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Festival Hopping

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Art, history, music, independence, food, rituals, film...It seems somewhere in the world there's always someone celebrating
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734 E 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90013, USA
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You don't need to work hard to explore New Orleans' diverse architecture. Take a walk around the French Quarter and you'll see Creole cottages and pre-Civil War townhouses with wrought-iron balconies. Hop on a street car and take in the antebellum...
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Snowmass Village, CO, USA
When I think of Aspen, I tend to think of winter, fancy people, and the movie Dumb & Dumber. And when I hear the words jazz festival, I immediately hear tunes from Herbie Hancock and Esperanza Spalding play through my head. So imagine my surprise...
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300 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205, USA
You haven’t truly experienced Texas until you’ve visited the hallowed grounds of the Alamo. Established in 1718 as the Mission San Antonio de Valero, the building is best known as the site of the 1836 Battle of the Alamo, a 13-day...
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52, Jaipur Rd, Mission Compound, Gopalbari, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302001, India
Holi, a religious spring festival primarily celebrated in South Asia, is what you would call, "A Color Overload." Powder is sold along the streets in an explosive array of colors, from fuchsia to neon yellow, so bright your eyes almost can't take...
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Khoroo 1, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
I wanted to go on a trip that was off the beaten path and so I picked Mongolia. I knew it was going to be quite an effort to get there so I wanted to make the most of it. I timed my trip to coincide with the Naadam Festival which is three day...
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Playón Chico, Panama
The family-owned Yandup Island Lodge is located on a private island across from the remote Playon Chico community on the Caribbean coastline of San Blas, Panama. The eco-lodge offers two tours a day: a visit to a beach on one of the archipelago's...
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The main square of the Tuscan town of Arezzo transforms into a jousting track when the bi-annual Joust of the Saracen - (a medieval term for the 'infidels' the Crusades sought to convert) takes place. The "primary" joust is in June, with the main...
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Gallup, NM, USA
Our balloon as it hovers just above the peak. An eager photographer rushes over to take a close-up picture.
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Sheridan, WY 82801, USA
Growing up in Colorado, I've been to my fair share of rodeos. Nothing prepared me for the rodeo in Sheridan, Wyoming. It's a four day festival when the rodeo comes to town, and the entire town shuts down for parades, block parties, country line...
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South Loop, Chicago, IL, USA
Concert goers from all over the world travel to Chicago to see the lollapalooza music festival. There is a wide variety of musical types to be found here. At Perrys tent each year, the emerging genre of dubstep is played. After a tornado warning,...
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55 Ujeongguk-ro, Gyeonji-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Buddha's Birthday is a splendid time in South Korea. The streets of Jongro in central Seoul become filled with prayer lanterns. If you are in Seoul head to the Jongro and Insadong areas as musical performances and street performers will be...
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209 Division St N, Reed Point, MT 59069, USA
Head in, be polite, and don't make waves until the regulars warm up to you. This will take approximately 20 minutes. Big event in town is the Annual Sheep Shearing Festival. Told ya to be polite.
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Piazza del Colosseo, 1, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
In 2003, I lived in Rome and loved to take late-night walks to this nearby amphitheater. The grandness of the structure is only increased at night and a large, flat rock outside its walls was a perfect place for me to pause and think. 2003 was the...
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Stok 194101
A short hike above the village of Stok, during it's popular winter festival in Ladakh, almost brings the heavens into focus.
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Amman, Jordan
During my two month stay in Jordan, in a frustrating effort to learn Arabic, our group took a day off of studying and headed into Amman for the Jordanian Independence Day celebration. We walked all around the city, visiting the Roman ruins,...
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1430 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80202, USA
It's been said that Larimer Square is where Denver started—it's definitely at the center of Denver's modern life, too. The area's Victorian buildings contain shops, boutiques, and some of Denver's most...
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Bali, Indonesia
Balinese culture has its roots in the Majapahit Kingdoms of Java, which date back to the 8th century, so it stands to reason, Jamu, Java’s traditional healthy and beauty system, has blossomed on Indonesia’s last remaining Hindu island. Just as the...
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Hadong-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do, South Korea
Hadong, South Korea is home of the annual Hadong Green Tea Festival. Attendees can walk the fields with the workers and pick newly formed buds off of the tea plants. Picking green tea is a lot of work. There are several steps involved in the...
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Madrid, Spain
May 15 is one of Madrid's two patron saint festivals. All the chulapos and chulapas (that would be the local working class) come out in their checkered vests, form-fitting dresses with mutton sleeves, and curious headgear to dance the chotis and...
