Magical moments await…
 
As temperatures cool, holidays heat up across Asia with some of the year’s largest cultural festivals across the region happening between
September to November.
Here’s where to experience the magic and beauty of Loy Krathong, the
Mid-Autumn Festival and more…
 
 

 
CHINA
 

 


 
Festival: Mid-Autumn Festival, 13 September
 
Also known as the Moon Festival, the Mid-Autumn Festival is one of China’s most significant traditional holidays and a popular occasion for family reunions. When the full moon rises, families get together to celebrate a successful harvest, eat the iconic moon cakes, share special meals and light lanterns.
  
 

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Where to go: Pingyao
 
Experience the Mid-Autumn Festival in full swing at China’s best-preserved ancient walled of, Pingyao. The UNESCO World Heritage site was originally constructed 1,500 years ago and remains just as mesmerising today. Walk around the picturesque old town with expert guides who will share the city’s secrets along with the art of Chinese tea and more with you. 
 

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INDIA
 

 


 
Festival: Diwali Festival, 27 October
 
The word Diwali comes from the Sanskrit word deepavali, meaning “rows of lighted lamps.” The flickering candles symbolise one’s inner light that protects from spiritual darkness. Homes and shops light up with oil lamps meant to welcome the Goddess Lakshmi for luck and prosperity while families gather to clean their houses for a fresh start and exchange gifts. The festival is celebrated differently across the country, however, making it one of the most diverse holidays in the country.
 

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Where to go: West Bengal
 
Coinciding with Diwali, Kali Puja, a holiday to honour the Goddess Kali, is also celebrated in the northeast region of Bengal making for an elaborate day of celebrations. Discover West Bengal’s delta of the Brahmaputra, the sacred Ganges flowing into the Bay of Bengal and the fertile lands watered by an abundant monsoon. Experience the local folklore, culture, tea plantation, cuisine and more with Secret Retreats.
 
 
 
 

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THAILAND
 

 


 
Festival: Loy Krathong from 11-13 November
 
Celebrated at the end of the rainy season, Loy Krathong marks a time to make merit and wash away misfortune that may have occurred in the past year for a fresh start. This is done by releasing decorative flower and banana leaf floats, known as krathong, into the rivers. In the northern part of the country, candles also light up the streets and paper lanterns are released into the sky for a dazzling effect.
 

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Where to go: Chiang Mai
 
One of the best places to experience the Loy Krathong festival in Thailand is the ancient northern capital of Chiang Mai. Here one can easily wander through town witnessing colourful parades, monk blessings and dance performances before heading to the river in the evening to release your own krathong and paper lantern.
 
 
 
 

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VIETNAM
 

 


 
Festival: Ooc Om Bok Festival, 10-20 November
 
Ooc Om Bok is one of the liveliest festivals for Khmer people in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta thanking the moon god for bountiful rice crops and celebrating the end of the Khmer year. Fruits and vegetables are often given as offerings to the gods at midnight while traditional dance and music performances, cultural workshops, boat races and more lend to a vibrant communal atmosphere.
 

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Where to go: Mekong Delta
 
 Journey to the Mekong Delta with Secret Retreats to witness Ooc Om Bok’s famous ghe ngo boat races in Soc Trang province. With long wooden boats shaped like a naga serpent, the races are a raucous affair. On the river, lanterns, colourful banners, flowers and other offerings are also placed on banana tree trunk rafts and set afloat.
 
 
 
 

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…to start planning your Asian journey
 

 
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