Event-o-Rama: 5 Must-Dos in January

There are some amazing events on tap all over the world, all the time. Here’s a taste of what you can see and do in January: 

  • Embrace winter in its frigid glory at the 31st annual Harbin International Ice & Snow Sculpture Festival (January 5-February 25) in northeastern China. This epic extravaganza is the largest of its kind in the world and features snow sculptures, ice skating, and full-size buildings made entirely of ice pulled from the Songhua River.
  • Forget just one little drummer boy. See thousands at La Tamborrada (January 20). The yearly event in San Sebastián, Spain, pays homage to the city’s patron saint with 24 hours of rhythmic merry-making culminating in a parade of Basque drummers dressed as soldiers and bakers. Just make sure you show up well-rested (and bring your earplugs), as the festivities kick off at midnight.
  • Didn’t get your fill of drumming in Spain? Head to Iloilo City, Philippines, for the Dinagyang Festival (January 25)—a thanksgiving celebration honoring Santo Niño (Baby Jesus). During the annual event, the city’s version of the Ati-Atihan festival, Iloilo’s streets come to life as thousands of locals and visitors alike feast, dance, and take in the colorful procession.
  • Enjoy a Rocky Mountain treat at the Winter SnowDays celebration (January 10-February 8). The month-long festival held each year in Canada’s Banff National Park is jam-packed with cold-weather activities—from an ice-carving competition to sleigh rides—making this the perfect winter getaway for the entire family.
  • What do you get when you mix an Aboriginal dreamtime myth with electronic music? Australia’s Rainbow Serpent Festival (January 23-26)  in Lexton, Victoria, that’s what. This international celebration of music and dance attracts upwards of 10,000 people each year for an open-air concert you won’t soon forget.

What would you add to the list? Let us know what we’re missing by leaving a comment below.



  1. Tyler Metcalfe
    January 27, 2015, 11:07 am

    Thanks for the suggestion Maxime! Our editors will consider this for next year!

  2. Maxime Ritchot
    Gatineau, Québec, Canada
    January 8, 2015, 10:45 am

    One day you should try out Canada’s National Capital Region Winter Beerfest occuring January 30-31, 2015 which is more than 100 Beers, more than 25 Breweries and has host more than 10K people last year. Definitevly a great occasion to have a cold beer in warm settings!!! the philosophy behind the Winter Beerfest: warm up and tame the January artic cold. Come together, under the protection of the totem poles in the Grand Hall of the Canadian Museum of History, and tame the great spirits. Listen and participate in sing-alongs around an outdoor bonfire, relax in the yurt, letting yourself be lulled by the music, while enjoying great beer and feasting on sumptuous appetizers…. A heart-warming beer-loving experience!