Autumn is round the corner, nature is decking up in glorious golden hues and it’s time for some of the most beautiful celebrations and festivities to begin! Many cities around Asia come alive during this time by revering traditions, giving thanks to their gods, and celebrating their bountiful yields. From religious processions and ceremonies to lavish, generous family lunches and grand parties and functions; there’s almost every type of celebration happening around Asia during the Fall.
The cities are abuzz with renewed energy. There are many more people on the roads, the shop vendors are going crazy giving discounts, food sales are at an all-time high, you can almost touch the electrifying energy around you. It’s the best time to visit these places to get a real sense of the culture and the people. It’s your chance to explore a unique, whole new side of these cities.
Mid-Autumn Festival, Hong Kong
When: 4 October 2017
Hong Kong adorns a vibrant new self during the Mid-autumn festival. Catch the fire-spouting 67m long dragon being carried across the streets with great frenzy! This 100 year old tradition is celebrated every year with dragon shaped lanterns taking to the streets, complete with heavy drum beats and firecrackers.
In the evenings, the Victoria Park skyline is filled with colorful lanterns to mark this harvest festival. There are also live performances of every kind. Do try the delicious Moon cakes, a festival delicacy that will delight your taste buds.
The Eulalia Festival, Seoul
When: 5-16 October 2017
The Seoul Eulalia Festival celebrates the beautiful silver glass Eulalia that is in full bloom in October. If you are in Seoul, this is one sight you shouldn’t miss. The grass takes a different hue in every light and is a thing of beauty as the sun falls on it. After sundown, the grass is lit in numerous colours and the riot of colours fills your heart with immense joy.
The story of the Haneul Park which was initially a landfill that was transformed into this beautiful grassland park in 1993 will leave you inspired.
Kagurazaka Bakeneko Festival, Tokyo
When: 15th October 2017
Love a dose of quirk? The Kagurazaka Bakeneko Festival based on the popular Japanese folklore of ‘The Bakeneko’ or Monstrous Cat will bring a smile to your lips. Cats have a big place in the country’s folklore and are believed to have mystical powers due to their odd, aloof nature and curious looks. The festival is a day-long parade held on the streets of Kagurazaka – a small town in Tokyo, where Bakeneko enthusiasts from all parts come together dressed as cats of all shapes and sizes- right from the traditional Japanese flavored Bakeneko to even Hello Kitty! Join in the celebrations and have some unique Halloween kind of fun.
Diwali, New Delhi
When: 19th October 2017
Diwali is one of the most widely celebrated festivals in India. Diwali marks the victory of good over evil and is celebrated with new clothes, decorations, firecrackers and a whole variety of sweets. Thousands of lamps are lit across homes and illuminations are grand. There is a festive atmosphere everywhere. This festival also marks the start of winter and fills you with a special warmth.
Busan Fireworks Festival, South Korea
When: 28th October 2017
Imagine yourself engulfed by a million colourful lights on a beautiful night. Every October, the Gwangalli Beach in Busan, South Korea is lit up by some of the best, modern lasers as well as tens of thousands of fireworks as part of the Busan Fireworks Festival. You will be magically transported as the theme song of the festival plays against the backdrop of the sea and mountains of Busan.
The first Busan Firework festival was organized for the 2005 APEC Busan Summit, however, it left such a lasting impression that it’s been celebrated every year since then. There are a lot of viewpoints from where you can witness this celebration. Our top recommendations are the beach or the Hwangnyeongsan mountain.
Sapporo Chrysanthemum Festival, Hokkaido
When: 1 – 3 November, 2017
If you thought flower festivals are always held in Spring, the Chrysanthemum Festival will be a pleasant and colourful surprise. This autumn festival celebrates chrysanthemum, an important symbol in Japanese culture. This festival features exquisite arrangements of different varieties of chrysanthemums. This autumn festival will make spring come alive again in your heart.
The Sapporo Chrysanthemum Festival has been held since 1963. Each year, over 800 stunning art works celebrating this glorious flower compete in different categories. The Japanese take this event very seriously and outstanding works are awarded by various Ministries as well as the Governor. The main venue is the famous Sapporo Ekimae-dori Underground Walkway and the event is open to all. Traditional Art and cultural performances are part of the event and this is a great time to experience this part of Japan.
Loi Krathong, Chiang Mai
When: 3 November 2017
Loi Krathong has an unequalled charm and mystique and takes place on the night of the full moon in November. Thousands of glowing lanterns illuminate the night sky while rivers and lakes glisten with candles as tiny boats are set afloat in honour of the Goddess of Water.
The drifting away lights are symbolic of the need to “let go”. Feel your troubles drift away and your heart fill with new hope and joy. There are festivities and parades and the air is filled with the smell of incense and the sound of prayer. Want to make a new beginning? Don’t wait for the New Year. Head to Chiang Mai this November.
Seoul Lantern Festival
When: 3-9 November, 2017
The Lantern Festival is one of Seoul’s most iconic annual events. Join 3 million visitors along the 1.2km Cheonggyecheon Stream to witness intricate light installations and floats that defy your imagination.
There is plenty to see and do. From a fantastic parade of amazingly intricate paper lanterns to enthralling Korean dance and music performances; you will have plenty of experiences to take back. You can also create your own paper lanterns, beaded jewelry, ink drawings, and other crafts as souvenirs to take back with you.
Celebrate these beautiful Asian festivals with HomeAway and take back memories to last a lifetime.