PUBLIC HOLIDAYS / FESTIVAL 2009
Starting Closing   Events & Festivals in Year  2009   City
Date Date    
4-Jan 4-Jan   Independence Day   The whole country
      Celebrations arranged by the government  in Naypyidaw and across the whole country. Ceremonies are very early at 0420 am and can usually not be attended by the public. All government offices and markets are closed.    
8-Jan 8-Jan   Kaya State Day   Kaya State
9-Jan 10-Jan   Kachin Manaw Festival (State Day Festival)   Kachin State
      Kachin State day is on 10 Jan. They festival will be held one day ahead of State day. But they celebrate once in 4th year or 10th year. Please check with us whether celebrate or not.    
12-Jan 16-Jan   Nar-ga New Year   Chin State
      The New Year is celebrated form January  14 to 15. On 14th, an opening ceremony is held  in the morning and in the evening there is traditional dance with bonfires.  On New Year day they have a competition of traditional sports, and gathering of subtribes of Narga, once fierce warriors in their bright and exotic dresses, celebrate with rice wine roasted meat and tribal dances performed with loud beating of drums.  

warriors

 

3-Jan 18-Jan   Ananda Pagoda Festival   Bagan
           
      Ananda Pagoda festival will be held starting from 15 - 30 Jan 08 . There are evening entertainments such as Zats: a variety of dance, song, short and long plays,  Anyeints: a performance of a few hours in which number of jokers caricature current situations and or person strung together by a traditional dancer, popular movies shown in open air.  It is also a popular sales fair where all kinds of goods, some of them are locally produced, are sold.  The most interesting aspect of this festival is the caravan of bullock-carts in the pagoda compound, camp under the shady trees.  It is very crowded around the fullmoon day,20- 22 January 2008.    
           
20-Jan 20-Jan   Feast of Shan Harvest Day   Shan State
7-Feb 7-Feb   Shan State Day   Shan State
12-Feb 12-Feb   Union Day   The whole country
      Celebrations arranged by the government in Naypyidaw and across the whole country. Mostly early morning. All offices and markets are closed    
           
2-Feb 9-Feb   Kyaik-Khauk Pagoda Festival   Syriam
      Kyaik-Khauk Pagoda Festival will be held starting from 14-21 February. Most of the pagoda festival has evening entertainments such as Zats, Anyeints, some stage show and movies shown in the open air the whole night for every day. Villagers nearby come to the festival by ox-carts, which can be seen just before and on fullmoon day (21 February).    
           
2-Feb 9-Feb   Nyan Taw Pagoda Festival (Shwe Myin Tin Pagoda)    Maymyo (Pyin Oo Lwin)
      Similar to most of the pagoda festivals with most of the ingredients as in the Mahamuni Pagoda Festival. It is a famous pagoda festival in Maymyo. In addition, we can observe several Shan and other ethnic groups who come from the hills to sell their products.    
           
2-Feb 17-Feb   Mahamuni Ceremony   Mandalay
      01st –09th  waxing day, ceremony in which a number of monks chant Buddhist scriptures non-stop. 08 the waxing day till fullmoon day: the real festival days with evening entertainment such as Zats (a variety of dance, song and short & long plays), Anyeints ( a performance of a few hours in which a number of “jokers” ( usually four) caricature current situations and /or persons strung together by a traditional dancer) and popular movies shown in open air. In the day time, there are many stalls selling various kinds of Myanmar snacks displayed in continuous rows of long tables.
On the 08th waxing day (n), there is a communal offering of food (dry rations) and various domestic articles to monks from the nearby monasteries (ca.100) lined up as in usual offerings.
   
2-Mar 2-Mar   Peasants' Day   The whole country
      Held in honour of the country’s largest productive workforce.    
           
