Five Not To Be Missed Colorful Malaysia Festivals

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Below are five not to be missed festivals in Malaysia.

Chinese New Year

New Year Shopping in China Town

Malaysia celebrates Chinese New Year in a grand manner, and is one of the countries in Southeast Asia to do so in a big scale. The Chinese communities around the country adorn their houses, the streets, and other establishments with traditional red decorations to ward off bad spirits. Fireworks, along with lion and dragon dances, are performed as part of the 15-day period (in January or February, depending on the Lunar calendar) of Chinese New Year festivities in shopping malls, on the streets, and on other business establishments.

Deepavali (Diwali)

The Rangoli of Lights

The Hindu Festival of Lights (and also the Hindu New Year’s Day) celebration in Malaysia is a very colorful and festive one, with the multitude of lights symbolizing victory and hope against darkness, evil, and other challenges for the Hindus. Celebrated in October or November, Deepavali is a day of prayers in Hindu homes and temples; on this day, the Hindus wake up at dawn to bathe their bodies with oil, before proceeding to say their prayers. Hindu homes and temples are beautifully-lit with oil lamps; fireworks, processions, and street bazaars delightfully mark the festivities in areas where Indian communities are located (such as Kuala Lumpur’s Little India). If you are lucky enough to be invited to a Hindu home for Deepavali, you will definitely have a feast of flavorful Indian dishes and desserts!

Hari Raya Puasa (Eid al-Fitr)

Ketupat is a popular traditional celebrative dish for Eid al-Fitr meal in Malaysia

Marking the end of the Ramadan (the month of fasting), Hari Raya Puasa is considered as the most important Muslim festival in Malaysia. The day is celebrated with prayers, and open houses allow Muslims to share food with their family members and the rest of the community; the best of Malay cuisine is offered to loved ones and guests to mark the end of the fasting month. Children and the elderly are given gifts of money in green packets (similar to the Chinese ang-poh)

 Thaipusam

Procession to the Batu Caves

This Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community starts with a procession from the Sri Mahamariamman Temple in Kuala Lumpur, and proceeds for 15 kilometers to the Batu Caves. The eight-hour journey culminates in climbing the 272 steps to the top of the caves; this event attracts more than one million devotees, and tens of thousands of tourists from other countries. The devotees carry elaborate sacrificial burdens (called “kavadis”) to implore help and blessings from the God Murugan. Thaipusam is also celebrated in another cave site in Ipoh, Perak, and in Penang.

Wesak

Float procession on the eve of Wesak Day

Wesak or Wesak day is a Buddhist celebration commemorating the three most important days (birthday, enlightenment, and the achievement of Nirvana) in the life of Buddha. Buddhists in Malaysia begin the festivities at dawn, as they gather in Buddhist temples throughout the country to meditate; giving food and donations to the needy offerings of joss sticks and incense, and prayers are also part of Wesak day celebrations. One of the highlights of Wesak is the breathtaking float procession, usually of a statue of Buddha.

Photos by trevphotos, Subharnab, Meutia Chaerani, xiangxi and Tianyake and discovered through thaholiday& reposted here.

Renee Blodgett
Renee Blodgett
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Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.

She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.

Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.

Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.
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