Do you need bucket list ideas or inspiration for an adventure to do with your friends? Good – because we’ve searched the net to find something new and exciting for everyone!

We found some close to home and some further afield. However, don’t let travel put you off enjoying these immersive events. Simply plan your holiday around the event and spend a little bit of extra time in the area while you’re at it. Whatever floats your boat (or tests your legs…) there’ll always be a celebration to suit your mood. For instance, there’s Tomatina’s crazy tomato-throwing right through to Bristol’s calming hot air balloons. Here are ten of our favourite finds. 

The World’s Top 10 Most Weird and Wonderful Bucket List Events: 

Choose from the world’s coolest, weird and wonderful events. These should definitely be on your bucket list because there are some absolute corkers in here!

La Tomatina, Spain

The ‘tomato throwing festival’ returns each year to Buñol near Valencia. The event sees tens of thousands of people pelt total strangers with tomatoes, and as a result you can expect one absolutely thrilling hour!

100 tonnes of tomatoes are crushed and thrown so every participant gets covered head to toe in tomatoes. The excitement ends with the firing of a water cannon, and the firemen hose the town down. But that’s not it as after that the festivities continue for the weekend. 

 

Henley on Todd Regatta, Australia

Because who needs water for a boat race?! Henley on Todd relies on the desert riverbed in the Australian outback remaining flood-free. Instead, contestants arrive with their own homemade yachts, bathtubs and rowing boats to race their way on foot up and down the dusty, dry riverbed.

As you can no doubt imagine, it’s spectacularly unforgettable!

 

Langley Mystery Weekend, USA

Immerse yourself in detective life for a whole weekend as the town of Langley on Whidbey Island in Washington join together to solve this infamous whodunnit. You’ll pick up a special newspaper outlining a murder, with photos of suspects plus a map showing the crime scene.

The clues are there so it’s down to you to conduct an investigation. Let’s see if you can solve the mystery before the murderer reveal on Sunday evening!

Santa Claus World Championship ("ClauWau"), Switzerland

Spectators flock to Samnuam in November for the unique sight of teams of Santas battling it out. Expect disciplines such as gingerbread decorating, chimney-climbing and delivering gifts by donkey.

In addition, during the festivities you’ll enjoy stunning skiing and a party-atmosphere so there’s a little something for everyone. 

Immerse Yourself in a UK-based Event

If you’re looking for a more wallet-friendly event that’s closer to home, find out where your nearest DeadDrop event is and join the Chocolate Run, The Spy Run, the Beer Chase or a number of other events planned throughout the year. 

Bor Sang Umbrella Festival, Thailand

The 3-day Bor Sang Umbrella Festival is held in January near Chiang Mai.  Celebrate the traditional Thai art and handcraft in the shape of parasols and lanterns. In addition it includes art exhibitions, live music, master classes, beauty contests and traditional activities.

The festival is one of the most spectacular and colourful across the world. It remains quietly under the radar just enough however, so that it remains a truly unique festival. 

 

 

 

Gasparilla Pirate Festival, USA

Head to Tampa, Florida in February to see the flags streaming and hear the volley of cannon fire as the fully rigged pirate ship ‘The Jose Gasparilla’ sails into port. The ship is accompanied by a flotilla to invade the town and as a result the town quickly fills with pirates. Expect marching bands, hundreds of floats, funfairs, outdoor stages and live music. And pirates. 

What a time to be alive!

 

Carnaval de Barranquilla, Colombia

Take to the sun-drenched streets of Barranquilla for an explosion of Caribbean rhythms, shimmering costumes and infectious non-stop partying. Children and grown-ups throw flour at each other, while spectacular creations parade by on floats jumping to Latin tunes.

Little ones can be stars in the children’s parade, and the hottest Colombian bands get everyone shaking their hips at the Fiesta de Orquestas soundclash. Join the excitement as the entire city lets its carnival colours fly.

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta, UK

Firstly, staring up into the summer sky as it fills with 130 enormous, multi-coloured balloons slowly rising is a jaw-dropping extravaganza. Secondly, by night you can also witness the Night Glow which involves 30 balloons flash and illuminate like vast light-bulbs to music.

There is a fairground and circus atmosphere back on land to keep the little ones entertained. As a result, even when your necks become strained from the excitement in the skies, you’ll find things to do! It’s a no-brainer, particularly if you live nearby. 

 

Gold Rush Days, USA

In Sacramento, California, cars are banned for the weekend as you immerse yourself in 1850s life. Complete with cracking pistols, horse transportation, period costumes and shootouts this is consequently one of the most truly immersive events we’ve ever seen! 

The event is suitable for ages 5+ and in 2019 will coincide with the 150th anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad’s completion.

 

 

 

Tübingen Duck Race, Germany

This family-friendly event sees 6,000 bright yellow rubber ducks dumped from trucks in the quant university town of Tübingen. They follow the river through the town until, roughly, 45 minutes later a winner is chosen as it crosses the finish line! The prize is holiday vouchers, but in addition, there are also 500 runners up who don’t go home empty handed. In other words, it’s DEFINITELY worth entering! 

 

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