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It’s time to celebrate! And it’s not as if we need much of an excuse to celebrate as there is always something good happening. It might be a special birthday, exam success, a new job or house, the arrival of someone special, or maybe a religious festival. Of all the possible ways to celebrate any of these special events, a tailor made trip cannot be beaten! So let’s look at a few unique destinations that will leave an indelible print on the memory.

The Carnival in Rio de Janeiro is one of those life experiences that will remain with you forever. Thousands of people dressed in exotic costumes, dancing the samba, laughing and drinking in one of the Planet’s best looking cities. Celebrations don’t come much more colourful, brighter, spirit-lifting or more memorable. There are lots of ways to join the fun from a ticketed seat in the Sandromo stadium to witness the main parade (that goes on all night), to joining a samba school to take part in the action, to being a part of one of the many blocos (street parties) for more informal frivolity.

During daylight hours you can visit Sugar Loaf Mountain or stand next to the statue of Christ the Redeemer to enjoy spectacular views of the city. Cooking schools, a visit to a favela, a guided tour of the historic city are other options as is some recuperative time on one of the famous sandy beaches. But if you want to go be sure to book early!! Next year’s Carnival starts on 23rd February.

For a much quieter celebration, Bhutan offers high end quality and low end visitor numbers. With its philosophy of Gross national Happiness and policy of sustainable tourism you won’t encounter crowds of westerners. There are many festivals throughout the year but the most spectacular time to visit is during the Thimphu Tshechu festival as locals flock to the capital in their finest robes. With a distinctly medieval flavour, the celebrations continue for 3 days as participants pack into the Tashicho fortress where a stage is erected for a succession of masked dances. Those that are present are believed to earn divine merit, enjoy great luck and have all their wishes come true!

Away from the festivals, Bhutan is an amazing experience in itself. Set in a spectacular Himalaya landscape, snow-capped peaks sparkle as they tower over deep shadowy gorges and wild forests. Majestic fortresses and working monasteries bejewel the stunning panorama. There are local handicrafts and beautiful textiles, flamboyant archery competitions, high altitude trails for biking and hiking and stunning flora and fauna. You won’t be disappointed.

Here in Europe, there are significant festivals to cater for every kind of celebration you might wish.  For one that is definitely strictly for fun, are the celebrations of La Tomatina, the greatest food fight in the world! During the last week of August in a town called Bunol, close to Valencia, 40 tonnes of tomatoes become ammunition for the wacky joviality as participants cover each other and themselves in soft, overripe tomato. It is said that tomatoes are a natural disinfectant so that your skin becomes cleansed of impurities! Maybe that is why the town is left spotlessly clean by a team of firefighters who hose down the streets – and many of the participants – after the battle. It’s not all culture free as the week leading up to fight sees the town full of parades, fireworks and paella cooking competitions.  

There can be no doubt that the more you celebrate life, the more there is to celebrate. This is just a bite sized morsel of the many opportunities all over the world to celebrate precious moments and, I think, we can all agree that life is too short not to celebrate nice moments!

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Posted by: Celine Delasalle | Posted in: News