You’d think that New Year was well and truly done by now, but amongst our things to do around this world this April are two more New Year celebrations. There are also demonic spirits hiding up ladies’ skirts, and — we can’t forget — the yams.

Trelawny Yam Festival

Albert Town, Jamaica: April 1

Easter Monday is yam day in Trelawny, Jamaica! The yam festival celebrates the ubiquitous root vegetable by showcasing its usage in all sorts of dishes, as well an amazing variety of creative byproducts and other uses. Thousands of people take part each year, but it’s not something to titilate my tastebuds… Maybe you just have to be there.

You can see why they deserve their own festival, right?
You can see why they deserve their own festival, right?

Carnaval Des Soufflets

Nontron, France: April 6-7

How do you purify a town from evil spirits? With bellows of course! It’s important to blow those demons away, whether they’re hiding under your neighbours’ shirts or their daughter’s skirt.

That was the thinking of the monks of Nontron in the middle ages, and today… Well, it’s an excuse for a bit of fun. Get dressed up in a nightshirt and cap, add some clogs and a mask, and don’t forget your bellows.

Those costumes are awesome.
Those costumes are awesome.

Boun Pi Mai (Lao New Year)

Laos: April 13-15

It’s a bit late in the year, but Laos celebrates the new year right now! While the public holidays only stretch for three days, you’ll find most people across the country celebrating all week.

This is an important time for the mainly-Buddhist country: offerings are made and Buddha statues are removed from their altars and temples for cleaning. The spin-off is that water is also used to ‘clean’ passersby, so make sure your electronics are well-protected if you’re in Southeast Asia this week. And bring your own water pistols.

You might get a little damp during the festivities.
You might get a little damp during the festivities.

Pahela Baishakh, the Bengali New Year

Bangladesh: April 14

The New Years celebrations in Bangladesh are noisy, vibrant, and… commercial. The big sales are a cause for celebration for many punters, but Pahela Baishakh is an ancient celebration of the Bangla New Year. Everyone dresses up to enjoy the fairs, which sell a variety of toys and dolls (among other things) and you’ll be entertained by singers and puppet shows.

Owls are lucky in the Bengali new year.
Owls are lucky in the Bengali new year.

If you’ve got photos or a story to share about any of these events, we’d love to share them with the Indie Travel Podcast Community. Email us today, or send a direct message to us @admin.

What are you up to in April? Doing something better than this? Tell us in the comments, and make us all jealous.

Your thoughts on "Best things to do in April 2013"

  • I'd love to experience the Lao New Year, but this April we'll be in Buenos Aires...staying for more or less the whole month. It'll be interesting to see how Easter is celebrated here, if it's at all noticeable (I'm guessing it will be!)

    on March 18, 2013 at 7:53 pm Reply
    • Easter is amazing in so many parts of South America, I'm sure Buenos Aires can do it right as well! Are you guys having fun out there? Getting over the cost+culture shock?

      on March 19, 2013 at 12:58 pm Reply
      • The prices in Uruguay are kind of insane! We're not quite over it yet, but we'll be couchsurfing soon, which will help us relax in terms of spending a bit. Argentina's not too bad, though. It's a lovely place, so we're really looking forward to being back in BA!

        on March 20, 2013 at 11:32 am
  • I know there are also sainig trips through Adriatic sea with Eastern discounts. Also very nice vacation, but I guess it depends on the weather.

    on March 29, 2013 at 11:02 am Reply
    • Yeah, it's a cold spring in Europe right now, so the water isn't the best place to be!

      on March 30, 2013 at 7:50 am Reply

Would you like to leave a comment?