Philippines for the
Intrepid Traveler

A Philippine festival can be a memorable addition to the intrepid traveler's Philippine adventure. The Philippine calendar is peppered with fiestas and festivals, every month with choices of destinations, colorful cultural windows scattered in a landscape teeming with diversity and folklore, celebrating their history and ethnic roots, the Virgin Mary, the Sto Niño or one of its countless patron saints – saturated with religiosity with zany and surreal pinches of paganism and, often, with extreme doses of bacchanalia.

For travelers who suffer the tropical weather, the months of January and February are blessed with predictably pleasant weather, Siberian-tempered, free of rain and humidity. Both months are festival-rich, the Black Nazarene celebration and Atiatihan in January, the Bamboo Organ Festival and the Chinese New Year in February.

For January, Atiatihan is the worthwhile destination for the intrepid traveler – a two-day bacchanalian revelry that celebrates the Sto Niño in a non-stop looping and intersecting parade of a motley multitude of participants, costumed and painted, libating, dancing and marching to the rhythm of drums and bands, Sto Niños borne in shouldered floats, cradled in arms or raised high above the intoxicated colorful celebrating masses. It is the quintessential religious festival of pure pagan fun teeming with uninhibited and cathartic third-world zaniness – Pinoy street theater at its best.


Check the dates – festivals may be fixed weekends, movable dates or seasonal. Also see:
StuartXchange is looking for digital photo contributions for the festivals. Attribution and links will be provided. Corrections and additional info appreciated.

Atiatihan Festival
• Black Nazarene
• Dinagyang Festival
• Lubi-Lubi Festival
• Sinulog Festival
• Carabao Festival
• Flores de Mayo
• Lubi-Lubi Festival
• Pahiyas sa Quezon Festival
• Sayaw sa Obando Festival
• Sarakiki Hadang Festival
• Kaamulan Festival
• Maradjao Karadjao Festival
• Peñafrancia Fluvial Festival
• T'boli Tribal Festival
• Chinese New Year
• Dia de Zamboanga Festival
• Internation Bamboo Organ
• Pamulinawen Festiva
• Tinagba Festival
• Mudpack Festival
• Parada ng Lechon
• Piat Sambali Festival
• Pintados Kasadyaan Festival
• Pinyahan sa Daet Festival
• Taong Putik Festival
• Ibalong Festival
• Catandungan Festival
• Zamboanga La Hermosa Festival
• Masskara Festival
• Lanzones Festival
• Lubi-Lubi Festival

• Arya! Abra Festival
• Kaamulan Festiva
• Penagbenga Festival
• Pilgrimage on a Caravan •


• Kahimonan Abayan Festival
• Kinabayo Festival|
• Pagoda Festival
• Sagayan Festival
• Sandugo Festival
• Sinulog de Tanjay Festival
• Ibalong Festival
• Kansilay Festival
• Helubong Festival
• San Clemente Higantes Festival
• Grand Cordillera Festival
• Pinta Flores Festival
• Cutud Lenten Rites
• Moriones Festival *
• Turumba Festival *

• Kadayawan Festival
• Kagayhaan Festival
• Lubi-Lubi Festival
• Palo-Palo Festival
• Sumbali Festival

• Lantern Festival
• Misa de Gallo
• Shariff Kabunsuan Festival

Godofredo Umali Stuart


More Readings for the Intrepid Traveler  
Fiestas and Festivals
Philippine Cuisine:
The Yucky-But-Yummy

Sabong / Cockfighting

The ABCDE of the Yummy
Philippine Cuisine
  by Godofredo Umali Stuart

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