Major festivals, events around the world

Here is a selected list of events for 2006. (For an expanded list, go to For more information on an event, plug its name into your favorite search engine. All dates and events are subject to change, so check before going.


Ottawa: Winterlude, Feb. 3-19 (weekends). One of the continent's largest winter festivals.

Perth, Australia: Perth International Arts Festival, Feb. 10-March 5, among the country's oldest and largest festivals of music, dance, theater, film and visual arts.

Hong Kong: The Hong Kong Arts Festival, Feb. 9-March 12, attracts world-class performers.

Turin, Italy: The 20th Olympic Winter Games, Feb. 10-26.

Europe: Major carnival festivities in Belgium (Binche, Feb. 26-28); Germany (Aachen, Feb. 11-27; Bremen, Feb. 17-18; Dusseldorf, Feb. 23-27; Cologne, Feb. 23-28; Mainz, Feb. 23-March 1; Munich, Feb. 26-28); Italy (Viareggio, Feb. 12-March 5 [Sundays]; Venice, Feb. 17-28); Portugal (Funchal, Madeira, Feb. 25-28; Lisbon, Feb. 28); Spain (Malaga, Feb. 3-12; Barcelona, Feb. 23-March 1; Sitges, Feb. 23-March 1; Cadiz, Feb. 23-March 5; Santiago de Compostela, Feb. 28-March 1; Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands, March 2-12); Switzerland (Lucerne, Feb. 23-28; Basel, March 6-8)

Hong Kong: Spring Lantern Festival, Feb. 12. An annual event marking the end of New Year celebrations.

Stuttgart, Germany: Dance Platform Germany (Tanzplattform Deutschland), Feb. 22-26, the country's leading contemporary dance event.

Brazil: Major carnival festivities in Bahia (Feb. 22-March 1), Rio de Janeiro (Feb. 25-28)

Vienna: Vienna Opera Ball, Feb. 23. The highlight of the city's ball season.

Caribbean: Major carnival festivities in Ponce, Puerto Rico, Feb. 23-March 1; Port of Spain, Trinidad, Feb. 26-28; Aruba, Feb. 26-March 8; San Pedro, Belize, March 1.

Buenos Aires: The Tango Festival, Feb. 24-March 6, features free events around the city.

Dalarna, Sweden: The Vasaloppet cross-country ski festival, Feb. 24-March 5, celebrated yearly since 1922.

Adelaide, Australia: The Adelaide Fringe, Feb. 24-March 19, one the country's biggest arts festivals.

Khajuraho, India: At Khajuraho Dance Festival, Feb. 25-March 3, the country's finest classical dancers perform among ancient temples on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

New Orleans: Mardi Gras Day, Feb. 28.



Nara, Japan: Omizutori Water-Drawing Festival, March 1-14, a 1,200-year-old series of rituals performed by Buddhist monks at Todaiji temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Daytona Beach, Fla.: Bike Week, March 3-12, claims to be the world's largest motorcycle event.

Anchorage: The Iditarod, the nine- to 12-day dog-sled race, begins March 4.

Philadelphia: Philadelphia Flower Show, March 5-12. Among the largest anywhere.

Maastricht, Netherlands: International Fine Art and Antiques Fair, widely considered the world's best event of its kind, March 10-19.

Jaipur, India: The city's annual Elephant Festival, March 14.

Dublin, Ireland: St. Patrick's Festival, March 15-19.

Valencia, Spain: Las Fallas, March 15-19, the city's biggest festival, a week of bonfires and parades.

Budapest, Hungary: The Budapest Spring Festival, March 17-April 6, the country's major annual cultural event, hosting music, dance, film and more.

Tokyo: Cherry-blossom viewing around the Emperor's Palace, March 25-31.

Washington, D.C.: The National Cherry Blossom Festival, March 25-April 9, celebrates the 3,000 blooming cherry trees around the Jefferson Memorial and Tidal Basin.

