Waisak Day, also referred to as Vesak Day, is a national holiday observed by locals in both Bali and Indonesia as a way to honour and celebrate Buddha.
As one of the common religions on mainland Indonesia, the celebrations attract pilgrims from all over the world as Vesak Day is the holiest day on the Buddhist calendar.
Waisak Day (Vesak Day) Bali 2018 Festival Celebration Dates, Indonesia
The specific date of this celebration is determined by the Hindu Calendar, and is scheduled on the day of the full moon in the fourth (Hindu) calendar month. For this reason, most of the Waisak Day celebrations fall in the month of May (using the Gregorian Calendar). This date was arrived at since, according to Buddhist religion, Buddha died on the day of the full moon on the fourth lunar month.
On the day of the celebrations, devout locals and foreigners who ascribe to Buddhist teachings will often gather at various temples at dawn. This is then followed by the raising of the Buddhist flag accompanied by the placing of offerings at the feet of Buddha statues.
Visitors who are in Bali for the first time during these celebrations will be in awe of the numerous flowers, and may wonder the reason behind this. The explanation is that just like the beautiful flowers, life is amazing. As the flowers wither, so is it with life that is subject to destruction.
In addition to paying homage to Buddha during Waisak Day celebrations, Balinese devouts are also expected to bring happiness to the people around them.