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The Independent Travel
30 August

Aviemore, Scotland

The two-day Scottish Balloon Festival and Harley Davidson Rally may be half over, but there's still plenty to do and see today: a mass balloon launch with over 20 participants (featuring the Sainsbury's strawberry and other commercial blimps); parachute drops; antics from the Tumblairs Clowns; helicopter rides and more than 300 Harley Davidson riders taking part in, amongst other things, the Poker Ride Competition. If that's not enough to fill your day, you can also have your face painted, take a horse and carriage ride or simply browse around the numerous side-shows and stalls. Just don't arrive too late - the arena programme ends at 5pm and, unlike last night, other activities only go on until 6.30pm.

31 August

Lancaster, England

If a summer saturated with football and cricket has left you loathing the word sport, then the sixth National Sedan Chair Championships and Georgian Fair, may be just the ticket to arouse your interest again. The championship takes place in the shadow of Lancaster castle and, aside from its un-Olympic location, it is one of the most bizarre sporting events ever to hit northern England. Teams of three (two men, one woman) race each other over an 80 yard grass course - the men carrying a replica 18th century sedan chair, the women making it that bit harder to carry. The race, beginning with eliminating heats at 3.30pm, is part of the city's annual Georgian Festival Fair, a time for Lancaster to ignore the calendars and act and dress as if it's 1805 all over again. Race entry forms are still available. Points are deducted if the teams show signs of incorrect deportment and manners.

30-31 August

London

The time has come once more for masquerade, calypso, soca, steel bands, jungle sound-systems, fish patties and fried plantain. Yes, its Notting Hill Carnival time again and residents will be joined by some two million revellers. The carnival takes over the streets between Ladbroke Grove and Kensal Road junction and is the largest arts festival in Europe. Despite the mass exodus of the Carnival's sponsors, the 33rd Official Notting Hill Carnival will not be scaled down - saved by last-minute support from Virgin Atlantic. For carnival information call 0181-964 0544.

1-30 September

California

If the English weather is still failing to melt your ice-cream and you've got a lot of holiday money left over from that rain-drenched weekend in Margate, why not pop over to sunny California for the Maritime Days. Beautiful Oxnard entertains more sand-castle contests, sailboat races and chowder cook-offs than Butlins can shake a stick at. There's even a pirates' ball and shipwreck party thrown in for good measure ... and not a knobbly knees contest in sight.

1, 3, 5 and 6 September

Indonesia

The eastern island of Madura once again plays host to the annual bull races, or kerapan sapi. Now that the harvest is over, the island championships begin in earnest. The races start at 9am at Bangkalan, on Madura, a destination which can be reached by a half hour ferry trip from Surabaya. The grand final is in the island's capital of Pamekasan.

3-6 September

Stockholm

Kill our Darlings is not quite as grisly as it sounds. This short film and video festival offers the rare opportunity to view material from the Nordic countries' top new and established talent. Amateur and freelance film makers from the region's media schools compete, showcasing their incredibly diverse work. Wannabe Spielburgs can get the inside story on how not to make a blockbuster at the discussions and lectures with the directors themselves.

5-7 September

Toronto

In honour of Labour Day weekend, Toronto's skies will be awash with activity as jet fighters, helicopters and military precision teams put on displays at the Canadian International Air Show. Older aircraft are also honoured as original planes from the First and Second World Wars take to the skies.

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