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Puebla de los Angeles, Puebla, Mexico
We were lucky enough to have Cinco de Mayo (celebrating the Battle of Puebla) fall while we were in Puebla. Having been told it's not that big of a deal there, we were pleasantly surprised to hear the sounds of bands playing not too far from our...
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Dorfstraße 20, 82487 Oberammergau, Germany
There is much more to Bierfest time than Oktoberfest. Small towns throughout Bavaria celebrate their own beer festivals throughout summer and early fall. These three riders led more than 4000 members of local Trachtenverein (folk dress clubs) to...
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Montclair, NJ, USA
The Montclair Film Festival launched their first program in May 2012, screening 45 award quality films and special events (many in pre-theatrical release) including a chat with Michael Moore hosted hosted by Thom Powers (he of the husband/wife...
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Jennersdorf, Austria
The Opera Festival Jennersdorf, in southern Burgenland’s “3-countries-Triangle”, is a world-class festival performed in a castle set among the pastures and meadows. It is one of Europe’s best intimate opera festivals! Experience it for yourself!
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After the race in which only a fraction of the riders are serious competitors, trick riding dominates the festival. One such event involves many prayer flags being thrown out on the ground while riders gallop past and attempt to pick up as many as...
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10901 Old Cutler Rd, Coral Gables, FL 33156, USA
While I went to the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden for their annual Chocolate Festival, I took time to walk around and found a little spot I'd previously overlooked. With a nearby bench, I took in a few moments to enjoy the sound of the water...
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Edinburgh, UK
All I can say is: largest arts festival IN THE WORLD. For 50 years, Scotland's capital city has seen a unique explosion of creative energy within the Fringe Festival. It's got EVERYTHING- street performances, theatre, comedy, literature, politics,...
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South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia
Ahh Southbank. Home to the ferris wheel of questionable importance, hordes of tourists, lively markets, the mouth watering Max Brenner ( is it ever not busy?!), the cheap as chips Southbank cineplex, the man made Streets Beach, more restaurants,...
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8321 Sankt Margarethen an der Raab, Austria
The setting of St. Margarethen’s natural stage may feel a little more Greek than Austrian. The stunning rock formations that have created this amphitheatre-like structure are a perfect backdrop for the operas and jazz concerts that take place here...
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Sacsayhuaman, Peru
Our recent trip to Peru was cleverly planned around the festivities of Inti Raymi - The Festival of the Sun. Wow, what a week it was, immersed in festivities, parades, music and celebrations we felt like we really got to know the culture. The...
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86020 Molise CB, Italy
The southern region of Italy is known for their traditional cheeses from scamorza to burrata (made from cows milk). It's an incredible process, and a real art which transforms cow milk, into curd, which is then dipped in hot water to soften, then...
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Claremore, OK, USA
While more and more mind blowing concoctions show up in Carnies stalls (deep fried Snickers) the funnel cake remains the tried and true. This was taken at the annual Gatesway Hot Air Balloon Festival in Claremore, OK.
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Budapest, Nagytétényi út 48-50, 1222 Hungary

We were also lucky enough to go during the Bor Fesztival which is an annualwine festival that showcases all of the local wines and the tasting took place in a castle...I love europe!

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Seville, Spain
Unintentionally, I managed to visit Sevilla during Feria de Abril which turned out to be the best experience. The sights, sounds, and tastes of this festival will knock your socks off. Even the little girls get dressed up in flamenco dresses and...
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I had the absolute pleasure of being in Dublin during St. Patty's Day, and it really was, as the cliche goes, "a sea of green". The streets were madness, but so full of love. What I love about the Irish when they drink is that they are happy: full...
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Artomatic is a free, month-long art festival held in unused spaces in the Washington, D.C. area. Nine floors of an Arlington office building slated for demolition were converted into a giant venue for visual art, performances, films, and workshops...
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Plaça de Sant Jaume, 1, 08002 Barcelona, Spain
On our first day in Barcelona, we learned that the city has surprises in store around every corner. We had just met up with American expat Jeff Koehler in the plaza in front of the Santa Maria del Pi church, about to head up a narrow street to THE...
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Innsbruck, Austria
While you might consider Vienna and Salzburg Austria’s musical capitals, Innsbruck has played its own role in Europe’s cultural history. During the Renaissance and Baroque, Innsbruck proudly claimed its spot as a centre of music and high art....
