The three most bizarre festivals

The three most bizarre festivals

Jessie Lim reveals three of the most unique festivals from around the world

The peak period for travelling is probably during summer, after which students return to university and exchange tales from all the exotic destinations they have been to. Some went to the sun-kissed beaches in the south of France to get a tan, some went to Iceland to escape the heat, and many probably visited Scotland just in case rail ticket prices shot up after 18th September. There are others who travel to attend festivals such as Glastonbury, though some of them are rather bizarre. Here are three:

1) La Tomatina (Buñol, Spain)

A food fight is not so uncommon, and you’ve probably heard of the La Tomatina, a week-long festival held in the small town of Buñol, with a massive tomato fight as its main draw. This Spanish tradition is still running strong since 1945, drawing over 20,000 revellers every year (the Buñol population is only about 10,000) despite it being a ticketed event.

The event is kicked off with the Palo Jabón, where there is a clamour to climb up a greased pole with a ham on top. Yes, a ham. If you have the time, you can watch the madness unfold here:

 Once the ham is knocked off, the tomato fight begins, and all hell breaks loose.

Graham McLellan


Looks a bit like this…

 2) The Great Fruitcake Toss (Manitou Springs, Colorado, United States)

Everyone loves giving fruitcake for Christmas, but hates receiving them as gifts because, let’s face it, how many slices of fruitcake can you and will you actually eat? So, why not save them for the Great Fruitcake Toss, held annually in January! There are a few divisions to compete in, such as Hand Toss, Kid’s Toss, Launch, Pneumatic Gun or Canon, Team Catch or Accuracy. I kid you not.

This two minute video sums it all:

It makes you wonder what the people who started this were thinking.

It gets better.

 3) Cooper’s Hill Cheese-Rolling Festival (Gloucestershire, England)

The British definitely match the madness of the fruitcake toss with their annual Cheese-Rolling Festival down Cooper’s Hill. 8 lbs of double Gloucester cheeses are used in the event where they are released from the top of the hill, and competitors simply hurl themselves down the slope after it. The first to the bottom wins.


The following video is worth every minute you spend away from your work:

It has attracted so much attention that teams even travel from abroad to compete, such as the team from Gouda, Holland, who even brought their own cheese as a contribution. Gouda cheese, of course.

If you have been to any of these festivals, or know of any other bizarre events that people travel for, do let us know at @pi_travel on twitter.


Featured image credit: velkr0

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