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Ati-Atihan Festival 2018 Details and Information

Get all the details about Ati-Atihan Festival 2018 on The Cheap Route, including Ati-Atihan Festival location, when Ati-Atihan Festival starts and finishes, and how long it lasts for. Events like Ati-Atihan Festival tend to change trips, get all the details beforehand so you can either attend the Ati-Atihan Festival celebration, or avoid the Ati-Atihan Festival crowds.

Ati-Atihan Festival Facts

Where Is Ati-Atihan Festival?

Kalibo, Philippines

When Is Ati-Atihan Festival?

3rd Monday of January for 7 days

What Is Ati-Atihan Festival?

Every year in January, local and foreign tourists alike flock to the island town of Kalibo, Aklan in the Philippines to join the merrymaking in the week-long Ati-Atihan Festival. Dubbed as the "The Filipino Mardi Gras", this festival is filled with tribal dance and music, as tribesmen in their indigenous costumes and painted faces parade along the streets.
The Ati-Atihan, meaning "make-believe Atis", was named after the Ati, the indigenous natives of the island. As explained by historians, the event originated when a group of Malay chieftains fled from the island of Borneo and found their way to the Philippines. The tribes of Panay island, the Ati people, granted them settlement. Thus, a Christian dimension was added gradually to the tribe’s pagan festival which is the Ati-Atihan.
The present day Ati-Atihan is celebrated is honor of Sto. Nino. Various activities are held in honor of this patron saint including masses, benefit dances, and processions. Thus, the festival ends on a religious note, with images of the Sto. Nino being paraded around in a procession led by priests.
But what really attracts a big crowd to this festival is the native dance competition. The rhythmic drumbeats and frenzy dancing of participants in colorful costumes, wearing tribal masks and extravagant headdresses while their bodies blacken with ash is simply too magnificent a sight to behold. The music and dancing run nonstop for several days and everyone is welcome to join the merriment.
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