Rainforest World Music Festival – Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo
Set in the atmospheric heart of the Borneo Jungle, Sarawak, this annual festival is a must attend event for all music-lovers! Each day there are informative workshops, ethno-musical lectures, jamming sessions and mini-concerts that allow festival-goers to interact with the musicians up close and personal. You’ll be moved through beats and rhythms that’ll culminate each night in a five-hour concert line-up on the main stage next to the lake, under the open sky. Buy a cheap guitar in Bangkok, and get involved with this unique musical event.
Kuala Lumpur Festival – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The KL Festival is a whole month of Malaysian culture and heritage. Around 50 performances, visual arts, traditional games, and language and literature events entertain locals and tourists all over Kuala Lumpur and the Klang Valley.
Buddhist Lent – Myanmar, Laos and Thailand
At the beginning of the rainy season in Myanmar, Laos and Thailand. Buddhist monks must remain in the monastery for three lunar months. Traditionally, this was so that they would not be in danger of treading on young plants which grow during this time.
Singapore Food Festival – Singapore
Food connoisseurs delight! A festival dedicated to the pleasure of eating delicious delicacies from all over the world. (And your parents were worried you’d come back skinny and undernourished from your travels!) Each street serves up a unique range of cuisine and there’s a festive atmosphere in the air. As well as food glorious food, there are also cultural activities; street shows in Chinatown, riverboat cruises, music and entertainment.
Banana Festival – Tagum, Davao del Norte, The Philippines
Taking place in Davao del Norte, the country’s leading producer of bananas, the Banana Festival is a ten day festival with lots of festivities and fairs, with street dancing and an agricultural trade fair to highlight Davao del Norte as “banana country”.
Bali Kite Festival – Sanur Beach, Bali, Indonesia
Traditionally held as a religious festival, this wonderful spectacle of an event is thought to send signals to the Hindu Gods to create plentiful harvests in the coming year. Kites of all different shapes, sizes and colours take to the skies above Bali, with some of the kites measuring up to 10 metres in length! Teams from local villages battle it out in competitions for best launch and longest flight. There is live music in the form of a Gamelan orchestra throughout the festival and hundreds of spectators.
The Candle Festival – Ubon Ratchathani, Thailand
This is a deeply spiritual festival following Khao Pansa, or Buddhist lent, when a great candle procession parades through the streets of Ubon Ratchatani to honour the everlasting faith of the people in Buddhism. The festival includes floats, special displays, cultural presentations and music and dancing. If you have been interested in learning about Buddhism and Meditation while you are in Thailand, this is a wonderful opportunity to find out more about traditional Thai beliefs in a beautiful, spiritual setting away from the tourists that can clutter the popular Chiang Mai at times.