Masskara Festival
| |

24 Famous Philippine Festivals & Fiestas to Celebrate Every Year

Want to experience more fun in the Philippines? Time your travel to the Philippines during these Philippine festivals and fiestas to immerse in the rich culture and heritage of the Filipino people.

From religious festivities to historic events, here’s a list of the most famous festivals in the Philippines you can look forward to celebrating every year. Bookmark our special 2024 Philippine holidays and long weekends calendar, too, in case the events fall on these holidays.

Top religious festivals in the Philippines

1. Sinulog Festival

sinulog festival one of the grandest Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Mark Linel Padecio

When: Third Sunday of January
Where: Cebu City

Sinulog is an annual religious festival honoring Sr. Sto. Niño. It is considered one of the biggest and grandest Philippine festivals. On the third Sunday of January, the city is filled with music, street dancing, parties, food, and more!

While you’re in Cebu, why not learn some basic Cebuano words before arriving at the Cebu airport? You may also want to visit these top Cebu tourist spots, relax at these Cebu beach resorts, Cebu hotels near Mactan Airport, or Cebu City hotels, and indulge in local Cebu delicacies like the famous Cebu lechon.

Tip: Get the Klook Pass Cebu and enjoy huge savings on top Cebu attractions. For instance, instead of paying a total of ₱4,955 for the Oslob Whale Shark + Badian Canyoneering if you book individually, you only pay ₱3,400 giving you ₱1,555 savings! Awesome, right?

Other Cebu attractions to choose from include Cebu Ocean Park, Cebu Safari, Anjo World, and so much more!


2. Feast of the Black Nazarene

Feast of the Black Nazarene
Photo credit: Jsinglador

When: January 9
Where: Quiapo, Manila

This religious feast is celebrated in the heart of Manila, Quiapo. The Black Nazarene is believed to be miraculous, that’s why thousands of devotees come here to participate in the annual Traslación. Some brave souls even climb up the float to touch the statue and wipe their towels.

When in Manila, make sure to learn some basic Filipino as it is the national language of the Philippines.

3. Ati-Atihan Festival

Ati-Atihan Festival is one of the popular Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Elisolidum

When: Third week of January
Where: Kalibo, Aklan

Another religious festival in the Philippines in honor of Santo Niño is Ati-Atihan Festival in Kalibo, Aklan. During this Filipino festival, street dancers in tribal costumes smear themselves with soot to look dark and be like the natives that once lived in Aklan. When the procession starts, you’ll hear drums and whistles followed by the chant, “Hala Bira!”.

4. Dinagyang Festival

Dinagyang Festival is one of the most celebrated Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Ranieljosecastaneda

When: Fourth Sunday of January
Where: Iloilo City

Dinagyang Festival is one of the most famous religious and cultural Philippine festivals. Aside from honoring the Sto. Niño, it also celebrates the pact between the datus (chiefs) and the locals. You’ll be treated to stunning performances, lively music, and a festive atmosphere during the grand celebration on the fourth Sunday of January.

To connect more with the locals during the festival, why not learn some useful Hiligaynon words and phrases?

5. Moriones Festival

Moriones Festival
Photo credit: EMMAN A. FORONDA

When: Holy Week
Where: Marinduque

Celebrated in Marinduque during Holy Week, Moriones Festival is another famous religious festival in the Philippines. You’ll see men wearing masks called “moriones” to embody the story of Longinus, the blind Roman soldier who speared Jesus Christ. His eyesight was believed to be healed by the blood from the side where Jesus was pierced.

6. Pintados-Kasadyaan

Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival is one of the most colorful Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Ranieljosecastaneda

When: June 29
Where: Tacloban City, Leyte

Also known as Pintados Festival, this cultural and religious event is held annually in Tacloban City to honor Sr. Santo Niño. It is based on the body-painting traditions of the ancient tattooed warriors called “pintados”.

While exploring Tacloban, impress the locals by speaking some basic Waray words and phrases.

7. Peñafrancia Festival

Image of Our Lady of Penafrancia
Our Lady of Peñafrancia | Photo credit: JohnPaulAven

When: Third Sunday of September
Where: Naga City, Camarines Sur

Peñafrancia Festival is one of the grandest religious festivals in the Philippines, and Asia’s biggest Marian event. It honors the patroness of Bicol, Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia. On the feast day, there is a fluvial parade where the Virgin is carried on a float traversing the Bicol River.

