Below you will find a list of the biggest local and nationwide festivals in Myanmar in 2019; note that this is not a full list of all festivals, as there are too many around the country to include all of them here. For more background, go to festivals, music and entertainment.
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Mahamuni Pagoda Fesitval
This traditional two day festival takes place at one of Myanmar’s most revered sites, the Mahamuni Pagoda; thousands of Buddhist pilgrims from all around Myanmar come to Mandalay to celebrate with dances, music and theatre.
Kyaik Khauk Pagoda Festival
Thanlyin, near Yangon
The most celebrated festival in Thanlyin, this celebration finds thousands of people coming to the areas surrounding the Kyaik Khauk Pagoda to buy/sell produce, ceramics, furniture, bamboo mats, and handicrafts. There is a variety of colourful evening entertainment including Zats, Anyeints and stage shows.
Shwe Myitzu Pagoda Festival
Every year in the ten days leading up to this full moon, the Shwe Myitzu pagoda becomes a focus of intense activity, with people from all over Kachin State gathering for boat races, music performances, dancing, eating and drinking.
Baw Gyo Pagoda Festival
At this festival it is the custom for pilgrims to cover four Buddha images, which are kept hidden for the rest of the year, with gold leaf; goods including tea and jewellery are brought from the surrounding mountains by local people.
Kakku Pagoda Festival
This three day festival takes place amongst the thousands of stupas at Kakku, where the local Pa’O tribe celebrate the end of the harvest. There is a market and traditional garments are worn for song and dance.
Pindaya Cave Festival
This festival marks the end of the harvest and the full moon of Tabaung, taking place around the famous Buddha-filled caves of Pindaya. Locals wear traditional tribal costumes and the roads are lined with market stalls.
Thingyan Water Festival (Burmese New Year)
Myanmar’s biggest nationwide festival and holiday. For more information, go here.
Sand Stupa Festival
On each night of this week-long festival, a sand stupa is built in a different district of the city. Hundreds gather to cook and eat street food, commemorate the occasion, and pray before the sand Pagoda. Different evenings have different festivities.
Kasong Full Moon Festival
Celebrating the day on which the Buddha attained enlightenment under a Bodhi (Banyan) tree, this festival includes a ceremony which involves the pouring of water at the bases of these trees all around Myanmar – at a time of year which is hot and the land parched. It is also a time for meritorious deeds such as meditation and the offering of flowers.
Thi Ho Shin Pagoda Festival
A traditional Buddhist pagoda festival and the biggest of the year in Pakkoku, it hosts a market and evening entertainment