15-22 February

Barbados, Caribbean

From today, celebrations will be in full swing at the Holetown Festival. Here, locals commemorate the arrival of the first settlers in 1627.

Festivities include street fairs, arts and crafts, music and dance, fashion and sports. Two of the most spectacular and popular events are the Queen's pageant and the floodlit tattoo.

19-23 February

Napier, New Zealand

The Art Deco town of Napier, on the North Island, is host to its annual award-winning Art Deco Weekend, taking place at the height of the antipodean summer. The programme is extensive, offering over 100 events. With costume parties, jazz performances, Art Deco talks and tours, a Bubbly Breakfast on the Beach and a Seaside Soft Shoe Shuffle ball, the festival caters for, er, everyone.

Around 20 February

Malaku, Indonesia

During this week, an annual "Sweep Beating Festival" (Pukul Sapu) occurs in Ambon, Maluku. This rather brutal event is held between two groups of men from the adjacent villages of Mamala and Morella, who strike each others' bare backs with broom sticks for about half-an-hour. Mamala oil, made from coconut, is then applied to those with injuries to show its healing powers which are supposed to include curing broken bones.

20-22 February

Ayutthaya, Thailand

The Lop Buri King Narai Region Fair takes place in the town of Ayutthaya in honour of King Narai the Great and his establishment of relations with European powers in the 17th century. His palace is the centre of the festivities, which feature homage ceremonies, processions, sound and light shows, bazaars and folk entertainment.

Until 8 March

Perth, Western Australia

The annual Festival of Perth is one of the oldest international multi- arts festivals in the southern hemisphere. This cultural feast, which commenced on Friday, assembles local, national and international music, theatre, dance, film and visual arts over the next two weeks.

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