The Philippines has been known for having countless colorful festivals throughout the year. And, SINULOG in Cebu City is probably one of the grandest festivals in the country. For those who don’t know it yet, Sinulog is a celebration to honor Señor Santo Niño or the Holy Child Jesus, the patron saint of Cebuanos, and it is celebrated annually every 3rd Sunday of January.
This year was the first time I celebrated Sinulog and I’m so glad I was able to fly over and experience the fun and craziness that Cebu celebrates that day with my barkada. Listening to other people’s Sinulog experience, there’s always something for everyone. Whether it’s your first time or you just go to Cebu every year to celebrate, this is one festival that never gets old.
Majority of us Filipinos are Roman Catholics and truth be told that the Philippines is a very religious country regardless of what religion you’re in. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people visit the island of Cebu to experience the Sinulog Festival. Before the actual Sinulog weekend, people gather in Basilica Minore Del Santo Niño to offer a “novena” or an offering of prayers and masses for 9 consecutive days to Señor Santo Niño. You’d witness how faithful and devoted Cebuanos are to their patron saint and you might be surprised to just find yourself waving your hands in the air with everyone else while singing to the tune of “Bato Balani sa Gugma”.
Another highlight of the festival is the colorful and festive vibe of the street dancers as they dance in great sync to the Sinulog beat during the street dancing. Yes, the Sinulog festival has its very own signature beat and you’ll be hearing the jingle all week at every corner of Cebu, so it’s no surprise you’ll dance to the beat as well.
Here’s when it gets really crazy! Sinulog weekend isn’t complete without the party. Cebuanos don’t just party, they party hard! During the Sinulog week, tons of parties are happening everywhere in Cebu but it’s during the weekend that parties are taken up to the next level and the best events happen! And, just when you thought it couldn’t get any crazier, Sunday comes and brings a new meaning to the word “PARTY” as DJs both local and international play the best of music to keep the party going, so my advice to the dj's out there is that whether you're a pro or rookie, you might wanna check out some awesome dj gear at musiciansfriend.com for your party gigs. Fair warning: the street party is not for the faint of heart. LOL. Get ready to get loud, bathe in booze and get messy with face paints and so much more! It’s pure chaos but in an insanely fun atmosphere!
The whole Sinulog experience is definitely one for the books! But, let’s not forget what makes Sinulog…“SINULOG”, and the main reason why celebrate it–for Señor Santo Niño de Cebu. Sinulog is always an epic celebration, and I sure can’t wait for the next!