• waisak.borobudur@gmail.com
  • Borobudur, Magelang, Central Java
What’s Waisak?

What’s Waisak?

Waisak (well known as Vesak worldwidely) is a day to celebrate Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death. It’s an important day for the Buddhist countries in Asia, celebrated in their own way on a chosen day which is based on their Buddhist philosophy.

In Indonesia, it’s a public holiday called “Hari Raya Waisak“, usually a full-moon day in May is chosen every year.

And the holiest and lively Buddhist festival is held on the day in Borobudur, a small town where has the world’s biggest ancient Buddhist temple.

During the festival, a lot of Buddhist monks and Buddhists visit Borobudur not only from other cities in Indonesia but also from all over the world. They pray and meditate in the temples, parade from Mendut Temple to Borobudur Temple in daytime. At the night, thousands of lanterns fly over the lit-up Borobudur Temple with their wishes under the full-moon.

Nowadays, the festival is known as a tourist attraction because of its photogenic scenes, but before it was purely for monks and deep religious Buddhists. The mysterious and sacred ambience still remain, if you joined in this festival, you could be feeling a kind of purification.

When is it?

As the date is based on Buddhist lunar calender, the date in current calender changes every year.

  • Sun 4 June 2023
  • Thu 23 May 2024
  • Tue 13 May 2025
    The above dates are “Hari Raya Waisak“. The main Waisak events such as the parade, the lantern possibly be held 1 day before of the above dates. For example, in 2017, Hari Raya Waisak was 11 May, but the events were on 10 May.

Who organizes the festival?

An Indonesian Buddhist organization named Walubi is responsible for the festival.


Event schedule?

Normally there are some religious events for 3-4 days including the parade and the lantern. Every year the schedule is slightly different because all events will be planed for full-moon time.
The basic schedule is as below. The detail time schedule is published just a few days before of Waisak.

Day 1 Bring the holy water from Umbul Jumprit to Mendut Temple
Day 2 Bring the holy natural fire from Api Abadi Mrapen to Mendut Temple
Day 3 Pray in Mendut Temple in the morning.
Parade from Mendut Temple to Borobudur Temple in afternoon.
Meditation and chanting in Borobudur Temple.
Release the lantern at midnight.

How can I join in?

There are 2 kinds of tikets for Waisak.

Waisak Participant Card
To join in religious events and rituals. For example Parade, Meditation in Borobudur Temple etc.
The Lantern is not included in this ticket.
This ticket is not sold for public.

Lantern Ticket
Specially to join in Lantern.
Ticket is sold in Borobudur on the day with limited number.
The ticket price in 2018 was Rp 100,000 per person, Rp 200,000 per person in 2022.


Dress code?

If you join in some religious activities like the parade, chanting, meditation, long-sleeved whitish clothes and shoes are required.


What if it rained on the day?

Basically, if it just drizzled, the event will be continued, if it rained heavily, the event could be interrupted for a while. All desicion will be made by the festival organizer.