Event Category: Festivals in Asia

As the largest and most populous continent in the world occupying almost a third of our planet’s earth area, it’s no wonder that festivals in Asia cover virtually anything you can imagine, from religion and folklore to food and music via the quirky and the downright bizarre. There’s probably no better way to get under the skin of a particular Asian country or destination than by attending a local festival.

Importance of festivals in Asia

On such an incredibly diverse continent where so many different religions, ethnicities and cultures have to co-exist peacefully, festivals in Asia are the glue that binds human relationships and keep people connected to their roots and values while opening up minds to other worldviews.

Types of festivals in Asia

Plenty of festivals in Asia have religious or mythical origins, from the many Hindu festivals such as Diwali India and Thaipusam in Malaysia, or popular Buddhist festivals such as Loy Krathong and Yi Peng in Thailand, to Muslim Eid al-Fitr in all Muslim-populated countries, and animist-inspired festivals of indigenous peoples like the Hornbill Festival in Nagaland, India. But also the more worldly festivals are becoming increasingly popular in Asia, whether they are art and literary events such as the Rainforest Fringe Festival in Borneo and the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival in Bali, or music and food happenings like Singapore’s Ultra Music Festival and the Cheung Chau Bun Festival in Hong Kong. But often a country’s most important event is their culture’s New Year, from Nowruz in many Central Asian countries and Tsagaan Sar in Mongolia, to Chinese New Year amongst all ethnic Chinese across Asia and the fun-filled water battles of Songkran in Thailand.  Others are simply nature’s gift such as the Cherry Blossom Season Japan, or honour fertility like Kanamara Matsuri or Japan Penis Festival. And for some serious winter fun go to China for the Harbin Ice Festival or Mongolia for its Khövsgöl Ice Festival.

Dates of festivals in Asia

Plenty of Asia’s festivals don’t have a fixed date and hence are celebrated at slightly different times each year. That’s because they are often based on lunar calendars like is the case with the Sky Lantern Festival Taiwan, or follow agricultural practices related to planting and harvest seasons such as the outrageous Bun Bang Fai or Rocket Festival Thailand. So don’t forget to do a little bit of research if you plan to incorporate a festival into your Asian travel plans.

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October 2021

Nabana no Sato Winter Light Festival Japan 2021

October 23, 2021 - May 31, 2022
Nabana no Sato, 270 Urushibata, Komae
Kuwana City,Mie511-1144Japan
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Nagoya, Japan - Mar 16, 2018. Giant led light tunnel in Nabana No Sato Park.

Nabana no Sato, a botanical garden in the Japanese prefecture of Mie, is home each year to one of the country’s best and biggest winter light festivals. During several months,…

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April 2022

Setouchi Triennale 2022, Japan

April 14 - November 6
Setouchi islands Japan
Setouchi Triennale Japan

Every three years the Setouchi Triennale, one of Japan’s biggest festivals of modern art, takes place in the south-west of the country. Come spring this exceptional celebration...

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June 2022

Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival 2022

June 5
Hong Kong Harbourfront Arena Hong Kong,China + Google Map
Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival 2022

One of the most dramatic festivals in Asia, the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival, this year in June, celebrates an event from some 2,000 years ago when Qu Yuan, a…

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Sheep Shearing Festival, Khot Armenia

June 8
Khut Armenia + Google Map

If sheep shearing is your thing then the village of Khot in Syunik, Armenia is the place to head for in June. There the Sheep Shearing Festival sees the local people of Vayoc, Dzor...

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July 2022

Naadam Festival Mongolia 2022

July 11 - July 15
ulaanbaatur ulaanbaatur,Mongolia + Google Map
Naadam Festival. Photo credit Marcin Konsek

Also called the Olympic Games of nomads, the spectacular Naadam Festival in Mongolia is the country’s biggest event and its national pride. Taking place every July...

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Boryeong Mud Festival 2022, South Korea

July 16 - August 15
Boryeong Boryeong,South ChungcheongKorea, Republic of + Google Map
Boryeong Mud Festival

At the Boryeong Mud Festival 2019 in South Korea, everything revolves around one and one thing only: mud. During 10 days the beach of Boryeong transforms itself into a mud heaven...

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August 2022

Ganesh Chaturthi Festival 2022, India

August 31 - September 9
Mumbai Mumbai,India + Google Map
Ganesh Chaturthi festival worldwide festivals

The spectacular Hindu Ganesh Chaturthi festival in September is an 11-day affair of colourful festivities, involving singing, dancing and theatre honouring the birth of the...

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September 2022

Onam Festival 2022, Kerala, India

September 8 - September 19
Kerala KeralaIndia
Free
Onam Festival Kerala, India

During the days of the Onam Festival, the biggest and most spectacular festival of Kerala, the entire Indian state goes on a spree of celebrations, music and dance performances...

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October 2022

Durga Puja Festival 2021, India

October 1 - October 5
All over the Indian subcontinent
Durga Puja

Durga Puja, one of the most important festivals for Hindu Bengalis, is the biggest yearly event in Kolkata and known as the Carnival of the East. Usually taking place in…

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Diwali 2022 (Deepavali), Festival of Light, India

October 24
Various
Diwali Festival

What do you do when you return home after having been exiled for 14 years? You heave a sigh of relief and celebrate. That’s what happens during Diwali (also called…

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Tokyo International Film Festival 2022, Japan

October 24 - November 2
Roppongi Hills, 6 Chome-10-1 Roppongi
Minato City, Tokyo,106-6108Japan
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Tokyo International Film Festival, Japan

Prepare yourself to rub shoulders with film stars and to discover top international movies at one of Asia’s most prestigious competitive film events, the annual Tokyo...

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