The Largest and Most Extravagant Seasonal Festivals in the World

The Largest and Most Extravagant Seasonal Festival in the World

For most of us, fall means back to school and football season. But, if you live in India, fall marks the beginning of the festival season with one of the most popular Indian festivals in October—the Dussehra Festival or Vijaya Dashami Festival (also called Dasera or Dasara). 

This Hindu festival celebrates the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana, marking the end of Durga Puja and Dussehra celebrations that began on September 30th and run for ten days into October. And the same thing all over the world; there are so many incredible and eye-catching seasonal festivals that one should explore at least once in a lifetime.

Songkran, Thailand

Thailand's Songkran festival is one of the most spectacular festivals in the world. The celebration lasts for three days, starting on April 13th. On these three days, Thai people will gather at temples to pay their respects to Buddha. 

Afterward, they will participate in a water fight with other Thais using water guns, buckets, or just throwing buckets of water at each other. Then they will participate in a traditional Thai dance before returning to their clothes and continuing with their daily lives as if nothing had happened.

Oktoberfest, Munich, Germany

In 1810, King Ludwig I married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. He granted her father the right to brew beer as a wedding present. The citizens of Munich were invited to join in on this celebration by attending a unique festival. 

This festival became so popular that it was decided to make it an annual event, with Oktoberfest being held every year starting on October 12th and ending on October 17th.

Mardi Gras Carnival, New Orleans, LA

Mardi Gras Carnival is an annual event that takes place before Lent. It is the last opportunity to party before giving up delicious food, drinks, and other indulgences during Lent. 

The day before Mardi Gras is known as Fat Tuesday. Traditionally this day has been a time for rich food, parades, and parties.

Las Fallas de Valencia, Spain

Las Fallas de Valencia is an exuberant, colorful festival celebrated all over Valencia. It lasts nearly two weeks with fireworks, parades, and food. These festivities celebrate Saint Joseph's Day on March 19th to commemorate Spain's heritage. This festival was marked when Joseph asked Jesus to walk with him from Nazareth to Bethlehem to live with his family. 

Las Fallas de Valencia is a tradition dating back to 18th century Spain where people make papier-mâché statues that are usually satirical or insulting depictions of people they know or dislike. These creations are called Las Fallas and typically have one day before they are burned down as part of a huge bonfire.

Burning Man, Nevada Desert

Burning Man is a week-long festival held annually in Nevada's Black Rock Desert. It takes its name from a ritual burning of a man's effigy at the end of one year and its lighting of a new man at the start of another. The event typically starts on Labor Day weekend, lasts 7 days, and draws more than 70,000 people to it each year. Attendees are required to bring all their own food, water, shelter, and fuel for the duration of their stay. 

Burning Man is an experiment in community, radical self-expression, and self-reliance that pushes society's boundaries by challenging our communal notions of what is possible from what is permissible.

Holi, India

Holi, also known as the festival of colors, is an ancient Hindu festival that celebrates new beginnings. The festival originates in a legend about a demon king who terrorized people with his magical powers. To combat him, one brave man volunteered to fight him on equal terms without using any weapons at all. He assumed this challenge for many years but was never able to defeat him. 

One day he decided to ask for help from Krishna (an incarnation of Vishnu), who agreed to help him if he would stop trying to use his own power against the demon king. The next time they faced off against each other, instead of fighting with weapons or magic like before, they used colored powders and liquids, symbolizing emotions like happiness or anger.

Carnaval de Barranquilla, Columbia

Carnaval de Barranquilla is a celebration that happens every year in February. It is also known as Colombia's largest and most extravagant seasonal festival. The Carnaval has two major parts: one is the parade, where people dress up extravagantly to dance through the streets, and another is a three-day celebration with live music, dancing, and lots of food. 

Festivities for Carnaval traditionally start on Friday morning when participants gather at Plaza Bolivar to eat tamales together before they march through town to mark the beginning of celebrations. Saturday is about dancing around Plaza Bolivar, while Sunday is about eating vast amounts of food while listening to live music.

Sanfermines in Pamplona, Spain (Running of the Bulls)

Sanfermines is a festival in Pamplona, Spain, in July. This festival has been a tradition since 1591. It takes place every year from July 7th to 14th, and many festivities, such as bull-running, with people worldwide coming to watch it. 

One of their traditions is to run from bulls through narrow streets at this festival. This tradition has been going on for over 500 years because it was first started by William Hemmingway, which is why this event is also called Hemmingway's Fiesta.

Chinese New Year, Chinese Celebrations Around the World

Chinese New Year is a grand celebration of the coming of Spring. It is a time to celebrate with family, friends, and loved ones. The festivities last for 15 days and are full of festive foods, lively music, colorful decorations, fireworks shows, parades, and more. 

Chinese New Year is also celebrated by people worldwide who share an affinity with Chinese culture. This includes Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand.

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