“Join the revolution” in the USA. Don’t worry, this isn’t a rally cry to overthrow the government.
“Join the revolution” in the USA. Don’t worry, this isn’t a rally cry to overthrow the government. Oh no, this is the slogan of the latest sport to spring up in America. They may have ‘adapted’ our game of rounders to create baseball, but this major sport, the first to be invented in a century, is totally off-piste. Kronum is a mash-up of football, rugby, basketball, you name it. Even aspects of quidditch have been thrown in for good measure. Two teams of ten play on a circular pitch and fight over one specially-designed ball. There are only seven teams in the US-only league, but it’s been billed as ‘fast-paced, action-packed and unpredictable.’ Be sure to catch a slice of the action before everyone else does.
Join the world’s largest religious gathering in India (27th Jan – 5th Feb)
Get yourself lost among the millions of pilgrims descending on the Indian city of Allahabad to celebrate the Maha Kumbh Mela. This year, it is estimated the crowds will tip the 100 million mark, which will, allegedly, be visible from space. Only occurring once every 12 years, people travel from all over the world to bathe in the Ganges for karmic relief. Don’t worry, though, no one will judge you if you decide dipping a toe in that scared river of sewage and rubbish is not your idea of a good cleanse! Instead, make sure you enjoy the spectacle—processions, singing, street theatrics are great fun and the tricks by the Sadhus (holy men of India) will leave your eyes watering.
Brrr-ace yourself for a nippy dip in Denmark (26th -29th Jan)
Winter weather in Denmark is raw and rough—you will be guaranteed a cold shiver or two. The village of Skagen is celebrating its 600th anniversary on 22 January, and alongside the Viking revelries, it is playing host to a chilly challenge. If you are a hardy soul, or crazy, you can join in with the Winter Swimming Festival with the ‘Icebreakers.’ After an icy dip in the sea, swimmers will be rewarded by a steaming mug of hot chocolate and rum in a cosy tepee. Sounds more like a gentle bribe to me! Go on, who wouldn’t want to play at Vikings and dive into the freezing sea – 2013 is the year to do something a little outlandish, and nowhere does it better than Scandinavia.
Shedding light on the dark days, Berlin (30th Jan – 9th Nov)
To mark the 80th anniversary of the Nazis coming to power, Berlin will launch a theme year, entitled “Zerstörte Vielfalt – Berlin in der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus (Diversity destroyed – Berlin during the Nazi period).” A series of events will be held throughout the city to deal with the unimaginable consequences of the regime and look into everyday life under the Nazi dictatorship. Among which, the German Historical Museum is hosting a major free exhibition ‘Berlin under the Nazi Regime’, and there will be films and play readings based on private letters. Berlin is a cosmopolitan city, and this year will serve as a reminder of its dark history and the importance of protecting diversity.
Wander the virtual rainforests of Panama (Aug)
Described as a very colourful, scattered pile of crumpled-up paper at first glance, the innovative Biomuseo is the Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry’s latest creation. It focuses on the natural history of the narrow strip of land that is Panama, and this much anticipated museum is as good a reason as any to visit the country. Being one of the most biologically diverse areas of the planet, the museum will have no problem showcasing everything weird and wonderful. ‘Panamarama’ will surround visitors with scenes from the rainforest; it is just as though you are there yourself, minus the mosquitoes. Need more convincing? Brad and Angelina have already paid the place a visit—must be good then!
Photo courtesy of Flickr user King Chung Huang.