By: Mengbi (Sophie) Chen
If you identify your Travanality as a Culturist or a Wayfarer, then June would be a perfect month for you to travel. It marks the beginning of a season where you can explore the world while feeling the summer vibe in the air through arts and music. What are you waiting for? Get out there and experience the enthusiastic locals, rich cultures, traditions, and some of the most creative innovations. These fascinating festivals are perfect for your summer travel itinerary.
Portland Rose Festival, Portland, OR, USA, May 27th – June 12th
Of course, summer is never complete without flowers, nature, and other elements that symbolize vitality. Immerse yourself into some beautiful flora scents by flying west to Portland, Oregon. Widely known for its rainy weather, bridges, food and beer, it’s also known as the “City of Roses.” Each year, the city holds a Rose Festival from the month of May to June, depending on the harvestings of the roses. This celebration of roses can trace its history back to more than a century ago when the visionary city leaders branded Portland as “The Summer Capital of the World.” Today, the festival is deeply rooted at the heart of Portland’s popular culture with its emphasis on cherishing the community values like volunteerism, patriotism and environmentalism. At the Tom McCall Waterfront Park, the city holds its Rose Festival Cityfair with amusement park attractions, fireworks, live performances, dragon boat races and many other amazing events. Get your 2016 season pass to enjoy the beautiful roses and mingle with the passionate Portlandians.
Dragon Boat Festival (duānwǔ jié), China, June 9th
If the Culturist in you is looking for a festival where you can immerse yourself into an ancient tradition, then the Dragon Boat Festival is the one for you. This traditional Chinese festival is celebrated every year in China, and other East Asian countries, on May 5 of the Lunar calendar. Historically, the festival is held to celebrate Qu Yuan, a famous Poet of the Warring States period of ancient China, whose suicide was to protest against the political corruption of the time. Today, the festival is celebrated in different ways. Many eat rice dumplings (zòng zì), drink realgar wine (xióng huáng jiû), and watch or even race the dragon boats. Some people also hang mugworts and calamus (herbs), or make an egg stand at noon to help prevent diseases and evil, with the hope to bring good-health and well-being for the family. The Dragon Boat Festival is a great gateway into knowing the traditions of Chinese culture and history, as it captures some of the best quintessences of the thinkings and the people.
Bali Arts Festival, Bali, Indonesia, June 11th – July 9th
If you happened to be traveling in and around South Eastern Asia this June, then you will want to stick around for the Bali Arts Festival starting on June 11. Traditionally, this festival starts on the second Saturday of June and runs through the month of July, inviting both local and international visitors to join. It’s widely regarded as the largest Indonesian cultural feast as it is one of the most exciting celebrations of the year. Every day throughout the celebration, numerous exhibition and art performances are held at the Taman Werdhi Budaya Arts Centre in Denpasar. The art centre, normally a tourism attraction with Balinese sculptures and architectures, will be decorated with traditional coconut leaves and colorful bamboos to welcome the visitors from all over the world. Hundreds of performers of Bali locals, or even original troupes from surrounding islands and abroad, will be dressed up in traditional Balinese clothings to present the audience various art and music performances ranging from local dances to modern and international art exhibitions. Be ready to join the opening lavish parades on June 11 this year as they will be some of the biggest cultural shocks you might encounter in life. Check out here for events and updates.
Awakenings Festival, Recreatiegebied Spaarnwoude, Amsterdam, June 25th – 26th
The Awakenings Festival is the most vital and crazy festival this summer and a must see on your list. This techno music festival was first organized by the ‘Monumental Productions BV’ in 2001, in Recreatiegebied Spaarnwoude, Amsterdam. Since then, it’s held annually in June bringing in over 40,000 people. Named as one of the Kings of Techno Festivals, Awakenings has numerous fun, exciting musical events featuring some of the most well-known techno producers and DJs like Adam Beyer, Dave Clarke, Nina kraviz and more. Along with famous artists, the event also provides world-class quality sound systems and the most up-to-date technologies to make sure the performances are the finest sound quality. When you enter Recreatiegebied Spaarnwoude, you can see not just one, but eight stages, two of which are open-air, one semi-open and three are tents. If you are a fan of electronic music and blood-pumping summer parties, then join the crowd at the Awakening. Are you ready to be galvanized?