World-famous festivals, parties and celebrations to check out in 2018: Carnaval, King’s Day, Festival of Sant Joan and more!

January 26, 2018 Louise Newsham

To add to your ever-growing travel bucket-list, we’re eyeing up some of the world’s most famous festivals, because what better way to connect with a different country than with a cultural celebration? From the wildest street-party in the world to a dazzling fireworks extravaganza, these unique festivals are once-in-a-lifetime experiences that are well-worth traveling for. 

If you thought these trips were out of reach, think again: the KLM Dream Deals is on NOW until 31st January, offering fares from Jakarta to Europe and the Americas that start as low as IDR 9,900,000! We know it’s short notice, and we know you’ll need to hop over to Jakarta first to catch these flight, but this might just be the 2018 travel inspiration you need – simply coincide your trip with these world-famous celebrations, and then tack on a few more days to see the local sights!

Join the parade at Carnaval – the biggest street party on Earth 

Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro: 9 February to 14 February

With approximately a million people attending Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro, this is hands down the biggest blowout celebration on Earth. It’s no wonder people from all around the world flock to see this incredible spectacle, as its famous Samba parade has locals and tourists alike dancing in the streets in the most elaborate costumes they can find. There’s singing, percussion, and all sorts of merriment. Don’t forget to check out the famous Copacabana beach while you’re at it.

Catch Holland’s famous blooming tulips in spring.

King’s Day in Amsterdam: 27 April

Amsterdam’s biggest party is not what you think it is. Not a dance festival or rave party, but the Dutch King’s birthday. Known as King’s Day, the Dutch don orange from head-to-toe and take to the streets for the biggest street party of the year. From the Vondelpark to the canals, locals spend the day outdoors drinking beer and having a great time. Tack on another few days to make a side trip outside the city to the famous Keukenhof gardens and admire Holland’s technicolour tulips and daffodils, blooming from 22 March to 13 May.

Once the night turns back into day, be sure to take in a tour of Barcelona’s awe-inspiring architecture.

Festival of Sant Joan (Night of Fire) in Barcelona: 23 to 24 June

Barcelona goes into full swing during the Summer Solstice, and if you truly want to experience the local traditions, visit at the start of summer to join in the Festival of Sant Joan. Pack a picnic, park yourself down by the biggest bonfire on the beach, pour the Cava, and watch the fireworks go off while musicians play in the nearby chiringuitos (local bar).

Visit Lisbon during the Festas de Lisboa for an unforgettable vacay.

Festas de Lisboa in Lisbon: 12 to 13 June

For a lively atmosphere in a charming setting, hit up Festas de Lisboa in June. The City of the Seven Hills becomes one giant outdoor party, as the locals parade down the Avenida da Liberdade wearing traditional costume, while folk music sets the tone. The city’s charming streets are decked out with colourful balloons, globes and garlands, and little districts called arraiais host outdoor parties where you can get your fix of beer, sangria, barbecued sardines, chouriço and more. Though Alfama is Lisbon’s oldest district, if you want to avoid the tourist-traps, you’re better off checking out the vibes at Vila Berta Graça and Bica instead.

You just can’t go wrong with a summer in Paris.

Bastille Day in Paris: 14 July

Ah, summer in Paris. In a city brimming with bon vivants, who puts on a celebration better than the French? The magical City of Lights truly comes alive during the French national holiday of Bastille Day. Stroll hand-in-hand with your loved one while enjoying the exquisite fireworks at night, participate in a public dance at the fire stations, and drink lots and lots of wine. Of course, no jaunt to Paris is complete without a trip the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Champs-Elysees.

Catch Calgary’s dazzling display of fireworks.

Globalfest (International Fireworks Festival) in Calgary: August

Take a tour around the world simply by attending Globalfest in Calgary. While its main draw is definitely the Fireworks Festival, where attendees can watch Calgary’s night skies light up with pretty colourful explosions; Globalfest’s OneWorld Festival is a true multi-cultural melting pot showcasing different cultures from around the world. Visitors can taste food from the Philippines, snag crafts from Azerbaijan and take photos in a traditional Japanese yukata, amongst many other fun activities, for a truly diverse experience unlike any other.

It’s your move now. Go solo, go with a friend, a partner – heck, bring the whole family if you like. With travel deals THIS good, you need to jump on one of these flights, stat. After all, spontaneous wanderlust is a whim that should always be rewarded.

KLM Dream Deals through Europe and The Americas start from IDR 9,900,000 from Jakarta. Book your flight now through

This article is proudly sponsored by KLM.


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