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Festivals in the Philippines: A Celebration of Culture and Unity

Region 9 Festivals in the Philippines

Aside from the fact that it’s a thanksgiving for bountiful harvest, it also serves as an act of healing and revival. It is an expression of people’s deep connection with the sea.

Local exhibitors were most interested in the impact of the festival and perceived it positively (H1). They assessed the improvement of the brand of the place and influx of tourists as positive effects.

Hudyaka ZaNorte

DIPOLOG CITY – Vice President Sara Duterte praised Hudyaka ZaNorte during her visit to the province this week. She said the holding of the event is a clear manifestation of its unceasing development. “Its success is a testament to your locals’ hard work and determination to advance, especially in this time of globalization,” she said. She also lauded the festival’s focus on the history and culture of the province.

Hudyaka ZaNorte is a month-long celebration of the province’s 159th founding anniversary. Its core events include the Kinabayo Festival, which features a reenactment of the Battle of Covadonga. The festival also honors St. James the Greater, the province’s patron saint.

The festival also showcases the province’s rich agricultural produce and tourism potential. It includes a night party and competitions, as well as garden shows and cultural presentations. A highlight of the festival is a sports complex in which participants compete in volleyball and table tennis tournaments. In addition, there is a special area where booths represent each municipality’s local products. Pinan’s booth, for example, exhibited five-kilo Hawaiian pineapples, which the townfolk claim are their biggest harvest.


The Sibug-Sibug festival is the province’s annual celebration of its founding day on February 26th. This two-week merriment features beautiful Ethnic Street hitting the dance floor with customs that depict good harvest, wedding, and healing. The festival also highlights the province’s number one product – shellfish or talaba in Tagalog.

The festival aims to preserve the Subanen culture of Diplahan, as well as its history and traditions. It also aims to boost tourism by highlighting its heritage and natural resources, such as the pristine beaches of Zamboanga Peninsula.

The festival was first launched in 2013 as a means to showcase the cultural identity of the municipality and its residents. Since then, it has grown to include a variety of activities such as the agri-tourism exposition, a trade fair and the prestigious Binibining Sibugay beauty pageant. Its renowned local products have also gained global recognition as evidenced by their inclusion in various international trade fairs.


Sakayan Festival is a celebration of the city’s people whose livelihood depends on fishing. It also honors the city’s founding anniversary. The festival’s activities include a cityhood address, agro-industrial trade fair and exhibits, food and cooking fest, sports, talent contest (singing, dance, essay writing), and other public services.

Dora Sakayan was born in Salonica, Greece to Armenian parents who escaped the genocide. She studied Germanic linguistics and language pedagogy at the Lomonosov Moscow State University and later taught German at Yerevan State University. She was a specialist in the field of foreign language acquisition.

Her archival research led her to discover the story of Clara Hilty, Fritz Sigrist-Hilty, and Haig Aramian. Through an organic interplay of primary and secondary texts, her book relates to the reader a coherent real-life story of endless human suffering but also of Christian compassion and selflessness. It is the most complete archival documentation of the event that spanned across three decades.


Almost every province in the Philippines has its own festival. These celebrations are filled with unbridled merriment and deep cultural significance. They can be dedicated to a town’s patron saint, its founding, or even seasonal changes.

The yearly Pasalamat Festival in Dapitan is held on the third Sunday of the first month and is a tribute to the city’s patron saint, Santo Nino. It is a festival that is also focused on the preservation of traditional arts and culture in the city.

The Megayon Festival in Zamboanga del Sur is a week-long celebration that takes place from the 11th until the 17th of September. It celebrates the unity between the Subanons, Bangsamoro Muslims, and Christians who live in the province. The word “Megayon” comes from the Subanen dialect and means “unity and solidarity”. In addition to cultural songs and dances, it also features indigenous sports competitions, peace forums, and environmental activities.

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