One way to explore the culture of a new country is to join its festivals, which will show you the great sense of communal pride and culture richness. Here are five biggest and most important festivals in Myanmar which would educate you a lot about Myanmar culture.

Thingyan Water Festival

Water festival is a distinguished cultural feature of some of the Southeast Asian countries which also includes Myanmar. According to the Khmer calendar, the five-day-long festival is held to celebrate the New Year Eve. On the second days of the New Year, people will go out to the streets and throw water to at others. The water-spraying part is also the highlight of the festival which has fascinated many of the travelers from around the world to come to Myanmar.

Taunggyi Balloon Festival

Taunggyi – the capital city of Shan state in Myanmar annually holds a special festival in which a many giant fire balloon will be released into the air. It is also the main attraction of this city. The balloon festival is held right before the full moon of the eighth moon of the Burmese calendar which usually falls in November.

The balloon comes in different shapes: it could be an elephant, a duck or dragons or paper air balloons for night releasing. They are all handmade and attached with smaller candle lights dotted around them.

However, this festival also holds a great risk that you should consider. There are incidents happening now or then on the night of raising fire balloon.

Thadigyut Festival of light

This is another festival which features the breath-taking showcase of light. Thandigyut festival is the second biggest festival in Myanmar, just right after Thingyan water festival. It is held on the full moon night of the Thadigyut month – the seventh month of Burmese year. It is meant to celebrate the day Buddha descended from heaven after he preached the Abhidhamma to his mother who had died and reborn in heaven.

Pagodas and houses will be decorated with beautiful light from candles, lantern and electric bubs or fire lantern. This is also the time for people to pay visits to pagodas and pay respect to Buddha or bring gifts to their respected and beloved ones.

The festival is filled up with many fascinating activities from religious ceremonies to street fairs and musical performance. This is the perfect opportunity for travelers to visit and explore the culture of Myanmar.