10 Most Bizarre Festivals Around the World
10 la tomatina, spain
image courtesy: time
as crazy as it seems, la tomatina is a festival celebrated just for fun and bizarre festivals around the world. yes it is true, there is no legendary or ancient tradition attached to the festival. la tomatina is celebrated on the last wednesday in the month of august in buñol, spain. this festival is celebrated purely for fun and enjoyment. every year tens of thousands of people gather from around the world to throw tons of tomatoes at each other. it is said that it all began back in 1945 when a few locals started throwing tomatoes on the city councilman during a town celebration. it doesn’t matter whatever happened to start the tradition; it was so much enjoyed by the people that it happened to be repeated every year, and the years after that. la tomatina begins with an event known as ’palo jabon’ in which one has to climb a greased pole on the top where a ham is placed. once someone climbs the pole and drops the ham, the tomato fight begins. the fight continues for an hour which is followed by the water shower.
9 roswell ufo festival (aliens festival), new maxico
image courtesy: event carnival
roswell ufo (unidentified flying object) festival is a week-long festival celebrated during the early days of july. the festival witnesses people from around the globe who acts and dresses like aliens. the activities during festival include ufo parade, alien puppet shows, special exhibits and concerts. it is allegedly said that on 4th july’47 a ufo crashed near the roswell town. some reports also state that 4 bodies of aliens were also found on the location 30 miles from roswell. the incident is best known as the roswell’s ufo incident and since then the roswell town celebrates the ufo festival to maintain its reputation as ufo capital of us.
8 tunarama festival, australia
image courtesy: my australia
what started as a sea side celebration to attract tourists in the year 1962 has now grown into a festival that draws visitors from whole of australia. the tunarama festival basically aims at the family market and provides free entertainment and contests, as whole festival is funded by its sponsors, to the people of all age group. initially, the tunarama festival was held as a day-long celebration to promote the tuna industry at port lincoln. the beautiful foreshore lawns of port lincoln gets filled with the lanes of stalls, rides and sideshows along with compekit ;)ions and contests for people of all age groups.
7 maslenitsa, russia
image courtesy: travelrussiatours.com
what makes maslenitsa so amazing is that it is a week-long festival and each day of the week is devoted to some special rituals. the festival of maslenitsa is celebrated during the last week before the beginning of the great lent (fasting before the easter). maslenitsa, however, has dual ancestry-pagan and christian. based to pagan side, the festival comes from pagan times, when russian people used to bid goodbye to winter and used to welcome spring, whereas based on christian side, maslenitsa is the last week before the great lent. on monday, that is the first day of festival, lady maslenitsa is welcomed. on tuesday people, especially youngsters, start all sorts of activities and games. on wednesday, son-in-laws visit their mother-in-laws and enjoy the pancakes made by them. thursday is the day off for people and all the activities reach their peak point. friday is tribute to mother-in-laws by their son-in-laws, as they invite their mother-in-laws for dinner. saturday is devoted to the young wives and their sister-in-laws to strengthen their relationship. last day i.e. sunday, is the day of forgiveness, on this day kith and kin ask each other for forgiveness and often odder some presents.
6 cheese rolling festival, england
image courtesy: gettyimages
the cheese rolling festival is held at the cooper’s hill in england on the spring bank holiday. it is an annual event and is traditionally done by and for the people living in local village ofbrockworth. however, the festival is now so famous that people from all over the world participate in it. according to the event, a round double gloucester cheese weighing 9 lb is rolled down from the cooper hill and the participants have to start racing down the hill after it. the one who first crosses the finish line is winner. every year there are four races, 3 for men and 1 for women with each race having maximum 20 participants, so as to avoid any form of casualty.
5 holi, india
image courtesy: dogonews
holi-the festival of colors, is celebrated in india and its neighboring countries by the hindus. it is one of the most vibrant festivals that anyone might come across. holi is marks the victory of good over evil as well as the arrival of spring season. during holi, hindus drenches each other with colored water and dry colored powder. water guns and colored water filled balloons are also used during water fights. the festival of holi commences with setting holika bonfire that represents the death of evil.
4 monkey festival, thailand
image courtesy: monkeys in the news
a festival dedicated to monkeys, is a great initiative by the people of thailand. monkey festival is celebrated in lopburi province, north of bangkok. a buffet of fresh fruits and vegetables, chocolates and candies is set down in front of temples on either tables or pyramids or simply on the mats. around 3,000 monkeys have feast during the festival. initially, this festival was started by a local businessman from lopburi province in thailand to attract tourism in the year 1989.
3 up helly aa – shetland’s viking fire festival
image courtesy: the telegraph
the up helly aa festival takes place in lerwick, shetland every year on last tuesday in the month of january. this fire festival marks the end of yule season. the festival involves a march by thousands of people who are in disguise through the town and villages in various themed costumes. according to the yule tradition, group of young men used to drag barrels of burning tar throughout the town on sledges. at present time, the procession consists of a main guizer (man in disguise) dressed as “jarl” and the procession reaches its peak with torches being thrown into a replica of viking longship. after the march, the squads visit their local places for the private parties.
2 hadaka matsuri (naked festival), japan
image courtesy: inspired eye
hadaka masturi, naked festival, as the name suggests is a festival in which the participants wear a minimum amount of clothing on their body. it is the festival celebrated in various parts of japan in which man only wears a japanese loincloth known as fundoshi. thousands of men participate in the festival to gain luck for the entire year. saidaiji temple at okayama is the most famous place for the celebration of the festival as it is the place of the origination of the festival. a stick measuring 20 cm in length and 4 cm in diameter is thrown by the priest in the crowd from a window. it is believed the stick brings luck and happiness for the man who catches it for an entire year. the tradition of hadaka masturi began almost 500 years ago when an amulet was dropped from one of the buildings of the temple with an idea of bringing luck to anyone who catches it.
1 baby jumping(el colacho), spain
image courtesy: now i know
also known as el colacho, baby jumping is another festival from spain to make up to our list. baby jumping is traditional festival of spain dating back to 1620. baby jumping is celebrated on the first sunday after catholic feast of corpus christi. during el colacho (devil’s jump), men dressed as the devil, also known as colacho, jump over the infants. the newly born babies are laid on the ground on mattresses and adult males, dressed as devil in yellow and red, jump over them. it is believed that the jumping of devil cleanses the children from doing evil and ensures their safe passage through the road of life in good health.