December 2023

Traditional Celebrations

The Winter Solstice Festival (22 Dec, Hong Kong) has its origins in the Chinese concept of yin and yang, which represents balance and harmony in life. It’s believed that the yin qualities of darkness and cold are at their most powerful on the shortest day of the year, but also at their turning point to give way to the light and warmth of yang. For this reason, the Winter Solstice Festival is a time for optimism.

The Chichibu Night Festival (2-3 Dec, Japan) is the festival of Chichibu Shrine in Chichibu, just 90 minutes from central Tokyo. One of the festival's main attractions is a two-and-a-half-hour firework display. Additionally, the streets are lined with stands selling festival foods and amazake (sweet rice wine) to combat the cold December night.

The Hagoita-Ichi or Battledore Fair (Date TBA, Japan) takes place near the Hondo or main hall of Senso-ji Temple. Some 50 open-air stalls selling hagoita (battledores), shuttlecocks, kites, and other New Year decorations stand huddled together with people visiting from all over the country. This is a traditional fair dating back to the Edo Period.

Christmas on a Great Street (Date TBA, Singapore) is a spectacular display of Christmas lights along Singapore’s famed shopping belt, Orchard Road. With no shortage of exciting events, Instagram-worthy sights, and a myriad of retail and restaurant choices, there's no better place to embrace the season of joy.

Perang Topat (Date TBA, Indonesia) is an agricultural fertility ceremony staged during the full moon of the Sasak calendar in Lingsar temple and in Sasak villages by both Hindus and Sasaks who cast topat (rice cakes) at each other for three days to celebrate harmony and friendship.

Lovely December (Date TBA, Indonesia) is an event held by the government of Tana Toraja. It features a variety of artworks of Tana Toraja culture and customs.

International Events

The Angkor Wat International Half Marathon (3 Dec, Cambodia) is an internationally recognized half marathon, organized by Cambodia Events Organizer (CEO), raising funds for the victims of antipersonnel mines in Cambodia.

The Amazing Thailand Marathon Bangkok (Date TBA, Thailand) is the latest addition to Thailand's running calendar. Runners will enjoy a unique city-centric course that will take them past some of Bangkok’s amazing landmarks. Choose from a full marathon (42.195km), half-marathon (21.1km), 10 km, and 3.5 km.