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Hofstallgasse 1, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
The Salzburg Festival is one of the most prestigious assemblies of artists in the world. Each summer, it brings the elite in music and theatre to the charming city where they contend for their audience’s favor. Salzburg becomes a buzzing hub for...
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Santo Tomás, 29160 Chiapa de Corzo, Chis., Mexico
During the ParaChico's festival, in January 2012, I snapped this photo of a group of women headed down the street to join the parades of men dressed in brush hats, blue-eyed masks, and colorful capes. For an entire week, huge groups of people...
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High on life and yoga here at Wanderlust Yoga Festival. Wild yoga classes, thought provoking yoga classes, yoga rope slackers, acro yoga, amazing music from Ziggly Marley, Ani Difranco, and Guravani. The sun is shining and people here are happy an...
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Fort Bragg, CA 95437, USA
Another highlight of the annual Mendocino Coast Crab and Wine Days festival is the cioppino dinner, held in the Fort Bragg Pentacostal Church hall. The fresh Dungeness crab is "swimming" in an amazing broth given added texture and kick from ground...
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San Antonio, TX 78205, USA
Festive Plaza in La Villita, a complex with shops run by local artisans, offers a more unique experience than the souvenir-selling El Mercado. Aside from shopping for authentic handmade goods, you can learn about its rich history. Self-guided...
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Near Nyingma Monastery, Saxena Road, Bodhgaya, Bihar 824231, India

Fireworks burst in pulsing staccato outside of the tall Root Institute walls in Bodhgaya, India, the city where Buddha was enlightened. Inside the weeklong meditation and Buddhism class, it was silence save for an hour a day. Hindus, Christians,...

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Located across the Tiber River from the Centro Storico, Trastevere is a kaleidoscope of ivy-covered buildings, complicated Italian history, and bombastic nightlife. The heart of the neighborhood is Piazza Santa Maria, a large square where street...
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6137 Koprinka, Bulgaria
I was driving down Highway 6 when I spotted a local carnival. I pulled over, parked, and stayed for several hours watching traditional folk music and dancing, wrestling (big in Bulgaria) matches, and general merriment. I love that the festival...
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PLAZA MAYOR, CENTRO DE, Cusco 08000, Peru
Five minutes after settling into my hostel in Cusco and meeting up with an international contingent of newly found friends from the prior week in Lima, we made our way toward the Plaza de Armas, center of the gone but not forgotten Inca Empire. As...
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The Mall, London SW1A 2BJ, UK
If you feel like taking a walk in London, head to the Mall. Built about a century ago as a ceremonial route, the Mall is a wide road stretching east to west from Trafalgar Square and the Admiralty Arch over to Buckingham Palace. The majority of...
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Seongji-ro 153beon-gil, Choeup-dong, Busanjin-gu, Busan, South Korea
The temples of South Korea are always one of my favorite things to check out while traveling there. For one, the temples in South Korea are usually accessible by hike and are often perched on the top of a mountain so just getting to the temple can...
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58 Quốc Tử Giám, Văn Miếu, Ba Đình, Hà Nội 100000, Vietnam
Don't skip Temple of Literature when you visit Hanoi, especially if it is during the time of the New Year Celebrations. This is when students and their families will come and pay a visit and calligraphists will assemble outside the temple and...
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Karl-Marx-Allee 33, 10178 Berlin, Germany
My sister and I watched some movie selections of the Berlinale Film Festival in the old Kino International Theater in eastern Berlin. The opulent lobby is full of 60s charm.
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Kapiolani Park Beach, Diamond Head - Kapahulu - St. Louis, HI 96815, USA
The Hawaiian Islands are made up of many more cultural groups than Hawaiian Islanders and white settlers. Located between Asia and North America, the blend of cultures is much different than the other 49 States. Every time I host guests in ...
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Festival of music of Andalusia, Judio e Hispano-marroqui. Flamenco at Dar Souiri. Orchestra Hadj Abdelkrim Raiss de Fez www.festivaldesandalousiesatlantiques.com Lets..make a group!!! www.ritabellydancer.com
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Easter Island, Hanga Roa, Isla de Pascua, Chile
I think this is the most mysterious place I have ever been. It is just crazy that no one truly knows who built these or why. Having been to Peru, I could definitely see the Inca influence on the base under the Moai. But I have also been to...
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La Rambla, Barcelona, Spain
Shortly after we arrived in Plaça del Pi in Barcelona's Barri Gòtic, so did a parade of gigantes and castellers. The latter (who name comes from the Catalonian word for castles) climb upon one another to build human towers. The tradition goes back...
