Top 5 traditional festivals you should not miss in Malaysia

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Besides sightseeing tours, participating in one of traditional festivals is also the great way to discover culture and people in Malaysia. The following are top 5 most interesting festivals you should not miss when traveling this country.

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Mid-Autumn Festival

Mid-Autumn Festival in Malaysia is started from September 19th and marked by Lantern Festival and Moon cake Festival. The festival marks the end of harvest season and becomes a symbol of peace and prosperity.

Come to Malaysia on this occasion, travelers can freely admire the beautiful streets with colorful lanterns and enjoy the delicious moon cakes. The shape of moon cakes in Malaysia is quite different from the others; they usually have the shape of sea oysters, flowers or moon.

Mid-autumn festival in Malaysia (via Travelers Today)

New Year Festival

Like other countries in Southeast Asia, New Year Festival is a chance to reunite of family’s members and relax after hard-working year. The first day of a new is on 1st January (according to Islamic calendar). One special thing in here is that before the festival for about 10 days, the Malaysia Muslims do not buy and eat delicious food but start to stop eating (only having a light meal before sunset). They think it is the way to express the sympathy for the suffering of the poor on the earth.

The popular dish on New Year Festival of Malaysian people is Otak-Otak or Otah-Otah. Travelers can easily find this dish at anywhere, from dining centers in the cities, restaurants to family meals. Malaysians greet each other on New Year days by lightly touching their hands on the palm of the others and then they get hands back and touch the heart for a few seconds. There are also many exciting activities in the festival you can enjoy.

New Year Festival (via Tourism Malaysia)

Independence Day

On 16 September 1963, Malaysia was formed as a new political entity from the merger of the Federation of Malaya, North Borneo (Sabah), Sarawak and Singapore. By 2010, September 16th officially became the national holiday celebrating Malaysia’s independence.

Come to Malaysia on this occasion, you can join in the parade with locals and enjoy traditional performances of art. With a multicultural and multi-ethnic country like Malaysia, this is also an opportunity for visitors to discover the interesting traditions of local people.

Vesak Festival

Vesak Festival (via Sky Ferns Tours)

Vesak Festival is one of the largest festivals and is celebrated by Buddhists all over the world. This is the day of remembrance of the birth, enlightenment and death of the Buddha.

On this day, the Buddhists and followers gather at temples before dawn to celebrate. In these temples, Buddhist flags will be pulled up; the devotees often bring offerings such as fresh flowers, candles and incenses to place to the feet of Buddha statues.

Hari Raya Festival

Held in the early August, Hari Raya Aidilfitri Festival is one of the two the most important traditional festivals in Malaysia. It marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan with fasting and prayer. Therefore, during this time, the shopping centers in Malaysia will be decorated shimmering with colorful lights and eye catching patterns.

Malaysia on Hari Raya Aidilfitri Festival (via Asia Places To See)

In two days of the festival, Muslims will pray, open their house to welcome guests and hold parties. Children and old people are usually given lucky money in green envelops. During the last night of Ramadan month, visitors also can enjoy the spectacular firework performances and variety of exciting entertainment shows.

Especially, if you go to Malaysia on the occasion of August 31st, you will have the opportunity to enjoy the magnificent parade to celebrate Malaysia Independence Day. This is not only an occasion for people to take a rest, reunite with family but also is the best time for shoppers with a series of promotions in the shopping centers.

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