1. Menton Lemon Festival (Fete du Citron), Menton, France
In 1929, Menton was deemed the continent's largest producer of lemons. Since then, Menton has been celebrating
the citrus fruit every February with its Lemon Festival. The festival takes on a different theme each year.
Some of the past themes included Disney, Neverland, and India. The colourful and lively festival includes parades,
fireworks and music, and the Casino Gardens in the centre of town are decorated with sculptures and exhibitions
built from lemons (and oranges).
2. The Running of the Bulls, St Fermin Festival
Held every year in July, the Running of the Bulls is the top
profile event during the San Fermin festival. Runners don
traditional white shirts and red neckerchiefs and run a
distanceof about 826 metres while bulls charge behind them.
The event originated from having to transport the bulls from
the corral to the bullring.
3. Tomatina Festival
People from all over the world partake in the tomato-throwing
food fight held in August. An estimated 40 metric tons of
tomatoes are used, and the tomatoes must be squished before being thrown as a precaution. At around 10 am, festivities begin with the
first event of the Tomatina, where one person climbs a
greased pole to reach a ham placed at the top, while the
crowd is showered by water cannons.
4. Las Fallas
In commemoration of Saint Joseph, Las Fallas is a celebration
that includes 5 days and nights of historical, religious and
comedic processions. Each neighbourhood displays a
firecracker-filled cardboard and papier-mâché artistic
monument to be burnt in bonfires on the final night.
Many participants dress in medieval clothing, and, more
recently, dress as modern characters including Shrek
and Lady Gaga.
Munich, Bavaria, Germany
Known as the world's largest fair, this famous beer festival
began when the citizens of Munich attended the wedding of
Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese in 1810.
Currently about 6 million visitors from around the world head
to Oktoberfest to enjoy the festival's beer, brewed within
Munich. In 2005, "quiet Oktoberfest" was developed to keep
the celebration traditional and family friendly. The tents,
therefore, play music limited to 85 decibels until 6 pm.
6. Calcio Storico
A tradition dating back to the 15th century, Calcio Storico
has been described as a sport resembling both football and
rugby. The famous and most important match was played
between the Bianchi and the Verdi in 1530, during the siege
of Florence. Today, played in a temporary arena, players
dress in authentic period costume, and run while the
opposing team tries to stop them. Head butting, punching,
elbowing, and choking are allowed and customary.
7. Il Carnevale
It is said that the first mention of the Carnival of Venice was around the city's victory against the Patriarch of Aquileia, Ulrico in the year 1162. The Carnival, which runs until Mardi Gras, is a festival celebrated with parades, masquerade balls, entertainment, music, and parties. During the Carnival, the streets of Venice are filled with people wearing elaborately designed masks. On the last weekend, there is a contest for the best mask, chosen by a jury of costume and fashion designers.
8. Mount Gaina Maidens' Fair
On the Sunday closest to 20th July, Romanians in traditional
costumes meet at Gaina Mountain, where families once
arranged the marriages of their children. Legend has it that
fairies brought a magic hen that laid golden eggs to the
mountain. Each year, the fairies would give the eggs to
couples who fell in love. The outdoor festival is opened by
the sound of women playing the alpenhorn, renowned all
9. Summer Solstice
Stonehenge, Amesbury, UK
Built between 3,000 BC and 1,600 BC, Stonehenge is an
ancient monument that has been studied and debated
throughout many years, especially because of its
extraordinary alignment and orientation to the sun.
Every year on 21st June, people from all over the world
gather at Stonehenge to watch the sunrise and celebrate
the longest day of the year.
10. Sa Sartiglia, Province of Oristano, Sardinia, Italy
Sa Sartiglia is an equestrian tournament that takes place on Mardi Gras and Carnival Sunday. Ornately dressed horsemen on steeds galloping at breathtaking speeds aim their swords at a star-shaped ring that hangs from a ribbon. The number of stars impaled represent how lucky the town will be in wealth and harvest for the year.