July and August Festivals in Europe

Festivals and cultural events are to travel what condiments are for cooking: without them the experience is much less exciting. The Internet has brought world culture within the reach of our computers, and there are many websites that not only list festivals and events around the world, but also provide in-depth cultural background information to help travelers gain an understanding of local traditions, beliefs and values that underlie these celebrations.

Although there are many European festivals which are famous worldwide, yet some of these are just too good to not get a mention. The Redentore festival - Venice, is marked with fun, feast and festivities. Celebrated on the third Sunday of every July, this is one of the most beautiful and spectacular festivals of Europe. Another ancient festival that has been going on for ages is the the Festa Della Madonna Bruna, which takes place in Italy towards the end of July. This festival is full of crackers, crowd, feasts and eloquently dressed horsemen.You would also love to go to the Ghent festival, which is the largest open air and cultural festival in Europe and takes place at Ghent towards the end of July. If you are a food and football freak, The National Eisteddfod of Wales, lasting from July to August is the right place for you to be. Termed as the festival being visited by most of the travelers around, this is definitely worth a visit.

Here are some recommended festivals in Europe, the ones you won't want to miss if you're going to be close by. These are the best of the large festivals, you'll find smaller fetes, sagre, fiestas and parades all over Europe most of the year, so keep an eye out for event posters and flyers on your vacation.

July and  Festivals in Europe

Festa Della Madonna Bruna- Italy
This is a unique festival held in southern Italy in July. The festival's highlight comes when a Carro carrying the Madonna is destroyed. The Carro is made of papier mache and takes an entire year to create. Making the Carro is a skill passed down from one generation to the next.

Festival d'Avignon
The Festival d'Avignon, or Avignon Festival, is an annual arts festival held in French city of Avignon. Founded in 1947 by Jean Vilar, it is the oldest extant festival in France and one of the world's greatest. check out the Festival d'Avignon July 8-27.

Ghent Festival
With almost 2 million people attending the festival in 2008 in Ghent, Belgium, the festival became the largest open-air cultural festival in Europe by distance.

L'Ardia di San Costantino- Italy (Sardinia)
If you are searching for a popular festival in Europe, why don't you try visiting the city of Sardinia, Italy for some horse action? The L'ardia Di San Costantino is one of the largest celebrations in this continent. It re-enacts the Christian figure Constantine and his conquest at Mulvian Bridge.

National Eisteddfod of Wales
The National Eisteddfod is the largest and oldest celebration of Welsh culture, unique throughout Europe as each year it visits a different area of Wales. Eisteddfod literally means a sitting (eistedd = to sit), perhaps a reference to the hand-carved chair traditionally awarded to the best poet in the ceremony 'The Crowning of the Bard'.Late July to early August.

Palio di Siena
The Palio di Siena (known locally simply as Il Palio), the most famous palio in Italy, is a horse race held twice each year on July 2 and August 16 in Siena, in which ten horses and riders, dressed in the appropriate colours, represent ten of the seventeen Contrade, or city wards.

Redentore - Venice
The festivity reaches its climax towards midnight with fireworks that are set off from pontoons spread along a 400 meter stretch between St. Mark's Basin and the Giudecca Canal.  Since 1978 they have been accompanied by music and are unanimously considered to be among the most spectacular in the world. Once the fireworks are over, the boats head for the Lido where, in keeping with tradition, their occupants await the sunrise.

Roskilde Festival - Denmark
Roskilde Festival’s audience is a unique gathering. They come is all colours and shapes. They are big, small, ugly, beautiful, happy and dirty people. Women, girls, boys and men sharing a sense of companionship as well as the music,made Roskilde Festival 2008 unique.One of the largest rock festivals in Europe. Late June-Early July.

Salsburg Festival
Huge arts festival. Late July-August.

Jazz Festivals
Summer brings lots of Jazz festivals to Europe. The two biggies: Montreux in Switzerland at the start of July, and Umbria Jazz, held in Mid July. Also see: Nice Jazz Festival.

August Festivals in Europe

Edinburgh Festival
One of Europe's best known fine art festivals, mid August to early September.For the opening concert of the Salzburg Festival 2008 there are two extraordinary artists meet the legendary Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra at the Great Festival Hall: Daniel Barenboim, 'one of the few musicians in the world today who could accurately be described as ledgendary' (The Times) and Pierre Boulez, the most significant French composer of his generation, as well as a noted conductor and music theorist who championed the work of 20th-century composers.

Helsinki Festival
"Finnish and international performing and creative arts, while featuring artists, ensembles and exhibitions of the highest level." Mid August to early September.

Puck Fair - Ireland
Held without fail on 10th, 11th and 12th August every year with 12 hours of free family street entertainment including horse fair, parade and coronation ceremony of King Puck, open air night concerts, fireworks display, children's competitions, street entertainers and dancing displays.

Tomatina Festival-Spain
Revellers hit the streets of Bunol, Spain, for the annual tomato fight.The part of the fair and Parties of Buñol in late August, you get to pelt everyone with the excess of tomatoes that appear in August.

Filled with cultural exuberance, Europe is at the peak of its festivities during the summer months, between late June to early September, and a carefully planned tour can definitely end you up in being a part of all the fun and the frolic that the locals and tourists enjoy and love so much here.

Times, dates, and locations of events are sometimes changed or even cancelled. Always remember to check with organizers and local authorities before booking tickets and making travel plans.

July and August Festivals in Europe