The Colors of Travel

Expand your palette with a color-inspired journey around the world.

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Dubrovnik, Croatia
Welcome to King's Landing!

Welcome to King's Landing!

King’s Landing, or as it’s known in real life, Dubrovnik, a Croatian city nested on the shore of the Adriatic Sea. Durbovnik’s stone walls, dramatic cliffs and amazing views make it the perfect seat for the king(s) of Westeros. 960 1280

Image Source / Getty Images  

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Duncan Muggoch, line producer for scenes shot in Spain and Croatia, says it is sometimes hard to film around tourists in Dubrovnik. Sherpas were used to help the production crew haul equipment through the narrow and often steep streets to specific locations throughout the city. Fans will see Croatia in the first few episodes of the fifth season. A soup kitchen scene with Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) visiting High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) was filmed in Dubrovnik. 960 1280

Macall B. Polay/courtesy HBO  

The Alcazar, Seville, Spain

The Alcazar, Seville, Spain

In Seville, the upper levels of the Alcazar are home to the royal family, but the palatial estate’s lush gardens are transformed into the Water Gardens of Dorne in the Game of Thrones’ fourth and fifth seasons. The Alcazar’s staircases are so narrow that the production crew had to use cranes to transport equipment up to a few of the palace’s balconies. More than 8,000 visitors converge on the Alcazar each day, making it one of the most-visited attractions in Seville. 960 1280

Macall B. Polay/courtesy HBO  

Plaza de Toros, Osuna, Spain

Plaza de Toros, Osuna, Spain

Located in southern Spain, the Plaza de Toros is an old bullring and national monument that was transformed into a gladiator arena for a scene in the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Producers picked the popular attraction because the arena’s stone structure is similar to those found in Croatia, another place where scenes were filmed for the medieval-era drama. 960 1280

Cristina Quicler/AFP/Getty Images  

Magheramorne Quarry, County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Magheramorne Quarry, County Antrim, Northern Ireland

While 1 crew was shooting scenes in Spain and Croatia, a second production crew filmed scenes at the quarry in Magheramorne, which is located on the shores of Loch Larne. This small town of 75 residents was transformed into a fishing village called Hardhome. In previous Game of Thrones episodes, the location was also used to film scenes of Castle Black (first season) and the Battle of Blackwater (second season). 960 1280

Helen Sloan/courtesy HBO  

Mourne Mountains, Northern Ireland

Mourne Mountains, Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland’s Mourne Mountains provided the scenery for Dany’s entrance into the Dothraki holy land. Of course, the Dothraki fighting horse statues are missing, so you’ll just have to imagine the iconic gate when you visit these breathtaking mountains. 960 1280

Moment Open / Getty Images  

Doune Castle, Scotland

Doune Castle, Scotland

The Lord's Tower and East Wall of Doune Castle in Scotland should look familiar to Game of Thrones fans. Poor little Bran fell (was pushed) out one of its windows in the first season, when he saw something he shouldn’t have. Originally built in the 13th century, Doune Castle features a nature walk through the grounds for visitors. 960 1280

Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images  

The Dark Hedges, Northern Ireland

The Dark Hedges, Northern Ireland

The Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland have played a major role in the Game of Thrones story, serving as the setting for the Kingsroad. But the area that surrounds the Dark Hedges should be a must-see for any fan, since it has been used to film Winterfell, Castle Black and the Stark family war encampment. 960 1280

Moment Open / Getty Images  

Downhill Beach and Mussenden Temple, Northern Ireland

Downhill Beach and Mussenden Temple, Northern Ireland

If you happen to be rooting for Stannis Baratheon, Downhill Beach and Mussenden Temple in Northern Ireland are your spots. Serving as the backdrop for Dragonstone Castle and Blackwater Bay, Downhill Beach was where Melisandre burned the old gods, issuing a new religion for Stannis’ followers. 960 1280

Moment Open / Getty Images  

Essaouira, Morocco

Essaouira, Morocco

This historic bastion in Essaouira, Morocco, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It also happens to have played the part of Astapor, the slave-trading city where Daenerys freed the Unsullied, including everyone’s favorite: Grey Worm. 960 1280