24-Feb 10-Mar   Maw-Tin Pagoda Festival   Ngapudaw, near Pathein
           
24-Feb 10-Mar   Shwe Saryan Pagoda Festival   Shwe Saryan Village, 
      45 minutes drive form Mandalay on the way to Maymyo (near Hton Bo), You can also take a small boat on the Douhtawaddy River and visit the pagodas nearby, Myanmar traditional toys, boxes, baskets, mats made of dried toddy palm leaves are the best selling village products in this festival.    Patheingyi, Mandalay
26-Feb 10-Mar   Pakhan Ko Gyi Kyaw Festival   Shwe Gu Ni Village 
      Regional Nat festival like Taung Byone and Yadanar Gu.    (between Pakkoku and Myingyan)
3-Mar 10-Mar   Indawgyi Festival    Hopin, near Myintkyina
      Ca. 100 miles far from Myintkyina. Approx. Five hours drive up to Indawgyi. This festival is held yearly for ten days. One intriguing fact is that two sandbanks are washed up by the waves before the festival begins so that people can walk from the bank to the pagoda. People believe that one is for human use and the other is a passage for the gods. These two sandbanks disappear into the lake shortly after the festival.     
4-Mar 10-Mar   Zalun Pyidawpyan Image Festival   Zalun, near Pathein
5-Mar 10-Mar   Baw-gyo Festival     near Hsipaw
      Once a year, only during the festival days, the locked up “four Buddha images” are brought out for display, worship and gilding with gold leaf. We can see tea-growing Palaung tribes from the hills and jewellers from Kyauk Me who try and sell their products there. Many kinds of gambling are allowed during the festival days only.   Shan State
8-Mar 10-Mar   Kakku Pagoda Festival   Kakku
      On the fullmoon day (02 March)-Alms offering is carried out by the native (Pa-O) people dressed in their traditional black out fits. There is the festival market also.    near Taunggyi
7-Mar 11-Mar   Pindaya Cave Festival   Pindaya
      (On full moon day 21  Mar) in Pindaya with offerings made by the native tribes such as Danu, Pa-O, Taung Yoe and Palaung. Festivities include performances with roaming artisans and the festival market.    
10-Mar 10-Mar   Nay Win Taung Pagoda Festival    Maymyo
      Same as Nyan Taw Pagoda Festival. Traditional Shan festival. It takes place in the northern part of Maymyo, about an hour’s drive from the downtown area.     
10-Mar 10-Mar   Tabaung Fullmoon Day   The whole country
      Ceremonies are held at pagodas all over the country    
27-Mar 27-Mar   Armed Forces Day   The whole country
13-Apr 16-Apr   Water Festival   The whole country
      Myanmar people celebrate the famous waterfestival called “Thingyan”. One cannot avoid of getting very wet because every one throws water at everybody. People drive through the city in open cars and there are stages along the street where people throw water. During this time, everything is closed: restaurants, shops, markets, Museum, etc.     
2-Apr 14-Apr   Shwemawdaw Pagoda Festival   Bago
     

Same with the other pagoda festival. There are evening entertainment such as Zats, Anyeints, stage show and also a popular sales fair where all kinds of goods, most of them are clothes, toys & kitchen supplies. ( not expensive one)

