Myanmar: On the Very Festival of Light

Festivals are the essence of a culture. People celebrate the very reason of being alive and it is festivals that truly reflect our human soul. Myanmar is filled with festivals of all kinds. 

Different cultures, ethnicities and traditions are celebrated in the Golden Land. In locally, festivals are named as Pwe or Pwe Taw. Different festivals for each month of the year and they are all celebrated with the fervor. Since there are so many festivals that no matter which time of the year you visit, you’ll definitely witness a festival or even two. So, on your Myanmar visit, be prepared to celebrate and enjoy.

The whole country celebrated the Thidikyut Festival by raising various kinds of colorful light illuminations. The festival is known as The Festival of Light and the myriads of small lanterns will decorate the monasteries, pagodas, houses and even on the streets. As a traditional belief to celebrate for the day Buddha’s return from the heaven after teaching of Dhamma (Pali) to the celestial beings, this is a sacred time to donate a great feasting to the monks as well as pay respect to elder ancestor. Through the years, the festival has been adapted to each customs and lifestyle and so has produced a wonderful diversity of traditional celebration around Myanmar.

As a typical Burmese Buddhist, it’s the season to give the time for the family on the month of October when a fine weather blends with the clear sky on top. The festival itself creates a reason to gather with the friends and family that mean the most to us. There is also something to remind us the purpose of our life and of the power of our adjoining relationships. Family reunion allows us to relax and unwind in the midst of busy lives and it’s time to make up the mistakes from the past.

There will be a lot of Charity Food Fairs which quite unique and ton of funs! The organizer will give you the tickets according to the number of participants. Says if you get the 30 tickets, you have to prepare some food or things for 30 people and you need to hang the Charity Food Fair Sign in front of your house. The organizer will stamp your house number on all the tickets. At the time of six o’clock, somebody with a ticket with different house number will knock the door unless you opened for it, then he will exchange his ticket with the food or thing you prepared. You need to be standing by until 9pm. At the same time, someone from your house can go around to get the things from other people house. After everything we collected, just the word “wow”, full of foods on the table and the entire family chit chat and enjoy it.

During the October there will be around ten days Public Holidays, the date is set according to the Myanmar Calendar. As the schools, government offices, most public and private companies are closed for this blessed holiday, local tourism is quite busy and crowded during the time. The gardens and the parks are full with local families and all the pagodas are busy from the sunrise till almost midnight. There will be temporary night markets in every cities of Myanmar which will allow you to do food adventure or superb circuit exploration. If you don’t mind the crowds, it can be lots of fun to enjoy like street activity or even a local night market. You will witness the truly traditional and local culture showcase during the Festival of Light which called Thi Din Kyut!

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