E+ / Getty Images  

Ouarzazate, Morocco

Ouarzazate, Morocco

Ouarzazate, a town in Morocco, is famous for the Atlas Film Corporation Studios, open to tourists for tours of the many sets left from movies like Babel and Kingdom of Heaven. Sets at this Morrocco studio stood in for the Free City of Pentos, and also served as the venue for Dany and Khal Drogo’s memorable wedding. 960 1280

Photolibrary / Getty Images  

Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon, Iceland

Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon, Iceland

At the Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon in Iceland, the Vatnajokull Ice Cap -- Europe’s largest ice cap -- serves as the ideal setting for the Land Beyond the Wall. Just look out for White Walkers! 960 1280

Stone / Getty Images  

Skaftafell National Park, Iceland

Skaftafell National Park, Iceland

Skaftafell National Park in Iceland was the setting of Jon Snow and Ygritte’s love story, from Jon Snow and Qhorin Halfhand’s sneak attack on the Wildlings to the near beheading of our favorite red-head. The park is open year round for GoT devotees or visitors just looking for a glacier hike. 960 1280

E + / Getty Images  

The Ledge, Skydeck, Willis Tower, Chicago, Illinois
The Ledge, Skydeck Chicago (Chicago)

The Ledge, Skydeck Chicago (Chicago)

Get a heart-pounding view of Chicago from 1,353 feet in the air. Fearless tourists can step into the Ledge’s glass boxes, which extend 4.3 feet from the Skydeck, which is at the top of the Willis Tower. 960 1280

Tim Boyle/Bloomberg/Getty Images  

CN Tower (Toronto)

CN Tower (Toronto)

There are multiple ways to see Toronto from the top of the CN Tower. Tourists can stand on the 2 1/2-inch-thick Glass Floor and look 1,122 feet down; walk around the SkyPod observation deck; dine at the 360 Restaurant with an amazing view of the city’s skyline; or, if they dare, try EdgeWalk, a hands-free walk around the ledge of the tower’s main pod. 960 1280

Michael Stuparyk/Toronto Star/Getty Images  

Tilt, 360 Chicago (Chicago)

Tilt, 360 Chicago (Chicago)

Hold on for your life! Tilt, located on the 94th floor of the John Hancock Center, literally tilts riders at a 30-degree angle for a jaw-dropping view of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile from 1,030 feet above street level. 960 1280

Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune/Getty Images  

Step Into the Void (Chamonix, France)

Step Into the Void (Chamonix, France)

Put on a pair of slippers and step into the Aiguille du Midi Skywalk, aka Step Into the Void, on a mountain peak about 3,400 feet above Chamonix, France. Face your fear of heights, enter the glass box, and get a panoramic view of snowcapped mountains in the French Alps. 960 1280

Jean-Pierre Clatot/AFP/Getty Images  

Brighton i360 (Brighton, England)

Brighton i360 (Brighton, England)

The architects who designed the London Eye will also design this stunning new glass attraction in Brighton, scheduled to open in 2016. Already touted as “the world’s tallest moving observation tower,” Brighton i360’s vertical cable car will have a glass floor, and patrons can expect to get an eyeful of Sussex’s coast (Bexhill-on-Sea to Chichester) from 450 feet up. 960 1280

Brighton i360   

Grand Canyon Skywalk (Grand Canyon West, AZ)

Grand Canyon Skywalk (Grand Canyon West, AZ)

Looking for a spectacular view of the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon? Hop on the Grand Canyon Skywalk, a glass bridge perched 4,000 feet above the Colorado River. 960 1280

Radius Images/Getty Images   

Glacier Skywalk (Jasper National Park, Alberta)

Glacier Skywalk (Jasper National Park, Alberta)

Experience the grandeur of the Canadian Rockies with breathtaking views from the Glacier Skywalk. From 918 feet high, tourists can see glaciers, rushing waterfalls and the valleys carved out by ice thousands of years ago. 960 1280

Brewster Travel Media  

Sky Tower (Auckland)

Sky Tower (Auckland)

