The Philippines is home to very happy people with colorful histories and various beliefs. It's probably why there isn't any lack of fiestas for every province the whole year. Filipinos have a knack of making a celebration out of everything—from wanting a child to thanksgiving for a good harvest—and these events become melting pots of new culture that aim to keep old traditions alive.

This summer, instead of just going to the beach to party, why not enjoy a different kind of party. Take your pick from our list of beautiful festivals that will definitely make your proud of your Filipino heritage.

What: Alimango Festival
Where: Lala, Lanao del Norte
When: March 22

Crabs are a symbol of unity among the different ethnic and religious groups that live in Lala, Lanao, as these keep their communities prosperous. To commemorate this peaceful coexistence, the town lavishly celebrates the annual Alimango Festival, the only festival the country to star crustaceans. The event showcases dance competitions and processions with participants dressed in indigenous clothing as well as colorful and creative crab costumes. To give tribute to the sea, townsfolk also flock to the mangroves for a yearly water parade. The festivities culminate on the 22nd of March.

What: Sinugdan
Where: Limasawa Island, Leyte
When: March 31 

"Sinugdan" means "beginning," and this is what the locals of Limasawa Island in Leyte celebrate every year: the commemoration of the country's first Christian mass and the beginnings of the Catholic faith in the country. 

Sinugdan starts with the Sto. Niño de Cebu visiting key barangays via water and land. Upon reaching its goal in the barangay of Magallanes, the santo is welcomed with festivities and a eucharistic celebration. Sinugdan is also full of parades and competitions exploding in bright colors of traditional costumes that would definitely delight both local and foreign visitors.


What: Moriones
Where: Marinduque
When: Held during Holy Week

Probably one of the most well-known festivals in the Philippines, the Moriones of Marinduque has inspired several other street celebrations and reenactments of biblical stories in other provinces. It stars the Morion—men and women costumed as Roman soldiers during Jesus' passion and death—who surprise locals with antics and pranks at the start of the Holy Week. The towns of Boac, Gasan, Santa Cruz, Buenavista, and Mogpog culminate the festivities with plays and parades that recreate Christ's journey to Cavalry.

What: Pandan Festival
Where: Luisiana, Laguna
When: April 3

The Pandan Festival is a week-long celebration that coincides with the independence of the town of Luisiana. It showcases the many different aspects of pandan, a crop  that abundantly grows in the locale. Visitors can enjoy different delicacies made from it in the cool Luisianan weather, but note that it isn't only about satisfying the belly. The Pandan Festival is also a feast for the eyes, as townsfolk dress up their homes with pandan leaves during the Gayakang Bayan, and parade in the streets with very creative hand-crafted pandan floats.

What: Liliw Gat Tayaw Tsinelas Festival
Where: Liliw, Laguna
When: April 22-26 

As Liliw is known for  great and comfortable espadrilles and flip-flops, it comes as no wonder that the town would celebrate their craft. During the Tsinelas Festival, merchants along the Gat Tayaw street create huge slippers and and vie for the title of "Pinaka-maganda na Malaking Tsinelas" ("Most Beautiful Giant Slipper"). Liliw craftsmanship is highlighted during a fashion show called "Tsinelas on the Ramp," and the townsfolk also get a great deal of fun with street parties and parades with colorful costumes in remembrance of the bird from whose song the town's name was based.

What: Panaad sa Negros
Where: Bacolod City
When: April 30

Held in the provincial capital of Bacolod, Panaad sa Negros translates to the vow of thanksgiving to God for a good life. Celebrated by 13 cities and 19 towns, it is considered one of the largest festivals in the country. 

Panaad sa Negros starts as early as March, with activities organized by the provincial government in preparation for the culminating event. Everything from beauty pageants to dog shows are set up for the enjoyment of the locals. As the celebrations come to a close, various parades, contests, street parties, and fireworks shows cap  everything off, making it one of the grandest festivals to be celebrated annually.


What: Sayaw sa Obando
Where: Obando, Bulacan
When: May 17 - 19

Not everybody dances at the Sayaw sa Obando, but the curious never fail to flock to the town streets during this season. For three consecutive days, women don their best terno to dance for St. Pascual Baylon, St. Clare of Assisi, and the Lady of Salambao in order to pray for children. The dance is also open to men and other women who wish to pray for good life and happiness. The parade is highlighted by musicians playing bumbong (bamboo instrument) as devotees sing holy hymns and prayers.

What: Pahiyas Festival
Where: Lucban, Quezon
When: May 15

The Pahiyas Festival is a colorful display of food, art, and abundance. Every year, the people of Lucban make kiping, which are tinted leaves made out of rice flour. These are then used to decorate their homes in thanksgiving for a bountiful harvest. The townsfolk put all their effort in creating beautiful tapestries of kiping not only to compete with one another, but also to honor the town patron, San Isidro.

Pahiyas comes from the word "payas," which means "harvest," and to celebrate this, locals display the best picks from their farms. Food is shared to friends and strangers alike, and visitors can enjoy the interesting sights of handcrafted rainbows of kiping while filling on Quezon's famous Pancit Habhab and Longganisang Lucban. 


What: Baragatan Festival
Where: Puerto Princesa, Palawan
When: May 22 - June 9

The Baragatan Festival is the celebration of the founding of Puerto Princesa. Coming from the word "bagat" which means "coming together of people," Baragatan is a huge event full of parades, floats, dance contests, concerts, trade shows, garden displays, and band competitions. The best thing about the Baragatan is that visitors can always opt to celebrate in their own way by the sea, as the sparkling shores of Palawan are always just a few minutes away.

What: Tapusan Festival
Where: Alitagtag, Batangas
When: May 31

The Tapusan Festival of Alitagtag celebrates the Holy Cross and the Virgin Mary as it closes the month of May with flowers and parades. The festivities start with offerings of flowers and gifts to the town church, which is later followed by street processions. Along the main thoroughfare of the town, the locals watch for beautifully-made flower floats that carry different santo. Some are also created as replicas of the famous Philippine sights. True to the tradition of Flores de Mayo, little girls and young ladies parade in ostentatious gowns during santacruzan, honoring St. Helena of Constantinople, who was said to have found the True Cross.

PHOTOS: Carl Clasio/Flickr Creative Commons, valkyrieangle/Flickr Creative Commons , YouTube

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