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Wheeler Theater, Fort Worden State Park, 25 Eisenhower Ave, Port Townsend, WA 98368, USA
Chamber Music in a barn--no, really, it's not a joke! Classical musicians really do perform in this barn on the Olympic Peninsula, For almost thirty years now, summers in the countryside across Puget Sound from Seattle have been synonymous with...
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In the morning, we went to Mixquic in the southwest of Mexico City to witness and participate in the decoration of the graves there. This photo was taken later in Zocalo in the city center where the parade and festivities lasted late into the...

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2015 E Riverside Dr, Austin, TX 78741, USA
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Known as the “live music capital of the world,” Austin earns its title every spring during the annual South by Southwest (SXSW) festival. At this year’s event, March 13 to 18 (with interactive and film segments starting on March 9), see a wide...
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Kathmandu 44600, Nepal
Tihar happens once a year, and if you happen to be visiting Kathmandu during this festival (roughly October), figure out how to make your way up to a rooftop and watch the city light up. Firecrackers and children's laughs ricochet off the...
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Referat für Wirtschaft und Arbeit - Servicezentrum Theresienwiese, Matthias-Pschorr-Straße 4, 80339 München, Germany
Each fall, crowds of partygoers at Munich’s Oktoberfest lift steins of golden beer skyward and bellow “Prosit!” The German holiday began more than 200 years ago at the marriage celebration of Bavarian Crown Prince Louis and Princess Therese. Many...
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Chiang Mai, Thailand
The depth of things to explore in Chiang Mai were beyond what I was able to do within 6 weeks. Hardly venturing out of the 4 walls of the inner city, I road via motor bike just one hour on the outskirts to the most beautiful hidden cove where a...
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103 Borough Rd, London SE1 0AA, UK
South Bank has both the best river walk in London and the city's liveliest cultural centers, so a walk along it is a must. The path takes you from the Globe and the Tate Modern along the Thames—passing Gabriel's Wharf with its...
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Hammerichsgade 1, 1611 København, Denmark
When the days get long, Copenhagen’s cobblestone streets blossom with bicycles, café tables, and jazz bands. Check out the lively music scene during the annual Copenhagen Jazz Festival. In between gigs, explore this compact capital on foot or...
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Charleston, SC, USA
A colonial classic, Charleston might initially come off as a little ye olde. But if you look more closely, this 340-year-old harbor city actually lives in the present. Bars reinvent Southern spirits, boutiques showcase new spins on cotton, and the...
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Valencia, Spain
Every March, Valencia Spain is filled with colorful papier mache statues, like this one of Michael Jackson in his Neverland Ranch. The intricate structures are supposed to represent trends and phenomena Valencia wishes to rid from its culture. On...
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Chamarajapura, Chamarajapuram Mohalla, Lakshmipuram, Mysuru, Karnataka, India
Yellow cows are a common sight during January and February in India's southern states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu where the Sankranthi or Pongol festival is celebrated. The festival occurs every January 14th-18th and is a thanksgiving ceremony for...
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Huancaro, Cusco, Peru
I was fortunate enough to trip on a festival day while in Urubamba, it started with a parade and ended with dance contests. These were just some of the amazing participants. It was the 26th of December.
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1 Custom House Quay, North Dock, Dublin, Ireland
View from the South Side of the River Liffey
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We were lucky enough to be in Kathmandu, Nepal for a Full Moon festival. At sunset, the monks lit thousands and thousands of little butter candles around Bodnath Stupa. We sat at a roof-top restaurant while they did the lighting (where this image...
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Jamaica Plain, MA 02130, USA
This highlight is a bit different than the usual. It's not a travel experience at all; it's a "home" experience, because I love my neighborhood and want visitors to get off the beaten path in Boston! "Wake up the Earth!" is an annual Spring...
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Keizersgracht 148, 1015 CX Amsterdam, Netherlands
We happened to get to Amsterdam just in time for the Gay Pride Canal Parade on the Prinsengracht. The combination of smoke, bubbles, confetti, and pure excitement in the air was intoxicating…mostly in a good way. The parade floats seemed to keep...
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Each Spring the Paro Festival or Tsechu takes place in Paro, Bhutan. The festival is a wonderful event to witness. Masked, barefoot dancers jump and twirl, while trying to subdue evil spirits and celebrate the teachings of Buddha. The event takes...
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Shiwar, Rajasthan 322704, India
The Holi Festival is also known as the festival of colors and is celebrated on a full moon at the end of February or beginning of March, which marks the end of winter. On the morning of the full moon people take to the streets ‘throwing paint’,...