It doesn’t have a glass-floor observation deck, but Auckland’s Sky Tower is worth a trip if you’re visiting New Zealand. Tourists and locals can dine in Orbit 360 -- a rotating restaurant -- and will have the option to view the city from the Sky Deck in October 2015. Try base jumping off the side of the tower if you’re a real adrenaline junkie. 960 1280

SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited  

Ostankino Tower (Moscow, Russia)

Ostankino Tower (Moscow, Russia)

The Ostankino Tower is the tallest freestanding structure in Europe, which makes it the perfect place to get awesome views of Moscow. Over 10 million people from more than 100 countries have visited the TV tower to stand on its 360-degree observation deck. 960 1280

Elf911/iStock/Getty Images  

The Edge, Eureka Skydeck (Melbourne, Australia)

The Edge, Eureka Skydeck (Melbourne, Australia)

Feeling adventurous? Step out onto the Edge, a glass cube that extends from the Eureka Tower’s 88th floor.   960 1280

Eureka Skydeck  

Spinnaker Tower (Portsmouth, England)

Spinnaker Tower (Portsmouth, England)

Spinnaker Tower has 3 observation decks: View Deck 1 at 328 feet, View Deck 2 at 344 feet, and the Sky Deck at 360 feet. Be brave and walk across the glass floor of Deck 2’s Sky Walk for a unique perspective of the harbor. 960 1280

Melanie Stetson Freeman/The Christian Science Monitor/Getty Images  

Tokyo SkyTree (Tokyo)

Tokyo SkyTree (Tokyo)

The Tokyo SkyTree, the second-tallest structure in the world after Burj Khalifa, is a broadcasting tower that includes shops, a restaurant and 2 observation decks, giving visitors views from 1,148 feet and 1,476 feet above the city. 960 1280

Moment/Getty Images  

Matira Beach, Bora Bora, Tahiti

Matira Beach, Bora Bora, Tahiti

Honeymooners flock to Bora Bora, Tahiti (aka “Romantic Island”) to experience the ultimate vacation in paradise. Most of the beaches here are private, but Matira Beach is open to the public. After a few hours of sunbathing, we suggest retiring to a rustic but comfortable bungalow over the water. 960 1280

Jose Fuste Raga / AGE Fotostock / Getty Images  

Grande Plage, Biarritz, France

Grande Plage, Biarritz, France

World-class surfers hit the waves at Grande Plage in Biarritz, a resort town in southwestern France that’s also a popular destination for French royalty. Biarritz has been called "the queen of beaches and beach of kings," which is why the town has hosted surfing competitions, including the Quiksilver/Roxy Jam tournament. 960 1280

Craig Swatton / E+ / Getty Images  

La Digue Beaches, Seychelles

La Digue Beaches, Seychelles

La Digue is the third largest inhabited island of the Seychelles. Tourists can choose any of 8 beautiful beaches to visit, including Anse Coco, Anse Source D’Argent and L’Union Beach. Head to Anse Marron if you’re in search of a more secluded Robinson Crusoe-like beach. This is a must-see beach. 960 1280

Logray-2008 / iStock / Thinkstock  

Ko Phi Phi Don Island Beaches, Thailand

Ko Phi Phi Don Island Beaches, Thailand

Brilliant turquoise waters lure travelers to the shores of Ko Phi Phi Don Island, Thailand. Bamboo Island, Laem Tong Beach, Loh Dalum, Koh Phi Phi Leh and Loh Bagao Bay are some of the beaches found around the island, but Long Beach is the most popular and a great spot for snorkeling, too. 960 1280

IakovKalinin / iStock / Thinkstock  

Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Located in Rio de Janeiro, the iconic Copacabana Beach is home to some of Brazil's famous beach beauties. The beach stretches between lifeguard watchtowers 2 and 6. And you may not know it, but American football was introduced in Brazil through a game played on this popular beach. 960 1280

