Picture a tartan picnic blanket under a weeping willow, cucumber sandwiches, strawberries and cream, some homemade elderflower cordial and a rolling lawn strewn with wild bluebells. There you have it: fantasy June in the UK. Forgive my blog for its UK bias this month, but it seems only right. For this month heralds the start of the Summer Season, and there is nowhere else in the world that does it quite the same way as this green and pleasant land. We have exhibitions and festivals à go-go: the Royal Academy of Arts’ Summer Exhibition opens on 9 June and is now in its 246th consecutive year; then to Althorp, the Northhamptonshire seat of the Spencer family, which is hosting a literary festival over the weekend of 12 and 14 June. If antiques are more your bag, head to the Masterpiece London show (26 June to 2 July), held in the South Grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, not far from Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London. Personally, I would sell my soul for a ticket to see Dolly Parton performing live at Somerset’s Glastonbury Festival, which runs from 25 to 29 June.
Particularly British sporting events also abound this month. Tennis fans have The Queen’s Club Championships from 9 to 15 June, followed by its much-anticipated big sister, the Wimbledon Championships, whose first serve begins on 23 June. We have races at the Epsom Derby (6 to 7 June), and everyone will be dusting down their best titfers for Royal Ascot (17 to 21 June). Speaking of ‘royal’ – and if you’ve never done it before – tootle down to Buckingham Palace on 14 June to celebrate our Sovereign’s official birthday at the Trooping the Colour.
Of course, there’s good June action elsewhere on the globe: Asia will be celebrating the Dragon Boat Festival on 2 June (read about the festival’s origins in this month’s Insider blog on Taipei). Meanwhile Jakarta, Indonesia’s capital, will be hosting its annual month-long Jakarta Fair, which runs from 6 June to 7 July and features a little bit of everything that the city has to offer, from artisan crafts to live music from local performers to a speciality food festival. And shopaholics, take note: the Great Singapore Sale will be in full swing throughout June, with bargains to be had island-wide.
Stateside, the Las Vegas Motor Speedway will be home to the Electric Daisy Carnival from 20 to 22 June, and San Francisco will host its colourful and joyous annual Pride Celebration and Parade from 28 to 29 June.
And finally, I am pleased to introduce Dimitri Bruyas and Tara Stevens, who give the lowdown on what is happening in their respective cities of Taiwan and Barcelona this month.
Zoë Manzi, Editor, MO magazine, The Condé Nast Publications
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