People who have had near-death experiences celebrate their survival by climbing into coffins, which are then carried through town and to a Santa Marta shrine.

Why: The festival gives ‘survivors’ an opportunity to celebrate their second chances, making it an occasion that marks a love for life more than brooding over death.

Offerings are usually made to Santa Marta, in thanks for helping the lucky folk scrape through their scary experiences.

Do it because: Even though the festival is centred around cemeteries and coffins, it is treated as a celebration of life, with firework displays and brass bands revving up the party mood. Don’t miss the coffin parade to the cemetery after Mass.

July 26
Las Nievas, Spain


Photo: Getty Images

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