Festivals have been a favorite way for people to celebrate culture and community for thousands of years. From the harvest festivals of early man to more modern celebrations like Burning Man or Coachella, human beings love to come together at festivals to eat, drink, and be merry.
If you are looking for a place where you can revel in the wonder of human culture for a few days look no further than these amazing festivals!
If you want four days of amazing music, art, camping, delicious food, and environmental sustainability then Bonnaroo is the festival for you. Eminem, Sheryl Crow, and The Killers are just a few of the more than 100 musical performances happening at the festival, so if music is your passion you'll find yourself right at home at Bonnaroo.
Not into music? Don't worry, you'll still have plenty to do, whether you are checking out the many comedy acts in the barn, exploring the multimedia art exhibits, dancing at the House of Yes, participating in the daily yoga classes, or experiencing the fully immersive version of the movie Labyrinth being put on by Little Cinema. Boredom is impossible with all of the exciting Bonnaroo activities going on!
Located in Manchester, TN, Bonnaroo is definitely the place to go for anyone who wants to combine their passion for environmentalism with their passion for the arts. Not only is the festival set up with solar panels to provide some of their electricity but they also require all vendors to use compostable or resuable serving ware, allow patrons to trade their plastic bottles and other trash for some really cool swag, and they partner with nonprofits to provide workshops and discussions about sustainability both onsite at the festival and once you've left for home.
Knowing that the creators and the staff are all about helping the festival-goers live their values makes Bonnaroo an especially fulfilling experience.
Whimsy is king at the Coney Island Film Festival with side show attractions and awards handed out while riding bumper cars, making this the most fabulous way to end your summer vacation in all of New York City.
If you are looking for a flashy, celebrity-studded film festival experience you might consider Sundance or Tribeca, but if you are looking for a quirky festival for people who truly love independent film you will want to get your tickets to the Coney Island Film Festival.
Devoid of all of the industry insiders and stuffy panels found at a typical film festival, Coney Island replaces the producers with burlesque dancers and sword swallowers for a truly epic film-going experience. If that isn't enough you can take a break between screenings to ride the ferris wheel or check out the New York Aquarium, making this a wonderful destination for people who want to branch out beyond the festival experience during their visit.
The festival is a fundraiser for non-profit arts organization Coney Island USA, so you can take pride in knowing the money you spend while in attendance is going to help support the most unique artists and performers in the country.
With more than 500 hot air balloons, chainsaw sculptures, and a laser light show, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is truly a one of a kind experience. Not only can you watch the balloons soar majestically above you during the most beautiful week of the year in New Mexico but you can also take a ride in a hot air balloon during the festival, giving you an opportunity you're not likely to have again anytime soon.
When you aren't flying high above the gorgeous desert landscapes you can watch as artists use chainsaws to create exquisite statues and sculptures or kick back on a blanket to watch the fireworks each evening.
The festival includes the Special Shape Rodeo, a fun event with balloons designed to look like anything from an armadillo to Darth Vader. This event is so popular that it often causes huge traffic backups as people all over the area stop to see the amazing hot air balloon designs.
The celebration even includes a hot air balloon-themed film festival and a full day worth of concerts for festival-goers to attend, so you'll always have something to keep you entertained at this particular festival.
Though the Just For Laughs Festival started as a small event in 1983 it has since grown to be one of the largest comedy festivals in the world, attracting both huge celebrities and previously unknown performers alike to Canada for three weeks each summer.
Anyone who is willing to purchase a ticket can see some of the hottest acts in comedy, but the best part about Just For Laughs is that they have more than 10,000 performances over the course of the festival, of which 75% are completely free. While most festivals will include entry fees with additional costs for various extras anyone can go to Just For Laughs and see comedians, dancers, circus performers, parades, and many other performances and events without spending a dime.
Not limiting themselves to just stand-up comedy, the festival includes a number of theatrical performances, monologues, acrobats, street artists, and pretty much any other kind of performance you can imagine.
Visitors to Canada will want to make sure they try some of the local cuisine such as poutine and beaver tails (the delicious pastry, not the real tail of a beaver) as well as taking the time to see some of Montreal's biggest attractions like the Notre-Dame Basilica and the Biodome. The streets of Montreal will come to life with performances throughout the festival, making this the perfect time of year to experience the festival's festivities along with all of the other wonders the city has to offer.
No matter what you want to celebrate this year there is an amazing festival out there to help you do it.
What festivals are you most excited about attending in 2018?