Embed a festival into any vacation for a truly immersive experience.
Happening form October to November each year, revel in the festivities of Hong Kong’s month-long celebration of fine dining and wine, featuring happening street carnivals, wine-themed tours and more. The festival is also a good opportunity to catch offers and promotions at more expensive restaurants!
NEXT: Harbin Ice Festival (Harbin, China) →
Harbin is infamous for its biting winters, but that simply makes it the best place for the iconic Harbin Ice Festival, the world’s biggest ice sculpture festival featuring life-sized ice buildings and slides and festival sports like ice rock-climbing and ice golf. Every December through February, millions of sparkly-eyed tourists brave the cold for this experience. And it gets even more spectacular after nightfall, with brightly illuminated sculptures adding a whole new dimension of magnificence.
NEXT: Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival (Pingxi, Taiwan) →
Although the custom of releasing sky lanterns is observed elsewhere in Asia, the mountainous region of Pingxi, with its low light pollution in the sky, presents the sea of luminous lanterns more beautifully and distinctly. Write your well wishes and hopes on the paper lanterns and set it into the sky – symbolically sending them up to the heavens. The festival officially happens around March, at the beginning of the spring season as a prayer for the coming year.
NEXT: Winter Light Festival (Kuwana City, Japan) →
Every January to March, winter illuminations captivatingly light up botanical park Nabano No Sato. While the vast flower gardens and giant greenhouses are a sight to behold by day, the night sees more than seven million LED lights running through the entire park grounds, creating gorgeous light scenes according to the year’s theme. Walk through the famous Tunnel Of Light, which completely envelops the reveller in a winding passage of sparkling lights.
NEXT: Holi Festival of Colours (New Delhi, India) →
In this joyous celebration popular in and outside India, the ancient Hindu spring festival sees families, friends and strangers chase and adorn each other with brightly coloured powder or water in the streets. Join in the singing and dancing during the bonfire and share Holi delicacies such as Gujiya, a traditional sweet pastry with dry fruits, with the locals.
NEXT: Songkran Festival (Bangkok, Thailand) →
To usher in the New Year every April, the Thais enjoy a three-day festival with street parties and family reunions. And, of course, the highlight of it all: friendly water fights along the streets of Bangkok. Dousing each other with water symbolically washes off the past year’s misfortunes to welcome a fresh start for the new year. Tip: Try Silom or Khao San Road for a more youthful and vibrant party, and Phra Pradaeng District for a more traditional take.
NEXT: Boryeong Mud Festival (Boryeong, South Korea) →
Originally conceived to market Boryeong’s mud cosmetics since 1998, the annual summer festival at Daecheon Beach every July is now a hot attraction among locals and foreigners for its wide range of activities such as slides, massages, health and beauty treatments, mud skiing competitions, live music and dance performances, parades, a marketplace, and a big fireworks finale.
NEXT: George Town Festival (Penang, Malaysia) →
George Town, Penang, is artsy enough on its own – what’s more during this annual month-long celebration each August? Join in the mix of free street performances, local and international art installations, performances and exhibitions in unique venues such as colonial shophouses and sidewalk galleries.
NEXT: Imbayah Festival (Luzon, Philippines) →
The Ifugao mountain people in Luzon, Philippines celebrate abundance and good harvest every April during what they call the Imbayah Festival, which tourists can attend. The festival begins with a ritual opening and street parade, after which the Ifugao, donning full ethnic costumes, participate in cultural activities, traditional games like tug-of-war and wooden scooter races and more. It’s quite a sight to behold!
NEXT: Hong Kong Wine & Dine Festival (Hong Kong) →
Adapted from The Straits Times, December 2017
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