During the festival, impress the locals by speaking some basic Bicolano words and phrases.

8. Zamboanga La Hermosa Festival

Regatta de Zamboanga - Hermosa Festival is one of the most colorful Philippine festivals
Photo credit: DOT Philippines Official Facebook Page

When: October
Where: Zamboanga City

Celebrated every October in Zamboanga City, Zamboanga La Hermosa Festival or Hermosa Festival is one of the oldest Philippine festivals. It honors the Nuestra Señora del Pilar (Our Lady of the Pillar). Aside from the street dance competition, concerts, and trade fairs, the much-awaited event here is the Regatta de Zamboanga, where colorful vintas (traditional outrigger boats) of Zamboanga race against each other to win.

While you’re in Zamboanga City, why not learn some basic Chavacano words and phrases to better connect with the Zamboangueños?

9. Higantes Festival

Higantes Festival
Photo credit: Rizal Provincial Government Official Website

When: Third Sunday of November
Where: Angono, Rizal

Higantes or Gigantes is the Spanish word for “giants”. With this, you can already imagine what you’ll see at the Higantes Festival in Angono, Rizal. The parade of these gigantic papier-mâché puppets expresses the locals’ mockery to the abusive hacienda owners during the Spanish colonial era. The festival is also the Feast of St. Clement, the patron saint of the mariners.

Philippine festivals that celebrate culture and history

10. Masskara Festival

Masskara Festival
Photo credit: Herbert Kikoy

When: Fourth Sunday of October
Where: Bacolod City

Masskara Festival is a huge celebration in Bacolod City every fourth Sunday of October. During the grand parade, street dancers wear attractive costumes and masks that reflect the joy of its people, making it known as the “Festival of Smiles”.

11. Kadayawan Festival

Kadayawan Festival
Photo credit: Fpj455

When: Third week of August
Where: Davao City

A famous festival in Davao City, Kadayawan Festival is an annual celebration of basically everything about life — from nature and harvest to culture and tradition. During the festivities, different communities in Mindanao showcase their heritage through street dancing in vibrant costumes.

12. Kadaugan sa Mactan

Kadaugan sa Mactan
Photo credit: DOT Central Visayas Office Facebook Page

When: April 27
Where: Mactan, Cebu

Performed every April 27, Kadaugan sa Mactan is the annual re-enactment of the Battle of Mactan along the coast of Mactan Island. This historic event pays tribute to Lapulapu, the former chieftain of Mactan and the first Filipino hero who, together with his men, fought against the foreign invaders led by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.

Before you leave Mactan, you may want to learn about the world-class Mactan-Cebu International Airport.

13. Sarakiki-Hadang Festival

Sarakiki-Hadang Festival
Photo credit: City Arts and Culture Office – Calbayog City Facebook Page

When: September 1-8
Where: Calbayog City, Samar

Celebrated on the first week of September, Sarakiki-Hadang Festival in Calbayog City, Samar is one of the prestigious festivals in the Visayas region. Aside from the range of activities, the main highlight of the festival is the street dancing where performers wear manok (chicken) costumes as they dance to the beat of traditional Samareño instruments.

14. Sinadya sa Halaran Festival

Sinadya sa Halaran
Photo credit: Capiz Tourism and Cultural Affairs Facebook Page

When: December 4-8
Where: Roxas City, Capiz

Sinadya sa Halaran is a famous festival in Capiz featuring the rich culture and history of Capizeños. Spectators look forward to the dance parade, fluvial parade, beauty pageant, agri-aqua trade fair, and fireworks show.

15. Kasanggayahan Festival

Kasanggayahan Festival
Photo credit: DOT Philippines Official Facebook Page

When: October
Where: Sorsogon, Sorsogon

Kasanggayahan means “prosperity and happiness”, and the festival itself is the founding anniversary of Sorsogon.

Fun fact: At the 2019 Kasanggayahan Festival, Sorsogon won the first Guinness World Record for the Largest Filipino Folk Dance when 7,127 dancers performed the Pantomina Sa Tinampo along the Rompeolas baywalk.

