7 Most Popular Filipino Celebrations and Events You Should Discover
If you have the good fortune of having a Filipino friend, then you know how much fun it is to celebrate with them. Filipinos love to live life to the fullest and love to gather together for fun. Filipino celebrations are among the most fun that you’ll ever attend in your life. One of the best ways to experience Filipino celebrations is to go to the Philippines during one of the many festivals they hold there.
Some last a day in length while others last a full month. Filipino celebrations are always big cultural celebrations that foreigners are even encouraged to enjoy while they’re in town. The Filipino philosophy seems to be “the more the merrier” and you’ll often find yourself welcomed in by people you don’t even know because this is the nature of their kind hearts.
If you really want to experience Filipino culture at its best, you should consider arranging your trip to the Philippines during one of these popular Filipino celebrations.
1- Ati-Atihan Festival
They say this was the festival that started the whole trend of Filipino celebrations. It’s a parade that features participants dressed in indigenous costumes, complete with face paint, performing tribal dances and beating drums. It takes place the 3rd weekend in January. In Kalibo, tourists are encouraged to cover themselves with black soot. Often this has been called the Mardi Gras of the Philippines and is an incredibly fun time for everyone.
2- Dinagyang Festival
A week later, head over to Iloilo City and you’ll find this epic street party. Live music, incredible food and drinks and street dancing are the highlights of this amazing event. If you’re looking to have a good time, you will find it right here.
3- Panagbenga Festival
Why not stay a little longer? In February in Baguio City, this festival celebrates the bloom of flowers. There are parades of flower floats and children dressed up as different plants and flowers too. Baguio has some interesting tourist sites to see anyway, but during this time, Session Road is closed to vehicles, allowing for street dancing, flower carts and room to relax at the outdoor cafes. Because it has become quite popular, bringing in more and more tourists with every passing year, it’s advised that you make reservations for restaurants and anything else you’re interested in well in advance.
4- Pahiyas Festival
On the 15th of May each year, this colorful festival takes place to celebrate the harvest. The people in Lucban adorn their homes with a variety of produce. It gets pretty competitive too, with whole homes covered in eggplant, green beans and other brightly-colored produce. It’s very common for people to carry a basket and pick the produce from these homes, free of charge.
5- Pintados Festival
There are many festivals that revolve around honoring Sto. Niño and this is one of them. Folk dancing and plenty of fiestas mean this festival is loads of fun for all ages. It truly captures the forever young philosophy that Filipinos seem to fully embrace.
6- Kadayawan Festival
The name of this festival comes from a friendly greeting with the meaning of beautiful. In Mindanao, it’s the biggest festival, which takes place the 3rd week in August. Like the other festivals, you can expect plenty of dancing, floral floats, and even beauty pageants and fireworks.
7- MassKara Festival
In Bacolod on October 19th, you’ll get the chance to enjoy this fun Filipino celebration. See, the thing about Bacolod is that it is called the “City of Smiles.” The people here live up to this nickname, donning colorful masks that have smiles on them. There is lots of street dancing and electrical displays. It’s a party atmosphere with a huge younger crowd because it happens to fall during semester break. As one of the liveliest festivals, it is a fantastic time to be in the Philippines.
Filipino celebrations truly showcase the culture here. It’s warm, welcoming, fun and friendly. Should you have the opportunity to travel to the Philippines during one of the many festivals here, you shouldn’t miss it. These are just 7 of the most popular ones, with plenty more.
Planning a trip to the Philippines? You should check out a full roster of the festivals there and see if you can catch one of them while you’re in town. You’ll be glad you did!