As we say “good riddance” to the cold-snowy days, apparently so does the rest of the world. Although many countries may not find the arrival of spring to be a reason to celebrate, there are a variety of festivals that welcome the new season and, believe it or not, some are the largest in the world. Learn about the reason for these unique celebrations as many welcome a new year, others rejuvenate and cleanse for the new season, and some well… they’re just stoked the warm weather has finally arrived!
Here’s the rundown of festivals, celebrations, and holidays around the world that welcome Spring with opened arms.
Spring Equinox in Teotihuacán
Annually, the spring equinox in Mexico City is celebrated by thousands of people who gather at Teotihuacán. Most visitors dress in white robes and red scarfs while performing dances, burning incents, and climbing to the top of the Pyramid of the Sun reaching out their arms in the belief that they will receive a strong energy, or ask the gods for health, and follow in ancestor traditions.
Hanami, Japanese Cherry Blossoms
If you’ve ever come across a Cherry Blossom tree that has fully bloomed, then you should already know about their beauty. In Japan during the months of Spring, the traditional Cherry Blossom festivals and celebrations begin. These Japanese trees only blossom for a few short months and all bloom at different times of the season throughout the country, so viewing the beautiful flowering trees (known as hanami in Japanese) is a big deal. Friends and families come together by picnicking, drinking and eating under the incredible blossomed trees. The meaning behind the festivals and celebrations is to welcome spring and appreciate the beauty nature has brought.
The Festival of Scrambled Eggs, Bosnia
The Festival of Scrambled Eggs or Cimburijada is a unique traditional event dating back a few hundred years that takes place in the town of Zenica, Bosnia. Every year thousands of people attend to celebrate the new season. The festival is focused on the egg which symbolizing new life. At this unique event, a mass amount of eggs are scrambled up and served for free to all who gather.
Songkran Festival or Thai New Year, Bangkok
If you find yourself in Thailand on April 13th to April 15th, prepare to get soaked! The traditional Thai New Year, formerly known as Songkran, is one of the most important events on the Buddhist calendar. The water festival plays a large role in the three-day celebration marking the start of the Thai New Year. The belief behind the kingdom-wide water throwing is that it’s purifying and cleanses you in order to start the new year fresh with happiness and good luck.
Sechseläuten, Zurich, Switzerland
Dating back to the 16th century, this spring festival is traditionally held on the second or third Monday of April. The celebration begins with the Guilds’ parade including 3,500 men, 350 horseback riders, 50 floats, and 30 marching bands leading up to the center of the festival. The “Böögg”, an 11-foot-tall snowman propped on a 32-foot pyre (symbolizing winter) is the center of Sechseläuten. The pyre is loaded with fireworks and lit on fire – the quicker the flames reach the snowman’s head and explodes; the sooner summer is predicted to come!
Bloemencorso Bollenstreek, Netherlands
It’s one of the largest flower parades in the world! Bloemencorso (Dutch for flower parade) is held in the Netherlands. There are 20 massive floats and 30 cars covered in decorative flowers traveling from Noordwijk to Haarlem every year. And being that the parade gets crowded with hundreds of thousands of visitors, it’s advised to arrive very early to reserve a spot. Oh, and don’t forget to bring your camera, these flowered floats will surely be like nothing you’ve ever seen before!
Sham el Nessim, Egypt
You may not believe it but Sham el Nessim is said to be the oldest celebration in the world! This national holiday marks the beginning of spring in Egypt and has been celebrated for over 4,500 years. The word Sham el Nessim translates close to “the smell of a breeze”. On this day, some Egyptian women smell a freshly cut onion in the morning, while others go out during the day with their families and friends to eat outside and breathe in the fresh air that’s said to have a beneficial effect on this day. Ultimately, the holiday represents a celebration of new life and rejuvenation.
Have you attended a unique Spring celebration? Tell us where you went in the comments below!