Yesterday was the 70th annual La Tomatina – a festival held in Valencia, Spain, where people get together to have a huge tomato fight. If you like a festival where you can get down and dirty, here are 5 of the messiest from around the world…
Songkran, or Thai New Year, is a Buddhist festival which is celebrated with a huge water fight. Traditionally, water pouring is a symbol of washing away all sins and bad luck, and the Songkran festival takes this idea and ramps it up to the max. You can channel your inner child, dust off that Supersoaker 3000 and drench whoever gets in your way. Unfortunately, talcum powder is also added into the mix, so you might end up a little pasty.
When? 13th – 15th April
Mess rating: 5/10 – talc + water = papier mache effect
This Spanish festival is like La Tomatina, but with wine. Thousands of locals climb a mountain in the La Rioja region to throw buckets of wine on each other and dance to a live vino-drenched band. To be honest, we’d rather not waste a single drop of Spanish Rioja, but you might get away with pouring it into your mouth…
When? 29th of June
Mess factor: 7/10. Wine stains…
This ancient Hindu festival signifies the victory of good over evil. It starts the night before with a Holika bonfire party, and then the next day, everyone goes nuts throwing dry multicoloured powder and water over each other. You’ll have to head to India to experience the real deal, but there are plenty of spin-offs all over the world, including The Colour Run if you like to combine festivities with exercise.
When?End of February or early March
Mess factor: 8/10.
No-one knows exactly where the Battle of The Oranges festival originated, but it’s Italy’s biggest food fight and you’ll be sure to get at least 250 of your 5 a day. It’s not just a free-for-all either – participants are divided into 9 combat teams, the battle takes place over three days, and there are strict rules in place. One thing they don’t seem to have any restrictions over is how hard you throw those oranges, so be sure to wear your sturdiest crash helmet.
When? February 14th – 17th
Mess factor: 7/10
Greece’s answer to the Holi festival takes place on what’s known, ironically, as Clean Monday. Participants are extra careful about getting their clothes stained, however, and come prepared dressed in plastic ponchos and goggles. Where’s the fun in that, eh? They dance in the street and throw up to 1.5 tonnes of coloured flour on each other, meaning cakes are probably off the menu for months.
When? Clean Monday – aka the start of Lent
Mess factor: 1/10 – if you wear the full suit
Holidays to Austria are all about the scenery. Choose where to go...
Tales of tradition. A melting pot of culture, tradition and food in...
Traditional mountain villages, laid-back lakeside towns and musical cities – Austria has...
Author: Selina Akhtar
Published: August 27, 2015
Our top deals tailored to you, straight to your inbox Sign up for offers
Shop Finder Ask a question? Contact us
We're part of TUI Group - one of the world's leading travel companies. And all of our holidays are designed to help you Discover Your Smile.
Registered address: Wigmore House, Wigmore Lane, Luton, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom, LU2 9TN
More from TUI
Terms & conditions
Ways to Pay
Google Play Store
App Store for Ios
TUI Travel Money
Holiday Budget Calculator
TUI Credit Card
Travel After Brexit
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and National Travel Health Network and Centre have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information check www.gov.uk/travelaware and follow @FCOtravel and Facebook.com/FCOtravel
More information is available by checking /destinations/info/travel-aware
Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting www.travelhealthpro.org.uk
The advice can change so check regularly for updates.
Some of the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme.
But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website.
This website will provide you with information on the protection that applies in the case of each holiday and travel service offered before you make your booking.
If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it,
those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.caa.co.uk