Ribeirorocha / iStock / Thinkstock  

Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Finding a spot to sunbathe on Rio’s Ipanema Beach may be difficult, but it’s a great spot for people watching and to strike up a conversation with friendly locals. There’s no shortage of “tall, and tan, and young, and lovely” bodies on this beach, either. Surfing, football, volleyball and footvolley are a few fun beach activities to keep beachgoers occupied. 960 1280

dabldy / iStock / Thinkstock  

Patong Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Patong Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Every year, hundreds of tourists visit Patong -- home to the largest stretch of sand and the wildest nightlife in Phuket, Thailand. Tourists can experience the town’s hot nightlife by heading to Bangla Road or Paradise Complex. The mercury seldom falls below 70 degrees, which makes both roads -- lined with nightclubs, discos and go-go bars -- a prime destination for partygoers. 960 1280

Kevin Landwer-Johan / iStock / Thinkstock  

75-Mile Beach, Queensland, Australia

75-Mile Beach, Queensland, Australia

In Australia, 75-Mile Beach is located on the eastern side of Fraser Island in Queensland. The island is the world's largest sand island and perhaps the only beach in the world that is a registered highway with a designated speed limit of 80 miles per hour. Nature-loving beach enthusiasts will appreciate the unspoiled natural paradise around the beach: The island is home to 230 species of bird and 25 species of mammals, including wallabies, flying foxes and dingoes. 960 1280

Marco Saracco / iStock / Thinkstock  

Folegandros Beaches, Greece

Folegandros Beaches, Greece

Vardia, Latinaki, Vitzenzou, Pountaki, Karavostasi, Agios Nikolaos and Agios Georgios are just a few of beaches in Folegandros, Greece. Most maintain their natural beauty because they are not overwhelmed by tourists. Livadi Beach is a perfect spot for campers. We recommend visiting Angali because it’s the Greek island’s nicest beach. 960 1280

Antonis Liokouras / iStock / Thinkstock  

Tenerife Beaches, Canary Islands

Tenerife Beaches, Canary Islands

The lovely shores of Tenerife entice visitors to the Canary Islands archipelago, southwest of Spain. This beach town has more than a dozen beaches where tourists can feel the warm waters of the ocean lap at their feet while basking in the warm sunlight. Playa de la Tejita, Playa San Marcos, Playa del Camison, Playa del Duque and El Medano are all examples of secret, off-the-beaten path, over-exposed and black-sand beaches found around the island. 960 1280

Somatuscani / iStock / Thinkstock  

Photos

The Louvre, Paris

The Louvre, Paris

The world’s best-known work of art, the "Mona Lisa," finds its home in the world’s most visited museum, the Louvre. For more than 200 years, da Vinci’s famous painting has resided within the Louvre, a treasure trove showcasing nearly 35,000 pieces of artwork from prehistory to the 19th century. Outside is also a visual feast. Here’s a view of the Louvre’s Pyramid, completed in 1989. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Crown Fountain at Millennium Park, Chicago

Crown Fountain at Millennium Park, Chicago

Experience this interactive work of public art at Chicago’s Millennium Park. The 50-foot-tall structure -- the brainchild of Spanish Catalan artist and sculptor Jaume Plensa -- is one of 2 towers on which digital video images appear. LED screens showcase actual Chicago residents. The water that spouts through a nozzle on each tower’s front face operates from May to October. 960 1280

atl10trader, flickr  

Goreme Open Air Museum, Turkey

Goreme Open Air Museum, Turkey

Centuries ago, monastic communities carved more than 30 cave churches and chapels into these towering rock formations in central Turkey. That was just the beginning: Inside, they painted Byzantine-era frescoes. Today, those works of Eastern Roman Empire art -- painted between the 9th and 11th centuries -- remain a unique artistic achievement. 960 1280

Thinkstock   

Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

The world of ancient Egypt shines in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Egyptian art collection. The star attraction is the Temple of Dendur (pictured here), a temple built by the Roman governor of Egypt, Petronius, around 15 BC. The Met’s other collections showcase the European masters, as well as works from the ancient Near East, Greek and Roman periods, and the Islamic world. 960 1280

Brooks Walker   

Vatican Museums, Vatican City

Vatican Museums, Vatican City

Michelangelo preferred sculpting to painting. And yet, the “artist who did not want to paint” created one of the most influential works in fresco art in the history of Western art: the painted ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. It’s part of the Vatican Museums, a total of 13 museums in more than a dozen Vatican palaces inside Vatican City. 960 1280

