Multicultural festival brings Eastern magic to the south of France on the 5th, 6th and 7th October

The International Festival of the Orient is currently taking place at the Palais des Expositions Acropolis in Nice. Running from the 5th to the 7th October, the festival is a celebration of all things Eastern, as visitors can sample oriental cuisine, learn about the region’s folklore and immerse themselves in a culture entirely different to their own. Mixing live performances and seminars with stalls, exhibitions and concerts, the festival represents an opportunity to experience this diverse continent like never before.

The Orient is a vibrant and varied place, encompassing a wide range of cultures and countries. At this year’s festivals, attendees will have the opportunity to learn about all aspects of nations as diverse as Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tibet, Vietnam and more. Crossing thousands of miles and many international borders to arrive in Nice, the Palais des Expositions will almost literally become a continent without any for the event.

Festival-goers will be able to learn about an extensive range of different practices, customs and cultures. From the Chinese circus to the country’s tea-making, from the art of the kimono to the science behind Bonsai pruning, from traditional Thai massages to the practice of releasing lanterns into the air and downstream, from Indian weddings to finding inner peace through meditation, mindfulness and yoga, there is a veritable feast of cultural events and interests on show.

Among the live shows on the event’s programme, there is a Japanese drum band, a Bollywood dance performance, head-spinning contortionism from Mongolia, Kung Fu displays, the dance of the Chinese dragon and calligraphy demonstrations. Exhibitions include traditional Japanese villages, dojos and Samurai swords, temples of the Buddhist faith and reproductions of all manner of important Asian architectural wonders, including the Taj Mahal, the Great Wall of China and the Terracotta Warriors. There is also a sprawling oriental bazaar, selling wares, foodstuffs and artisanal products from all of the aforementioned countries.

Visitors to the festival can obtain tickets from the box office, located at the entrance to the Palais des Expositions. Prices are €12 for adults and €8 for concessions, which includes children aged between 5 and 10 and those with disabilities. Events and exhibitions run from 10.30am to 10pm daily and there is no need to book in advance to participate – interested parties can simply turn up and sign up on the spot. As a travelling event, those unable to make this edition of the festival can follow its progress to Italy next, where it will feature at Carrara, Perugia and Padua.