Image: Getty Images
1. Edinburgh festival fringe (August 2-26)
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world and takes place every August for three weeks. Thousands of performers, from established artists to budding talents, find an expression here. It also includes theatre, comedy, dance, musicals, operas, music and exhibitions. Join in for an unadulterated dose of arts and entertainment.
Image: Love Temple Bar / Derek Speirs
2. Temple Bar TradFest (January 22–27)
This festival offers you a taste of traditional Irish music and culture. Replete with concerts, events and other forms of entertainment, it takes place over five days and five nights with more than 200 performances across multiple venues including the grand City Hall and Christ Church Cathedral.
3. Indian Derby (February 3)
The Royal Western India Turf Club at Mahalaxmi hosts the biggest derby of the horse racing calendar, and 2013 is set to see stakes rise past Rs 3 crore–the highest ever for an Indian derby. Mumbai’s famous old racecourse sees patrons in their finest outfits on a day that’s as much about your designer as your bet.
4. Shanghai International Tea Culture Festival (May 15-18)
Aimed at ‘expressing emotions with tea’, this festival is held every year in the Zhabei district, after fresh tea products are introduced in the market in April. A host of activities related to tea culture are organised, and tea enthusiasts, experts and tasters from more than 30 cities of the world grace this event.
Image: Alan Crowhurst / Getty Images
Image: Getty Images
5. Budapest Dance Festival (April 24-29)
Organised by the National Dance Theatre, this features a plethora of dance styles from ballet and contemporary to folk and fusion. A multitude of venues throughout the city host both Hungarian and international dance troupes for six days. This year, get ready to be charmed by the Compagnia EgriBiancoDanza, the Gangaray Dance Company, and the Yvette Bozsik Company.
6. The Dong Zhi Festival (December 21)
Also known as the Winter Solstice Festival, this is based on the Chinese lunar calendar. Families gather to pray for a good year, and celebrate it by eating tang yuan, a traditional delicacy made out of rice flour stuff ed with sesame seeds or red bean paste, served along a clear soup made of sugar and water. The Chinese community in other Asian countries also observes this festival with vigour.
7. VajdahunyadvAr Summer Festival (July 12-August 9)
The courtyard of the elegant Vajda-hunyad Castle is home to this festival of classical music, swing, klezmer and traditional Hungarian gypsy. The castle, whose architecture is a blend of Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles, serves as a beautiful backdrop to the eclectic music. Concerts take place on Mondays and Thursdays.
8. Austin City Limits Music Festival (October 4-6 & 11-13)
ACL Music Festival sees more than 100 bands in performance. This is said to have earned Austin the epithet of the ‘Live Music Capital of the World’. It features a wide range of national and international artistes excelling in all genres of music, from western swing, Texas blues and rock n’ roll to jazz, country and alternative rock.
9. PANAFEST [Pan African Cultural Festival] (September 21)
This vibrant event is a celebration of Africa. It commemorates the month of September as the African Heritage Month in Montgomery County, Maryland. It includes remarks and citations by elected officials and community leaders, African cultural dances, African art & craft exhibits, live performances by African artistes, a taste of exotic African cuisine and more.
10. 34th America’s Cup (September 7-22)
Held every four years since 1851, this is the biggest and most prestigious sailing yacht race in the world. 2013 will see things come to a climax in San Francisco Bay. Crew of 11 will man 72-ft catamarans that clip along the water surface at speeds of up to 30 knots, in an event that showcases the pinnacle of teamwork in challenging conditions.
11. Alliance Française French Film Festival (March 5-24)
Now in its 24th year, this will charm the discerning cinephile with an eclectic collection of more than 40 films of the world. It is the biggest foreign film event in Australia. Screenings will be held in Sydney at Palace Verona, Chauvel Cinema, Palace Norton St and Orpheum.