Welcome to our blog, where we explore strange festivals around the world! Countless unusual and quirky events held worldwide are sure to surprise and amuse. These celebrations frequently have rich cultural or fascinating historical backgrounds but include some of the most peculiar and unusual customs you’ll ever encounter. So fasten your seatbelts and get ready to explore the unknown and beautiful world of the world’s most bizarre festivals!
Strange festivals: El Colacho
The festival of El Colacho takes place in the Spain village of Castrillo de Murcia every June. It combines Catholic and pagan rituals to symbolize god’s triumph over evil. Historians theorize it might have been a fertility ritual initially. “evils” in red and yellow masks curse and whip the locals with a horsetail on a stick. El alto del Colacho, or the devil’s flight, starts when the black-clad caballero arrives with drums to drive out evil.
During these strange festivals, babies born in the previous year are placed on mattresses in the street. Costumed men leap over them in a heart-stopping display, believed to be a baptism to protect them from illness and bad luck. The devil is thought to absorb their sins during the leap. Onlookers criticize Colacho to avoid bad luck for the coming year. After the jump, the babies are showered with rose petals and immediately taken home by their parents.
Cheung Chau Bun Festival
Since the 18th century, the traditional Chinese festival has taken place every April or May, giving meaning to a Taoist sacrifice ritual. On Cheung Chau Island, locals started participating in the festival to bring luck to their families and ward off evil spirits and deities.
“According to legend, a plague decimated Cheung Chau in the final years of the Qing dynasty. According to an entry in the Hong Kong Intangible Cultural Heritage Database, “Huizhou and Chiu Chow natives invited accomplished monks and Taoist priests and set up a sacrificial altar in front of Pak Tai Temple to pray to deities, repent, and to comfort departed souls from the land and the sea to dispel the disaster.
Lopburi Monkey Banquet
Visit Lopburi Monkey Banquet, or Monkey Buffet Festival, to witness the financial mayhem. The Lopburi Province, north of Bangkok, prepares an impressive feat each year, including 4,000 kilograms of fruits, vegetables, cakes, and candies that feed close to 2,000–3,000 macaque monkeys to bring luck to the region and its people. The festival was started in 1989 by a local businessman who devised this idea to show appreciation for monkeys and boost tourism. Fortunately for him and the monkeys, it was successful!
Día de los Muertos
As the name suggests, the Day of the Dead Festival honors departed loved ones. The customary celebration celebrated in Mexico in November is strikingly similar to Halloween in appearance. Family and friends come together to pray and remember the deceased. During this time, it is said that the dead awaken and return to earth briefly to feast, drink, and dance with their loved ones. Family members prepare the deceased’s favorite foods and offerings to treat them as honored guests. This celebration is not a day of mourning but a festive occasion.
Visitors and locals travel to Cooper’s Hill in South West England Gloucester to witness the most unusual competition. Competitors launch themselves down the hill in pursuit of a nine-pound round cheese. The winner is the first person to cross the finish line and receives the cheese as payment. The rolling cheese was initially intended to be caught before it reached the bottom, but the rules were changed due to how quickly it gained speed and how dangerous it was for the players.
We can infer that various cultures and regions hold unusual and peculiar events. These festivals might seem strange or even shocking to outsiders. However, they have solid cultural significance and are steeped in tradition. They also give locals and visitors a chance to get together and celebrate in an enjoyable and heartfelt way.
This blog highlights how diverse human culture is and emphasizes the importance of embracing differences through the strange festivals it covers. By learning about and appreciating these distinctive traditions, we can better understand and respect the world around us.