16 of the Top April Festivals Around the World in 2022

Published Categorized as Best of World Travel, Destinations, Travel Blog
Jinhae-Gyeonghwa-Station cobered in cherry blossoms

Festivals provide a unique insight into a countries culture, so here are 16 of the top April festivals around the world to add to your bucket list!

In April, the weather in Europe, parts of Asia and North America is starting to warm up and outdoor celebrations begin. It is a great time to travel and there are many wonderful cultural festivals around the world held at this time of year. There is no better way to really experience and try to understand a culture than to participate in a local festival. The memories of the music, food, ceremonies and traditions will stay with you forever.

There are so many amazing festivals in April around the world to experience, so here is our bucket list pick of the 16 top April festivals that offer something for every type of traveller.

N.B. We will updating this list regularly, so if you have any festivals or events you think should make the list, please let us know in the comments section.

DISCLAIMER: This article contains affiliate links and Exit45 Travels are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. That means if you click a link and make a purchase, we make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

Did You Know?

  • April was formerly the second month of the year under the Roman calendar.
  • This month is named after the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite.
  • April is considered to be the best month of the year to look up to the skies and watch meteor showers.
  • April is the month to celebrate National Caramel Day (5th), National Beer Day (7th), National Siblings Day (10th), National Eggs Benedict Day (16th) and National Adopt and Shelter Pet Day (30th).

“In the cherry blossoms shade there’s no such thing as a stranger.”

– Kobayashi Issa –



April Festivals Around the World

Here are the best April festivals and celebrations to add to your bucket list travel calendar.

AfrikaBurn – Tankwa, South Africa

Where: Tankwa, South Africa

When: Annually in late April / early May: 25 April – 1 May, 2022

Duration: 7 days

AfrikaBurn is South Africa’s version of Nevada’s Burning Man festival. The festival is held annually in late April into early May. AfrikaBurn is held on an isolated property in Tankwa, 400 kilometres from Cape Town, on South Africa’s Northern Cape.

The festival was first held in 2007 and over recent years has grown into a huge annual event attracting a community of fun-loving music and culture fans, creators, artists and influencers from around the world.

Attendees of AfrikaBurn are expected to participate and create a contemporary city of art, theme camps, music, performance, and costume. Large wooden structures / sculptures are constructed over the course of the week and just like Burning Man, are set on fire at the end of the festival.

Check availability on accommodation options in Tankwa

One of the best April Festivals is AfikaBurn - giant sculptures in the desert
AfikaBurn: Image by Ash Edmonds at Unsplash

BaliSpirit Festival – Ubud, Bali

Where: Ubud, Bali

When: Annually in April: 5 – 10 April, 2022

Duration: 6 days

The BaliSpirit Festival, held annually in Ubud, Bali, is the ultimate festival for those looking to improve their health and wellness. Offering workshops and music schedules of more than 300 sessions in yoga, dance, healing, breath work, martial arts, sound, music and more, it is designed to truly pamper both mind and body.

When planning your trip to the BaliSpirit Festival, it is recommend to spend more time than just the festival week in Bali. There are amazing pre-festival events to tune you in the perfect mood, as well as post-festival retreats and trainings, which expand the festival experience and deepen the process of transformation.  

The extraordinary variety of programs, combined with the spiritual and beautiful natural setting of Bali, make BaliSpirit Festival an unforgettable experience.

Check availability on accommodation options in Ubud

a woman doing yoga in ubud at BaliSpirit april Festival
BaliSpirit Festival: Image by Jared Rice at Unsplash

Bisket Jatra – Bhaktapur, Nepal

Where: Bhaktapur, Dhapasi, Madhyapur Thimi and Tokha in Nepal

When: Annually on the 14 April: 14 April, 2022

Duration: 1 day

Bisket Jatra, marking the start of the Nepali New Year, is a celebration with interesting rituals. Celebrations take place in several regions of Nepal, but the most lively festivities are held in Bhaktapur, an ancient Newa city in the eastern part of the Kathmandu Valley, just about 15 km from the capital.

Also known as the ‘festival after the death of the Serpent’, Bisket Jatra rituals include the slaughtering of two snakes. One of the most exciting events on the day is a massive tug-of-war between the upper and lower town residents. Also, a huge chariot carrying a statue of the god Bhairava or Bhairab is carried by hundreds of devotees through the streets to the Khalla Tole. The celebrations then end with a chariot battle and the collision of chariots representing male and female deities, Bhairab and Bhadrakali, symbolise ritual consummation and fertility.

