Celebrations, Feasts and Events
Join us in the various festivals and celebrations throughout the year in Macau. You'll enjoy a cosmopolitan atmosphere and get to taste a world of colors, tastes, events and celebrations. From Christian festivals to Chinese festivals and even the Filipino Pahiyas. Only in Macau.
New Year Celebrations- 1st of January
Chinese New Year
End of January; beginning of February; 1st day of the First Moon
Chinese New Year is the most important and colourful Chinese New Year festival celebrated by the majority of the local population, where shops, offices, factories close for this traditional holiday.
Procession of the Passion of Christ - February / March
It is then returned through the city via the stations of the Cross, accompanied by a magenta-robed escort and crowds of the faithful and curious.
Feast of Tou Tei - March
Tou Tei is the Earth God and he is said to be everywhere. Celebrations are held at the Tou Tei Temples around the city.
Easter Celebrations - March / April
A very important festival especially among the Christian community. Many shops sell sweets related to this festival, as chocolates, Portuguese "folar" (egg cake), etc.
Macau Arts Festival - March / April
This festival is organized by the Cultural Institute and co-organized by the Civic and Municipal Affairs Bureau. It is the time when most of the cultural associations and institutes of Macau display their best shows.
Normally the programme include music concerts, dance, painting exhibitions, Chinese opera, theatre etc... It is an occasion when the cultural diversity of Macau comes to the stage. For specific information about the programme of this event please visit the following Internet address: http://www.icm.gov.mo
Ching Ming Festival - April
Falling on the 106th day after the Winter Solstice, Ching Ming Festival is a family affair. It is the day when relatives flock to their ancestors' graves.
Birthday of Pak Tai - April
Performances of Chinese opera are usually held in a mat-shed at the Pak Tai Temple in Taipa village. According to legend, Pak Tai conquered Demon King, who was terrorizing the universe. As a reward he was given the title of Superior Divinity of the Deep Dark Heaven and True Soldier of the North. Chinese opera is performed by his temple on Taipa.
A-Ma Festival - April / 23rd day of the Third Moon
Homage is paid to Macau's most popular deity, the Goddess of Seafarers, from whom Macau is said to derive its name. Held at the A-Ma Temple.
Bathing of the Lord Buddha Festival - May / 8th day 4th Moon
A day when the images of Buddha are ceremonially cleaned and purified in Buddhist Temples throughout the territory.
Drunken Dragon Festival - May / 8th day 4th Moon
This is a very strange festival if compared with the other major Chinese festivals. It dates from the misty past from the Kangxi Kingdom of the Qing Dynasty.
Tam Kong Festival - May / 8th day of the Fourth Moon
A colourful festival celebrating the birthday of the God Tam Kong. This child god is said to control the weather and help the sick. Among the fishing community, he is second in popularity only to A-Ma.
Procession of Our Lady of F atima - 13th May
The St. Anthony Procession is a very short procession held every year on the feastday of the Saint along the streets and park adjacent to the St. Anthony Church.
Macau is shaped like a lotus and is historically known as the Land of the Lotus flower. In fact, the design of the flag of Macau SAR features a lotus flower above the stylized Macau-Taipa Bridge on a light green background. Thus every June and July Macau hosts a lotus flower festival.
Dragon Boat Festival - May-June / 5th day of the 5th Moon
This old Chinese festival is to commemorate the heroic poet Wat Yuen who protested against corruption by drowning himself.
Today all celebrations are
concentrated on the famous Dragon Boat Races, which in Macau takes place
on the Nam Van Lakes. Many local teams and foreign teams take part in this
Women Volleyball Grand Prix - August
Macau stages a section of the volleyball matches in the spacious Forum stadium with international teams battling to qualify for the finals.
Feast of Maidens - August / 7th day of the 7th Moon
Sometimes referred to as the Lovers' Festival, it falls on the seventh day of the seventh moon on the lunar calendar and has deep meaning for unmarried women. The festival celebrates the only day in the year when the legendary Heavenly Weaver can meet her lover, the Cowherd, over a bridge of birds spanning the Milky Way.
Hungry Ghosts Macau Festival - August / 14th day of the 7th Moon
In order to appease the ancestors' souls and all the forgotten spirits, people make small models in paper of objects, and burn it all with incense on the pavements of the streets or at the entrance door of their houses. They worship the gods to protect those beloved ones and for that prepare dishes of meat and fruits.
Mid-Autumn or Moon Macau Festival - September / October
The centre of this celebration is the Moon on the 15th day of the 8th moon, according to the lunar calendar.
People make especial lunar cakes, which they offer, to each other in familiar and friends visits. The preparation of the cakes requires the eggs and the ingredients to be energetically shaken.
At night everybody goes out to observe the new moon and to worship the gods with colourful and exquisite lanterns.
In Macau the traditional spots for that are the Praia Grande and Nam Van Lakes, all gardens and Hac-Sa and Cheoc-Van beaches in Coloane. People sometimes leave their lanterns floating on the water.
Chung Yeung Festival - Sept-Oct / 9th day 9th Moon
Also known as the Festival of Ascending Heights, celebrated by the Chinese, when many people climb hills after offering prayers at family graves.
International Fireworks Display Contest - September / October
The largest of its kind and one of the most important in the world. Experts from different countries are invited to Macau to compete with spectacles of fireworks set off over the Nam Van Lake.
This is a Festival that every year brings to Macau some of the finest orchestras, singers, choirs and music players. The programme contemplates both the Western and the Chinese classical and modern music. The climax is traditionally the performance of an opera.
The concerts and recitals take place all over the Territory in the baroque churches, in the Chinese pavilions, in the gardens and in the Auditoria of the Cultural Centre.
The Lusofonia Macau Festival is usually held in the Carmo Area in Taipa, featuring folk arts and culinary booths from ten Portuguese-speaking communities (Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Goa, Daman and Diu, Macau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe and East Timor). The participants will bring along their music, pictures, videos, arts and crafts, garments, books, souvenirs, local snacks and beverages to the festival.
Macau Open Golf Tournament
With presence of high profile players and support of the Macau Golf and Country Club, the Macau Open gives the region's golfers a chance to test their rapidly development skills against the best in the world.
Macau Grand Prix - November
The Grand Prix is one of the worlds most exiting car and motorcycle races using a city circuit - the Guia Circuit. It is probably the most internationally known event produced in Macau, because of its quality and of its history of five decades.
During the days of the Grand Prix the whole city feels extraordinary excitement: the noise of the engines, the crowds of tourists, the colourful decoration of the streets. The Macau Grand Prix changes the rhythm of life during one week. To know more ..
Macau Food Festival - November
The popular Macau Food Festival is usually held alongside the Macau Grand Prix weekend and extends to another week. This is a gourmets favourite time to visit and enjoy Macau.
Some of the Macau's best restaurants are represented, from the whole gamut of Chinese food - Cantonese, Shanghainese, Beijing, Chiu chow, etc, - to Asian food from Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan. Favourite ice creams - like Lemon Cello - are present. A big stage for shows and sing and dance contests wraps up the whole family friendly festival atmosphere.
Macau International Marathon - December
Running of the International Marathon over a full course that circles the peninsula and crosses to Taipa and Coloane Islands. Runners from overseas will join hundreds of Macau and Hong Kong athletes.
Christmas Macau Festival Celebrations - 25th December
Although the great majority of the population in Macau is not Christian, this season in Macau is particularly different. One can feel a bit of Europe on the air.
Some cake shops and hotels prepare traditional Portuguese Christmas cakes and the entire city is decorated with lights and Nativity scenes. See our Macau Christmas photos!