What's on around the world in November 2014
November is a month of events for the whole family to enjoy. There are Thanksgiving celebrations all over the U.S., led by the massive parade in New York City. Across the Atlantic, the English skies will light up with fantastic firework displays on Bonfire Night, an evening that dates back to the 1600s. Fans - young and old - of Talk Like a Pirate Day, Jack Sparrow or just pirates in general may want to head to the Cayman Islands' Pirates Week Festival. Families looking for a more tranquility should consider Chiang Mai for the annual Lantern Festival.
Bonfire Night, Lewes, England
Bonfire Night, also known as Guy Fawkes Night, has its origins in the uncovering of the Gunpowder plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1605. This is commemorated in England with bonfires, often with effigies of Guy Fawkes on top, and tremendous firework displays. One of the best places to enjoy Bonfire Night is the usually quiet town of Lewes in East Sussex, which comes alive with the biggest 5th of November celebration in the worldi. On the same evening, a torch lit procession through the town centre pays tribute to the seventeen Protestant martyrs executed in 1555 during the reign of Queen Maryii.
Typically up to 80,000 people enjoy the Lewes festivities, particularly the family-friendly firework displaysii. The event is organised by local bonfire societies: each has their own traditional costumes ranging from Tudor England to Mongol warriorsii, and Lewes Bonfire Council provide information for potential visitorsiii.
Yi Peng and Loy Krathong, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Known more commonly as the Lantern festival, Yi Peng is the Chiang Mai version of the Loy Krathong festival, where thousands of people release lit lanterns into the night sky, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle. Rivers are adorned by festival goers with thousands of krathong, or small floating ships made from banana stalks and decked with incense, offerings, flowers and candlesiv.
This religious festival originated from the Brahmanic tradition before it was adopted by Thai-Buddhistsiv. The flames and lights of the lanterns represent the veneration of Buddha and it is a time for the region's people to reflect and undergo spiritual cleansingiv. If you attend this festival, be sure to treat the event with respect as you enjoy the parades, traditional dances, lantern-making contests, fireworks and local culinary delicaciesiv.
Brazilian F1 Grand Prix, Sao Paulo, Brazil
7th to 9th November
Brazil hosts the penultimate race of the 2014 Formula 1 season and Mercedes' teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg will go head-to-head for the title. Sebastian Vettel won this race last year to equal Alberto Ascari's 1953 record of nine consecutive F1 victories but this year Vettel has struggled, failing to win a single racev,vi. Great Britain's Lewis Hamilton from the Mercedes racing team currently leads the F1 championship standings after the Russian Grand Prix with 291 pointsvii. Australian F1 Grand Prix driver Daniel Ricciardo currently sits in third place behind Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosbergvii.
The track itself has a mix of bumps, long straights and unforgiving corners that will test the drivers to the limit and provide the crowd with a fantastic driving exhibitionviii. Enjoy the carnival atmosphere of Sao Paolo with a diverse range of bars and restaurants to entertain you away from the trackviii.
Pirates Week Festival, Cayman Islands
6th to 16th November
The Pirates Week Festival brings the ever-popular and notorious pirate culture back to life in an 11-day, family-friendly extravaganza. Attracting over 40,000 visitors in recent years, Pirates Week has grown to become the country's largest festival with street parades, dancing, fireworks and plenty of pirate-oriented activitiesix.
The highlight is the mock 'pirate invasion' where two replica pirate ships make a surprise landing at the George Town harbour and capture the Governorx. Try your luck at the hilarious Cardboard Boat Regatta with prizes for the shortest race, best costume and most remarkable sinking, or relax and enjoy the superb fireworks displayxi.
Thanksgiving celebrations, New York City, USA
One of America's favourite and most well-known holidays, Thanksgiving brings families together to celebrate and enjoy each other's company. The holiday originated from the feast the Pilgrim Fathers held to celebrate their first American harvest, but today families often use it to enjoy the parade in New York or watch American football gamesxii.
Many families will enjoy a roast turkey lunch, but it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without the iconic Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. The parade, first run in 1924, attracts 2.5 million spectators to Manhattan for the 4km spectacle of 'falloons', or balloons combined with floatsxii. After watching the parade finish near 7th Avenue, check out Macy’s flagship store on Herald Square with over 90,000 square metres of products, making it one of the world's largest department storesxii.