The world is full of traditions and culture. Every country, state, city, village has different ways of celebrating different occasions. From birthdays to new years the style of celebration differs from place to place.
It is not necessary that every festival asks you to dress up in new clothes or perform a ritual. Here is a list of some bizarre yet interesting festivals which are celebrated around the world. If you are keen about experiencing them yourself, then just be there to enjoy how the locals celebrate them.
Know When, Where and How These Unusual Festivals Are Celebrated
1. Boryeong Mud Festival, South Korea
Mud has proved to be a brilliant remedy for your skin. Koreans have used this formula in their widely known festival Boryeong Mud Festival. The mud packs applied by the festival-goers is the main centre of attraction. People cover themselves with layers of mud to beautify their skin. The mud is added with minerals that help in purifying the skin. The mud baths are effective in increasing the blood circulation and removing excess oil from the skin. The festival has many interesting things such as making mud structures, mud massages and Mud body paintings. Relax on the Daecheon Beach if you get overloaded with mud.
When is the festival celebrated: This is a summer festival and is celebrated usually from 12 July- 21 July.
2. Battle Of Oranges, Ivrea, Italy
Battle Of Oranges is one of the largest food fights in Italy where almost 5,00,000 pounds of oranges are destroyed. Each year the townspeople of Ivrea divide themselves into two groups and dress up in battle attire.
The three-day war is believed to have a historical story behind the festival. The evil Marquis who attempted to rape a young girl in the village who saved by a woman. After his death, people revolted and this resulted in the war. People divide themselves into two teams- Commons and Royal Lines.
After three days of bruising fight, the war is ended by one of the Generals. The event is followed by a huge funeral on Fat Tuesday.
When is the festival celebrated: 2-5 March
3. Monkey Buffet Festival, Lopburi, Thailand
Also Read: Pocket-Friendly Guide To Thailand – Explore The Exotic Asian Paradise
The local festival of Thailand is celebrated in ruins of the Phra Phang Sam Yot temple, Lopburi, Thailand. The festival invites the guest of honour, the local macaques to dine on the tower of fruits and vegetables.
Lopburi local festival is celebrated to mark the appreciation of the monkeys. From the time of Ramayana, they are believed to bring luck and happiness. The monkey king Hanuman and his army helped in rescuing Sita from Ravana. The macaques jump across the table on the pyramids to feed on watermelons, lettuce, durian, pineapple and many more.
This is how Lopburi’s annual buffet celebrates the victory and triumph Rama got over Ravana. The credit is given to the monkeys and is considered as the symbol of prosperity and good luck.
When is the festival celebrated: Last Sunday of November.
4. Underwater Music Festival, Looe Key Reef, Florida
Have you ever attended any underwater music festival? The festival is celebrated annually in the Looe Key Reefs which is the world’s largest and North America’s only living coral reef.
Bill Becker, the founder of this festival, celebrated it for public entertainment and awareness for the preservation of coral reefs.
The Ocean- themed songs are played via speakers hung underground through floating boats above the reef. Several divers and snorkelers come to enjoy the music and get an ethereal experience.
When is the festival celebrated: Saturday after 4th July
5. La Tomatina Festival, Spain
La Tomatina Festival takes place in Bunol, a little village near Valencia, Spain. The history behind this festival is that in 1945 a group of young boys who wanted to participate in the village activities went up on the stage and started performing.
The musicians fell down on a street of the fruit market. In the rage of anger, they started throwing tomatoes from a local vendor. This tradition has continued since then.
Around 120 tons of tomatoes are loaded on a truck from which it is thrown on the participants and the fight starts getting all squishy and mushy. Around 22,000 people from all over come to enjoy this festival.
When is the festival celebrated: Annually during the last Wednesday of August.
6. Bog Snorkeling Championship, Wales, UK
Bog Snorkeling is a championship that was first held in 1985 in Llanwrtyd Wells. People have to complete the two paths filled with water and wamp. The participants are dressed in curious suites and have to cross the bog trench as fast as possible.
You can only flipper or snorkel in this championship. Take your mask, swimsuit, snorkel and fins to join this funny yet adventurous competition.
To participate in this championship just arrive at Waen Rhydd Peat bog near Llanwrtyd Wells, in Powys, Wales.
When is the festival celebrated: Every bank holiday in August.
7. Thaipusam Festival, Tamil Nadu
Thaipusam is a Hindu festival celebrated in Tamil Nadu on the birth anniversary of Lord Murugan also known as Subramanium. He was the youngest son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.
The Tamil community celebrates this festival with full excitement for 10 days. The festival is celebrated in South India and South East Asia. The festival also memorializes the mythological tale when Lord Murugan vanquishes the evil demon Soorapadman with a vel (lance).
On the first day of the festival, the devotees shave their heads and indulge themselves in different acts such as carrying kavadi (burden), piercing their tongue, skin, cheeks and vel skewers. They do not bleed nor feel any pain.
When is the festival celebrated: Full moon of the Tamil month of Thai, usually in January/February.
8. Baby Jumping Festival ( El Colacho), Spain
In the Catholic religion, many children are baptized when they are born by gently putting them under cleansing waters. In the Spanish village of Castrillo de Murcia, the infants are put on the streets and men dressed in devil costumes jump over them.
The festival is traditionally known as “El Colacho” is one of the most bizarre festivals celebrated in the world. No history can be traced for this festival although it looks interesting when being performed on the streets. The devilish men jump over the babies like Olympic hurdles terrorising the onlookers just for fun.
The little sinners are then considered to be absolved of man’s original transgression. Then some rose petals are sprinkled on the babies and taken away by their parents.
When is the festival celebrated: Last week of June
9. Day Of The Dead (Día de Los Muertos), Mexico
Day of the Dead is a festival to celebrate life and death. The families celebrate the reunion of the deceased souls of their relatives. The celebration is completed with food and drinks. The most prominent symbols related to the Day of the Dead are calacas (skeletons) and Calaveras (skulls). People wear skulls masks and eat skull candies.
The roots of this celebration lie in contemporary Mexico and among those of Mexican heritage in the United States and around the world, go back some 3,000 years, to the rituals honouring the dead in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica.
After death, the person completes his after death journey which has nine stages. The family members offered food, water and clothes to the deceased souls to help them complete their journey.
When is the festival celebrated: November 1-2
These insane festivals are worth attending as they will be a memory forever. Don’t miss out this unusual experience and witnessing bizarre traditions.