July 1-24: Although Beaune in Burgundy is justifiably famous as a wine capital, this charming town turns into a center of music during the Festival de Beaune, celebrating the Baroque period, Mozart and the Romanticists. Visitors can enjoy a range of operas, concerts and recitals in venues throughout the city, including the famous Hospices.
July 2-4: Seattle’s Lake Union Wooden Boat Festival brings together traditional watercraft enthusiasts from all over the region. Would-be sailors can sign up for free rides on a variety of heritage vessels, and live music, children’s activities and a 24-hour boat-building competition/regatta provide additional entertainment.
July 6 – August 14: The Drill Hall of New York’s Park Avenue Armory rings with iambic pentameter during the 2011 Lincoln Center Festival. The renowned Royal Shakespeare Company plans to mount five productions over six weeks: “As You Like It,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “King Lear,” “The Winter’s Tale” and “Julius Caesar.”
July 9-10: The Weymouth, England, Waterfront hosts the fourth annual Dorset Seafood Festival, sponsored by Pommery Champagne. More than 70 stalls sell fresh-as-can-be seafood delicacies and an array of seafood-related accoutrement. Events include cooking classes, wine-pairing demonstrations and the Cross Harbour Oyster Challenge, a wild swimming race capped by oyster-eating and Champagne quaffing.
July 12-17: Attend a different opera each night at Berlin’s Komische Oper during the Comic Opera Festival. This year, the festival includes performances of “The White Horse Inn” (Benatzky), “Salome” (Strauss), “Rusalka” (Dvořák), “Idomeneo” (Mozart), “Dialogues of the Carmelites” (Poulenc) and “The Mastersingers of Nuremberg” (Wagner).
July 17: The Gion Matsuri festival in Kyoto climaxes today with the Yamaboko-Junko procession, an event dating back 1,100 years. Thirty-two giant, towering floats parade through the city in a massive spectacle. Each float features elaborate decorations; one even displays 500-year-old tapestries.
July 23 – August 10: An impressive natural amphitheater (complete with waterfall) in Québec City’s Parc de la Chute-Montmorency serves as a memorable backdrop for the annual Loto-Québec International Fireworks Competition. On Wednesday and Saturday evenings, various international teams compete to put on the most spectacular pyrotechnic display. The grand finale on August 10 is sure to be particularly exciting.
July 28-29: Peruvians celebrate their independence over two days, culminating with a grand military parade in downtown Lima.
July 28-31: One of South Africa’s largest food and wine events, the Stellenbosch Wine Festival is a “joyous experience of all things epicurean.” Attendees can sample more than 500 Stellenbosch wines while nibbling gourmet cuisine prepared by top chefs.