A list of festivities celebrated by Asian, Middle Eastern, Latin American and African cultures.
Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided on this section is correct at the date of posting on the website. Waitemata DHB and the site editors do not accept any responsibility for information which is incorrect or out of date. If you find any information that you believe may be inaccurate, please email to eCALD Admin.
The following list is sorted in date order and can be changed to a list view.
Thursday, 21 March 2019
Naw Ruz is one of nine holy days for adherents of the Baha'i Faith worldwide and the first day of the Baha'i calendar. Since ancient times it has been a national holiday in Iran. Baha'u'llah, the founder of the Baha'i Faith, adopted the day as a holy day.
Thursday, 21 March 2019
Magha Puja is an important Buddhist festival celebrated on the full moon day of Magha in Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand, and on the full moon day of Phalguna in Myanmar. The spiritual aims of the day are: not to commit any kind of sins; do only good; purify one's mind.
Tuesday, 9 April 2019
In Jainism, Mahavir Jayanti, also known as Mahavir Janma Kalyanak, is the most important religious holiday. It celebrates the birth of Mahavira, the last Tirthankara.
Sunday, 14 April 2019
Vaisakhi is a festival celebrated in the Punjab region. Vaisakhi is especially important for the Sikh community as it marks the establishment of the Khalsa. More recently, this festival is also celebrated around the world by Sikh diaspora.
Saturday, 20 April 2019
Pesach or Passover is an important biblically derived Jewish festival. The Jewish people celebrate Passover as a commemoration of their liberation over 3,300 years ago by God from slavery in ancient Egypt that was ruled by the Pharaohs, and their freedom as a nation under the leadership of Moses.
Sunday, 21 April 2019
Easter or Resurrection Sunday is a festival and holiday celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred three days after his crucifixion by Romans at Calvary.
Monday, 6 May 2019
Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar. Muslims worldwide observe this as a month of fasting. This annual observance is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam. The month lasts 29–30 days based on the visual sightings of the crescent moon.
Saturday, 18 May 2019
Vesak, also known as Buddha Day, is a holiday observed traditionally by Buddhists on different days in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Tibet, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and South East Asian countries. Sometimes informally called "Buddha's Birthday", it actually commemorates the birth, enlightenment and death of Gautama Buddha in the Theravada or southern tradition.
Declaration of the Bab
Thursday, 23 May 2019
Siyyid Ali Muḥammad Shirazi was the founder of Babism, and one of three central figures of the Baha'i Faith. After his declaration he took the title of Bab meaning "Gate" or "Door". Bab's declaration is commemorated by Baha'i communities on a yearly basis.
Ascension of Baha'u'llah
Wednesday, 29 May 2019
Baha'u'llah was the founder of the Baha'i Faith. He claimed to be a messenger from God referring to the fulfilment of the eschatological expectations of Islam, Christianity, and other major religions. His death is commemorated by followers of the Baha'i Faith annually.
Wednesday, 5 June 2019
Eid al-Fitr ("Festival of breaking of the fast") is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting.
Sunday, 9 June 2019
Pentecost is a feast commemorating the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and other followers of Jesus Christ. For this reason, Pentecost is sometimes described by some Christians today as the "Birthday of the Church".
Saturday, 13 July 2019
Obon or Bon is a Japanese Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of one's ancestors. This Buddhist / Confucian custom has evolved into a family reunion holiday during which people return to ancestral family places and visit and clean their ancestors' graves.
Tuesday, 16 July 2019
Asalha Puja, also known as Dharma Day, is one of Theravada Buddhism’s most important festivals, celebrating as it does the Buddha’s first sermon in which he set out to his five former associates the doctrine that had come to him following his enlightenment.
Monday, 12 August 2019
Eid al-Adha ("Festival of the sacrifice") is the second of two religious holidays celebrated by Muslims worldwide each year. It honors the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his promised son, Ishmael, as an act of submission to God's command.
Friday, 23 August 2019
Krishna Janmashtami is an annual celebration of the birth of the Hindu deity Krishna, the eighth avatar of Vishnu.
Tuesday, 3 September 2019
Paryushana Parva is one of the most important festival for Jains. Paryushana is formed by two words meaning ‘a year’ and ‘a coming back’. It is a festival of repentance and forgiveness.
Tuesday, 10 September 2019
The Day of Ashura is on the 10th day of Muharram in the Islamic calendar. In Shia Islam, it marks the martyrdom of Husayn ibn Ali. In Sunni Islam, it marks the day that Moses fasted as gratitude for the liberation of the Israelites.
Sunday, 29 September 2019
Navratri is a festival dedicated to the worship of the Hindu deity Durga. The word Navaratri means 'nine nights' in Sanskrit, nava meaning nine and ratri meaning nights.
Monday, 30 September 2019
Rosh Hashanah begins on the first day of Tishrei, the first month of the Jewish civil year, but the seventh month of the ecclesiastical year. The day is believed to be the anniversary of the creation of Adam and Eve.
Wednesday, 9 October 2019
Yom Kippur, also known as Day of Atonement, is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people. It's central themes are atonement and repentance.
Sunday, 27 October 2019
Diwali (also known as "Festival of Lights") is an ancient Hindu festival celebrated in Autumn every year. The festival spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness.
Birth of Baha'u'llah
Tuesday, 12 November 2019
The Birth of Baha'u'llah is one of nine holy days in the Baha'i calendar that is celebrated by Baha'is and during which work is suspended. The holy day celebrates the birth of Baha'u'llah, the founder of the Baha'i Faith.
Guru Nanak's Birthday
Tuesday, 12 November 2019
Guru Nanak was the founder of Sikhism and the first of the Sikh Gurus. His birth is celebrated world-wide on Kartik Puranmashi, the full-moon day which falls on different dates each year in the month of Katak, October–November.
Sunday, 1 December 2019
Advent is a season observed in many Western Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. The term is an anglicized version of the Latin word adventus, meaning "coming".
Monday, 23 December 2019
Hanukkah, also known as the Festival of Lights and Feast of Dedication, is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple (the Second Temple) in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire of the 2nd century BCE.
Wednesday, 25 December 2019
Christmas or Christmas Day is an annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, observed most commonly on December 25 as a religious and cultural celebration among billions of people around the world.
Monday, 13 January 2020
Maghi is the Punjabi name for the festival of Makar Sankranti which is celebrated all over India as a winter harvest festival. It is a cultural, seasonal and a religious festival marking the agricultural new year, increase in daylight and holding of sports festivals.
World Religion Day
Sunday, 19 January 2020
World Religion Day is an interfaith observance initiated in 1950 by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United States, celebrated worldwide on the third Sunday in January each year. Though initiated in the United States, World Religion Day has come to be celebrated internationally.
Monday, 3 February 2020
Setsubun is the day before the beginning of spring in Japan. The name literally means "seasonal division", but usually the term refers to the spring Setsubun, which is celebrated yearly as part of the Spring Festival.