It may not be as famous as Denver’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre, but a small resort hidden in the East MacDonnell Ranges is just as deserving of the name and reputation.
On one side of me a hijab-clad dominatrix leads her partner around on a chain, while on the other a glittering gold pharaoh dances wildly. Techno is blaring from a set of speakers but I can barely see the DJ through the haze pouring from a smoke machine and the reflected glare of the desert sun.
This is not a mirage, it’s the Saturday pool party at Wide Open Space and I’ve never been so aware of the complete lack of sequins in my wardrobe. When the music ends a line of revellers snakes up the hill behind the pool, their costumes flashing in the sunlight like fireflies.
The annual event at Canada’s Takhini Hot Pools draws people from around the world competing for the title of the world’s coolest ’do’
Tendrils of steam curl up softly from the searing waters of Takhini Hot Pools, fed by a natural hot spring located just northwest of Whitehorse in Canada’s Yukon Territory. For decades, locals have taken to the mineral water there, high in calcium, magnesium and iron, for its therapeutic properties and warming capabilities, but more recently, Takhini has become the battleground for one of the world’s most hair-raising competitions.
Known as the International Hair Freezing Contest, the friendly tournament began as an extension of the Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous, an annual festival held each February that celebrates winter sports like dog sledding and snowshoeing. Seeking a reprieve from achy muscles and the wrath of winter’s chill, athletes and spectators alike would soak together at Takhini. Noticing an opportunity, in 2011, a former manager challenged visitors to style their hair into frozen hairdos and take selfies. Employees would then select the wildest coiffure of the bunch.
Durga Puja, also called Durgotsava, is an annual Hindu festival in the Indian subcontinent that reveres the goddess Durga. It is particularly popular in West Bengal, Assam, Tripura, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, Bangladesh and the diaspora from this region, and also in Nepal where it is called Dashain
Where: Pingxi, Taiwan – Republic of China
When: 10 February 2017
According to the elders of Pingxi, the Sky Lantern Festival originated in the Xing Dynasty, more than two thousand years ago. At that time, bands of outlaws frequently raided the lowland villages, forcing residents to seek refuge in the mountains. Village watchmen used “fire balloons” as signals to inform the residents that their houses were safe once again and when those hiding in the hills saw the celestial flares, they knew it was time to go home. Today these lanterns have two main purposes. One: they display scribbled
Where: New Orleans, Louisiana – USA
When: 28 February 2017 (Parades & celebrations run through 24 -28 February)
Mardi Gras is synonymous with hedonism and debauchery, and with a motto of Laissez les bons temps rouler (Let the good times roll), it’s no surprise that this is probably the wildest party in the United States. It may be a surprise to some, however, that Mardi Gras is the official final celebration before the period of Lent, the Catholic period of introspection
Where: Nara, Japan
When: 28 January 2017 (or 29 January 2017 in case of bad weather)
The name of the festival literally translates as ‘The Mountain Roast’ and is where on the 4th Saturday in January each year, the dead grass on the hillside of Mount Wakakusayama is set ablaze – but until after one epic fireworks display. There are two theories of the evolution of the festival. The first claims that the burning of the mountainside began during boundary conflicts between Nara’s great temples (Tōdai-ji and Kōfuku-ji), while another claims the fires were used to drive away wild boars. Once set ablaze the mountain can burn for up to an hour and because of the mountains elevation it can be seen from anywhere in the city. MORE HERE