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I am always on the lookout of pet-friendly events in Manila. That is why I was so happy when I learned that Holi Festival of Colors in Manila, an Indian cultural event allow dogs since it is always held in an outdoor location. My first attendance of Holi Festival in Manila was in 2016 as a content creator covering this event. The ticket was sponsored and in exchange I made a blog feature about it. You may click HERE to read it. Even though it was my first time attending Holi Festival in Manila, I had fun and so I decided to join once again like everyone else. I paid for my entry ticket this time.

holi festival in manila philippines

I really wanted to come as early as I can but I have some important things to do so I ended up arriving at quarter to five already. The venue is already full of people but I wouldn't say crowded enough. Going inside was very easy. I just showed my email confirmation and that's it. The Php 350 ticket I bought online came with 2 free gulal powders but I was given 3 pieces. On the day itself, the entrance ticket already costs Php 500 and also includes free gulal powders.

holi festival in manila

I am quite hungry that time so the moment I went inside, the first thing I did is visit the food boths. I grabbed some food, a dessert that I forgot to take a photo of and a small book that was recommended by a monk who was sitting in one of the booths. 

holi festival sm by the bay moa

After eating, I looked around and noticed the crowd was way less than the amount of people I have seen in 2016 of the same event. I said to myself maybe because there are more to arrive. The Holi Festival in Manila circa 2016 was really jampacked. That day I have seen all kinds of people from India in terms of skin color. I have seen those who are brown-skinned, some have darker colors, some are white skinned and most of them are the typical people from India I see almost every day. I have seen way too many cute kids of Indian decent. 

holi festival in manila

By 6pm, fewer people came. I also noticed the program doesn't have much to offer. It is mostly songs and music. I can clearly remember back in 2016, there were many cultural presentations coming from different groups representing the many places of India, schools where most Indian kids go to here in Manila and even special guests. However, the Holi Festival in Manila 2024 doesn't have much to offer. I knew they have two hosts but they were barely speaking and interacting with people. Well, I may be wrong they speak through microphone but there was no camaraderie I can feel. 


The music  which is Bollywood or should I say songs coming from India that they were playing was enough to get the people to dance. However, I can see there is something LACKING. There should be a voice in the microphone checking every one else like setting their mood  of the festive Holi Festival but there was NONE. I can clearly remember that in 2016, there was a COUNTDOWN and that every one went CRAZY and dancing like there's NO tomorrow. This time, there was no countdown I can recall. I went to the bathroom twice so maybe there's one but still, the experience is way less than before.

holi festival in philippines

I have not been to the real Holi Festival in India so I cannot really say these thoughts I share reflect what should be the exact vibe BUT then again as someone who has joined events of all kinds, I honestly suggest the Holi Festival in Manila in 2016 was the best one for me.

I suggest to add more LIFE to this event. Bring back more cultural performances, invite over one or two special guests from India or even those who are living in the Philippines that have roots from India with an inspiring story to tell and GET a host(s) WHO can make this event ALIVE. It was between 7pm and 8pm that I decided to go home because there is nothing much worth staying. Everyone is just enjoying the music and dancing to its tune. That's it.

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