Hari Raya Puasa 

Muslims celebrate the festival of Aidilfitri - popularly known as Hari Raya Puasa, or simply Hari Raya (Day of Celebration) in Malaysia - to mark the culmination of Ramadhan, the holy month of fasting.

It is a joyous occasion for Muslims, as it signifies a personal triumph, a victory of self-restraint and abstinence, symbolising purification and renewal.

Chinese New Year - CNY -  in Malaysia

Its origin can be traced back thousands of years, to the legend which tells of a fearsome mythological creature known as Nian that is said to have once terrorised China, devouring people on the eve of CNY. To ward off the beast, red-paper couplets were pasted on doors, firecrackers were set off throughout the night, and huge fires were lit. Today, the prevalence of the colour red, and firecrackers, form part of the CNY celebrations throughout the world, as a part of custom and tradition.

The festival, which once also marked the beginning of spring in China, begins on the first day of the lunar calendar year, the first day of the new moon, and ends on the 15th day, known as Chap Goh Meh, the last day of the full moon. However, celebrations are normally confined to the first few days and the last day. In Malaysia, the first two days are gazetted as public holidays.

Christmas in Malaysia

The observance of the birth of Jesus Christ on Dec 25 is celebrated in Malaysia like everywhere else in the world; it is a time for family and friends; hope and rejoicing; love and understanding; and giving and forgiving. However, the image of a white Christmas - that of chestnuts roasting on an open fire, and Jack Frost nipping at the nose - doesn't quite fit in too well with a country that is merely seven degrees shy of the Equator. The average temperatures here range from a low of 22°C to a high of 33°C, so a sunny (or perhaps, rainy) Christmas is a given.

Deepavali -
the Hindu Festival of Lights

Gazetted by the Government as a one-day public holiday, it is celebrated here in Malaysia by the Hindu community - mainly consisting those of Indian ethnic origin - during the seventh month of the Hindu lunar calendar, which usually falls in either October or November.

And it is not called the Festival of Lights for nothing, for it is celebrated with a joyful vivacity, with bright lights and even brighter smiles, as though to underline the traditional meaning and message behind it. Even the word "Deepavali" is etymologically derived from the Sanskrit word that literally means "row of lights".

The Chinese Mooncake Festival 

The Mooncake Festival, also known as Mid-Autumn Festival, falls on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month which is Sept 24 this year. Historically, it was a harvest festival for farmers but traditionally, womenfolk worshipped Chang-Er, the moon goddess. Moncakes are also known as ``reunion cakes'' as family members gather to partake of the sweet confectionery. Mooncakes are eaten throughout the month before the actual festival day. They make meaningful gifts for kith and kin. In the evenings, children gleefully carry lanterns of all shapes and sizes. The bearing of lanterns and the origin of mooncakes date back to a 14th century revolt by the Chinese against the Mongols.