups and small inexpensive toys. Decorative costumes and masks are worn by non Krewe members as they march with the parade.
Time of celebration : Between February 3 and March 9
Floating Lanterns Festival, Honolulu, Hawaii
Celebrated for the remembrance of the loved ones who’ve passed and promote healthy relationships of the community. Thousands of people gather to witness six thousand floating lanterns which bear the prayers for the lost loved ones. Traditional Japanese and Hawaiian performances of music and dance go on for an hour or two on the stage meanwhile.
Time of celebration : Memorial Day (probably in the month of May)
La Tomatina, Food Fight Festival, Buñol, Spain
The tomato fight has been a tradition since 1945 although no one is really sure how this festival originated. Only 20,000 lucky people are allowed to participate and the games begin at around 11 am when the trucks bring in the over-ripe tomatoes. The festival only begins after one person from the crowd successfully reaches the top of a greasy wooden pole which is two-storey high. The water cannons fire and so the food fight begins which lasts for an hour after that.
Time of celebration : last Wednesday of August
Dia de los Muertos – US and Mexico
Day of the dead is a Mexican holiday when friends and family members gather to pray for the loved ones who have died. The traditions involve building altars and honoring the deceased by keeping gifts of their favorite food and marigolds at their grave.
Time of celebration : November 2
Yi Peng Lantern Festival, Thailand
Yi means ‘two’ and peng means ‘full moon day’, this way Yi Peng refers to full moon day in the second month. It is a religious ceremony paying homage to the Buddha. Sky lanterns decorate the air with their luminescence looking like yellow stars on Earth. On this day, people decorate their houses, gardens and temples too. There are two lantern releases; one is the local celebration and the second one is for the tourists.
Date of celebration : announced only few weeks prior
Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, Albuquerque
This is the largest hot air balloon festival in the world. It is a nine day event and has a whooping 500 balloons each year. It began in 1972 for celebrating the 50th birthday of 770 KOB Radio and soon turned into hot air balloon championships after some years. Hundreds of balloons float above the city as the day begins and the view of the rising balloons is quite mesmerizing for the first timers. This is one of the largest events for travel photography and writing.
Time of celebration : first week of October
Up Hella Aa, Fire Festival, Scotland
Up Hella Aa has been a tradition since 1880 and is now the biggest fire festival. The festival is never cancelled or postponed except a few occasions. It begins with marching in the morning and ends with massive fire celebrations. Over 800 heavily disguised men form ranks in the streets and at the stroke of 7.30, the procession begins and burns the dragon ship to conclude the event.
Time of celebration : last Tuesday of January
Ágitagueda Art Festival, Portugal
What better shade could you ask for than walking under a hundred umbrellas during a sunny day. This festival is an old tradition but the hanging of the umbrellas decorating the roof of the street began only 3 years back and is already gaining world fame. This vibrant spectacle is something you cannot miss for your travel photography if you are visiting in July.
Time of celebration : every July
Winter Light Festival, Japan
With more than 7 million LED lights, winter in celebrated with a unique style in the Nabana No Sato botanical garden as they create a incomparable view. The famous tunnel of light is a specter for creative travel photography of Japan’s most impressive illuminations.
Time of celebration : mid November to mid March
On the festival ground
as the air began to cool,
And the sun went down
my soul swooned.