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River Valley Rd, Singapore 179037
The Thimithi Festival, or Fire Walking Festival, in Singapore is a major Hindu festival celebrated during the month of October. It's purpose is to venerate and honor goddess Draupadi. Legend holds that Draupadi was made to walk on burning coals...
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City Park, Denver, CO, USA
On October 6, the Cultivate Festival—hosted by Chipotle, founded in Denver—combines beer and wine tastings, cooking demonstrations by such celebrity chefs as Michael Chiarello, and musical performances by Okkervil River and others.
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Calle Mañueta, 8, 31001 Pamplona, Navarra, Spain
The churros here supposedly get their crispy exterior from being cooked over an ax-cut beech-wood fire. You can sample the results when the 140-year-old shop is open: only two Saturdays in June, every day during the San Fermín festival in July,...
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Virpazar, Montenegro
Ukljeve is a small bleak found only in Lake Skadar, Montenegro – one of 7 endemic fish species in the lake. This tasty little fish is just one of the many treats you will find at Virpazar’s annual Ukljeve i Vina festival, held in February this...
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990 Washington Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11225, USA
Participating in the Japanese tradition of hanami, or "flower viewing" at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden during springtime is one of the simplest pleasures I've had that didn't involve food. For four weeks, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is home to pink...
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Austurbakki 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland
Opened in 2011, Reykjavík's Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre is not only the most significant classical music venue in Iceland (home to the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Icelandic Opera), but also one of the country’s...
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Shirakawa, Ono District, Gifu Prefecture, Japan
Celebrated my birthday at the Matsuri in the old town of Takayama. It is the annual festival of the Hie Shrine in the southern half of Takayama. This is an image I took at the ryokan we were staying at during our stay there. The people from the...
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Florence, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy

I saw this exquisite chalk drawing of Leonardo da Vinci's Lady With An Ermine on the ground in one of the main plazas in Firenze. It started drizzling and I just had to take this photo before the rain washed it away!

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Av Central, León, Nicaragua
With my rudimentary Spanish, I hadn’t understood why a local suggested wearing long pants to the night’s festival. “Because of the fireworks,” she had said (I thought). The recommendation seemed odd considering the stifling heat and humidity. But...
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Magic Island, Honolulu, HI 96814, USA
Even before I moved to Hawaii, I knew I wanted to be a part of the Lantern Floating Festival. It takes place on Memorial Day weekend in May at Ala Moana Park in Honolulu. An estimated 40,000 people turned out for the 2012 celebration where...
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Camí de Binissaida, 108, 07720 Es Castell, Illes Balears, Spain
To really get to know the Spanish island of Minorca, be prepared to sit atop a saddle. The island has a love affair with a breed of horse: the graceful, strong, coal-black Minorcan. While donkeys traditionally worked the fields, the Minorcan was...
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4264 Bohinjska Bistrica, Slovenia
This was a MUST do for me during out trip. To visit the annual Kow's Ball festival where the cows come down front the mountain meadows to lower pastures. This is a reason to celebrate with Pust, Prust and Pivo! Also lots of dancing.
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Sycamore Building, Sycamore Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, Co. Dublin, Ireland
A fanciful three-week celebration of the arts, Fringe has been an annual asylum for artistic oddballs since 1994. Nearly 650 productions— theater, dance, poetry, magic, outdoor installations—enliven venues all over Dublin. 353/(0) 1-670-6106....
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West Town, Chicago, IL, USA
The annual Design Harvest festival brings more than 50 vendors to West Grand Avenue. Oversize tents fill up with metal sculptures, handmade messenger bags, and beautiful wooden furniture by Chicago designers such as Jason Lewis. September 29–30....
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Chiang Mai, Thailand
Every year, on the evening of the full moon of the 12th lunar month, thousands of paper lanterns are launched into the skies above Chiang Mai. At temples all across the city, monks help tourists and residents alike light their lanterns and send...
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Edirne, Edirne Merkez/Edirne, Turkey
Ha ha haaaaay! Every year on May 5-6, the Turkish Roman community congregates in Edirne, Turkey, to celebrate the coming of Spring, known as Hidrellez. A celebratory area outside Edirne is full of color and movement as locals dance to the 9/8...
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3 Taiyang Ave, Songbei Qu, Haerbin Shi, Heilongjiang Sheng, China
My sister's invitation to participate in the Harbin Olympiade for synchronized skating meant that our Christmas trip was delayed until February. Being from Chicago, I thought I was accustomed to the biting cold, but ending up practically in...