September not only marks the beginning of the fall season, but it also signals the commencement of significant cultural celebrations around the world. From the deserts of North America to coastlines in Africa, there are numerous international festivals taking place during this autumnal month.
Explore These Interesting World Festivals This Fall
1. Festival Internazionale di Danza nei Paesaggi Urbani, Rome, Italy
Dates: early September
Known in English as the International Urban Theatre Festival, this annual event honors the art of theatre by transforming arbitrary urban spaces into stages. Theatre groups and actors carry out unpredictable performances in mundane areas of the city such as sidewalks and street corners to entertain passersby.
2. Lake of Stars Festival, Bandawe, Malawi
Dates: three days during late September
The festival began in 2003 to promote Malawian culture and encourage international tourism. This event has proved to be a success since the most recent festivals each garnered over $1 million for the local economy. Lake of Stars Festival showcases musical, dramatic, and artistic performances by emerging and recognized talent from Malawi as well as other countries.
3. Fiestas Patrias, Chile
Dates: September 18 and 19
Chile celebrates its national day of independence annually on September 18 and holds a military parade on the following day. Although only two days are officially recognized as holidays, festivities often last for an entire week with businesses closing for several days in observance. The joyous event features barbecues, dances, and rodeos. O'Higgins Park in Santiago is a popular spot to partake in the Fiestas Patrias activities as it is home to La Grandiosa Bertita, one of Chile’s oldest fondas where food, drink, and performances are offered during the holiday.
4. Kishiwada Danjiri Matsuri, Osaka, Japan
Dates: the Saturday and Sunday prior to Respect for the Aged Day in September
Originating in 1703 as a means to pay homage to Shinto gods for a bountiful harvest, this Japanese festival at the Kishiwada Castle in Osaka involves participants enthusiastically wheeling around danjiri, bulky wooden carts carrying a portable shrine. Due to the zealous and vivacious nature of this celebration, numerous accidents and even several deaths have occurred during past festivals.
5. Festa des Vermar, Binissalem, Mallorca, Spain
Dates: last weekend in September
Ever since the Ancient Romans historically introduced the island to grape cultivation and wine production, the wine industry has become an integral part of this region’s culture and economy. The highlights of the annual Festa des Vermar include tasty wine, music, and the beloved yet messy Grape Battle.
6. Curaçao Pride, Willemstad, Curaçao
Dates: late September
Spanning over the course of an entire week, Curaçao Pride welcomes allies and members of the LGBTQIA community to celebrate via a pride walk, parade, and plenty of parties filled with dancing and DJs. The event began in 2013 and has been organized annually by a group of volunteers who strive to raise awareness regarding the rights and equality issues of the LGBTQIA community in the Caribbean.
7. Burning Man, Black Rock City, Nevada, United States
Dates: the final Sunday in August until the first Monday in September
This yearly experimental arts and community event was inaugurated in 1986. The festival’s name derives from its tradition of setting a gigantic wooden figure on fire; the statue symbolizes “the Man.” Burning Man upholds 10 essential principles which include “radical” self-expression, inclusion, and civic responsibility.
8. Fetu Afahye, Cape Coast, Ghana
Dates: early September
In the past, a deadly disease took the lives of many of the people of Oguaa, so the community prayed to the gods to eradicate the plague. Their prayers were answered, so the Cape Coast chiefs and people continue to celebrate Fetu Afahye annually as a way to ward off another epidemic and keep their town clean. The colorful festival features energetic drumming, dancing, and vibrant parades.
9. Hills Garlic Festival, New Denver, British Columbia, Canada
Dates: second Sunday in September
This breathtaking festival pays tribute to garlic by hosting themed contests and more than 100 local vendors selling goods and crafts like pottery, garlic wreaths, and scrumptious food. The competitions involve determining the heaviest garlic clove and best poem inspired by garlic.
10. Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival, Lisdoonvarna, Ireland
Dates: the entire month of September
The town of Lisdoonvarna annually attracts tens of thousands of hopeful singles in Europe with its renowned matchmaking event. Replete with speed dating, fortune telling, pub crawls, and much more, this Irish festival offers an opportunity for hopeless romantics to fulfill love-related ambitions.
This article was written by Justina Tran.