Most of us have heard of Glastonbury Festival in England, and the Rio Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. There are many of these amazing festivals each year around the globe for the masses to enjoy.
But if you’re looking for something a bit different, perhaps not on such a big scale, or in a country you may not have thought of travelling to before, then this list is for you.
The Baalbeck Festival is celebrating 60 years this year, and is the oldest cultural event in the Middle East. It was originally created to promote tourism and artistic culture and it soon became an annual event every summer, gaining international names in the music, theatre and dance scenes.
Located in the spectacular setting of the temples of Bacchus and Jupiter, you would be hard pressed to find another stage quite like it. The Baalbeck International Festival also plays an important role in promoting Lebanon to the world, and inspiring positive cultural movements for the country. For more information visit: http://baalbeck.org.lb/
The Electric Picnic is an arts and music festival located on the grounds of Stradbally Hall in County Laois. There are 2 main stages, along with small performance tents for musical and comedy acts, and food demonstrations, as well as sideshows, crafting areas, and a place to camp on-site.
The Body & Soul area situated amongst the trees is quirky and calm by day, and a lit up wonderland by night. There is even a spa and bath house allowing you to spend time in an open-air wood-fired hot tub.
Something to suit everybody’s taste, and family friendly, this is one festival you don’t want to miss. For more info visit: https://www.electricpicnic.ie
FESPACO is the bi-annual Pan African Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou that takes place in Burkina Faso.
The festival is a competition for African filmmakers who predominantly produced their films in Africa, and is a place to be inspired and exchange ideas.
Created to educate and raise awareness of the development of African cinema, it now attracts attendees from neighbouring countries and beyond.
The competition awards trophies to the film makers, with the most prestigious awarded to the film that best shows ‘Africa’s realities’. Visit the FESPACO official site for details on the next scheduled event: https://www.fespaco.bf/en
Bold and daring, is used to describe the program offered by the Mural Festival in Montreal. The city streets come alive with graffiti murals, musical performances and installations by artists from around the world.
You can watch the murals being made in real time, or take a tour of the urban artwork being displayed here since 2013. In addition, the Art Fair showcases sculptures, illustrators and photographers exhibited by 10 different galleries, and the Parc du Portugal is home to the Grower Market, screenings and dance performances.
Parade is a travelling festival with theatre, dance, mime and musical performances. Many bars and restaurants are on offer, with a particular focus on providing bio-industry free products and eco-friendly and recyclable materials.
Children will be entertained every afternoon with the Kids Parade and crafting. The festival kicks off in Rotterdam and then The Hague, before moving to Utrecht and finally rounding up in Amsterdam. Dates and tickets can be viewed here: https://www.deparade.nl
According to Inca tradition, the first Inca celebrated the winter solstice on the first day of the New Year in the Inca calendar. The festival takes place a few days later on the 24th June when the sun rises.
The festival takes place in the City of Cusco in the main plaza. The festival these days is a theatrical representation of the historic rituals and involves the raising of the rainbow Inti Raymi flag, music, colourful clothing and masks and the sharing of food. Discover more here: http://www.discover-peru.org/inti-raymi
Besides the huge musical acts that perform at Melt! Festival every year, one of the most intriguing things about this festival is its setting. Previously a brown coal mine, the massive pieces of equipment used during excavation were set to be scrapped.
But instead, former mine workers saved the five disused bucket wheel excavators, bucket dredgers and stackers and grouped them together to create an imposing steel landscape.
Not just an event location, Ferropolis, known as ‘the city of iron’, is a museum, industrial monument, steel sculpture and theme park, surrounded by Lake Gremminer. You can also camp here and enjoy the 3 day festival of electro, hip hop, indie and mainstream music. See details here: https://www.meltfestival.de/en/
If hip hop and reggae is more your thing, then the Splash! Festival is also held here. For more information visit: https://www.splash-festival.de/en/
Known as the European Festival of Humour and Satire, the festival showcases theatrical and comedic performances from puppeteers, dancers, mimes, musicians, clowns and street artist from Slovakia, the Czech Republic and beyond.
The festival spans over 3 days at the end of Summer across multiple stages in the medieval mining town of Kremnica.
There’s more to The Flower Festival than flowers! Held annually in Medellin, this festival is an important social event for the city. The flower parade sees the carrying of large flower arrangements, called silletas, on the backs of the parade participants, knowns as silleteros. Most silleteros carry on the tradition after it is passed down from their parents.
Historically, silleteros would carry wooden chairs on their backs, which would carry people, sometimes up steep hills, barefoot and for periods of around 3 hours for one journey. Later the seats were modified to carry market wares, such a vegetables and flowers.
The week-long festival includes a horse trail ride through town, music, displays and fireworks. Visit Discover Colombia for visitor information: http://discovercolombia.com/medellin/events/the-flower-festival
When thinking of the beautiful scenery of Snowdonia in Wales, one would not expect the Italiante village of Portmeirion. Making up this unique town is Castell Park, which features; you guessed it, Castle Deudraeth, and many large stages.
The Village is the location of the Central Piazza with intimate outdoor performances, the Dome Gallery, Town Hall and Mermaid Spa. At the Village Green you can partake in yoga and massage.
In-between The Estuary Stage and the River Dwyryd is a swimming pool to splash in whilst watching your favourite band. The Stone Boat offers a boutique riverside venue and is located nearby the Clough’s restaurant.
Finally, the Woodlands offer a collection of stages and spaces amongst the large beautiful natural settings, including a floating dance floor on Chinese Lake.
You can also sleep here, and why would you want to leave? Festival No.6 accommodation includes luxury tents, exclusive premium tents with 24-hour concierge services, caravans, and hotels, including within the castle.
Tickets and information of the other entertainment on offer can be found here: https://festivalnumber6.com