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Mooncake Festival 2023

The Mooncake festival is one of the biggest festivals in Malaysia for Chinese people. It is celebrated during the end of September or early October and is, therefore, also called the mid-autumn festival. The mooncake festival is a joyous celebration with family, mooncakes, parades, and lanterns.

Origin and History of Mooncake Festival

Like many other festivals, the mooncake festival also has various tales associated with it. The most famous one among them is the Hou Yi and Chang’e story. Hou Yi was a great hero who shot nine out of ten suns that rose in the sky to prevent people from their disaster. He was given the gift of the elixir of immortality for his bravery. Hou Yi gave the elixir to his wife Chang’e to keep, as he didn’t want to be immortal without her.

One of Hou Yi’s apprentices, Peng Meng, came to know about this. He forced Chang’e to give him the elixir by breaking into her house in Hou Yi’s absence. Chang’e refused Peng Meng and swallowed the elixir, and then went to the moon. When Hou Yi learned about the incident, he grieved for his wife and offered her favorite fruits and cakes in the open moon. Other people joined in, and thus the festival originated.

Another variation of this tale suggests that Hou Yi became a cruel ruler after defeating the suns. So, his wife didn’t want him to become immortal. She drank the elixir of immortality herself and went to the moon. The moon festival is a thanksgiving by the people to Chang’e for saving them from the tyrant.

According to another legend, the history of this festival dates back to the time of the Zhou dynasty. The people of the Zhou dynasty worshipped and offered sacrifices to the moon for a great harvest. It was done in the season of mid-autumn and became popular during Tang and Song dynasties when the rich started having parties, music, and dance in the celebration of the moon. Then, in the Yuan dynasty, mooncakes became a part of the custom. The Chinese used to stuff messages in the mooncakes and sent them to their Mongolian rulers. With time, it became a prominent festival in the Chinese community.

When is Mooncake Festival 2023?

The mooncake festival 2023 is being eagerly awaited by the Malaysians to celebrate it with their family. This year, the mid-autumn festival will be celebrated between September 29th to October 6th . The people of Malaysia will be seen lighting lanterns, buying mooncakes, visiting temples and malls, and attending celebration events.

How is the Mooncake Festival Celebrated?

Malaysians celebrate the mooncake festival by visiting Thean Hou temple in Kuala Lumpur. The temple is adorned with lanterns around its 6-tiers, and people sing prayers. Many people also visit Penang, where the festival is celebrated with great pomp and show. Dragon and lion dancing, mooncake tasting, etc., are held at various places, including Kepala Batas, Nibong Tebal, Bukit Mertajam, and Butterworth. An awe-inspiring lantern parade is held at Georgetown. Celebratory events also happen at different malls in Malaysia. People head over to hotels with their families to indulge in mooncakes’ delicacies and celebrate the festival with their loved ones.

Highlights of Mooncake Festival 2023

The mid-autumn festival 2023 brings a lot of excitement with itself. The festival will be celebrated all over the country, and people will reunite with their families and friends. The two main places to visit for celebrating the moon festival are Kuala Lumpur and Penang. The Chinese community in Kuala Lumpur is in full swing for the celebrations. There will be dragon and lion dances, artists and youngsters performing dance and songs, and floats carrying Chang’e and seven maidens in the lantern carnival.

The Thean Hou temple will be visited by many for offering prayers to the goddess of heaven. The temple will be decorated with lanterns, and its intricate carvings will be glorified with embellishments. The mid-autumn festival lantern show will also be held at the temple.

People also visit Penang for the mooncake lantern festival. This place has a predominantly Chinese population, and the festival celebrations here offer an exotic experience. The ‘River of Lights’ lantern parade will be held in Georgetown. Along with the Chinese lions and dragon dances, one can also enjoy the Wushu competition at the Straits Quay Square.

People from different parts of the country will come to celebrate this festival together. However, keeping the COVID situation in mind, it is recommended to follow all the safety guidelines. Mandatory mask-wearing and practice of social distancing are required during the visit. Travelers can also get quarantined before and after their journey to both these Malaysian states.

How to Reach the Mooncake Festival Venue?

The two main venues of the Mooncake Festival are Kuala Lumpur and Penang. One can reach here via bus, train, and air. However, buses are the best way to travel to these places. We suggest you book your bus ticket in advance to save yourself the hassle.

The most popular routes to and from Kuala Lumpur are: 

The popular routes to and from Penang are: 

Popular Bus Operators 

You can book an online bus for these popular routes or other routes for Kuala Lumpur and Penang on redBus. redBus is the most-trusted travel service in Malaysia for booking bus tickets online . You can visit the redBus website or download the app on your smartphone to get all the routes and buses’ details. To become a part of the mooncake festival celebrations, book your tickets in advance to avoid any last-minute hassles and enjoy the festival fully.