It's time again to plan ahead - Canberra, Venice, Valencia, Dublin, Thailand and Amsterdam are beckoning!
March in Canberra, Australia
|Australia's capital is one of the many popular travel destinations in Australia. For a change, visit Canberra in the evenings between 28th February to 8th March and you’ll see it’s attractions all lit up for the ENLIGHTEN festival. There are free and ticketed events like live performances, exhibitions, tours and talks at places like the National Library of Australia, National Portrait Gallery and Questacon – all after hours!|
March in Venice, Italy
Carnevale di Venezia:
The Carnival of Venice (Carnevale di Venezia) is an annual event which attracts up to 3 million visitors each year and will be held between 14th February to 4th March.
It celebrates the history and culture of Venice, and the centre-piece of the event is the contest for “the most beautiful mask” (la maschera piu bella), judged by a panel of international costume and fashion designers.
This year’s carnival theme is “Wonder and Fantasy Nature”, and will be inspired by traditional fairy tales from all over the world, exploring the relationship between humankind and the environment.
So get creative, don your fairy tale masks and join the daily parades, music, dancing and theatre shows!
March in Valencia, Spain
We are all told never to play with fire, but it looks like the people in Valencia make an exception between 13th March to 19th March.
The Festival of Fire (Las Fallas) in Valencia is a traditional celebration held to commemorate Saint Joseph and the onset of Spring, and brings up to 3 million visitors to the city.
During the 5 days there are bullfights, parades, paella and beauty contests. Fireworks are lit everyday and everywhere during the festival, but the focus of the celebrations is the creation and subsequent destruction (by the insertion of fireworks and lighting them) of huge puppets or dolls (ninots) made out of cardboard, wood, paper-mache and plaster on the last day of the festival. The most favourite ninot is spared and exhibited with all the previous year’s favourite ninots in the local Museum of the Ninot”.
Note that this festival is loud, smokey and literally burning, so best to avoid the area (as some locals do each year) if you prefer something less…fiery!
March in Dublin, Ireland
Saint Patrick's Day:
The Saint Patrick’s Day Festival is held between 14th March and 17th March, and commemorates Saint Patrick - who is credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland, as well as the heritage and culture of the Irish people. Traditionally it is also a day for spiritual renewal and the offer of prayers for missionaries around the world.
The celebrations include wearing lots of green, lots of shamrocks, street parades, music and lots of eating and drinking – especially since the day is a public holiday In Ireland! So whether or not you have been to the Saint Patrick’s Day festivities in Australia, see how it’s done in its home country!
April in Thailand
How does one celebrate New Year’s Day in a hot tropical country? With lots and lots of water! Iced would be nice too! The Thais will celebrate their New Year, Songkran, between 13th April to 15th of April, and what started out as a traditional ritual where the children sprinkle water from silver bowls onto the hands of their elders and monks, perfumed with jasmine petals to bless them, has grown into water throwing mayhem!
The streets are lined with pickup trucks full of water, and the young and old are all ready with their water pistols, buckets, whatever will hold water - ready to wet and splash anyone (even the police) who passes by!
It might sound like a big waste of water, but the Thais believe that the water washes away the bad luck from last year, and the New Year will be clean and full of good luck.
So if you are keen on joining in this water play, make sure that you either have water proof cameras and equipment, or leave them in your hotel room, because no one is exempt!
April in Amsterdam, Holland
Koningsdad (King’s Day) Netherlands: Since 1890, Holland has had a succession of female monarchs and every year they celebrate their Queen’s birthday on (Queen’s day (Kininginnendag)) on 30th April. However, 30th April 2013 saw them welcome their very first male monarch, and so Queen’s Day will now officially be King’s Day!
The very first King’s Day will be held on 26th April, but is not expected to be very different to Queen’s Day.
So be prepared to wear something orange – the colour of the Dutch royal family, and join the other million party goers in Amsterdam and enjoy the live music, DJs, parties, games, sports events and a citywide street sale where anyone can sell literally anything on the streets and parks!
Note that this day is a public holiday and the majority of Amsterdam’s museums and attractions will be closed.
Hope that inspires you!
Note: We at Fast Cover Travel Insurance do our very best research to make sure that the dates we provide are correct. However, we recommend that you do confirm these events before you travel.