Nashville: Tin Pan South, March 28-April 1, songwriters' festival.

Sisimiut, Greenland: The Arctic Circle Race, a three-day cross-country ski competition, March 31-April 2.



Oudtshoorn, South Africa: The Klein Karoo National Arts Festival, April 1-8, offers pop, rock, cabaret, classical music, drama and dance.

Charleston, S.C.: The Lowcountry Cajun Festival, April 2, has Zydeco and Cajun music, crawfish races, Creole food and more.

Geneva: Salon des Inventions, an international inventors' exhibition, April 5-9, one of the principal events of its kind.

Verona, Italy: Vinitaly, April 6-10, is one of the world's largest exhibitions of wines and spirits.

Paro, Bhutan: During Paro Tsechu, April 9-13, throngs in traditional costume descend on Paro Dzong temple for Buddhist blessings, dances and dramatic performances.

Melbourne, Australia: The Melbourne Comedy Festival, April 12-May 7, with more than 1,000 acts in one of the world's largest such events.

Luang Prabang, Laos: Pii Mai, the Laotian New Year, April 13-15, celebrated in this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Thailand: Songkran, the Thai New Year, April 13-15, marked by colorful parades and much water-throwing.

Rome: On Good Friday, April 14, the pope leads a torchlight procession up Palatine Hill from the Colosseum, reenacting the Stations of the Cross.

Taiwan (various locations): Mazu (Goddess of the Sea) parades, April 20, with celebrations at 400 temples accompanied by drums and firecrackers.

Chau Doc, Vietnam: Ba Chua Xu, April 20-25, the country's largest folk festival.

Rome: April 21, to mark the founding of the city in 753 BC, the Aventine Hill is covered with candles.

San Antonio: A highlight of Fiesta San Antonio, April 21-30, is the Texas Cavaliers River Parade, April 24, in which elaborately decorated floats drift down the San Antonio River.

Stratford-upon-Avon, England: Shakespeare's birthday celebrations, April 22.

Seville, Spain: Feria de Abril, April 25-30, with round-the-clock flamenco and more.

Speyside, Scotland: Speyside Whisky Festival, April 27-May 1, celebrates Scotch with tastings, distillery tours, lectures.

Chicago: Art Chicago in the Park, April 28-May 1, at Butler Field, one the country's most important art fairs.

Netherlands (various locations): Queen's Day, April 30, celebrates the birthday of Queen Juliana, one of the country's liveliest holidays.

Florence, Italy: Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, April 30-June 14, Italy's oldest music festival.



Louisville, Ky.: The Kentucky Derby, May 6.

Prague, Czech Republic: Prague Spring International Music Festival, May 8-16, one of Europe's major musical events.

Vienna: This year's Vienna Festival (Wiener Festwochen), May 12-June 18, focuses on Mozart's 250th birthday.

Borobudur, Indonesia: Waisak, May 13, is a Buddhist festival held at one of the world's largest Buddhist monuments.

Bristol, England: Bristol Comic Expo, May 13-14, a huge fair for collectors of comics.

Kyoto, Japan: At Aoi Matsuri, the city's May 15 hollyhock festival, hundreds of people parade in historic costumes.

Istanbul: International Istanbul Theater Festival, May 18-June 4.

Beaufort, S.C.: The Gullah Festival, May 26-28, celebrates the Sea Islands' distinctive African American culture.

Charleston, S.C.: Spoleto Festival USA, May 26-June 11. Opera, dance, drama.

Indianapolis: The Indy 500, May 28.

Paris: The French Open tennis tournament, May 29-June 11.



Prague, Czech Republic: World Festival of Puppet Art, June 1-10.

Fes, Morocco: Fes Sacred Music Festival, June 2-10.

Landgraaf, Netherlands: Pinkpop, June 3-5, thought to be Europe's oldest pop music festival.

Venice, Italy: Vogalonga, June 4, is a 28K rowing race around the Venetian lagoon.

