Carnival de Timor - Carnival de Timor is the annual festival held in Díli in February or March and is all about fun, music and multiculturalism. Festivities usually take the form of a parade, and all participants will be dressed up to the nines! Both modern and traditional costumes will be on show, and Timorese from all the different regions of the country participate. Bands line the streets and the crowd usually continues to party into the night to the live music.
Easter Festivities – Depending on when Easter falls on the calendar, expect to see processions, services and celebrations for Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday. Visitors will be warmly welcomed in church at any time.
Independence Day – This is the big one! The Timorese proudly celebrate 20th May – the day East Timor gained independence. Festivities include celebrations, cultural events, sporting competitions and parades all over town.
Sunset Fair – Running from Independence Day on 20 May until Proclamation of Independence Day on 28 November, the Sunset Fair runs every Friday night in the Cristo Rei Park area. You’ll find food, drinks, music and dancing.
Díli “City of Peace” Marathon – This international marathon attracts competitors from around the world around a route that takes in much of the capital. There’s also a half-marathon and 7km fun run if you don’t feel like completing the full 26.2 miles.
Tour de Timor – By reputation one of the world’s toughest bike races, the Tour de Timor takes riders through some of the most spectacular parts of Timor Leste over six day-long stages.
All Saints Day and All Soul’s Day - All Saint’s Day (November 1) and All Soul’s Day (November 2) are significant to Catholic East Timor. Many religious services take place, and people will spend time visiting cemeteries and re-paint and decorate the graves of their family members.
Santa Cruz Cemetery Massacre Anniversary – November 12 is a significant day for East Timorese. Night vigils are observed and candles are to remember those who were massacred by the Indonesian military at the Santa Cruz Cemetery in 1991.
Continue on to Customs and Cultures of Timor Leste or go back to Timor Leste Overview