   
15-Apr 15-Apr   Sand Stupa Festival   Min Thar Su Quarter
    In three different Mandalay quarters stupas are built with sand within 01 night. Sand stupas are built up with five segments gradually converging to the top. Each layer of white sand is supported by bamboo-mats and -posts. The celebration dates are not the same and depend on the different quarters where the festival is held.    Mandalay
17-Apr 17-Apr   Myanmar New Year   The whole country
    This is the start of the new year and the end of the waterfestival. The whole country is very quiet and everything is closed.     
17-Apr 17-Apr   Popa Ceremony   Mt. Popa
    Nat dances on Mt. Popa. Very crowded and difficult to get up the mountain.    
1-May 1-May May Day    
6-May 6-May Sand Stupa Festival - see 14 April   Yahai Quarter, Mandalay
7-Mayr 8-May Sand Stupa Festival - see 14 April   Pa Le Ngwe Yaung, Mandalay
7-May 8-May Shwe Kyet Yet Event
Crowded with people pouring water to the sacred Bo tree.
  Shwe Kyet Yet, Amarapura
8-May 8-May   Kason Fullmoon Day   The whole country
      Pouring water to the sacred Bo tree. No other special entertainment. Just only a small ceremony all over the country. Especially lots of crowds at Shwekyetyet Pagoda.     
8-May 8-May   Shite-thaung Pagoda Festival   Mrauk U
      This pagoda festival will be held on 3rd (Full moon day) as same as the others pagoda festival but they have one exiting thing is they have traditional boxing show.    
31-May 15-Jun   Thihoshin Pagoda Festival   Pakkoku
      This pagoda festival will be held from 11- 26 June. There is festival market and also evening entertainments such as Zats, Anyeints and Movies.    
15-Jun 7-Jul Chin Lone Festival ( Mahamuni Waso festival) Mandalay
    Chin Lone (Cane Ball) tournament held in Mandalay. It is used to held in Mahamuni Pagoda compound almost a month for every day and night. Cane ball players from all over the country come up to Mandalay to enjoy this festival. We can enjoy to see several ways of playing Chin Lone  and racing by either team or individual together with local / folk music played while entertaining the audience.   
6-Jul 6-Jul   Waso Fullmoon Day   The whole country
      Start of Buddhist Lent. Donation ceremonies of new robes and other temporal requirements to the monks  all over the country at major pagodas, monasteries and even at homes.    
19-Jul 19-Jul   Martyr's Day   The whole country
      The day of the assassination of General Aung San and other ministers. Early morning (private) memorial services at the monument near Shwedagon Pagoda.     
23-Jul 29-Jul   Shwe Kyun Pin Festival    Mingun
    Regional Nat festival. Can observe several kinds to ceramic wares from Singaing and Kyaukmyaung are laid out at the bank of river for sale during the festival.    Mandalay
29-Jul 5-Aug   Taung Byone Festival    Matara, near Mandalay
      Traditional Nat Festival. The most famous in Upper Myanmar. 01 hour drive from Mandalay. It lasts five days and every day has special programs. Festival where especially youngsters are merry and enjoy drinking and where people of all ages can join in the Nat dance. Ceremonies are mostly at night and it is very hard to get into the village    
5-Aug 5-Aug   Fish Feeding Ceremony   Pwinphyu, near Magwe
13-Aug 19-Aug   Yadanar Gu Festival    Amarapura
      Traditional Nat festival on the Mandalay-Sagaing road. Approx. Half an hour drives from Mandalay. We can take a small sampan along the lake up to the Nat Shrine hall.     
11-Sep 11-Sep Shwe Kyet Yet Boat racing festival Shwe Kyet Yet Jetty
19-Sep 6-Oct   Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda Festival   Inle Lake
      The biggest occasion of the Lake Inle. The images of the Buddha from Phaung Daw Oo are placed on a decorated royal barge and taken around the lake, stopping at villages for people to pay homage. The festivals is full of pageantry and colourful, and there are fun fairs, music, dances and boat races. Since this festival lasts very long, please check with us for exact dates and events    
26-Sep 3-Oct   Kyaukdawgyi Pagoda Festival
  Mandalay
    It’s situated at the foot of Mandalay hill, within a short walking distance from Mandalay Hill Hotel. It is considered popular sales fair where all kinds of goods (some of them locally produced) are sold. Next to that is the usual organization of events similar to other Pagoda Festivals.     
26-Sep 25-Nov   Myathalon Festival   Magwe
2-Oct 3-Oct   Shinbinsagyo Pagoda Ceremony   Salay
2-Oct 2-Oct   Elephant Dance Festival    Kyaukse
    Yearly cultural highlight of Kyaukse, 26 miles to the south of Mandalay. The whole town competes, not only for the best “elephant dance”-performance, but at the same time for the nicest-decorated “elephant”. For the dance itself: two men get inside at life-size hollowed-out papier-mâché elephant figure and imitate the movements of a real elephant. Usually, there is a ‘lead’-man who coordinates the movements of the dancers, assisted by a small number of musicians.
The festival is celebrated on the day before full moon day of Thadingyut . As the day progresses, it is getting more and more crowded because people nearby villages and as far away as Mandalay come to Kyaukse and join in the festivities. 
   
