In a world full of knowledge, it is not very often that we are unaware of big events and special occasions in the world. Since experiencing over 35 different countries all with unique lifestyles, cultures and sights, I have noted the ones that surprised people the most. These experiences should be on everyone’s bucket list!
Day of the Dead, Mexico
With my sights set on Mexico in 2016 with Cantimplora Travel (check them out- SO excited!) I have been doing my fair share of research into the Mexican culture. I honestly had no idea how diverse and beautiful their culture could be, with my naivety and first impressions of ‘culture’ going to Cancun and Spring break. The day of the dead festival is by far one of the most unique in the world. Dancing, singing and face painting in honour of family and friends who have passed. This is a very powerful and inspiring day that I hope to be a part of! WHEN? October 31st
Thailand Water Festival- Songkran
Possibly the world’s most exciting and fun street festival. The Thai people celebrate Songkran every April, with water bombs, plungers, pistols, buckets- you name it- you get soaked! road trains raid the streets with enthusiastic teens bounding down on tourists and locals with buckets and buckets of water- it is literally the world’s biggest water bomb fight! There is, however, cultural significance to this festival, as it is celebrating the Thai New Year and beginning of the Summer season! WHEN? Every year around April 13-15th (solar new year).
Kings Day in Amsterdam
Never have you seen so many people crammed into one canal! The Netherlands celebrates Kings day every year in April with locals wearing orange in support of their King. The canals are full of boats, pumping music and drinking. The celebrations also include a huge firework display and it is considered one of the biggest calendar events of the year. Other festivities include street carnival with street performers and performances. WHEN? April 27th (in 2016- changes yearly!)
Germany over Christmas
There is something so magical about the German Christmas markets. Almost every town, big or small, will have their own. Hot Glühwein and gingerbread made fresh daily, it is a truly beautiful time of the year. The tradition here is very strong and you will feel instantly uplifted with spirit. Read more about the markets here. WHEN? Every year in almost every town, from End of November through to the new year’s week.
Australia Day in Australia
I recently wrote about the impact travelling has had on my awareness of the depth of Australian culture. Australia day is possibly the biggest day of the year for Australians and the pure pride and joy for the land down under is unmissable. Celebrating how good life really is, that is what it is all about. On this day you will see thousands flock to the beach, backyard BBQs, parties at almost every club and pub across the country and fireworks in every capitol city. Both family and young travellers will enjoy the festivities and the real Aussie bogan pride! WHEN? January 26th
Super Bowl in America
Although not technically an American ‘cultural’ norm, it has become an intensive part of the American modern society and tradition. The two finalist teams of the NFL (National Football League) play for the grand final trophy, with the winners showered with praise. Super Bowl day is one of the world’s most promoted (and costly) events of the year, with advertisers paying millions to be featured in commercial breaks. Socially across America, you will find house parties, bars packed with punters, large street parties, stadium parties and a LOT of beer being guzzled. It is a great time to sit back, watch the game (even if you don’t understand it) and get into the competitive spirit! WHEN? Usually in February every year, but dependent on game schedule.
Have you come across any others?