Dennis Jarvis, flickr  

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

In the 17th century, the Dutch were among the world’s leaders in trade, science, military might and art. This era -- known as the Dutch Golden Age -- is preserved at the Rijksmuseum, a Dutch national museum in Amsterdam. The museum showcases a large collection of paintings from this period -- such as Rembrandt’s “The Night Watch” -- that explain why the Dutch were among the world's artistic leaders in developing landscapes, still lifes and genre painting. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid

Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid

In 1937 the Basque town of Guernica, Spain, suffered an aerial attack in which hundreds of civilians died. Soon after, at the behest of the Spanish Republican government, the artist Pablo Picasso began a mural-size work, “Guernica,” in response to the bombing – and as an expression of the tragedies of war. See the haunting work at the Museo Reina Sofia museum, Spain’s national museum dedicated to 20th-century art. 960 1280

Yvette Wohn, flickr  

Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan

Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan

This Dominican convent in Milan holds a priceless artistic treasure -- that was nearly lost to the world. During World War II, aerial bombs hit the 15th-century church, destroying many of its walls. Luckily, one of the walls of the refectory (dining hall) was spared -- and so was the mural painting that covered it: Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.” 960 1280

mll, flickr  

Storm King Art Center, New York State

Storm King Art Center, New York State

Nature and art combine in tranquil harmony at Storm King Art Center. The 500-acre site, located 1 hour north of NYC, is home to more than 100 carefully placed sculptures. The landscape’s design was the vision of a retired businessman, Ralph Ogden, who founded Storm King in 1960. As you stroll the fields in the lower Hudson Valley, you’ll see massive works of sculpture such as this piece, “Mozart’s Birthday,” by sculptor Mark di Suvero.  960 1280

Melodie Mesiano, flickr  

Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy

Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy

Visitors walk through one of the oldest art museums in the Western world: the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy. Construction of the building began in 1560; later, in 1765, it was opened to the public as a museum. Among the treasures you’ll find inside are Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus,” ceiling frescoes and ancient Roman sculptures such as “The Wrestlers.” 960 1280

Saiko, Wikimedia Commons  

National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Washington, DC’s National Gallery of Art holds a major distinction: It’s home to the only portrait by Leonardo da Vinci in the Americas. The Renaissance master’s double-sided portrait of a 15th-century Italian aristocrat, Ginerva de’ Benci, can be found in the West Building’s Main Floor gallery 6. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), NYC

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), NYC

Known simply as MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art in Midtown Manhattan houses one of the finest collections of modern art in the Western world. One of the standouts among the museum’s 150,000 treasures is “The Starry Night” -- the famous 1889 work by Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh that captures a view of southern France from his sanatorium room window. 960 1280

Minette Layne, flickr  

Lakshmana Temple, India

Lakshmana Temple, India

Visitors enter Lakshmana Temple, dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu, in central India. Carvings depicting various erotic scenes adorn the southern facade of this Hindu temple, built more than 1,000 years ago. Still, they’re just a small portion of the astonishingly intricate images you’ll see among the more than 600 Hindu deities that adorn both the inside and outside of this sandstone temple. 960 1280

Manuel Menal, flickr   

Museo Nacional de Antropologia, Mexico

Museo Nacional de Antropologia, Mexico

Before Christopher Columbus set foot in the Americas, a rich civilization thrived in what is now modern-day Mexico. The pre-Columbian era is preserved at Mexico’s Museo Nacional de Antropologia. Inside you’ll find the largest collection of pre-Columbian artifacts in Mexico, such as the Aztec Stone of the Sun, a large monolithic sculpture that was discovered in 1790. 960 1280

Miguel Angel Bernardo, flickr  

Spiral Jetty, Utah

Spiral Jetty, Utah

This earthwork sculpture, constructed over a 6-day period in 1970, was built entirely of mud, basalt rocks, salt crystals, earth and water. It was the creation of American artist Robert Smithson, who coined the term “earthworks” art. "Spiral Jetty" is Smithson’s most famous example of this art form. While exposure to the elements has changed the jetty’s original colors, it remains a fixture of the northeastern shore of Utah’s Great Salt Lake. 960 1280

