Faces of
Malaysia
Penang

Penang is the name of an island in the Straits of Malacca, and also of one of the states of Malaysia, located on the north-west coast of peninsular Malaysia. Penang is the second smallest state in Malaysia after Perlis, and the eighth most populous. A resident of Penang is colloquially known as a Penangite. The city Georgetown is the 2nd biggest city in Malaysia and traveller′s hub.

Gunung Mulu National Park

The Gunung Mulu National Park in Borneo (near Miri) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with caves and karst formations. The caves are home to over 5 million bats who exit the caves in search for food every evening in a spectacular way.

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Hawker Stalls in Penang

Thaipusam Festival

The Hindu Thaipusam Festival festival is a public holiday in Malaysia and takes place every year end of January / beginning of February.

The spectacular Thaipusam Festival draws more than one million devotees and visitors to the Batu Caves near Kuala Lumpur but there are also large precessions in Georgetown/Penang and Singapore. Thaipusam is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community. Especially images of devotees piercing their cheeks, tongue, face or other suitable body parts with sharp objects make this event memorable.

Body Piercing Thaipusam

Thaipusam Malaysia


Devotees at the Thaipusum procession at Batu Caves near Kuala Lumpur
photos: Matt & Konni

Thaipusam is a celebration of the birthday to the Hindu deity Subramaniam.
The highlight of this celebration is the kavadi procession. More than one million people are expected to throng Batu Caves (just north of Kuala Lumpur) for this celebration. There is also a big parade in Georgetown, Penang and Singapore (procession is a 4km walk from Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple in Serangoon Road to Sri Thendayuthapani Temple on Tank Road).

Batu Caves
 

Next / Recent Occurances:
2018: 31 January
2019: 21 January
The date of Thaipusam fluctuates and always takes places either end of january or beginning of february.


list of Public Holidays in Malaysia



more information
Wikipedia Thaipusam

portrait photo Thaipusam in Penang
photo taken in 2018 in Penang by Matt Hannewald

more portrait photos taken at the Thaipusam Festival in Malaysia:
Recelebrating Ecstatic Thaipusam (2018)
Celebrating Ecstatic Thaipusam  (2009)