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Opposites Attract in Southeast Asia

Korea is already divided, and in South Korea, travelers will find other dichotomies: modern vs. ancient, lively vs. peaceful. In the capital of Seoul shop for traditional crafts at Gwangjang Market and load up on high-tech gadgets at Yongsan Electronics Market. Outside the bustling city, travelers can find tranquility in Buddhist temples and dense forests.

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Boryeong Mud Festival
Camel Cup Australia

Camel Cup Australia

What started as a bet in 1970 between 2 friends has turned into a popular event unique to Australia. The Camel Cup is now an annual celebration held in Alice Springs with belly dancers, music, camel rides and, of course, camel races. 960 1280

Peter Carroll  

Monkey Buffet Festival

Monkey Buffet Festival

The Monkey Buffet Festival is held annually in an effort to grow tourism in Thailand. The festival includes giving fruits and vegetables to the local monkey population in the Lopburi province north of Bangkok. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Pirate Festival

Pirate Festival

One of Louisiana’s largest festivals, Contraband Days is also the oldest festival held in the city of Lake Charles. With close to 100 pirate-themed events, the festival lasts 12 days. 960 1280

www.monsoursphotography.com  

Boryeong Mud Festival

Boryeong Mud Festival

The Boryeong Mud Festival is an annual festival held in Boryeong, a town south of Seoul, South Korea to promote the medicinal and cosmetic qualities of town’s mud. The 2-week festival includes a mud pool, mud slides, mud prison, mud-skiing competitions and a market that sells cosmetics made from the mud. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Matchmaking Festival

Matchmaking Festival

The famous Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival draws over 20,000 people looking for love to the busy pubs of Ireland for the whole month of September. If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll run into Willie Daly, Ireland's most famous matchmaker. 960 1280

Andrew Whitacre, flickr  

Battle of the Oranges

Battle of the Oranges

The largest food fight in Italy, the Battle of the Oranges is held in the northern city of Ivrea. The origin of the orange-throwing tradition is unknown, especially since oranges don’t grow in the foothills of the Italian Alps and must be imported from Sicily. 960 1280

Gio S.p.o.t.s, flickr  

Haro Wine Festival

Haro Wine Festival

Haro Wine Festival is held every summer in the town of Haro in northern Spain. After mass for patron saint San Pedro, the Batalla de Vino, or Battle of Wine, breaks out and wine is tossed from buckets until everyone is soaked and colored pink. 960 1280

Bigsus, Wikimedia Commons  

El Colacho

El Colacho

El Colacho, or the Baby Jumping Festival, dates back to 1620 and is held annually to celebrate the Catholic feast of Corpus Christi in the village of Castrillo de Murcia near Burgos, Spain. Men dressed as the devil jump over babies to cleanse them of original sin. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Oaxaca Radish Festival

Oaxaca Radish Festival

Radishes are sculpted into everything from animals to saints at Oaxaca's annual Radish Festival. The festival is filled with music, traditional dancing and lots of food, including deep-fried doughnuts drenched in syrup. According to tradition, after eating, throw your plate over your shoulder and the number of pieces it breaks into dictates your fortune for the next year. 960 1280

Matthew Yglesias, flickr  

Cheese Rolling at Cooper's Hill

Cheese Rolling at Cooper's Hill

In England’s annual Cheese Rolling, a round of Double Gloucester cheese is let loose from the top of Cooper’s Hill and competitors race down the hill chasing it. Following the 200-year-old tradition, the first person to reach the finish line at the bottom of the hill wins the cheese. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Running of the Bulls

Running of the Bulls

The Running of the Bulls happens every year through the narrow streets of Pamplona during the festival of San Fermin. Hundreds of people run in front of 6 bulls and another 6 steers down a half-mile stretch, culminating in an afternoon bullfight. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Thingyan Water Festival

Thingyan Water Festival

Thingyan is the Burmese New Year Water Festival during which the sprinkling of water was intended to metaphorically wash away one's sins of the previous year. The festival has grown into an annual water fight with revelers using garden hoses, water pistols and water balloons to douse other participants. 960 1280

Ian Kerr, Wikimedia Commons  

UFO Festival Roswell

UFO Festival Roswell

UFO enthusiasts and skeptics alike flock to Roswell, NM, to celebrate one of the most debated incidents in history. The 3-day event includes a costume contest, a pet costume contest and an alien parade. 960 1280

Mike Stauffer, New Mexico Tourism Department  

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