Iceland: Seafarers' Day (Sjomannadagur), June 5, marked countrywide with parades, seafood feasts and swimming and rowing races.

Chicago: The Chicago Blues Festival, June 8-11.

Newport, England: The Isle of Wight Festival, June 9-11, is one of England's biggest rock festivals.

Chattanooga, Tenn.: The Riverbend Festival, June 9-17, draws more than half a million people for jazz, blues, country, folk, bluegrass and classical music.

Montreal: St-Ambroise Fringe Festival, June 10-20, includes virtually every kind of performing art.

Antalya, Turkey: Aspendos Opera and Ballet Festival, June 10-July 22, takes place in a 2,000-year-old amphitheater overlooking the Mediterranean.

New York: JVC Jazz Festival, June 12-24.

Dublin, Ireland: On Bloomsday, June 16, James Joyce fans gather in the author's hometown.

Zurich, Switzerland: The Zurich Festival, June 16-July 9, showcases theater, dance, classical music and opera.

Scandinavia: Midsummer Day is marked June 24.

Verona, Italy: The Verona Opera Festival, June 24-Aug. 27, stages "Aida," "Carmen," "Cavalleria Rusticana"/"Pagliacci," "Tosca" and "Madama Butterfly" in the city's Roman amphitheater.

Munich, Germany: The Munich Summer Opera Festival, June 25-July 31, features more than 50 performances.

London: The Wimbledon tennis championships, June 26-July 9.

London: The City of London Festival, June 26-July 13, showcases music, art, architecture and film.

Puri, India: Rath Yatra, June 27, one of India's most spectacular Hindu festivals, draws hundreds of thousands of pilgrims.

Bordeaux, France: Bordeaux Fete le Vin, June 29-July 2, a celebration of the region's wines.

Lenox, Mass.: Tanglewood Music Festival, June 29-Sept. 3.

Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Folklife Festival, June 30-July 4 and July 7-11.

Montreux, Switzerland: The Montreux Jazz Festival, June 30-July 15.

Spoleto, Italy: Festival dei Due Mondi (Festival of Two Worlds), June 30-July 16, encompasses film, performing and visual arts.



Sigtuna, Sweden: Sigtuna Medieval Days, July 1-2, is a medieval fest in the country's oldest town.

Krakow, Poland: Krakow Jewish Culture Festival, July 1-9.

France (nationwide): The Tour de France, July 1-23.

Kingston, Jamaica: Reggae Sunsplash, July 1-31.

Brussels: Ommegang, July 6, thought to be the city's oldest historical pageant, with about 1,400 performers.

Forde, Norway: The Forde Folk Music Festival, July 6-9, one of the country's biggest music fests, with more than 250 performers.

Leh (Ladakh), India: The colorful Hemis Festival, July 6-7, celebrates the birthday of Buddhist Guru Padmasambhava.

Pamplona, Spain: Running of the Bulls, July 6-14.

Japan (nationwide): For Tanabata (Star Festival), July 7, Japanese cities and towns are festooned with decorations and lanterns.

Kuching, Malaysia: The Rainforest World Music Festival, July 7-9, celebrates ethnic music and indigenous cultures on Borneo.

Calgary, Canada: The Calgary Stampede, July 7-16, one of the world's premier rodeo events.

Cyprus: The Festival of Ancient Greek Drama, July 7-Aug. 6, stages comedies and tragedies by international theater companies.

Douai, France: In the Parade of the Giants, July 9, giant effigies of characters from local folklore are marched through the city's streets.

Stornoway, Scotland: The Hebridean Celtic Festival, July 12-15, a feast of traditional language, customs and music.

Zanzibar, Tanzania: ZIFF (Zanzibar International Film Festival) -- Festival of the Dhow Countries, July 14-23, East Africa's largest cultural event, with films, music, performing arts, exhibitions and workshops.

Santa Fe, N.M.: Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, July 16-Aug. 21.