2-Oct 4-Oct   Tadingyut Festival    The whole country
      End of Buddhist lent. And also the festival of lights. Pagodas, houses and streets are brilliantly illuminated. It is not only a time of joy but also thanksgiving and paying homage to teachers, parents and elders.     
3-Oct 3-Oct   Tadingyut Fullmoon Day   The whole country
25-Oct 9-Nov   Shwezigon Festival   Bagan
      Shwezigon Festival will be held starting from 5- November to 20 November. There are evening entertainments such as Zats: (a variety of dances, songs, short and long plays), Anyeints (a performance of a few hours in which a number of "jokers" caricature current situations and or person strung together by a traditional dancer, popular movies shown in open air. On full moon day ( 12th Nov), there is a communal offering of food and various domestic articles to the monks from the nearby monasteries (ca. 600) lined up as in usual offerings.    
27-Oct 1-Nov   Thanbodde Pagoda Ceremony   Monywa
    Like other pagoda festival with the usual entertainment provided. Myanmar thanaka, sandalwood and woven textiles (cotton blankets and longyis mainly) can be bought at the various stalls around the pagoda area.      
27-Oct 1-Nov   Phowintaung Festival    Monywa
      Like other pagoda festival with the usual entertainment provided. Myanmar thanaka, sandalwood and woven textiles (cotton blankets and longyis mainly) can be bought at the various stalls around the pagoda area.    
27-Oct 1-Nov   Kaunghmudaw Pagoda Festival    Sagaing
    The most interesting aspect of this festival is the caravan of bullock-carts in the pagoda compound. Some of the carts carry their village products, such as hand-woven cotton cloths and cane mats, to sell them there. They like to camp under the shade of the trees.     
26-Oct 1-Nov   Fire Balloon Festival (Taunggyi )   Taunggyi
      Taunggyi Fire balloons festival will be held from 6 -12 November and can watch the various competitions of hot- air  balloons. At day-time, see the competitions of decorated hot-air balloons in different shapes and forms of animals such as elephants, horse, cattle, pig mythical Hintha bird and hen etc. Also see the fireworks and firecrackers of hot air-balloon at night time.    
31-Oct 1-Nov   Fire Balloon Festival ( Maymyo )     
      This festival has taken place on the day before full moon and full moon day since two years ago. It is similar to festival in Taunggyi, but not bigger than in Taunggyi.   Maymyo
31-Oct 31-Oct   Robe Weaving Contest   Big Cities
    The robe weaving ceremony is held on the eve of the day before fullmoon day in one night. This is a competition for the weaving skills between teams of women  to complete special saffron-coloured robes, called “Ma Tho Thin Gan”  from the evening onwards at dawn. It is still done in the traditional way and lots of people enjoy watching the demonstrations. At dawn, the robes are offered to the great image of Lord Buddha and followed by the prize giving ceremony for the winners.    
31-Oct 1-Nov   Shin Mar Le Pagoda Festival    Mandalay
      Celebrated at the time of the Tazaung Dine Festival. People throe with lotus flowers to the top of the stupa, located at the North entrance of the Mahamuni Pagoda, as homage to the Lord Buddha.     
1-Nov 1-Nov   Tazaungdaing Fullmoon Festival   The whole country
      Many locals of different status offer yellow robes & other items such as slippers, umbrellas, alms bowls and other domestic articles to the monks. This offering ceremony is commonly called "Kathein" and every local hope – at least once in his/her life – to participate in this event. Especially Sagaing attracts quite some crowds, as it is known as the Buddhist place of retreat per excellence in the country with a concentration of monasteries, nunneries and pagodas in that area. Many people (even from Mandalay) go and spend the whole night (preceding full moon day) in Sagaing.     
21-Nov 8-Dec   Alotaw Pyi Festival   Bagan
4-Dec 4-Dec   National Day   The whole country
24-Nov 1-Dec   Shwemyetmhan (Golden Sceptical)  Pagoda Festival   Shwetaung
    This pagoda festival is as same as the others pagoda festival. But one interesting thing is during the British time, Mrs. Hurtno wife of the commissioner was relieved from her eye disease after she offered a pair of glasses to the Buddha. Local people who lives around this area they believe that whoever have a problem with eyes they make novena to this pagoda.    
1-Dec 1-Dec Taung Byone Natto (Sit Htwet) Nat Festival   Taung Byone Village 
1-Dec 1-Dec Minmahagiri Nat Ceremony    Popa
25-Dec 25-Dec   Christmas Day   The whole country