Festivals are mostly organized by a community or group of people who are celebrating some particular aspect. Most festivals have a fixed period during which it holds. In the past most festivals had a religious inclination but they can be focused on the arts, agriculture, environment and anything a community can think of to entertain the public. Over the years, festivals have become very popular with some attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors. While there are many festivals being organized over the world today, what follows is what is considered the five top festivals in the world.
Mardi Gras, New Orleans USA
This festival also known as fat Tuesday refers to activities or celebrations that start on or before the Christian Three king’s day and ending just before Ash Wednesday. The name is used to reflect the fact that Fat Tuesday is the last day Christians get to eat before they start the fasting period of lent. It is usual to wear masks and parade around streets in New Orleans. Kings and Queens parading throw trinklets and coconut to the all too willing crowd who beg for them. Sometimes, to be able to get a coconut or trinklet, the paraders ask the onlookers to bare their breast. However organizers insist that this is not a tradition and onlookers are under no obligation to bare their bodies.
Carnival, Rio de Janeiro Brazil
This festival takes place in February each year and last for four days. This is one very popular festival the draws millions of people to Rio de Janeiro each year. From brightly dressed and skimpily clad dancers to masked paraders pulling stunts. In the Sambrodromo parade, different communities compete for the price of best samba group.
Kanamara Masuki, Kasawaki Japan
For two days each year, 31st March and 1st April, Japanese are in for a good time with this fertility festival. Watch the frenzy as festival attendees suck on phallus shaped candies as transvestites carrying the huge pink shaped phallus parade through the crowd. The festival originated during a syphilis outbreak in the country and the aim was to help shove out the disease. Today it is used as a fundraising activity for HIV AIDS.
Semana Santa, Antigua Guatemala
In the week that leads up to Easter, the crucifixion of Jesus Christ as well as his resurrection is reenacted by the Christian folks. The streets of the town are lined up with a lot of flowers and pines and crowds line the street as they wait for the procession. Roman centurions and soldiers are all dressed up in ancient regalia and the Christ carrying the cross is processed through the city.
Il Palio, Siena Italy
This festival occurs in July and August each year. The seventeen communities of Siena are brought together and they compete against each other in this bareback race. The races can be very violent and they last just about ninety minutes. While the race may not last all day, the rest of the day is used in merry making.