There is no better experience than taking a trip to Myanmar in March with a series of specific-cultural festivals…

God Ko Gyi Kyaw Festival

Duration: from 3rd to 8th of Tabaung months
Duration:8 days
Location: Phakhan, Yayzagyo
Meaning: The festival is celebrated to honor a debaucherous nature spirit that was incorporated into Myanmar’s animist infused flavor of Buddhism.
Visitors are very enjoyed and interested in the songs, dances of devotees to god Ko Gyi Kyaw – a funny god loves drinking and gambling. The festival was held at the home of Kyaw Ko Gyi in Yayzagyo.

God Ko Gyi Kyaw Festival

God Ko Gyi Kyaw Festival.

The ceremony of entering monasteries for boys

Time: in Tabodwe and Tabaung months
Duration: 2 days
Location: the whole country
In Myanmar culture, the most important responsibility of parents to their son is for the child to be imbued with the teachings of the Buddha. Therefore, their son was put into the monastery in a short time as a little monk to learn about the Dharma. The ceremony of entering the monastery is a feature of Myanmar culture. The ceremony usually organized at the time the student is absent from school. The ceremony included a parade around the monasteries, temples or pagodas with the shaved head boy dressed as the monk.

Shaved head boy in Myanmar.

Shaved head boys in Myanmar.

Shwe Nattaung Pagoda Festival

Time: From 8th to 15th of Tabaung month
Duration: 7 days
Location: Shwe Taung, Bago City
Meaning: The festival is the annual harvest and alms celebration in Myanmar.

This is one of the largest festivals in Myanmar. During the festival, many pilgrims and visitors get to the pagoda by ox-carts.
Surrounding the temple, various merchant stores sell religious iconography, food, and toys. Monks from a long line outside the temple grounds and slowly proceed through the entire compound being given small gifts, rice by local people. It is believed that the pagoda was built during the Pyu kingdom.

Buddha image at Shwe Nattaung Pagoda.

Buddha image at Shwe Nattaung Pagoda.

Maw Tin Zun Pagoda Festival

Time: From 8th to 15th of Tabaung month
Duration: 8 days
Location: Laputta, south-west coast of Myanmar.
This is the unique coastal temple festival attracts many visitors. Guests can travel by boat from Yangon to Pathein, a delta town famous for its traditional umbrella making.

Maw Tin Zun Pagoda.

Maw Tin Zun Pagoda.

Inn Daw Gyi Shwe Myitzu Pagoda Festival

Time: From 8 to Tabaung full moon
Duration: 8 days
Location: Moenyin, Kachin State, northern Myanmar

Shwe Myitzu pagoda located on the water of the largest lakes in Myanmar. There are many pilgrimages visiting the lakeshore during the festival. These sand dunes emerged in the middle of the lake created the way for pilgrims visiting the pagoda.
It is believed that a sand way is for the mortal and a sand way is for the gods. After the festival, the sand ways sank under the lake.

Panoramic view of Inn Daw Gyi Shwe Myitzu Pagoda Festival.

Panoramic view of Inn Daw Gyi Shwe Myitzu Pagoda Festival.

Bawgyo Pagoda Festival

Time: From the 10th to 15th of Tabaung month
Duration: 6 days
Location: Thibaw, southern Shan State

This is a famous historical festival in Shan State. The festival is not only celebrated for people in Shan State, but also for people on central Myanmar. Visiting the pagoda during the festival is a great opportunity for visitors to learn traditions, customs, and cultures of the Shan in central Myanmar.
Surround the pagoda is the colorful merchant stalls, food vendors with grains, delicious treats, household goods, and religious charms. Attendees are expected to offer alms to every priest in attendance in a ceremony.

Bawgyo Pagoda.

Bawgyo Pagoda.

Zalun Pyi Taw Pyan Festival

Time: Full moon day of Tabaung month
Duration: 10 days
Location: Zalun, Ayeyawady state
Meaning: The festival is held in honor of Buddha’s Image to commemorate the event.

British colonists after the occupied the Lower Myanmar brought the statue of the temple to London for smelting this bronze statue. It is said that the British could not be melting statue. In contrast, the Queen of England often had headaches and nightmares. The Queen had ordered her soldiers to return the statue to the country. After the statue returned to Myanmar the pains of the Queen was naturally healed. To remember the story, the famous statue is also called Man Aung Myin Pyitawpyan (Buddha returned from a foreign country).
The local around the country will donate goods to the Pyi Taw Pyan Pagoda after the bountiful harvest. Outside the temple is filled with food vendors. While attendees make an offering of alms to the monks. The red-robed monks form a long line and receive donations of items from participants in the festival.

Zalun Pyi Taw Pyan Buddha image in the festval.

Zalun Pyi Taw Pyan Buddha image in the festival.