On the day following the New Year, locals celebrate the Sindure Jatra Festival. In the town of Bode, a tongue-piercing ritual is held, followed by a massive procession. On this day, children also give sweets, fruits and gifts to their mothers to show love and respect. All adults whose mothers have passed away visit Mata Tirtha in the west of Kathmandu to immerse themselves in the water and make offerings to honour their late mother’s memory.

Check availability on accommodation options in Bhaktapur

giant tug of rope contest at Bisket Jatra April Festivals
Bisket Jatra Festival in Nepal

Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival – Empire Polo Club, Indio, California

Where: Empire Polo Club in Coachella Valley, Indio, California

When: Annually in April: 15 – 17 April and 22 – 24 April, 2022

Duration: 3 days x 2

Often simply referred to as Coachella, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is one of the biggest music festivals not only in the United States, but in the world. It is the first major music event in the world’s calendar and ushers in the music festival season.

Due to its massive popularity, the festival is structured as two consecutive three-day weekends, each with the same line-up.  Coachella is held at the Empire Polo Fields in Indio, California, in the Coachella Valley.

Coachella was first held in 1999, and today draws huge names and emerging artists from every music genre. Well know musicians such as Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Bob Dylan, and Kendrick Lamar have performed over the years. Some of the headlining performers for 2022 include Rage Against the Machine and Swedish House Mafia.

Check availability on accommodation options in Coachella Valley

dj perofrming on a stage to an audience at Coachella april festival
Coachella: Image by Eric Ward at Unsplash

Earth Day – Worldwide

Where: Worldwide

When: Annually on the 22 April: 22 April, 2022

Duration: 1 day

Earth Day is not a festival as such, but it is a well-recognised annual event around the world. The first Earth Day was held in 1970 in America to protest environmental ignorance and demand a new way forward. Today more than 190 countries stand in solidarity to call attention to environmental protection so that our planet is a liveable place for the forthcoming generations.

Each year, Earth Day focuses on a theme, signifying a new focus on a particular environmental concern. These themes relate to environmental education, volunteering i.e. plant trees or pick up litter, and events to raise awareness.

Earth Day marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970.

Exit45 Travels April Festivals Earth Day pexels valentin antonucci Small
Earth Day: Image by Valentin Antonucci at Pexels

Festa das Torchas – Algarve, Portugal

Recommended by Nichola at ‘Family Hotel Expert’

Where: São Brás de Alportel, Algarve, Portugal

When: Annually on Easter Sunday in April: 17 April, 2022

Duration: 1 day

Portugal has some wonderful festivals through the year, but the Festa das Torchas, the Easter festival in the Algarve, is really special. Set in the sweetest town of São Brás de Alportel, this is one of the remaining festivals of its type which would have been popular throughout this region.

Held on Easter Sunday, the festival involves choirs, candles and the presence of the whole community which comes out to celebrate. The Flower Torch Festival, to give it its English name, is one of the most atmospheric festivals you can visit.

The main street through the town is absolutely full of flowers which fill the air with their beautiful perfume. There are cakes and handicrafts for sale at stalls lining the main square. Locals will hang sheets and rugs from their balconies to add to the colour. Many of the townspeople will then proceed through the centre, chanting and carrying photographs and flowers.

It is mesmerising and for a moment you feel part of the community with them which is a wonderful feeling. The whole family will enjoy this festival, and there are lots of things to do with kids in Algarve. Also, with plenty of great hotels in the Algarve within striking distance of São Brás de Alportel, this is a festival not to miss if you’re in the area and can spend a night to really enjoy the festivities for the whole day.

Check availability on accommodation options in Algarve

a street parade at Festa das Torchas april festival in Algarve
An Authentic April Festival in Portugal: Festa das Torchas, Algarve

Holy Week in Jerusalem – Israel

Recommended by Maya & Sari at ‘Chasing Lenscapes’

Where: Jerusalem, Israel

When: Annually during Holy Week: 10 – 16 April 2022

Duration: 7 days

If you love festivals, April is one of the best months for festival lovers all over the world. Just around Easter time, many Christians around the globe celebrate Holy Week during which they recall the events leading up to Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. Although you can experience Holy Week’s various events in many cities worldwide, can you think of a better place to celebrate it than Jerusalem in Israel?

