Where to go and what to do in 2014.

January is a time for new beginnings and resolutions but also the perfect time to start planning holidays for the upcoming year. Need a few ideas? We have compiled a mini-guide to some of the top cultural events happening throughout 2014, as well others which are less well-known but sure to provide a unique cultural experience.

Passepartout Homes wishes its blog readers a 2014 full of new adventures!

 

JANUARY

January 24-26, 2014

Pernik, Bulgaria

Surva, the International Festival of the Masquerade Games

In Bulgaria, the New Year begins with a folkloric masquerade tradition performed by single men and women. Each year the town of Pernik hosts the biggest festival of this folklore tradition. Dressed in elaborate masks and costumes, this ritual tradition is meant to chase away evil spirits and make way for new beginnings.

For more information: http://surva.org/TheFestival_Eng.html

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Surva, the International Festival of the Masquerade Games

 

Vietnam

January 31, 2014

Tet Festival

Tet celebrates the Vietnamese New Year and is the most important festival in Vietnam. The New Year is welcomed with the sounds of drums, bells, gongs and firecrackers to ward off evil spirits while colourful parades of dancers dressed in masks weave through the streets. This is also a time when families get together to feast on Vietnamese delicacies and play traditional games.

 

Mauritius

Chinese Spring Festival

January 31st is also Chinese New Year, which is celebrated in Mauritius as the Chinese Spring Festival. Colourful red lanterns line the streets as processions of dancers dressed in dragon costumes auspiciously welcome the New Year.

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FEBRUARY

 

February 15 to March 4, 2014

Venice, Italy 

Carnevale di Venezia

The Venice Carnival is the most celebrated carnivals of Europe, best known for the beautiful masks and elaborate costumes donned by revellers. Over 3 million visitors visit this magnificent city during its famous carnival which dates back to the 12th century.

For more information: http://www.carnevale.venezia.it

Carnevale di Venezia 2013

Carnevale di Venezia

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MARCH

 

March 7-9, 2014

Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu Festival

This spectacular annual festival is Hawaii’s cultural event of the year, featuring dance performances and demonstrations of traditional art from all over Hawaii and the Pacific. The 3-day extravaganza concludes with a lively parade of floats, dancers and musicians.

For more information: http://www.honolulufestival.com/

 

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Honolulu Festival

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APRIL

 

April 4-13, 2014

Nicosia, Cyprus

Cyprus Film Days, Nicosia

Cyprus’ international film festival will be running into its 12th edition this year. This celebration of cinema will be featuring feature films from all over the world vying for the award of best film.

For more information: http://www.cyprusfilmdays.com/

 

April 13-20, 2014

Malaga, Spain

Semana Santa

The Semana Santa or ‘holy week’ happens in towns and cities across Spain during the last week before Easter Sunday. In Malaga this is a centuries-old ritual during which elaborate throne-like platforms carrying religious statues and idols are taken in processions through the streets of the city’s historic centre.

For more information: http://www.semana-santa-malaga.com

 

April 12 – 20, 2014

Hue, Vietnam

Hue Festival

The Hue Festival is a large-scale event held every two years in Vietnam’s former imperial capital. This is a week-long celebration of Vietnam’s cultural heritage, showcasing theatre, dance, music, puppetry and acrobatics at several venues across the city, including the majestic Hue Citadel.

For more information: http://www.huefestival.com/

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MAY

 

May 14 – 25, 2014

Cannes, France

Cannes Film Festival

France’s top international film festival needs no introduction. This will be the festival’s 64th edition, with its jury being headed by New Zealand’s Jane Campion, who is also the only woman to have won the festival’s top prize, the Palme d’Or.

For more information: http://www.festival-cannes.com/en.html

 

May 15 – 25, 2014

Paris, France

Festival Jazz à Saint-Germain-des-Prés Paris

Paris takes on a jazzy vibe during this springtime festival with jazz concerts at over two dozen venues in and around the neighbourhood of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.

For more information: http://www.festivaljazzsaintgermainparis.com

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JUNE

 

June 23 – 6 July, 2014

London, UK

The Wimbledon Championships

June in London is all about Wimbledon, as tennis fans flock here to watch the world’s top players battle it out at the most prestigious tennis championship. Dating back to 1877, this is also the oldest tennis tournament in the world.

For more information: http://www.wimbledon.com/index.html

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JULY

 

July 2 – 22, 2014

Avignon, France

Festival d’Avignon

One of the best-known annual international arts festivals in the world, the Avignon festival has showcased theatre since 1947 in the unique setting of Avignon’s stunning architectural beauty. During the main festival and the parallel ‘off’ festival, there are over 900 performances of not only theatre but also dance, music and circus arts presented in the open air.

For more information: http://www.festival-avignon.com/en/

 

July 5 to October 5, 2014

Santorini, Greece

Santorini Biennale

The sublime Greek island of Santorini is the inspiring setting for this eclectic arts festival which for its second edition will have as its theme ‘Peace Mechanisms’. Running for three months, the creations of emerging and established artists will be showcased, including art installation, college, short film, glass art, photography and video art.

For more information: http://www.santorinibiennale.gr/2014-theme

 

Mid-July to mid-August 2014

Split, Croatia

Split Summer Festival

This beautiful city on the Dalmatian coast provides a stunning setting to this month-long arts festival featuring open-air concerts, operas, plays, ballets and exhibitions at venues across the city.

For more information: http://www.splitsko-ljeto.hr

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AUGUST

 

August 24 – 25, 2014

London, UK

Notting Hill Carnival

The eclectic neighbourhood of Notting Hill has been the setting for London’s own street carnival since 1966. Close to a million people come to watch the lively processions of steel bands and costume parades of dancers at what is the biggest street festival in Europe.

For more information: http://www.thenottinghillcarnival.com/

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SEPTEMBER

 

September 5 – 20, 2014

San Francisco, USA

San Francisco Fringe Festival 

This is an exciting and unique grassroots festival which brings avant-garde theatre to the streets of San Francisco. The 23rd edition will present 35 performance groups at open-air venues like Union Square, Fisherman’s Wharf and the Castro.

For more information: http://www.sffringe.org/

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OCTOBER

 

October 8 – 23, 2014 (tbc)

London, UK

BFI London Film Festival

The UK’s largest film festival presents over 300 feature films, documentaries and shorts from around the world.

For more information: http://www.lff.org.uk/

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NOVEMBER

 

November 1, 2014

Mexico 

Dia de los Muertos

The ‘day of the dead’ is one of the most important holidays in Mexico. This is not a sombre occasion but a 2-day celebration to honour deceased relatives through music, dance and food.

 

November 6, 2014

Thailand 

Loi Krathong

During this popular annual festival celebrated all over Thailand, paper lanterns are floated on water or released in the sky. The sight of hundreds of lamps floating upwards towards the heavens is a spectacular sight and an unforgettable experience.

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DECEMBER

 

The entire month of December

Innsbruck, Austria

Christkindl Market

Innsbruck’s beautiful Alpine setting creates the perfect ambiance for a festive Christmas market. The smell of gingerbread and mulled wine, sound of carols and glimmering lights are sure to kindle the Christmas spirit.

For more information: www.innsbruck.info

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Christkindl Market

 

By Isabel Putinja, Travel Writer  – http://isabelwrites.wordpress.com

Paola Fiocchi Van den Brande

Paola Fiocchi Van den Brande is Founder and Director at Passepartout Homes, luxury holiday homes.

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