Festivals in Bolivia

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Bolivia is a nation of many cultures and Bolivia Festivals present a rare opportunity to decode the social and religious trends prevalent in Bolivia. While some festivals have a national presence, others are limited to specific regions. Owing to regional variations, some Bolivian festivals are celebrated differently with minor differences in the nature of festivities.

Fiesta Virgen de la Candelaria or Festival of Dark Virgin of the Lake

This festival is celebrated on August 5. It is celebrated across Bolivia and some parts of Peru. Most of the celebrations are observed by people living around the Lake Titicaca region and villages of Copacabana. The festival celebrates a religious deity who is widely believed to be the Patron of Bolivia. A similarly-themed festival, called the Copacabana or the festival of Virgin Candelaria, is also celebrated. The festivities here are more colorful and include street processions. This version of the festival is more prevalent in La Paz—the capital city.

Festival of Alasitas

This festival originated in Porongo and is now celebrated across Santa Cruz and the neighboring towns. The festival honors the god of prosperity and abundance—Ekkekko. Dates for the festival usually fall during the last week of January or first week of February. As a custom, people make miniature, hand-crafted mimics of what they wish for and place these along the idols of Ekkekko. Another version of the same festival is celebrated during September in some parts of Bolivia.

Dia Reyes Magos or the Festival of "Day of Kings"

This festival is celebrated in the first week of January. Though the celebrations are widespread across Bolivia, some parts of the nation don’t celebrate it very enthusiastically. The Day of Kings commemorates some of the most influential rulers that ruled Bolivia prior to its colonization.

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