Jerusalem is one of the most special cities in the world, and it has a unique atmosphere every day of the year, but there’s just something extra special while visiting Jerusalem during the Holy Week. Just before Easter, the cobbled streets of Jerusalem’s old city are filled with pilgrims from all over the world.  During this time, you’ll be able to catch an emotional ceremony, a religious celebration or a celebratory procession that take place every day of the week.

During Holy Week, there are five official events starting from Palm Sunday and ending in Easter Sunday. Throughout this week there are also many prayer ceremonies and public gatherings, and it’s just so exciting to stroll through the ancient streets of the old city and feel the special atmosphere.

One of the most exciting events you can experience during this week is the Good Friday procession. Groups of believers from all over the world participate in the procession. Each group wear their own unique garments, holding out crucifixes, some carrying huge crucifixes on their backs, singing and praying, while following the path Jesus walked on his way to his crucifixion. Note that some of the religious processions are only open for the pilgrims and reporters / photographers. However, the streets are opened to the wider public right after the procession and throughout the day you can join some of the special events that take place all over the old city. Visiting Jerusalem during the Holy Week is a one-in-a-lifetime-event that is going to stay with you forever. 

Check availability on accommodation options in Jerusalem  

priests walking in a parade on eater sunday at Holy Week Jerusalem
Holy Week in Jerusalem

Jinhae Gunhangje Cherry Blossom Festival – Jinhae, South Korea

Recommended by Kenny at ‘Knycx Journeying’

Where: Jinhae, South Korea

When: Annually in March/April: 1 – 10 April, 2022

Duration: 10 days

Jinhae is a lesser-known travel destination of Korea yet it is gaining attention from the world for the Jinhae Gunhangje, a festival that happens in April every year, celebrating the cherry blossom. The festival lasts for 10 days and it takes place in Jinhae, a city located in South Gyeongsang Province, South Korea.  

Jinhae was originally a naval port, and the city also has a number of cherry blossoms viewing spots. Some of them are frequently featured in travel magazines and books – including the Anmin Road, a 4-kilometer long road on Anmin Hill, covered by cherry trees; the Gyeonghwa Station, a small train station that stopped service since 2006 but was kept with an old train for photo-taking; and last but not least, Yeojwacheon Stream and Romance Bridge, a wooden broad walk along a stream with cherry blossom on top, and canola flower at the bottom.  

The festival also has street and marching band performances, and food stalls, and hawkers in the city center serving delicious local dishes.  

If you still have time after a day of walking, visit Jehwangsan Park, and walk up to the top of the hill to the Jinhae Tower. The observation deck offers an unobstructed and panoramic view of the entire area. 

Check availability on accommodation options in Jinhae

a train going through a tunnel of cherry blossoms Jinhae Gyeonghwa Station april festival
Jinhae Gyeonghwa Station

Koningsdag (King’s Day) – Netherlands

Where: In all big cities in the Netherlands

When: Annually on the 27 April: 27 April, 2022

Duration: 1 day

Koningsdag or King’s Day is a national holiday in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It is celebrated on the 27th April and pays tribute to King Willem-Alexanders’ birthday. You will find celebrations for King’s Day in all major cities in the Netherlands, but the largest street party happens in Amsterdam.

This national holiday is a great source of Dutch pride and as such, everyone dresses in orange in honour of the ruling family, the House of Orange-Nassau. It is also Netherlands’ national colour. Locals take to the streets to enjoy this day of fun and celebrations. Boats flood the canals and party goers line the banks watching parades of live musicians, DJs and dancers.

Koningsdag is also known for its nationwide vrijmarkt or ‘free market’ where many Dutch set up a shop in the street and sell their second-hand items.

Check availability on accommodation options in Netherlands

the dutch dressed in orange and partying at Kongingsdag Celebrations in the Netherlands
Kongingsdag Celebrations in the Netherlands: Image by Ernesto Velázquez at Pixabay

Meguro River Cherry Blossom Festival – Meguro, Tokyo, Japan

Where: Meguro River, Tokyo, Japan

When: Annually from mid-March to early April: 2022 date TBC

Duration: 1 day

We have added Meguro River Cherry Blossom Festival to our post on the ‘Best Festivals in March” as the date is yet to be confirmed for 2022 and it can be in either the month of March or April.

