Located at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, the island city-state of Singapore is arguably the most expensive city in the world and among the best tourist places to visit in Southeast Asia. This tiny island city-state consists of high-end shopping malls, exclusive nature reserves & marine parks, bustling riverside quays, vibrant nightlife, and sumptuous cuisine. Besides, Singapore also has a vast culture, a mix of Asian and European cultures. The diverse ethnicities that live in the city-state celebrate a variety of vibrant festivals held throughout the year. Ranging from religious celebrations, food festivities, sports events, and sociocultural observances, here is the list of some of the famous festivals of Singapore here that can be witnessed as part of Singapore tour packages.
Dragon Boat Festival
The Dragon Boat Festival is one of the most delightful and cultural festivals celebrated in Singapore. This is a Chinese festival celebrated in a commendable way in Singapore every year on the fifth day of the fifth month of the Chinese calendar. Also known as the Duanwu Festival, this event is held in honor of Qu Yuan, a highly regarded minister of the state known for his honesty, who was unfairly exiled by his emperor. On the day of the festival, the races of dragon boats were organized at the Bedok Reservoir in Singapore. The place is lively when the boat with heads like that of the dragon’s being rowed at the pace accompanied with thundering drums, cheering spectators, and waving flags. Also, people consume rice dumplings (zhongzi) and realgar wines on this day. If you love competition, sports and an electric atmosphere, be sure to plan your Singapore Trip during the time of the festival.
Must Visit - Singapore Tourist Places
Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival and Lunar New Year, is another significant festival celebrated by Singaporeans. Started in 2698 BC, the Chinese New Year marks the first day of the new moon and is a massive event that is celebrated by Chinese communities all over the world. It usually falls on the last week of January and the beginning of February. Chinatown, one of the top places to visit in Singapore, is the place to witness the exuberant and colorful Chinese New Year celebrations in Singapore as every corner of this bustling area comes to life with dragon dancers, exploding firecrackers, iconic red Chinese lanterns, crowds of worshippers as well as locals who gather to participate in the fanfare and enjoy mouth-watering Chinese banquets. Many shopping malls offer excellent sales and promotions that attract a large number of people to shop during this fest.
Thaipusam is one of the most significant Hindu festivals celebrated in Singapore. Hindus in Singapore celebrate this festival on the full-moon day in the month of Thai in the Tamil calendar to commemorate the victory of Lord Subramaniam (also known as Lord Murugan) over the evil forces. The rituals or procession of this festival are not meant for the kind-hearted person. It is because, during this festival, male Hindu devotees pierce their bodies and faces with hundreds of needles from their kavadi, a structure of at least 20-23 kg in weight that they carry, and walk barefoot for 3 to 4 km from Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple to Sri Thandayuthapani Temple as an offering to the deity. It is considered a practice of self-mortification. Thousands of bystanders offer additional encouragement by clapping and chanting prayers along the route.
The Lantern Festival
Also called the Mid-Autumn Festival, Lantern Festival is another prominent festival celebrated by the Chinese community in Singapore. It is held on the 15th day of the eighth month of the Chinese lunar calendar when the moon is at its fullest and brightest. In ancient China, it was the celebration of a bountiful harvest in the middle of autumn. Giant lantern displays are put up in Chinatown to mark this special occasion. On this evening, children parade the streets with their own lanterns while adults come together to eat mooncakes and appreciate what they believe to be the roundest and brightest moon of the year. One can enjoy a lot of performing arts groups, an Opening ceremony, traditional dances, stalls selling mooncakes of different flavors, etc.
Singapore Night Festival
Singapore Night Festival is one of the popular and magnificent Singapore festival organized at the Bras Basah Bugis in August every year. From the traditional performances to original work of the street artists, this festival has a different theme every year for which the artists are chosen, and decorations are selected according to it. The main highlight of this event are the interesting line-up of arts and cultural experience that lures large number of tourists every year. Don’t miss to be a part of this event if you are in the city during the month of August.
Singapore International Festival of Arts
Hosted by the Arts House Limited, Singapore International Festivals of Arts is one of the important events for promoting various art forms like music, dance, and visual arts. This event is generally observed mid-year and stretches for one month. From art exhibitions to Shakespeare on the stage, this festival hosts several shows and performances in different art forms which is a true celebration for every artist. If you’re an art fanatic and looking for a motivational surge of creativity, then you must attend this event as part of Singapore Packages.
Hari Raya Puasa
Marking the end of the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan, Hari Raya Puasa is a traditional and local version of Eid celebrated in Singapore. One of the famous Singapore festivals, it is celebrated for the commemoration of Prophet Ibrahim’s trust in God and his willingness to sacrifice his own son for him. During this day, Muslims wear new clothes and start their day by visiting the nearest mosques to offer prayers and listen to the sermons. Then, rest of the day is spent with a massive home-cooked feast and spending quality time with family. Also, this religious festival is celebrated with the sacrifice of animals like goat, sheep and cows.
Singapore River Festival
Observed for a week, Singapore River Festival is among the popular festivals in Singapore held every year in the month of September or October. Showcases with the multi-cultures, arts, music, and dance by the waters in Clarke Quay, Boat Quay, Empress Place, and Robertson Quay, this event is all about the illusions on the river water in Singapore, among the top tourist destinations to visit in the World. During this event, international artists along with DJs stay here for the week to ensure that all the outdoor parties are grooved, along with parades and performances that add grace to the festival which draws many tourists and locals.