Seasonal Festivals

Religious festivals which falls fall during almost every month of the Myanmar lunar calendar draw people to pagodas.
On the days of festival, the stairways and platform of Shwedagon are thronged by endless streams of devotees from dawn till midnight.
A few of the religious festivals bear special significance for the Shwedagon Pagoda.

The most significance festivals are known as :

  • Festival on the Full Moon Day of the Myanmar month " Tabaung " ( February- March ) , known as " Tabaung Festival ".
  • Myanmar New Year Festival which is the water pouring festival and also called as " Thin- gyan Festival " in April.
  • The Buddha Day Festival; known as " Kasone Festival " in April-May.
  • Festival on the beginning day of the Buddhist Lent ; the " Waso Festival " in July.
  • Festival on the last day of Buddhist Lent , which is known as " Thadingyut Festival " in October.
  • Festival of weaving a robe for Buddha; called as the " Tazaungdaing Festival " in November.
Season of Novititation

During the season of novitiation there are colourful processions. The soon- to-be novitiates, dressed in their princely finery, with parents, friends and relatives in attendance, make a ritual circuit of the pagoda, then go their way to the monastery.


It is the significant Festival of Shwedagon because it was on the Full Moon Day of Tabaung that the King Ukkalapa and the two brothers enshrined the sacred hair relics in the Shwedagon.


The Thingyan festival ushers in Myanmar New Year when for about three days there is much mirth and revelry in water-pouring celebration everywhere. At Shwedagon, Buddha images and shrines are ceremonially washed and monks offered sumptuous meals.


The Kasone Full Moon Day or the Buddha Day ,hundreds of people and many religious groups come to pour water from silver bowls into the enclosure around the Scared Bo Tree with ceremonies and pageantry. It is the day on which Prince Siddartha was born, on which He attained Buddhahood and on which He passed away.


The Waso Full Moon Day which marks the beginning of the Buddhist Lent. Community prayers are held day and night. Waso offerings, especially of the tall candles, are in abundance at every Buddha images.


Thadingyut Festival signalizes the end of the Buddhist Lent. This festival commemorates the Buddha's return from Tawadeintha when Devas (celestial beings) line his route and illuminated the way. The Shwedagon platform appears a magnificent spectacle,lit from platform to peak.


During Tazaungdaing Festival, the Shwedagon is the scence of an event of national intrest, the Mathothingan weaving contest. From evening till before midnight, girl weavers feverishly vie with each other to be the first to complete weaving a yellow robe. The robes, four in number,are offered to the four images on the Pagoda representing the Four Buddhas: Kakkasanda, Konagamana, Kassapa and Gotama.