5 of the world's most striking festivals

There’s no doubt that many of the festivals (if not most) celebrated today around the world originate from old dying-hard traditions, which probably explains why some festivals can be so baffling and outright dangerous!
5 of the world's most striking festivals

Take for instance, the tree sliding festival (Onbashira) in Nagano Japan and the Cooper’s Hill Cheese Rolling in Gloucester England. You can take your pick on which event is more dangerous but the bottom line is that running down a 50 or 70 degree hill is just plain crazy! Below, I have unearthed  a few more mind-boggling festivals that you may never knew existed:

St. John’s Festival, Porto

St John’s (Sao Joao) Festival may not be the most renowned festival in Europe but in Portugal, Sao Joao is one of the most popular street festivals of the Portuguese calendar year. The Sao Joao festival is held on June 24 and it’s an amusing festival that draws young and old from all corners of Portugal to take part in what it’s no doubt, one of the world’s most striking festivals.

What makes Sao Joao interesting is the part where attendees end up beating each other with hammers while carrying garlic stalks. Luckily, they use plastic hammers, which makes the whole thing even more strange. The festival is really fun, just make sure to leave before the firework display if don't fancy hammer bashing!

Baby Jumping Festival, Castrillo de Murcia

Spain is home to its fair share of peculiar traditions such as the famous Tomato Festival (La Tomatina) and the “Running of the Bulls”. However, festivals in Spain don't come more bizarre than El Colacho or the Baby Jumping Festival.

You’ll agree that the Baby Jumping Festival has to make the list of one of the world's most striking festivals when you learn what the festival consists of. Yep, you guessed it! The Baby Jumping fest is about people (men) dressed in “devilish costumes” jumping over cute little babies, though it isn't a jumping competition.

There's actually a purpose for grown men to be jumping over babies this and that is to cast away evil spirits from them.

Moose Dropping Festival, Talkeetna

Alaska is perhaps most popularly known for two things: big bears and Sara Palin! However, if I was to tell you about a festival where moose poop was celebrated, would you believe me?
Well, you should because the Alaskan town of Talkeetna (just a short drive south of Denali State Park) used to celebrate this festival up until 2010 when the festival organizers cancelled it for the foreseeable future. In all fairness though, the Moose Dropping Festival wasn't the weirdest festival in the world but it was definitely one of the most bizarre festivals in the United States.

Camel Wrestling Festival, Selcuk

Camel wrestling is may be after all the answer to sumo wrestling, and it's one of those festival you have to experience to understand! If you travel to the Turkish city of Selcuk during the third Sunday of January you can witness one of the world’s most striking festivals!

This festival is more a sporting event than a festival, though there's plenty of traditional foods to sample and and plenty of live dancing to enjoy. Seeing the two male camels going head to head is striking in itself, though what makes this event fun to watch is when the camels run-off the arena and owners have to chase them!

Fortunately though, camel wrestling isn’t anything like bull fighting since camels aren't harmed, which is good to know. I would rate camel wrestling similarly to rodeo bull riding, though luckily for the camels they don’t get their’ “jewels” tied-up with a rope!

The Battle of Oranges, Ivrea

If you thought the idea of vegi-throwing festivals such as La Tomatina in Spain were “juicy” enough, wait until you experience the Battle of Oranges festival in the Italian city of Ivrea during the month of February. The throwing of oranges in the city Ivrea dates back to hundreds of years and I would have to agree 100% that it's the closest to a "fruit riot" you'll ever get!

If you find pelting tomatoes at the Tomatina festival exhilarating, the Battle of Oranges will be right up your alley since it's also very intensive! Bear in mind though that being hit with an orange isn’t quite the same….You’ll actually end up with cuts and bruises!

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