Pindaya Cave Festival

Time: From 11th to Tabaung full moon
Duration: 5 days
Location: Pindaya, Southern Shan State
The ethnic Shan, Pa O, Palaung, Taung Yoe, Intha and Danu living around Pyindaya camping under the big banyan tree to attend the festival. Pyindaya cave has thousands of new and old Buddha images. During the festival, thousands of people gather in the cave. It is spectacular scenery. Some people are coming by cars, some go by traditional oxcarts.

Buddha images in Pindaya cave.

Buddha images in Pindaya cave.

Shwe Myet Hman Pagoda Festival

Time: From the 13th to 15th of Tabaung month
Duration: 3 days
Location: Shwetaung, Bago City
The festival is held annually. Many Buddhist come to the festival to express reverence and worship the Buddha. Guests can buy regional specialties of Pyay or traditional handicraft of Myanmar.

Shwe Myet Hman Pagoda

Shwe Myet Hman Pagoda.

Kakku Pagoda Festival

Time: From 14th of Tabaung month
Duration: 3 days
Location: Kekku ancient temple, near Taunggyi, southern Shan State
Meaning: The festival is held to celebrate a bountiful harvest.

This is a large area with more than 3,000 temples and pagodas. The pagoda is believed to be built from the reign of Bagan, located on the hills overlooking the Hopon Valley. In full moon day of Tabaung month, the Pa O attends the festival with the most beautiful dress to show reverence. The best time to visit Kekku Pagoda Festival is the early morning of full moon day when the people come to offer to Buddha. The festival ends with the pilgrims making offerings of rice and other items for more than 1,000 monks in the pagoda.

It is an occasion for people to donate alms to the pagoda as a religious merit-making activity. It is also the time for people to meet their friends, exchange news, gossips, and trade. They get dressed in their traditional costumes. Some come in bullock carts while others arrive by more modern conveyances on the village tractor. During the festival, participants can enjoy ancient songs and dances performances of Pa’O tribes who in navy or black jacket and pants with a colorful head wrap.

pa-oh-women-entering-the-kakku-pagoda-on-festival-day-kakku-southern-shan-state-myanmar-burma

Pa-oh women entering Kakku pagoda on the festival day of Kakku, southern Shan State, Myanmar.

Shwedagon Pagoda Festival

Time: Full moon day of the Tabaung month
Duration: about 1 week
Location: Yangon
Meaning: The festival is celebrated to show veneration to Buddha and his teaching.
Shwedagon Pagoda is the most famous pagoda in Myanmar and attracts many pilgrims. During the festival, there are contests of woven saffron by traditional looms to offer Buddha statues at 4 corners of the pagoda. The monks chant all day without a break during the festival.

Shwedagon Pagoda Festival - One of the greatest festival in Myanmar.

Shwedagon Pagoda Festival – One of the greatest festival in Myanmar.

Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda Festival

Time: From the full moon day of Tabaung month
Duration: 9 days
Location: Village Sar Shwe Yan, Patheingyi, the ancient capital of Mandalay
Road to the temple Shwe Yan Sar is very accessible by car because of its location near highway Mandalay – Lashio. The festival is very interesting with a typical rural market attracting visitors from remote areas. The attraction of the festival is the traditional toy knitting from dried palm leaves. Next to the temple is a temple from the 17th century, Kalar Gu Po temple, with so many beautiful frescoes.

Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda, Tha Hton, Myanmar

Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda

Alaungdaw Khathapa Pagoda Festival

Time: Full moon day of Tabaung month
Duration: 1 day
Location: Alaungdaw Khathapa National Park, Sagaing State
The pagoda located in a national park in Yinmarbin County, Sagaing State. There are many people from the surrounding area attending the festival. Visitors come here not only to attend the festival but also to admire the beautiful nature of one of the most famous eco-tourist destinations in Myanmar.

Alaungdaw Kathapa Pagoda in Alaungdaw Kathapa Nation Park.

Alaungdaw Kathapa Pagoda in Alaungdaw Kathapa Nation Park.

Utram Panguni Festival

Time: From full moon day of Tabaung or Tagu (March or April)
Duration: 10 days
Location: Sri Angata Munieswar Eswari Swamy Temple, Pelikha village, Kyauk Tan District, Yangon
This is the major festival of Hindus in Myanmar held in Sri Angata temple built-in 1862. The ceremonial activities and rituals attract many visitors. Many people wait for hours to see their family or friends participating in the ceremony. After walking on hot coals, the believers will cross a pit filled with goat’s milk, and then lather turmeric on the legs. This sacred festival often has many local followers and foreign participants.

Panguni Utram (Full Moon of Panguni Month in Tamil People) Sri Angata Munieswar Eswari Swamy Temple, Pelikha village, Kyauk Tan District, Yangon.

Panguni Utram (Full Moon of Panguni Month in Tamil People) Sri Angata Munieswar Eswari Swamy Temple, Pelikha village, Kyauk Tan District, Yangon.