Linz, Austria: Pflasterspektakel, July 20-22, is a spectacular street festival with hundreds of magicians, mimes, acrobats.

Deadwood, S.D.: Days of '76, July 25-30, celebrates Deadwood's Wild West past.

Vancouver, Canada: Celebration of Light, July 26-Aug. 2, a huge fireworks competition.



Berlin: The Berlin Beer Festival, Aug. 4-6, held in a mile-long beer garden.

Edinburgh, Scotland: The Edinburgh Military Tattoo (Aug. 4-26); Edinburgh Fringe Fest, which purports to be the world's biggest open arts event (Aug. 6-28); Edinburgh International Book Festival, one of the English-speaking world's major literary events, with readings, discussions, sales and book signings (Aug. 12-28); Edinburgh International Festival of classical music, theater, opera and dance (Aug. 13-Sept. 3); and Edinburgh International Film Festival (Aug. 16-27).

Hiroshima, Japan: Thousands of paper lanterns are set adrift on the Motoyasu River on Aug. 6, the anniversary of the atomic bombing of the city.

Budapest, Hungary: Sziget (Island) Festival, Aug. 9-16, Hungary's largest music festival.

Brussels: Once every two years the city's Grand Place is covered for several days with a huge flower carpet. Aug. 11-15, 600,000 begonias do the job.

New York: The New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC), Aug. 11-27.

Mt. Hagen, Papua New Guinea: At the Mt. Hagen Cultural Show, Aug. 19-20, 50 local tribes meet for a colorful ritual of dance and music that attracts thousands of spectators.

Eilat, Israel: The Red Sea Jazz Festival, Aug. 28-31, a major Middle Eastern jazz event.

Bunol, Spain: The Tomatina, Aug. 30, probably the world's largest food fight, painting the town red with a couple of hundred tons of hurled tomatoes.

Chicago: Chicago Jazz Festival in Grant Park, Aug. 31-Sept. 3.

Black Rock Desert, Nev.: Burning Man Festival, Aug. 31-Sept. 4.



Seattle: Bumbershoot arts festival, Sept. 1-4.

Aarhus, Denmark: The Aarhus Festival, Sept. 1-10, Scandinavia's biggest cultural fest.

Washington, D.C.: Black Family Reunion Celebration on the National Mall, Sept. 9-10.

New York: New York Musical Theatre Festival, Sept. 10-Oct. 1, stages more than 30 new musicals and launches emerging writers, composers, lyricists and performers.

Lyon, France: Lyon Dance Biennale, Sept. 12-Oct. 3, hosts hundreds of international dancers.

Austin, Texas: Austin City Limits Music Festival, Sept. 15-17.

Munich, Germany: Oktoberfest, Sept. 16-Oct. 3.



London: The Chelsea Crafts Fair, Oct. 3-15, is one of Europe's best for jewelry, ceramics, glass, furniture and more.

Morehead City, N.C.: The North Carolina Seafood Festival, Oct. 6-8, one of the world's largest.

Tenterden, England: The Tenterden Folk Festival, Oct. 6-8, showcases folk song, music and dance.

Albuquerque: The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, Oct. 7-15.

Cheltenham, England: The Cheltenham Literature Festival, Oct. 7-16, among the world's oldest such events, presents top novelists, actors, comedians, playwrights, politicians and poets in several hundred events.



Pushkar, India: Rajasthan's Pushkar Camel Fair, Nov. 2-5, is a world-class extravaganza of color and activity.

Britain: Guy Fawkes Day (Gunpowder Day), Nov. 5, marked with fireworks and bonfires in various cities and towns.



Miami: Art Basel Miami Beach, Dec. 7-10 in the city's Art Deco district, combines a major international art show with special exhibitions and music, film, architecture and design events.

Verona, Italy: Santa Lucia Festival, Dec. 10-13.

Rio de Janeiro: Fireworks, samba and raucous partying mark New Year's Eve, Dec. 31, on Copacabana Beach.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World