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International Festivals

Yesterday, 17th March 2015 was St. Patrick's Day. I have been looking at the celebrations online and I really wished I was there. I mean look at all the fun people were having, wearing green, drinking lots of alcohol and celebrating Patrick. If I had it my way I would love to be in Ireland, in the heart of the city to be with the revellers to understand why on in this auspicious occasion we are celebrating a saint by getting really really drunk. It got me thinking which other festivals I would love to attend this year if I had the opportunity.


Taiwan Lantern Festival
This festival has already passed but I have always wanted to go to one. Maybe I will make it for next year's festival. During the Taiwan Lantern Festival, thousands of sky lanterns light over Pingxi District in Taiwan and in Yanshui District, there is a firecrackers ceremony of Wumiao Temple. Fireworks Display ("beehive of fireworks") was originally celebrated to ward off evil and disease from the town. The Sky Lanterns were released originally to let others know that the town was safe.


La Tomatina
Is a festival that is held in the Valencian town of Buñol, a town located 30 km / 19 miles from the Mediterranean, in which participants throw tomatoes and get involved in this tomato fight purely for fun. It is held on the last Wednesday of August, during the week of festivities of Buñol. At around 10 a.m., festivities begin with the first event of the Tomatina. It is the "palo jabón", similar to the greasy pole. The goal is to climb a greased pole with pork on top. As this happens, the crowd works into a frenzy of singing and dancing and gets showered in water from hoses. Once someone is able to drop the pork off the pole, the start signal for the tomato fight is given by firing the water shot in the air and trucks make their entry. The signal for the onset is at about 11 when a loud shot rings out, and the chaos begins. This event is held in August


It is a 16-day festival running from late September to the first weekend in October with more than 6 million people from around the world attending the event every year. Locally, it is often simply called Wiesn, after the colloquial name of the fairgrounds themselves. The Oktoberfest is an important part of Bavarian culture, having been held since 1810.


Running of the Bulls
Is a practice that involves running in front of a small group of cattle, typically six, of the toro bravo breed that have been let loose on a course of a sectioned-off subset of a town's streets. The most famous running of the bulls is that of the eight-day festival of Sanfermines in honour of Saint Fermin in Pamplona, although they are held in towns and villages across Spain, Portugal, in some cities in Mexico, in San José Festival held in Trujillo, Peru, Mesquite, Nevada, southern France during the summer. Before the running of the bulls, a set of wooden or iron barricades is erected to direct the bulls along the route and to block off side streets. There may be a double row of barricades along the route to allow runners to quickly exit in case of danger. The gaps in the barricades are wide enough for a human to slip through, but narrow enough to block a bull.


White Nights Festival    
Is an annual international arts festival during the season of the midnight sun. The White Nights Festival consists of a series of classical ballet, opera and music events and includes performances by Russian dancers, singers, musicians and actors, as well as famous international guest stars. The Scarlet Sails celebration is the culmination of the White Nights season, the largest public event anywhere in Russia with the annual estimated attendance about one million people, most of whom are students from thousands of schools and colleges, both local and international.



  1. even though Oktoberfest is only 2 hours drive away, I have never actually been there - shame on me!

  2. Such fun to read about these fun festivals! I have no desire to run before a bull - but the smiles on the tomato-covered girls makes me suspect that might be quite fun!


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