Fireworks have been a quintessential part of most of our celebrations for centuries now. As the world is slowly wriggling out of the pandemic, the possibility of celebrating our special events in their absolute grandeur looms brighter. Ever since the last New Year’s Eve, which I celebrated onboard one of the popular New Year’s Eve cruises in Sydney, I have had this burning desire to see all the famous event fireworks around the world. It was super cool to watch the lights shoot up into the skies at midnight, surrounded by numerous illuminated new year cruises and buildings. Ah…such an irresistible sight it was! I would’ve never imagined myself to be a lover of fireworks if it weren’t for the Sydney NYE celebrations.
A few days ago, I jotted down a list of events and places I hope to see in the coming years. As much as I love travelling on my own, I would want you all to be a part of my travel shenanigans. Here’s a look-see into my wishlist of fireworks destinations around the world.
The Yonshakudama, Japan
Launched every year during the Katakai-Matsuri Festival, the Yonshakudama is touted to be the world’s largest fireworks display. This autumn event takes place in September every year in Katakai in Japan. The fireworks festival began as a tribute to all kinds of celebrations within the community, such as birthdays, weddings, business success and the like. The festival takes place from the morning on the festival day culminating with the impressive fireworks. The fireworks are believed to be made up of 10,000lbs explosives with a bloom diametre of approx. 2,400ft. This display is even featured in the Guinness Book of Records.
Fourth of July, the USA
Independence Day in the USA is steeped in patriotism and tradition, and at the heart of it all lies the fireworks, flags and hotdogs. Although I have heard a lot about the day’s events, it was only recently that I learnt about the grand annual fireworks that happen over the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. And within no time, I had told myself that I’d travel to the USA to watch this magnificent spectacle. Honestly, I can’t wait to see it!
Lunar New Year, China
Did you know….the origin of fireworks trails back to China 200 B.C.? Legend has it that the fireworks were created when the Liyuan people tossed bamboo stalks into pits of fire, which produced unusually bright and attractive flames. With the advent of gunpowder, the Chinese invention of pyrotechnics really took off. Today, the Lunar New Year or the Chinese New Year is observed across the globe, the biggest celebrations taking place in places like Beijing, parts of America, Hanoi and in all parts of the world with Asian communities.
The Tradition of Dashuhua, China
Celebrated in the Middle Kingdom, China, Dashuhua is a long-standing tradition that was developed by blacksmiths some 500 years ago. Today, it has been listed as an example of intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO. A spectacular shower of sparks is created when a powerful and risky launch of molten iron is poured over a cold wall. It is indeed a wonderful art form carried out during the Lantern Festival.
New Year’s Eve, Rio de Janeiro
Of all the things that I’ve marked ‘unmissable’, NYE in Rio comes in my top 5. The mesmerising fireworks is one of the biggest and the most beautiful in the world and I sure don’t want to miss it! The electric and joyful atmosphere at the festival combined with the many exciting activities transform the Copacabana beach into a sea of colours, music and upbeat vibes. Some of the most interesting activities you will find here are a blend of many traditions and experiences from different parts of the world.
I’m sure this list may appear very basic, but experiencing each event first hand is what will make all the difference. I’m making my plans already… are you up for it too?