Following are the list of Holi-like festivals, which may have slightly different forms but are as messy.
- Boryeong Mud Festival
Koreans immerse themselves in nutrient rich mud, to celebrate one of their most popular festivals called Boryeong Mud festival. Although not as colourful, this Holi like fest is an annual summer event that takes place in Boryeong, a small town around 200 km south of Seoul in South Korea. Koreans will be celebrating this mud Holi 2017 this July.
A mud festival is celebrated in Switzerland as well. Paleo, is the largest Swiss open-air rock festival where students and festival volunteers pay tribute to the 40th anniversary of the Woodstock music festival by playing around with mud. In Michigan too, a fest is hosted, where mud-slinging is the name of the game. Participants jump into an artificially created mud field and slop around the muddy mess for hours.
- La Tomatina
La Tomatina festival, held in the Valencian town of Buñol in Spain every year, is so famous that this it was even featured in a commercial Hindi film. Every year this lycopene rich Holi is celebrated by the firangi populace with great joy. Tomatoes, ripe and fresh are spattered against each other, the very same way India uses its water balloons. Although some may view the use of tomatoes as wasteful, Spaniards are not exacting. The country is going to celebrate its tomato Holi 2017 on August 30.
- Els Enfarinats
This traditional festival of Ibis town of Spain is 200 year old. It is celebrated each year with flour bombs, eggs and firecrackers. This celebration marks the biblical massacre of innocents by King Herod. The people of Ibis town, however, have to wait until December to celebrate their Holi 2017.
This festival marks Thailand’s New Year and is different from other festivities. People run around the street throwing chilled water on each other, smearing mushroom coloured paste. Only a month away from Indian Holi, the chilled water is a cool respite from the sudden onset of heat. Thai people are all set to celebrate their chilled water Holi 2017 between 13 to 15 April.
- Battle of Oranges
This is an Italian version of La Tomatino uses oranges instead of tomatoes. This Battle is in fact the biggest food fight in Italy. People organize themselves into groups and spend the day pelting oranges at each other. The next Battle of Oranges will be held in 2018 as Italians have already celebrated the orange Holi 2017 in February.
- Gama Festival
This annual festival of Gulkula, north- east of Arnhem Land in Australia is the most vibrant festival of all. The YoIngu aboriginal community celebrates the event every August. Members of this tribe, paint themselves in bright colors and dance all day to celebrate their ancient culture. This aboriginal Holi 2017 is a must experience for all those who value unique experiences.
- Ice bucket challenge
This list would be incomplete without mentioning the phenomenal ice bucket challenge (IBC), the event which basically began as an effort to raise awareness about ALS but became very popular as Public figures from cinema, politics, sports, and more took up this challenge of pouring chilled water on oneself. This is not a festival–but can probably shape into one as the IBC Holi of the world.
As we are poised to celebrate Holi 2017 with colours and sweets, G’nY wishes you very happy and safe Holi. However, as G’nY readers we would want you keep just two things in mind, conserve water and show zero tolerance towards wastage of food. You are welcome to share your stories with us – we will surely post them here for everyone to enjoy and learn.