One of the most anticipated holidays in Indonesia is Lebaran or Eid al-Fitr. Usually, Lebaran is the longest holiday in this country. This yearly occasion is generally celebrated in many ways. There are many Lebaran traditions that only exist in this country.
First of all, Indonesia consists of thousands of tribes. Even so, there are some underlying similarities between them when celebrating Lebaran. Here are some unique Lebaran traditions which you can find in Indonesia.
During Lebaran holiday, you can expect the road in the rural areas to be very hectic. Conversely, the roads in big cities become empty. Migrant workers who have worked for the whole year in big cities usually return to their hometown during Lebaran. Since millions of people do so, this mass temporary migration creates lots of traffic jams.
Buying new clothes
Everyone wants to look good during Lebaran. All members of the family, from the small infant to the oldest member get to wear new clothes during the holiday. Many shopping centers react by providing many promotions. However, nowadays, shopping activities has shifted from traditional markets only to online marketplaces.
After the last iftar of Ramadan, people will gather to celebrate. Generally, they chant takbir, to acknowledge the greatness of God. In many places, they only chant in the mosque. However, many also join in a convoy to chant takbir on the streets.
Firecrackers and fireworks
The festivities also brings some danger as many people play with fire. Literally. People play with firecrackers and fireworks everywhere. It must be noted that you need a very special permit to play with those things. However, people can easily acquire them from many sellers at the side of the road. So, prepare for a bang during this festive period.
When Lebaran comes, you go to all of your extended family’s houses. You come to catch up, say hi, and generally wish each other well. At this occasion, people usually ask for forgiveness for mistakes they have done in the last year. In a broader term, you can also do Halal Bihalal with your friends. It is common to see a large gathering of friends during Lebaran.
The happiest people during Lebaran is definitely the kids. They can enjoy a long holiday, get shiny new stuff, and also receive lots of money from older relatives. People who have worked usually give small pocket money to kids or younger people in their extended family. Usually, the kids who visit older relatives will get the money.
Lebaran is definitely a huge party. And as with many other parties, you can expect lots of food. People send gifts in the form of food to families, neighbors, and relatives. This is usually a token of respect from younger people to their elders. However, nowadays, people send food to everyone they love. Sharing is caring, they say.
Indonesia has lots of unique Lebaran traditions. Each place, each tribe, each ethnicity has a different way to celebrate Lebaran. However, there are some overarching Lebaran traditions that you can find everywhere in this country.