In The Know: Sinulog Festival


The Sinulog, celebrated every third Sunday of January, is one of Cebu’s biggest and most popular festivals.

An annual dance ritual in honor of the Sto. Niño, it was originally of pagan origin.

The word “Sinulog” is derived from the Cebuano word which means “like the flowing water,” which describes the forward-backward movement of the Sinulog dance.

The first ever Sinulog parade was organized by then Regional Director of the Ministry of Sports and Youth Development David Odilao Jr. in 1980.

To distinguish the festival from the popular Ati-Atihan festival in Aklan, the organizers decided to use Sinulog to depict the country’s pagan past and Christian present.

The celebration traditionally lasts for nine days, which culminates with the Sinulog Grand Parade. Apart from the parade, the festival includes a Sinulog bazaar, contests, art and cultural performances, and a procession.

A tourist attraction, Sinulog workshops and demonstrations have been conducted through the help of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and the Philippine Folk Dance Society. Inquirer Research


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