Spring is right around the corner which means festival season will be in full swing. As we look through festivals happening around the world, we realize that we want to see more of your faces in the photos. So we’ve pulled together a few not-so-commonly known festivals that might pique your interest enough to hop on a plane and go! Remember, take a picture and send it to us.

APRIL | Kanamara Matsuri Festival | JAPAN

Otherwise known as the “Festival of the Steel Phallus,” this religious festival is a celebration of all things related to the peen and fertility. Organized by the priests of Kanayama Jinja, a shrine where locals go to pray for marital and fertility issues, this year’s festival will be held April 1st in Kawasaki, a short 15-minute train ride from Tokyo Station. During the Kanamara Matsuri Festival, the suburban neighborhood, Daishi, comes alive with penis decorations and food, tourists and locals, drumming, and chanting. Imagine the souvenirs being brought back from THIS festival!

IMG: Penis Festival Photog: Ryan Latta | Flickr | Creative Commons

MAY | Cooper’s Hill Cheese-Rolling | UK 

This festival is kind of dangerous….like someone could seriously break their neck, yo! In the midst of honoring all things cheese, huge rolls of Gouda are hurled down a steep hill as participants chase after them. It’s all fun and games until someone slams headfirst into God’s green earth. But who doesn’t love Gouda?!?

This year’s festival is held on May 28th in Gloucestershire, approximately 2.5 hours outside of London by car. No application is needed. No signed consent form…nothing. Whether you participate and get messed up is truly up to you. Don’t believe us then watch the video below and if you don’t gasp or laugh then you might not need to be there.

For more information, check out the official site.

IMG: Wheel of Gouda Cheese Photog: Andrea Parish-Geyer | Flickr | Creative Commons

JUNE | The Baby Jumping Festival | SPAIN

Summer is rolling in, hopefully, and this festival has to be the strangest one yet. Babies are laid out on pillows, and grown men, dressed as devils, jump over them! A baptismal/religious custom from the 1600s in which babies born over the last year are absolved of sin once jumped over. Hmmm…okay.

Taking place in Castrillo de Murcia, about 3 hours north of Madrid, the Baby Jumping Festival is a part of the celebrations for the Catholic festival of Corpus Christi. The baby jumping is meant to purify the babies and ward off evil spirits. It’s basically a festival of exorcisms. If this is your thing, then head out there June 3rd for the 2018 festival and be sure to send a postcard.

IMG: Baby Photog: Tatiana Vdb | Flickr | Creative Commons

JULY | Mud Festival | SOUTH KOREA

This is just one huge party in the mud. Mudslides, mud wrestling, mud obstacle course, even a mud spa! Add in music, fireworks and the beach and what’s not to like?

The Boryeong Mud Festival is one of South Korea’s largest festivals and much of it has to do with the tourists coming in. Tourists flock to the week-long event, held July 13th-22nd, for the fun and games. Locals enjoy the health benefits of the mud. Apparently, the mud from Boryeong contains minerals that remove excess oils, improve blood circulation, and reduces scars. If a week-long mud spa and games are for you, then definitely check out the festival’s site.

IMG: Mud Fest Photog: Shawn Perez | Flickr | Creative Commons

AUGUST | Air Guitar World Championships | FINLAND

Release your inner Jimi Hendrix (I prefer Prince on guitar myself) at this festival which basically sounds like the “American Idol” for air guitar players. If you plan to participate, come ready to battle! These folks take their air guitar play very seriously. No…seriously! Watch the video.

Held annually in Oulu, Northern Finland every August, this year the 22nd Air Guitar World Championships is going down from August 24th to 26th. There isn’t a ton to do in Oulu; however, if you plan right you can explore Helinski first and then head to Oulu; flights generally run around $100.

IMG: Naked Dude Air Guitaring Photog: Mark Chapman | Flickr | Creative Commons

Have you attended any strange, unusual or not commonly known festivals around the globe? If so, tell us about it in the comments. Happy Festival Season!




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