2. Budapest’s Visegrád Medieval Palace Games – July 7-10
This royal festival in the leafy outskirts of Budapest offers more than just equestrian shows and armor-clad men to entertain the crowds. This is not your average Renaissance faire: for one thing, it’s held at the very real palace of Visegrád.
Life-size chess is held on the opening day of the festival — that’s right, party-goers can hop from square to square and duke it out on a human-sized chess board. Archery contests are open to anybody who comes dressed to look the part. But the highlight of the festival is the Knight’s Heptathlon, an open event where participants can try their skills at throwing battle stars, archery, wrestling, and lance throwing alongside famous Hungarian sportsmen.
3. Brazilian Festas Juninas – Throughout June
Forget the sequined bikinis and spangled headdresses of Carnival. If you want to look the part during Rio’s winter party season, you’ll need to channel your inner country bumpkin at a “June Festival.” Throughout the Brazilian winter, locals party like yokels, complete with straw hats and moonshine.
Once appropriately dressed — think check shirt and dungarees for the boys, braided hair and check dresses for the girls, with blackened teeth and painted-on freckles — down some cachaça-based grog and try your hand at forro, the sultry Northeastern dance whose accordion-based sound provides the musical backdrop to Festas Juninas.