Dinagyang Festival, Iloilo, Philippines
It is held in the province of IloIlo every 4th week January. This colorful festival is celebrated by the Christian faithful in honor of “Señor Santo Niño” – the Holy Child Jesus Christ.
The celebration of the festival began when a priest of the locality introduced the devotion to Señor Santo Niño in 1967. The devotion to the child image of Jesus Christ then took root and spread to other localities in the province. The costumes and style of dancing of the festival is patterned to that of the tribal garments and dances of the Atis back then, the tribal groups who where the original settlers of the area.
Although the dancers may be covered with ashes and charcoal
colors, they still gleam with exquisiteness because of the colorful costumes that they wear while they dance. These highlights are complemented with the booming holler of “hala bira” which makes the festival a more lively one.
The Dinagyang Festival was recognized by the United Nations as one festival which promotes the organization’s Millennium Development Goals. Excitement and pride permeate every word of the Iloilo people in describing their homegrown festival. They refer to it as fully their own.
Tourists from abroad and even locals from around the country take their time liesurely as they capture the vibrance and excitement of experiencing the sights of the Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo.