One of the best ways to make sure that your trip to Vietnam is an unforgettable one is to plan it around the time of the festivals celebrated in the country. We will list for you top 10 best festivals take place in Vietnam in 2020.
1.Lunar New Year in January/February
‘Tet’ is an abbreviation of Tết Nguyên Đán, which translates as ‘The Feast of the First Morning of the First Day’.
Today, it’s a time for paying respects to ancestors and welcoming the New Year with family members
Held between late January 2020, it is officially a three-day celebration but festivities may continue for about a week (sometimes more) with every effort made to indulge in eating, drinking, and socializing.
Tet Festival is also a great time for locals to enjoy an array of traditional Vietnamese dishes such as banh chung (steamed square cake), gio cha (Vietnamese ham/sausage), xoi (sticky rice), and thit ga (steamed chicken). Visiting guests are also served with tea and mut (various dried fruits and seeds), which is kept in ornate boxes and placed at the table in the living room.
As the most important festival in Vietnam, most offices, shops, restaurants, and attractions are closed for the first three days of Tet. Flights are also often fully booked about a week before the festival, so it’s highly recommended that you plan in advance and book your flight to Vietnam as early as possible.
2.Hue Festival 2020
Hue Festival is a biannual celebration that takes place in UNESCO-listed Hue City.
You can enjoy an array of cultural events, games, and performances held over a week. Founded in 2000, the festival was held to preserve traditional customs that were practiced during the Nguyen Dynasty.
Hue Festival is held in April, May or June every two years. Festival Hue 2020 this year takes place from 01 Apr 2020 – 06 Apr 2020 at 40 venues around the city.
Some of the unique events held include the Hue Poetry Festival, Dialogue of Drums and Percussion and Ao Dai fashion shows.
You can also enjoy sporting activities like kite flying, boat racing, and human chess. Street performances, film screenings, and art exhibitions are held throughout the festival week as well.
Offering visitors a look into the city’s rich culture and heritage, Hue Festival 2020 is one of the most popular festivals in Vietnam.
3.Perfume Pagoda Festival in Mid-February/March
Perfume Festival takes place at the Perfume Pagoda in Hanoi, from the 15th day of the 1st lunar month.
Perfume Festival draws throngs of local pilgrims from all over Vietnam to Hanoi’s iconic Perfume Pagoda, where they to pray for a prosperous year and pay their respects to Buddha.
The pilgrimage starts with a dragon dance at Den Trinh Pagoda on the 15th day of the 1st Lunar, where pilgrims (and even travelers) travel by boat along the Yen River to the base of Huong Mountain, passing by limestone caves and rice fields.
The journey continues on foot by climbing hundreds of stone steps towards Huong Tich Cave, offering a colorful display of food offerings, statues of deities, lit incenses, and praying locals.
4. Mid-Autumn Festival in Mid-September
Mid-Autumn Festival, held on the 14th and 15th day of the lunar month.
This event features a wide range of activities such as children carrying paper lanterns, lion dances, and food booths selling mooncakes, sticky rice, fruits, and various sweets.
Also known as the harvest festival, households set up an altar during the night of the Mid-Autumn Festival, on which they display offerings in honor of the full moon.
Where’s the best place to celebrate? Mid-Autumn Festival is best enjoyed in Hoi An, where you’ll get to see plenty of street performances, lantern processions and arts exhibitions throughout UNESCO-listed Ancient Town.
Children also get to participate in essays, drawing and coloring contests during Mid-Autumn Festival, while visitors can enjoy breathtaking sights of colorful paper lanterns lining the Thu Bon Riverside and Japanese Covered Bridge.
5.Hung King Temple Festival in early April
Hung King Temple Festival is held in commemoration of Kinh Duong Vuong, who became Vietnam’s first king in 2879BC.
While the main worship event takes place at the Hung Temple, which is perched atop Nghia Linh Mountain in Phu Tho Province, 100 lanterns are released into the sky on the eve of the festival.
The next morning, a flower ceremony is held at Den Thuong (Upper Temple), where the Hung Kings used to worship deities during their reign.
Lastly, a huge procession starts at the foot of the mountain, consisting of pilgrims, “xoan” classical song performances, and “ca tru” classical operas at several temples along the way towards the main Hung Temple.
6. Lim Festival in Mid-February
Lim Festival is celebrated in Lim Village, which is located within the Tien Du District, Bac Ninh Province. Located 18km from Hanoi, You can easily make your way to this traditional village by bus or rental car.
Lim Festival is where you can enjoy UNESCO-listed quan ho folk singing performances and a wide range of traditional games during your visit. Held on the 12th and 13th day of the first lunar month, several stages are built within the village where you get to see locals performing in traditional costumes.
We highly recommend heading over to the lake outside the Lim Communal House to catch quan ho singing performance on a dragon boat. Lim Festival also hosts folk games such as danh du (bamboo swings), cockfighting, tug-of-war, wrestling, human chess, and blind man’s bluff.
7. Buddhas’s Birthday
Buddha’s Birthday is celebrated by devotees throughout Vietnam, despite being a communist country.
Taking place on the 8th day of the 4th lunar month, many temples are adorned with lavish decorations with locals offering fruit, flower garlands, and various Vietnamese dishes.
This event often draws thousands of visitors looking to partake in street parades and prayer sessions.
Hoi An is arguably the best place to enjoy this festivity. Held at Phap Bao Pagoda, the day starts with a procession of monks along the streets of Hoi An Ancient Town before locals flock to the temple to perform religious rites and listen to Buddhist scriptures.
In the evening, expect a lively parade along the main road of the Old Town, where animals are released while flower garlands and lanterns are placed along the riverbank. Aside from experiencing the local culture, Buddha’s Birthday is also a great time to enjoy vegetarian dishes sold by street vendors in Hoi An.
8.Hoi An Lantern festival in 14th day of every month
Hoi An Lantern Festival is a monthly event that transforms the quaint UNESCO World Heritage Site into a spectacular display of paper lanterns.
On the 14th day of each lunar month, every shop, restaurant, bar, and business in the Ancient Town switches off all electricity and relies on hundreds of candles and lanterns.
Meanwhile, entrance to all temples is free of charge, where you can see monks and locals holding candlelit ceremonies.
Hoi An Lantern Festival takes place in UNESCO-listed Hoi An, but the best place to celebrate is along the Ancient Town area. Held until late, the streets are also filled with musicians playing traditional instruments, Chinese chess, poetry readings, and lantern-making classes.
9. Danang International Fireworks Festival 2020
This event is everything you need to know about how, where, and when to watch the fireworks displays, as well as other highlights of this explosive festival in Danang.
This year’s competition is themed ‘Stories by the Rivers’. Catch all the action along Da Nang’s Han River, on selected dates from June 1 until July 6. The show starts promptly at 8 pm each Saturday during the festival.
10. Dalat Flower Festival
This special celebration usually takes place in late December until early January and lasts around five days. The biennial festival will be held in December when Da Lat has the best weather of the year.
The festival is held with the purpose of exhibiting flowers, vegetables and ornamental plants from the local as well as other regions within the country and many other countries in the world in order to attract visitors to come to Dalat, promote the economic development of the city.
Dalat Flower Festival is also an activity honoring the value of flowers and floriculture, calling for investment in Dalat flower industry as well as promoting a positive image of the city, the culture and the people of Dalat.