7 pics of Scotland's wacky Viking festival

2014-01-29 10:43
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Pics: Top 7 fiery festivals

As the world prepares to celebrate Guy Fawkes, take a look at these incredible fire festivals from around the world.

If the terror and triumph of Vikings has always fascinated you, heading to Shetland in Scotland for the annual Up Helly Aa fire festival comes highly recommended.  

The festival kicked off in the city of Lerwick on Tuesday, drawing more than 12 000 viewers from right across the globe.

The Scotsman reports that visitors from as far afield as Japan and Korea flocked to the town to witness the spectacular annual celebration of Shetland’s Viking heritage.

The festival takes place in the middle of winter and marks the end of the Yule tide. Its main feature is a procession of torch-bearing men, divided into various squads, dressed as Vikings.

The procession, led by what is known as the Guizer Jarl, culminates in torches being thrown into a replica of a Viking longship.  

After the procession, the squads visit local halls (including schools, sports facilities and hotels), where private parties are held. At each hall, each squad performs its act, which may be a send-up of a popular TV show or film, a skit on local events, or singing or dancing.

Take a look at these incredible pictures posted by Instagram users

Have you ever attended Up Helly Aa, or any other fiery festival? Send us your pics to pics@news24travel.com, share them with us on Facebook, mention us in a comment on the pic/s on Instagram or Tweet them to @news24travel

Read more on:    travel  |  travel international  |  festivals

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