Read more about the Meguro River Cherry Blossom Festival in Tokyo, Japan in our post on the Best Festivals held in March Around the World

 Meguro River Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo, over the river
 Meguro River Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo, Japan: Image by Life Of Doing

Melbourne International Comedy Festival – Melbourne, Australia

Where: Melbourne, Australia

When: Annually in April: 30 March – 24 April, 2022

Duration: 25 days

If you love stand-up comedy or just like to laugh, you will love the annual Melbourne International Comedy Festival. It is the largest comedy festival in Australia and the third-largest international comedy festival in the world after Edinburgh and Montreal. It is generally regarded as the least commercial and most relaxed of the three major international comedy festivals.

Established in 1987, it takes place in comedy clubs, pubs and bars throughout Melbourne CBD over approximately four weeks in April, and typically opens on or around April Fool’s Day on the 1st April.

The Melbourne International Comedy Festival hosts more than 550 events, both ticketed and free, and offer something for every sense of humour. In addition, the festival encompasses street performances, theatre, cabaret, and visual art.

Check availability on accommodation options in Melbourne

signage for theApril Festival of-melbourne comedy festival

Moriones Festival – Marinduque, Philippines

Recommended by Bernadette at ‘Live a Relaxed Life

Where: Marinduque, Philippines

When: Annually during Holy Week (March / April): 10 – 17 April, 2022

Duration: 8 days

The Philippines is one of the few Asian countries that have rich Catholic traditions

Holy Week is celebrated in the islands in unique and religious ways. Penitents walk hoping to cleanse themselves of their sins, Catholics visit seven churches to be in God’s good grace, and some towns hold parades that tell the story of Jesus Christ and the events leading to and after the crucifixion. 

One of the more colourful celebrations is held on the island of Marinduque. For generations, locals have commemorated Holy Week with the Moriones Festival. The festival features the story of Longinus who was healed of his blindness when the blood of Jesus Christ fell on his eye during the crucifixion. The festival is held during Holy Week and may fall between March to April in a given year, starting with Palm Sunday and ending with Easter Sunday. 

Various events involve people donning Moriones masks made of paper mache. The masks portray the Roman soldiers and Syrian mercenaries that were part of the Passion of the Christ. Many masks are passed down through the generations and skilled artisans create the full cover masks. The masks, along with ornate costumes, have been part of this street festival since 1887.

Check availability on accommodation options in Marinduque

large paper mache masks in parade at Moriones april Festival
Moriones Festival in the Philippines

National Cherry Blossom Festival – Washington DC, USA

Where: Washington DC, USA

When: Annually in March and April: 20 March – 17 April, 2023

Duration: 3 weeks

We have added the National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington DC to our post on the ‘Best Festivals in March” as this is when it begins. However, this festival can be enjoyed in both March and / or April each year.

Read more about the National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington DC, USA in our post on the Best Festivals held in March Around the World

a couple having a photo taken under cherry blossom trees at National Cherry Blossom Festival – Washington DC, USA
National Cherry Blossom Festival – Washington DC, USA

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival – New Orleans, USA

Recommended by Jenny at ‘Traveling Party of 4

Where: New Orleans, USA

When: Annually in late April: 29 April – 8 May, 2022

Duration: 10 days

The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is an annual ten-day outdoor festival occurring in late April, highlighting not only music but art, culture, and cuisine. The festival is over fifty years in the running, minus a two year COVID hiatus in 2020 and 2021, and has featured such musical acts as Duke Ellington, Fats Domino, Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Ella Fitzgerald, James Brown, Tina Turner, Harry Connick Jr., Jimmy Buffett, and the Doobie Brothers. And more recently, Billy Joel, Fleetwood Mac, Christina Aguilera, Tom Petty, and Elton John. 

Jazz Fest has multiple tents and stages featuring a vast array of musical genres — jazz, Zydeco, Cajun, country, rock and roll, gospel, blues, pop, reggae, and rap. 

Plus over 60 food and drink venues, featuring popular local Cajun fares such as muffuletta sandwiches, crawfish etouffee, gumbo, Po’Boys, red beans and rice, and beignets. You can even try fried alligator on a stick. The food tour you will encounter at Jazz Fest is almost as exhilarating as the music scene.  

Your day will be dedicated to music, dancing, eating, meeting the good people of New Orleans, and bonding with your friends and family.  

Here are ten tips when planning to attend New Orleans Jazz Fest (plus a bonus tip).

