Promoted

Shetland’s “Up Helly Aa” Fire Festival Looks Like The Best Festival On Earth

A yearly tradition in the Shetland Islands, where people dress up as Vikings and set alight to a longship, to celebrate the end of the Christmas season.

1. What do you do if you live in the Shetland Islands on the last Tuesday of January? Well you dress up like this…

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

2. Lots of your friends dress up up like this. You’re all VIKINGS.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

3. PROUD VIKING WARRIORS.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

It’s also cold in the Shetlands, like really really cold, so you’re probably happy to be wearing so many layers.

4. Then you find a torch and set it alight.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

How many torches are there? More than a THOUSAND.

5. You hold it above your head like the proud Viking you are.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

6. Look at you, with a proud Viking beard and everything.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

7. Then after marching throughout the town you find a Viking longship.

David Cheskin/PA Wire

The town is in darkness as all of the streetlights are turned off, so the torches can really glow.

8. You march around it with all of your Viking mates.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

9. And then after you’ve marched around it for a bit (and after a bit of a singalong), you throw your torches into the ship AND SET THE WHOLE SHIP ON FIRE.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

10. THE ACTUAL WHOLE THING ON FIRE.

Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

11. BURN BABY BURN.

David Cheskin/PA Wire

What then follows? Hours of dances and performances in nearby halls, followed by a public holiday the next day so everyone can recover. This is the best holiday ever.

12. BEST. HOLIDAY. EVER.

David Cheskin/PA Wire

Check out more articles on BuzzFeed.com!

 
 

    Contributions

    Here Are The Top Stories
    • Greece's finance minister has resigned following an overwhelming "no" vote on new austerity measures tied to further bailout funds. The country's future in the eurozone is uncertain.
    • The South Carolina Senate is debating a bill calling for the removal of the Confederate battle flag from statehouse grounds.
    • More than 1 million people are expected to attend Pope Francis' mass in Ecuador on Monday.
    Get The News App

    Now Buzzing