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Festivals around the world

Written by Daniel Otero

Festivals & Holidays around the world and recognized internationally


By: Daniel Otero



When travelling around the world, living or experimenting different cultures–it’s important to keep an open mind.


In this essay it’s necessary to address what’s subjective and objective in celebration, there nature, our favourite or least favourite of them all. Therefore, let me begin with the countries I have lived in or travelled too to experiment different festivals.


Recognizing those with international exposure, and enjoyed not only by the people of that particular country, but worldwide.


Beginning with China, this country of 1.4 billion citizens celebrates Spring Festival. Usually, it’s a festival which takes place through February and the country does a literal switch of travelers from east to west and vice versa.  Not only involving those who live in the country.  It involves expat Chinese throughout the world and also people from other backgrounds who frequently join in.

Ramadan, this following festival is celebrated through the Muslim world. From Morocco to Iran, every September comes the time for fasting or pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia.  This month long celebration covers 24 countries of Muslim and Islamic beliefs.

The next one is Hanukkah or known as the Festival of Lights.  People of Jewish background or faith celebrate this holiday in Israel and in different countries where Jews are located in the world.  It takes place during the first week of December.


Last, but certainly not least, for most Western or Christian countries there’s Christmas (25th December).  Christmas takes place the last week of December and will extend, depending on the country to the first week of January.  Twenty-Spanish speaking countries and the Philippines celebrate after Christmas, Three-Kings Day.  This holiday definitely takes place on the 6th of January.


What the world has in a common celebration is New Year’s Day, and this is for all to enjoy worldwide.  Because New Year brings the hope of a new day and year.

Another festival gaining a lot of attention and momentum in recent years is Diwali. India’s celebration, the festival of lights takes place around November.  Celebrated not only in India’s Hindu community, but also worldwide; wherever Hindu expats live and gather.

For me, though, I’m of Jewish background.  I still feel that Christmas is one of the best festivals to enjoy, because I feel it expands and goes beyond borders, communities and cultures.  Uniting people from different countries, ethnics, faiths and religions.

Members of an Indian Hindu family light earthen lamps on a rangoli, a hand decorated pattern on the floor, as part of Diwali festivities in Ahmadabad, India, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017. Diwali, the festival of lights, is being celebrated across the country Thursday. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki) –

However, there are other festivals around our gorgeous planet to be delighted upon and fully impressed!


Taking the Tomatina festival in August (Lin, 2018).  Tourist in towns like Bunol, celebrate it in a grand style by throwing the sap of the tomato at each other.

Another celebrated in Mexico is the Day of the Dead; which it is great way to teach children about death and respect for their ancestors.  It is a way to honour those living in past and never forget them.

With all these mentioned, I hope you can one day travel to these countries and enjoy all the special-cultural moments!

About the author

Daniel Otero

A New Yorker who has been living in China for the past 10 years. He's a freelance writer/journalist and ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher.

A former member of the military with extensive travel to 50 countries and has lived in six.

Lover of life, good food, travel, writing and dealing with social issues.