  1. It’s hot, so dress accordingly, hydrate, and wear sunscreen.
  2. Rain is often in the forecast; plan for it.
  3. Arrive hungry; you won’t want to miss any of the unique Bayou food tour.
  4. Hydrate at least once with the strawberry lemonade.
  5. Wear comfortable shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty.
  6. If you can’t dance Zydeco, no worries, someone will be happy to teach you.
  7. Drop-into the smaller tents and stages. You know, take the road less travelled. You will be amazed at what you will find.
  8. If you don’t like big crowds and have the budget, purchase a VIP pass that will afford you a dedicated area with a bar and bathrooms. Some VIP tickets come with a bus ride to and from your hotel.
  9. Some say avoid Bourbon Street. I say, unless you are with kids, check it out. But, be aware, it is VERY adult, doesn’t smell too good, and you may see things you can’t unsee.
  10. New Orleans does not have an open container law, as long as your beverage is not in glass.

And one more BONUS tip — lookout for the after parties in town. We stumbled upon an after-party and watched one of the best jazz concerts I have ever seen in an intimate surrounding with a front-row seat. The day after, that very same jazz band was on the big stage at the festival performing for standing room only crowd.  

Check availability on accommodation options in New Orleans

street musicians at April Festival of New Orleans Jazz Fest
New Orleans Jazz Festival: Image by Robson Hatsukami-Morgan at Uunsplash

Songkran Water Festival – Thailand

Where: All over Thailand

When: Annually on the 13 – 15 April: 13 – 15 April, 2022

Duration: 3 days

Songkran is considered to be one of the best festival experiences to have in South-East Asia. It is a Buddhist festival marking the beginning of the traditional Thai New Year according to the Luna or Solar Calendar. This important Thai festival is extremely popular with both locals and tourists alike, and is a unique and fun way to ring in their New Year. Just be prepared to get soaking wet during this massive water fight!

Traditionally, water was lightly sprinkled on themselves and others (now it comes in the form of soaking people in water). To the Thai, water symbolises plenty of rainfall in the coming year, and the cleansing of themselves of bad things, and also a symbol of fertility.

Today, the tradition of water sprinkling has turned into a massive water fight (the largest water fight in the world) and happens over three days. Anything can be used to splash people such as hoses, ‘Super Soakers’ water guns and buckets filled with icy cold water. April is one of the hottest months in Thailand so being splashed with water is a welcome relief.

Everywhere you look people will be soaking wet, dancing, drinking and having a great time! 

Some of the best places to celebrate Songkran are in Bangkok at the Bangkok Songkran Splendours Festival, Chiang Mai, and Phuket.

Exit45 Travels - April Festivals -Songkran Water Festival - Thailand
One of Our Favourite April Festivals: Songkran Water Festival – Thailand

Tulip Festival – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Where: Amsterdam, Netherlands

When: Annually in late March through to mid-May: 24 March – 15 May, 2022

Duration: approx. 7 weeks

We have added the Tulip Festival to our post on the ‘Best Festivals in May”, however, this festival can also be enjoyed from March through to May each year.

Read more about the Tulip Festival in Amsterdam, Netherlands in our post on the Best Festivals held in May Around the World.

lady standing in front of a garden at tulips at the tulip festival in may in amsterdam
Tulip Festival – Amsterdam, Netherlands

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Check out our Travel Resources page for the companies we use and recommend to plan and book our travels. Through lots of trial and error over the years, these are the best!

In Summary – The Top April Festivals Around the World

You can find many festivals around the world which are held throughout every month of the year. You will be spoilt for choice if you choose to celebrate at a festival in April as there are lots of both smaller and larger festivals out there for you to pick from and enjoy.

What is your favourite April festival in the world and why? Have you been to any of our list of the best April festivals around the world listed above? Have we missed any you think we should add? Post your tips, comments and questions below.

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DISCLAIMER: This article contains affiliate links and Exit45 Travels are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. That means if you click a link and make a purchase, we make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please see our disclosure policy for more information.

By Peta Wenzel

We are Peta (Australian) and Jonas (Swedish/Australian), a couple in our mid 40’s / early 50’s who have been travelling the world fulltime since January 2018. We met and lived on the Gold Coast, Australia and spent many evenings researching and watching YouTube vlogs about travel and dreaming of the day we would retire and be able to enjoy a lot more travel ourselves. Over the years, a number of events happened to family and friends and an opportunity arose which made us decide to not wait but to instead take a “Gap Year”. We are now in our 3rd year of travel and still hunger for new adventures and embrace the uncertainty that comes with full-time travel. If you want to know more about who we are, why we choose this lifestyle and how we do it, please follow our adventures and see how you can do it too.

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