March

MARCH

Ko Gyi Kyaw Spirit Festival

Date                     : 3rd Waxing to 10th Waxing of Tabaung

Location              : Pakhan, Yayzagyo Township

Duration             : 8 days

It is enjoyable to see the singing and dancing of the worshippers to Ko Gyi Kyaw : a happy spirit who loves to drink and gamble. This annual festival in his honour is celebrated in his home town; Yayzagyo.

 

Novitiation Ceremony

Date                      : During the months of Ta bodwe and Taboung ( school holidays, mostly in summer holidays in March and April before the water festival )

Location              : Throughout the country

Duration              : 2 days

It is deemed the most important duty that parents owe to their son by letting him go forth  and embrance the legancy of the Buddha, join the Sangha as novice and become immersed in the teachings of Buddha at least for a short while. Novitiation ceremony is the unique characteristics in Myanmar. The ceremony usually celebrates during the school holidays. A formal Novitiation Ceremony involves a parade around the pagodas with boys all dressed up as princes.

 

Shwe Nattaung Pagoda Festival

Date                      : 8th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location              : Shwe Taung Township, Bago Region

Duration             : 7 days

This is one of the largest pagoda festivals in this part of Myanmar and many local pilgrims arrive by bullock-carts from the surrounding villages. This pagoda is said to be built in the Pyu Period.

 

Maw Tin Zun Pagoda Festival

Date                     : 8th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location             : Laputta Township, Southwest Coast of Myanmar

Duration            : 8 days

This is the only seaside Pagoda Festival which attracts many people and it can be accessed from Yangon by a pleasant boat ride to Pathein, an interesting delta town famous for its parasols.

  

Inn Daw Gyi Shwe Myitzu Pagoda Festival

Date                      : 8th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location              : Moenyin, Kachin State ( Northern Part of Myanmar )

Duration             : 8 days

Shwe Myitzu pagoda is situated on the largest lake in Myanmar, this 8 - day festival highlights a pilgrimage to the banks of the Pagoda. Sandbanks emerge from the lake just prior to the beginning of the pagoda festival making it an easier trek for pilgrims. Locals believe that one sandbank is used for humans and the other is for spirits. Immediately following the festival, the sandbanks disappear and retreat back into the lake.

 

Bawgyo Pagoda Festival

Date                      : 10th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location              : Thibaw Township, Southern Shan State

Duration             : 6 days

It is a famous historic pagoda festival in Shan State of Myanmar. Not only the people from Shan State but also the ones from the middle part of Myanmar take part in that festival. To observe Shan tradition, custom and culture, which are slightly different from the tradition of the middle part of Myanmar, is quite good while celebrating in the festival.

 

Zalun Pyi-Taw-Pyan Buddha Image Festival

Date                       : Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location               : Zalun, Ayeyawaddy Region

Duration              : 10 days

The colonialists who had occupied lower Myanmar took this Buddha Image to England with the intention of using the bronze in their mint. According to legend they could neither melt it nor break it with hammers, and the Queen was said to have suffered nagging headache and nightmares. She ordered that the statue be returned to the place from where it was taken. After sending back it to Myanmar, she recovered from the suffering. In memory of its having been taken abroad and having been brought back, it became famous as the Man Aung Myin Pyitawpyan Buddha Image ( the statue that was returned from aborad ).

 

Pindaya Shwe Oo Min Festival

Date                       : 11th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location               : Pindaya , Southern Shan State

Duration              : 5 days

Shan, Pa O, Palaung, Taung Yoe, Intha, Danu groups residing around Pindaya come and camp under the huge banyan trees to take part in the festival. The Pindaya Cave houses hundreds of Buddha Images, old and some new. During the festival time, thousands of devotees come from villages around the area to the cave. It is a joyous scene, people coming in groups by car, some coming in a huge line of traditional bullock-carts. The tribals circle the ox-carts, and in the middle, people do their cooking and rest for the night during the festival.

 

Shwe Myet Hman Pagoda Festival

Date                     : 13th Waxing to Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location             : Shwetaung, Bago Region

Duration            : 3 days

People enjoy celebrating Shwe Myet Hman Pagoda Festival annually. People of Buddhist can pay obeisance and others can observe the Buddha image, only one having spectacles, that is very wonderful in Myanmar. The products of Pyay and it's environ, the traditional handicrafts from various places of Myanmar are available during the festival.

Kekku Pagoda Festival

Date                     : Begins on 14th Waxing of Tabaung

Location             : Kekku Ancient Pagoda Complex, near Taunggyi, Southern Shan State

Duration            : 3 days

A cluster of more than 3000 pagodas, said to be from Bagan period, but in the Yun Sha n style, are grouped on a small hillock overlooking the Hopon Valley. Pa O people flock to the festival in their best costumes to pay homeage to the Pagoda on the full-moon day of Tabaung. The best time to see this is at dawn, on the full-moon day, when villagers come with offerings to be offered to the Buddha Images. The festival ends with the Pilgrims offering rice and other items to more than 1000 monks.

 

Shwedagon Pagoda Festival

Date                    : Full Moon Day of Tabaung

Location            : Yangon

Duration           : Approximately one week preceding the fullmoon day

Shwe Dagon Pagoda is the most well known pagoda in Myanmar and this Pagoda Festival is one of the most visited festivals for pilgrims all over the country. There is a competition to weave the holy robes using traditional looms to be offered to the Buddha Images at the four corners of the pagoda before dawn. Monks recite the holy scriptures 24 hours continuously throughout the duration of the festival. Buddhist devotees pay homage every day and their donations go towards the preservation of the Pagoda.

 

Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda Festival

Date                   : Full Moon Day to 8 Waning Day of Tabaung

Location           : Shwe Sar Yan Village, Patheingyi, Mandalay Region

Duration          : 9 days

Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda is easily accessible by car, being on the main Mandalay-Lashio Highway. The Shwe Sar Yan Pagoda Festival is a very festival indeed : a typical rural fair, bringing many visitors from not only the outlaying villages but also from faraway. The main attractions of this festival are the folk toys woven out of dried palm fronds. Beside the Pagoda is also a 17th century pagoda, Po Kalar Gu, which houses many beautiful mural paintings.

  

Alaungdaw Khathapa Pagoda Festival

Date                    : Fullmoon Day of Tabaung

Location            : Alaungdaw Khathapa National Park, Sagaing

Duration           : 1 day

The Alaungdaw Khathapa shrine is located in a National Park in Yinmarbin Township, Sagaing Region. It is crowded with the local people from surrounding area and far distances. The festival is held by lighting to the Pagoda and National Cave. People go there not only for just  pilgrimage but also for observing the nature as it is one of the renowned ecotourism sites of Myanmar.

 

Panguni Utram ( Full Moon Day of Panguni Month of Tamil People )

Date                      : Full Moon Day of Tabaung or Tagu ( March or April )

Location              : Sri Angata Eswari Munieswar Swamy Temple, Pelikha Village, Kyauk Tan Township, Yangon Region

Duration             : 10 Days festival, main festival falls on Full Moon Day

Panguni Utram is the main religious festival of Hindu people in Myanmar, held in the compound of Sri Angata Eswari Munieswar Swamy Temple which was built in 1862. The ritual attracts many participants and even more spectators with the performance of fire walking, many of who wait long hours to witness relatives or friends perform. After walking over the hot coats, the devotees wade through a pit filled with goat's milk, then rub their feet with yellow powder, turmeric. This holy rare occasion is usually attended by the many local and overseas devotees.

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