5 hip and holy Easter locations

Priests carrying cross Barcelona, Spain by Joanne Lane

Easter in Barcelona, Spain. Pic: Joanne Lane, http://www.visitedplanet.com

Religious festivals marking the Easter celebrations are far from staid and boring. In fact some of these are amongst some of the most interesting you’ll find in your travels. With that in mind here are five VIP Backpacker locations where you can use your discount card for accommodation and tours, while taking part in some of the hippest Easter festivals on the planet. Continue reading

Australian and New Zealand autumn festivals

The coming of March marks the shift to autumn in Australia and New Zealand and while that means summer fun is over, the festivities will continue. Autumn is an excellent period of events, music concerts and festivity. Here are some of the key events over the next three months to look out for.

Feel free to add your event to the list in the comment section below.


Pic: womadelaide.com.au

Pic: womadelaide.com.au

> WOMADelaide, Adelaide, Australia (7-10)
The World of Music, Arts and Dance has been going over thirty years and still is one of Australia’s best loved outdoor festivals. For four days there are performances and workshops on various stages by musicians, DJs and dancers, plus plenty of good food, environmental discussion and good vibes.
www.womadelaide.com.au Continue reading

Carnival: Get your hips swaying to samba time

Carnival in Sao Paolo. Pic: Sergio Savares, CC.

Carnival in Sao Paolo. Pic: Sergio Savares, CC.

Hey hey it’s Carnival time and that means it’s time to get your hips swinging to the samba beats in festival hot spots in Europe, Asia, North America, Central America and South America. The Carnival season runs roughly from 15 February to 3 March with events cultivating on Shrove Tuesday, which in 2014 falls on 4 March. There are plenty of places you can to and enjoy the last let your hair down before the solemn season of Lent. Here are some highlights featuring VIP Backpacker accommodation and packages you can take advantage of:

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Officially the party central of the Carnival, Rio is literally hopping during the Carnival season so book as far ahead as possible. This is because both locals and tourists alike don costumes, join a Samba school and strut and dance their wares in the parade through the Sambaddome. Small, informal groups also join to form similar parades in the neighbourhoods meaning there’s always a Carnival party somewhere to enjoy. VIP Backpackers has accommodation in Rio de Janeiro, but also in Forteleza and São-Paulo.

Pousada Colinas de Copacabana
437_5– Colinas Residencia Hotel offers 26 ample private suites and also 29 small private rooms in Colinas Hostel.

Room Types Cost Available
Dorm (6) from $24.37

Continue reading

Let the party begin: Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Pic: mardigras.org.au

Pic: mardigras.org.au

February and March are a great time to be in Sydney when the city comes alive with the frocks, feathers and frivolity of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

Running from February 7th and culminating in the parade on March 1st, there’s a month long program including:
* Rainbow Fun Run, February 8
* Find love on wheels – bike rides around the city on three dates: February 9, 16, 23
* Fair Day, February 9
* Team Sydney Annual Tug of War Festival, February 9
* The Harbour Party, February 22
* Sunset Cruise, February 26
* Cabaret, theatre, arts and films at various times
* Laneway party, March 2
* and plenty more … Continue reading

What to do on Australia Day


Pic: StoryBridgeHotel

Australia’s Day is held annually on January 26. It’s a fun day where anything from barbecues to fireworks, flag raising, smoke ceremonies and cockroach races are held to celebrate living in such a fantastic country. There are plenty of things to do on Australia Day. Here are some ideas so you too can join in the fun. In 2014 the Australia Day public holiday will be on January 27.

* The World Championship Cockroach Races are held every year on January 26 at the Story Bridge Hotel in Brisbane. Gates open at 11am. This is one crazy day where “pain is everything and victory is eternal”! Continue reading