Do you love the flowers as much as we love them? Then you should appreciate these 5 incredible flower festivals around the world. Showcasing nature’s beauty, they celebrate local cultures and provide unforgettable experiences to the people who visit them.
Flower Festivals Around the World
Flower Parade Corso Zundert in the Netherlands
If you enjoy art as much as you enjoy flowers, then the Corso parade in Zundert is the one you don’t want to miss. The only flower festival that perfectly marries both worlds, contemporary art and floristry, it celebrates the work of Holland’s best florists with an emphasis on new design. Famous for its creativity and scope, it annually attracts over a half a million people. They all flood a tiny town called Zundert in the Netherlands, Vincent Van Gogh’s birthplace. Everyone arrives on the first Sunday of September to see the biggest flower parade in the world.
Corso is not only the largest, but also one of the oldest flower parades. Founded in 1936 as the annual celebration for the Netherlands’ most iconic symbols, flowers, volunteers have organized the event since then. Each year, twenty teams of passionate flower connoisseurs start preparing for the festival weeks in advance to create the most impressive, over-the-top floats you’ve ever seen. Mystical animals, mythical creatures and futuristic objects in incredible shapes are masterfully arranged using colorful local dahlia flowers by the thousands. Then, the giant floats parade through the town beautifully adorned with flowers and accompanied by marching bands and other performers. The parade reaches its climax when a professional jury names the best-designed flower float and a big celebration begins.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve visited a flower parade before or not, Corso’s floats will blow your mind. And if this is not real art I don’t know what is.
Chiang Mai Flower Festival in Thailand
If Corso is the most creative, and Feria de Las Flores the largest, then the Chiang Mai Flower Festival in Thailand is definitely the most colorful in the world. Unlike many other festivals that happen in spring and summer, Chiang Mai starts during the first weekend in February. The symbol and center of the celebration is the rare and beloved Damask rose, which is native to the city. Locals know it as the Rose of the North, and it blooms in Thailand well into February. But the festival also features many other beautiful blooms including chrysanthemums, gerbera daisies and orchids in Thailand among others.
While there are many activities for visitors during the celebration, the flower parade, which includes spectacular traditional dance and musical performances, is definitely the festival’s main event. The parade features beautifully decorated floats, many of which present amazing bright elephant idols, Buddhist and traditional themes. A true explosion of color combinations made with classical and experimental arrangements, Chiang Mai is one of those flower festivals that can’t be missed.
Festival of the Flowers in Medellin, Colombia
You know that when something starts with fireworks it’s probably going to be spectacular. And Feria de Las Flores or Flower Festival held in a Colombian city Medellin does not let down. The scope of the event is impressive. Starting early in August, the celebration lasts for 10 days and and boasts over a hundred events and activities for locals and tourists alike who come to Medellin to see one of the largest flower festivals in the world.
The Festival of the Flowers is another must-see. Colombia, the second largest flower exporting country in the world, really knows its flowers. Started in 1957, the festival is a tribute to Colombia’s flower business, and it marks the end of slavery. Today, this flower festival’s main event includes hundreds of men, women, and children of all ages walking down the streets carrying elaborate flower displays on wooden contraptions on their backs. Some weigh over 200 pounds, and the parade is an enormous spectacle. Some displays are created with thousands of individual blooms.
But the festival is not only about flowers. It also features live musical performances, cars parade, orchid competition, horse riding and other fun activities which make Feria de Las Flores the most important social event of the city.
Flower Carpet in Belgium
Quite different from other flower festivals, Carpet of Flowers in Belgium (Brussels) is an extraordinary spectacle made to please all the senses. Every other summer, on the weekend of August 15th, over a hundred volunteers gather to create a half-mile-long carpet of fragrant begonias and dahlias. Located in the middle of the gothic central square Grand-Place, it offers great views on the carpet. Each year, a composer creates a matching musical piece specially created for that year’s theme. A breathtaking sound-and-light show it immerses you in the square’s magical, 15th century atmosphere.
Battaglia di Fiori Flower Festival in Italy
A little town of Ventimiglia, Italy turns into a flower Mecca once every two years. It’s called Battaglia di Fiori, or the “Battle of Flowers.” For two colorful days in the second half of June people celebrate warm weather. They also fiercely compete for first prize in the flower contest.
The festival starts with a joyous celebration with dancing and music. Spectacular floats made of thousands of flowers are true works of art. They make their appearance during a nighttime procession through the city streets. The parade typically ends with a firework display and “white night” festival. The “battle” itself happens the following day, when the people on the floats start throwing thousands of flowers at each other. The onlookers can also join in. They always leave a battlefield of colorful scented petals behind.
Flower festivals are an exciting sight to behold. Whether you prefer art, culture or pure fun there are celebrations that will cater to any of your preferences. So, choose your next destination and enjoy the most beautiful flower festivals in the world!
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