The Sinulog Festival is one of the biggest festivals in the Philippines. Every year, thousands of tourists and locals experience the spectacle and grandeur of Cebu’s biggest celebration. People from around the world travel to the city to witness the events, while fellow Filipinos from outside Cebu island also travel to take part in the Grand Parade. The street dance performances, along with the creative and colorful floats and higantes, make the festival extra memorable for everyone attending.
In Cebu City, there’s a festival known as Sinulog. It’s a citywide celebration that encompasses the right mix of partying and a little bit of religious fervour. There’s some debate about the true meaning of Sinulog. But what can’t be argued is the impact that the festival has on the city.
The Sinulog festival has its roots in Spanish colonialism, much like a good portion of the country’s religious tradition. The center of the celebration is the Santo Nino, a version of the Christ child that is dressed as a king, wielding a scepter and a globe.
In the Philippines, there is a place that probably has the longest continuous celebration – starting from September when Christmas songs, ‘Merry Christmas!” to the shouting of “Pit Senyor!” during the Sinulog Festival culminating on the third Sunday of January. This goes beyond the feast of Epiphany which ends the Advent Season.
It is also about this time that Sinulog preparations are visible everywhere in Cebu City. What is probably more well-known is the Sinulog Parade. It has generated interest and millions of people visit Cebu for the parade. The Sinulog dance choreography, costumes, and props is a year-long preparation for most.