Michael David Murphy, Wikimedia Commons  

Liverpool

Liverpool

It all started in Liverpool where John Lennon formed a band called the Quarrymen with Paul McCartney and George Harrison. 960 1280

SilvanBachmann, Getty Images  

Cavern Club

Cavern Club

After the Quarrymen, the lads formed The Beatles, and from '61 to '63 they played 292 shows at Liverpool's Cavern Club. 960 1280

Atlantide Phototravel, maremagnum, Getty Images  

The Ed Sullivan Show

The Ed Sullivan Show

Over 40 percent of the US population saw The Beatles' historic appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show on February 9, 1964. Left to right: Ringo Starr, George Harrison, Sullivan, John Lennon, Paul McCartney. 960 1280

Express Newspapers, Getty Images  

Abbey Road Studios

Abbey Road Studios

The Beatles recorded virtually all of their groundbreaking singles and albums at EMI's Abbey Road Studios in London. 960 1280

littleny, iStock  

Penny Lane

Penny Lane

In 1967 John and Paul wrote the double-sided single "Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever," inspired by childhood haunts. 960 1280

George Clerk, Getty Images  

Abbey Road

Abbey Road

Beatles fans pose for photos imitating the iconic "Abbey Road" album cover. 960 1280

Visit Britain, Jack Barnes, Getty Images  

Dakota Building

Dakota Building

John Lennon and Yoko Ono moved into NYC's Dakota building in 1973. John was murdered outside the Dakota on Dec. 8, 1980. 960 1280

Steven Allan, iStock  

Strawberry Fields

Strawberry Fields

Strawberry Fields is a 2.5-acre section in New York City's Central Park dedicated to the memory of John Lennon in 1985. 960 1280

Glow Images, Inc, Getty Images  

Imagine

Imagine

The focal point of Strawberry Fields is a mosaic of a single word, the title of Lennon's 1971 song "Imagine." 960 1280

Blaine Harrington III, Getty Images  

The Imagine Peace Tower is a memorial to John Lennon from Yoko Ono, located on Videy Island, Reykjavik, Iceland. It consists of a tall "tower of light", projected from a white stone well which has the words "Imagine Peace" carved into it in 24 languages. The tower is lit every year from 9 October, Lennon's birthday, through 8 December, the date he was shot. Iceland was selected for the project because of its beauty and eco-friendly use of geothermal energy. 960 1280

Arctic-Images, Getty Images  

Venice's Carnevale

Venice's Carnevale

Carnevale, in Venice, Italy, is a huge winter festival with parades, public and private masquerade balls, entertainment and music.  The annual festival starts 40 days before Easter and ends on Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday.  Decorative Venetian masks are an important part of carnevale. A jury of international costume and fashion designers vote for the best mask during the last week of the celebration. 960 1280

Frank Kovalchek, Wikimedia Commons  

Rio’s Carnival

Rio’s Carnival

This world-famous festival is held before Lent, every year. It’s considered the biggest carnival in the world. Two million people flood the streets during the 1-day event that is the culmination of a fierce dance competition between rival samba schools. Each school must have an overall theme and 6 to 8 floats, and it’s not uncommon for 1 school to be represented by thousands participants.  The first festival dates back to 1723. 960 1280

Getty  

Sundance Film Festival

Sundance Film Festival

Celebrity alert! This film festival, held in Park City, Utah, showcases new work from American and international independent filmmakers.  It is the largest independent cinema festival in the US, and comprised of non-competitive and competitive sections, including feature-length documentary films. Actor Robert Redford’s company, Sterling Van Wagenen, started the first film festival in 1978. 960 1280

Getty  

New Orleans’ Mardi Gras

New Orleans’ Mardi Gras

The New Orleans Carnival season officially starts, on January 6th and ends in February, the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras, aka “The Greatest Show on Earth,” specifically refers to the Tuesday before Lent. Most tourists center on Bourbon Street and the French Quarter, but most of the major parades originate in the Uptown and Mid-City districts and follow a route along St. Charles Avenue and Canal Street. 960 1280

Getty  

Winter Party Festival

Winter Party Festival

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force hosts the White Party Festival in Miami Beach. It’s 1 of the world’s biggest celebrations for the LGBT community. During the 6-day event are 9 spectacular dance parties with more than 10,000 guests from around the world. The proceeds from this non-stop party go to local nonprofit organizations. To date, The Task Force has donated $1.2 million to LGBT Community Projects Funds of the Miami Foundation. Kick up your heels for a cause. 960 1280

Elvert Barnes, Flickr  

Quebec City’s Winter Carnival

Quebec City’s Winter Carnival

Quebec City’s Winter Carnival is the largest and most popular winter celebration in the world. Visitors spend more than $42 million per winter in this city of winter wonder. The festival starts during the last week in January and ends in mid-February. Some of the fun festivities include the Uniprix 400-feet ice slide, dog sled racing, snow rafting, the Arctic Spas Village, outdoor dance parties, night parades, winter camping, and much more. 960 1280

Morgan, Flickr  

Frozen Dead Guys Day

Frozen Dead Guys Day

Nederland, CO, hosts this unique, annual festival, based on an old story about a Norwegian citizen Trygve Bauge, and how she brought her deceased grandfather, Bredo Morstol, to the US, preserved on dry ice and stored in liquid nitrogen.  The townspeople discovered the cryonic state corpse in 1994. During the first full week of March, the town keeps locals and tourists entertained with coffin races, a slow-motion parade, “Frozen Dead Guy” lookalike contests, snow sculpture contests, snowshoe races and a polar plunge, for those who can brave a cold swim. 960 1280

Matt Beldyk, Flickr  

Yukon Quest

Yukon Quest

Looking for a fun sporting event? In February, head to Alaska to cheer on mushers and their sled dog teams, as they make their 1,000-mile, 10- to 16-day trek, from Fairbanks, Alaska to Whitehorse, Yukon in Canada. The Yukon Quest Trail follows historical Gold Rush and Mail Delivery dog sled routes from the turn of the 20th Century.  The champion wins a $35,000 purse. 960 1280

WwwBrooks, Flickr  

Ottawa’s Winterlude

Ottawa’s Winterlude

In Ottawa, Ontario and Gatineau, Quebec, they celebrate Winterlude or in French, Bal de Neige. Canada’s National Capital Commission runs the 3-week winter festival in February, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.  There’s no shortage of things to keep people busy. Some activities and entertainment include musical concerts, an ice sculpture competition, ice skating in the largest ice playground, or relax and chill out in the ice lounge. 960 1280

Canadaos Capital, Flickr  

Hwacheaon Sancheoneo Ice Festiva

Hwacheaon Sancheoneo Ice Festiva

This annual festival takes place in Hwacheon, located in South Korea’s Gangwon province. This virtually untouched region is known as the first area in Korea that freezes over in the winter, and the river is covered with a thick layer of ice. Visitors can try ice fishing with their bare hands; view an exhibition of ice sculptures that take over 20 weeks to prepare; and sample raw and grilled mountain trout. The winter festival runs for almost the entire month of January. 960 1280

Korea Tourism Organization  

Valencia’s Las Fallas

Valencia’s Las Fallas

 Visit Valencia, Spain! Las Fallas, which means “the fires,” is a 5-day celebration that attracts more than 3 million flame-loving revelers. The focus of this annual fiesta is the creation and destruction of puppets, or ninots, designed to poke fun at corrupt politicians and Spanish celebrities, or they usually depict satirical scenes and current events. The ninots are set ablaze on March 18th at midnight, the day known as La Crema. One of the ninots is spared from destruction by popular vote. Other activities include bullfights, parades, paella contests and around the city. 960 1280

yourtheone, Wikimedia Commons  

Sapporo Snow Festival

Sapporo Snow Festival

This famous festival is held in Sapporo, Japan, over a 7- day period in February. It is 1 of Japan’s largest and most distinctive events. Millions of people visit Sapporo for the International Snow Sculpture Contest, to view the impeccable, frozen art in Odori Park and Susukino. And much like any major winter festival, an annual beauty contest is held to crown a new Susukino Queen of Ice. 960 1280

City of Sapporo  

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