The highlight of 1988's crowded travel calendar may be Australia's yearlong celebration of its founding 200 years ago. But 1988 also marks the 1,000th birthday of the city of Dublin. And to keep travelers on the move, there are the winter and summer Olympic games and the two U.S. political conventions. Among this year's big travel events:
Winter Olympics, Calgary. The folks up north have blended the traditional winter sports competitions with a major performing arts festival focusing on Canada's cultural achievements. Feb. 13-28.
Europe's "cultural capital," West Berlin. Each year, one city in Europe is dubbed Europe's cultural capital, and this year West Berlin is honored. Throughout the year, but especially in the summer, special arts events are staged by many of the continent's leading performing artists and groups.
350th anniversary of the first Swedish settlement in America, Wilmington. In 1638, a group of Swedish settlers under Peter Minuit founded what has become Delaware's largest city. To commemorate the event, Wilmington is throwing a yearlong celebration. The Swedish king and queen are expected to make an official visit in April.
Glasgow Garden Festival '88. Glasgow bills the festival as one of Scotland's biggest events of the century. Some 120 acres on the south bank of the River Clyde have been set aside for both flower exhibits and a family amusement center with thrill rides and novelty transport systems. April through September.
Israel's 40th-Year Independence Celebrations. April 21 is Israel's 40th Independence Day, to be celebrated nationwide with special ceremonies. Throughout the year, however, there will be a full schedule of music and dance. A highlight is the staging of Verdi's biblical opera "Nabucco" with a cast of 600, May 15-29 at the Sultan's Pool in Jerusalem.
International Festival of the Arts, New York. From Puccini to Stephen Sondheim, New York's first International Festival of the Arts this summer will highlight the cultural achievements of the 20th century. Some 400 events are scheduled in concert halls, parks and theaters throughout the city. June 11 through July 11.
400th anniversary of the Spanish Armada. This British event commemorates Sir Francis Drake's victory over the Spanish fleet in 1588. There will be a reenactment of the battle off Plymouth in July, and the castles of the south coast and the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich are staging special Armada exhibits during the summer.
Dublin Millennium. The official birthday date is July 10, celebrated with a reenactment of an 18th-century Lord Mayor's Parade around the old walls of Dublin, a big party in Phoenix Park and the release of 100,000 balloons. But there will be arts and entertainment events throughout the year, including a millennium parade on St. Patrick's Day, March 17, focusing on the history of the city.
Democratic National Convention, Atlanta. The candidates, the delegates and the media will gather in the Georgia capital from July 18-21 to choose the Democratic presidential and vice presidential nominees.
Republican National Convention, New Orleans. The GOP delegates head for one of the country's liveliest and loveliest cities to pick their nominees, Aug. 15-18.
Summer Olympics, Seoul. Has it really been four years since the Los Angeles Olympics? World-class pageantry and athletics in the South Korean capital from Sept. 17 to Oct. 2.