Alternative Festivals 2019

Alternative Festivals 2019 | In this blog post we want to introduce you to weird festival concepts. With that in mind, here are four markedly different events for your consideration this year.

La Tomatina

Buñol, Spain

Avoid the last Wednesday in August when traveling with a tomato allergy to the Spanish city of Buñol near Valencia. Or at least put on some clothes that you can throw away after visiting the city center. Every year at the end of August there is “La Tomatina” happening. This world’s largest tomato battle was created in the early 1940s, then banned under the fascist Franko regime and then re-establish in 1980 by the city council of Buñol. The city’s Administration is the organizer of the spectacle. Apparently, commercial instincts have triumphed over bureaucratic conceit ;) But let the pictures tell the rest of the story …

La Tomatina - Your weapon of choice will be the tomato.
Alternative Festivals 2019: La Tomatina – Your weapon of choice will be the tomato.

La Tomatina in Bunol, Spain
La Tomatina in Bunol, Spain

The WHO might not be too happy about it. Each year 20,000 tourists fire 100 tons of tomatoes at each other.

Burning Man Festival

Nevada, USA

Another really really awesome alternative festival is in our opinion The Burning Man. It always takes place at the beginning of September at Black Rock City – a temporary city erected in the Black Rock Desert. Closed real cities are Reno in California and Carson City in Nevada.

That whole Burning Man thing started in San Francisco in the late 1980s. A few crazy people burned homemade wooden statues on the beach every year. The police had to prohibit it at some point. But the hype surrounding this extravagant campfire was already so great that the organizer relocated the circus into the desert. Nowadays, up to 70,000 visitors have to pay entrance fees. But compared to the 80ies there is of course much more happening: overwhelming unique art, performances, events and crazy sandstorms will leave you in awe.

Burning Man, Nevada, United States
Burning Man, Nevada, United States
'Self-expression 2.0' at the Burning Man.
‘Self-expression 2.0’ at the Burning Man.
... and then just burn it down. Nothing will be left behind in Black Rock City.
Alternative Festivals 2019: Burning Man in Nevada most installations will be simply burned down. Nothing will be left behind in the temporary city of Black Rock.

Up Helly-Aa

Lerwick Fire Festival, Scotland

Each year, 600 miles north of London, a Fire Festival takes place on the last Tuesday of January. Which also means: you just missed it in 2019 :( The “Up Helly-Aa” – The End of the Holy Days – is celebrated on a Shetland Island with the burning of a Viking ship. About a thousand torchbearers in funny costumes lurch a galley replica thru the town of Lerwick to finally set it on fire in a park. This kind of torchlight procession is also celebrated in neighbor cities such as Scalloway and Lerwick. Still, Lerwick draws the most spectators.

Bloco de Lama

Mud festival, Paraty, Brazil

Paraty’s down and dirty version is such contrast to the glittering carnival in Rio de Janeiro! Bloco de Lama appears to be some kind of mud fight party. It’s all about swamp creatures. black mud and lashings of dark. Some groups of mudskippers also represent the ancient tribes of natives in the otherwise colorful procession through the historic town. But not sure who of the many tourists actually cares about tradition here.


Alternative Festivals 2019. By Chili & Churp | © International Destinations |  This blog post is also quite nice Beach Beauties here.