16. Catandungan Festival

Catandungan Festival
Photo credit: Catanduanes Tourism Promotion

When: Third weekend of October nearest October 24
Where: Virac, Catanduanes

Catandungan Festival is both a cultural and religious festival commemorating the independence of Catanduanes as a separate province from Albay. Activities during the celebration include a beauty pageant, Pantomina folk dance, photo exhibits, and tours.

17. T’boli Tribal Festival

Lake Sebu
View of 7 Falls at Lake Sebu | Photo credit: Felix Navy

When: Third week of September
Where: South Cotabato

Also called Lemlunay, T’boli Tribal Festival is a thanksgiving festival held in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato. It is a gathering and a celebration of the rich heritage of the major ethnolinguistic tribes in the province including the T’boli, the Manobo, the Ubo, the Kalangan, the Tasaday, and the Maguindanao.

Philippine festivals that celebrate local products and harvest

18. Pahiyas Festival

Pahiyas Festival in Lucban is one of the famous Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Ranieljosecastaneda

When: May 15
Where: Lucban, Quezon

Officially called the Lucban San Isidro Pahiyas Festival, it is one of the grandest and most colorful harvest festivals in the Philippines. It honors San Isidro de Labrador, the patron saint of farmers. During this fiesta in the Philippines, the locals decorate their homes with fruits, vegetables, flowers, and other local produce, making them visually appealing masterpieces.

19. Lanzones Festival

Lanzones Festival in Camiguin is one of the popular harvest festivals in the Philippines
Photo credit: Theglennpalacio

When: Third week of October
Where: Mambajao, Camiguin Island

From the name itself, you’ll already know that the festival celebrates the lanzones fruit, which is one of Camiguin’s most important crops, putting them on the tourism radar. During the Lanzones Festival, street dancers wear alluring costumes adorned with lanzones fruits or leaves.

20. Panagbenga Festival

Panagbenga Festival is one of the most colorful Philippine festivals
Photo credit: DOT Philippines Official Facebook Page

When: February
Where: Baguio City

Panagbenga Festival is a month-long flower festival in Baguio City honoring the season of blooming. During the parade day, spectators are treated to visually striking floats covered with different species of flowers and plants.

While you’re in the city, why not pick up some basic Ilocano words and phrases for your social interaction?

21. Tuna Festival

Tuna Festival is one of the most famous Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Tuna Festival Facebook Page

When: First week of September
Where: General Santos City

Tuna Festival celebrates the bountiful harvest of tuna, GenSan’s popular product. At this Filipino festival, you’ll be treated to lively performances by dancers wearing beautiful tuna-themed costumes and props.

22. Sagingan Festival

Sagingan Festival is one of the top Philippine festivals for harvest
Photo credit: Capital Town Tubod, Lanao del Norte (Sagingan Festival) Official Facebook Page

When: October 16-17
Where: Tubod, Lanao del Norte

Saging means “banana” and you can very well tell that this festival is centered on this yellow fruit, from the decorations to the street dance costumes and props. Sagingan Festival is in honor of the patron saint of farmers San Isidro Labrador.

23. Banigan-Kawayan Festival

Banigan-Kawayan Festival is one of the top Philippine festivals
Photo credit: Lawrence Ruiz

When: September 29
Where: Basey, Samar

Banigan-Kawayan Festival celebrates local crafts banig (hand-woven mat) and the kawayan (bamboo) in Basey, Samar. Expect to see these crafts being showcased at the annual street dance parade.

24. Giant Lantern Festival

Giant Lantern Festival is one of the most popular Philippine festivals during Christmas season
Photo credit: Ramon FVelasquez

When: mid-December
Where: City of San Fernando, Pampanga

Every Christmas season, we all look forward to seeing lanterns illuminating the streets, houses, and establishments. The City of San Fernando in Pampanga is taking lantern-making seriously with its Giant Lantern Festival. With its popularity, the city earned the moniker as the “Christmas Capital of the Philippines”.

So, which of these Philippine festivals or fiestas do you want to experience? Feel free to let us know on our social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube.

You might also be interested to visit Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bagac, Bataan to see some preserved heritage houses and learn more about Philippine history and culture.

In addition, visit these top Philippine tourist spots to experience the best of the country.

Similar Posts