Events + Entertainment

Dinagyang Festival 2023: 5 Things to Love about Iloilo’s Grandest Festival (Plus Events Schedule)

Here are the events and things to expect in Iloilo’s Dinagyang Festival this January 2023!

By: Mira Maestrecampo | November 16, 2022
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Dinagyang Festival, Iloilo festival, Iloilo City

The mark of the grandest comeback of the biggest Iloilo festival commences as early as now.

Images: Iloilo City Government Facebook page

The most prominent and world-renowned Queen of the Festivals in the Philippines is back to make the streets of Iloilo come alive again, starting the year with the comeback of the Dinagyang Festival set to be held on January 13 to 22, 2023. The official launch of the preparations for the grand Iloilo City festival commenced last October 14 with the 100-day Countdown to Iloilo Dinagyang 2023 program at South Point, SM City Iloilo. Indeed, it’s high time for Ilonggos to return to the streets and exclaim, ‘Viva! Viva! Señor Sto. Niño!’

You can now start to book your tickets to Iloilo City. The Dinagyang Festival just officially released the schedule of activities for the event. The festival will go digital no more after two years. As one of the first festivals to be celebrated in the Philippines, Yoorekka knows that you are excited to celebrate the festival once again, so here are some things that you can expect so far on the upcoming Iloilo festival:

1. Dashing Floats and Bright Parade of Lights at the biggest Iloilo Festival

Dinagyang Festival – Iloilo Festival – Iloilo City –, Dinagyang Festival

The splendid display of the Dinagyang parade floats will wow tourists and travelers visiting Iloilo.

Image: Iloilo Dinagyang Facebook page

There are many colorful festivals in the Philippines showcasing brightly-lit parade floats, and one of them is the iconic Dinagyang Festival. The country’s most awarded festival will be better, bigger, and bolder as Dinagyang 2023 brings a visual feast, showcasing a bright and colorful parade of lights and gigantic floats. Stay tuned for the Dinagyang ILOmination and Dinagyang Floats Parade of Lights, which are happening on January 21, 2023, from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM. The parade will be held at the Iloilo City Diversion Road with proposed routes on Atria Park, SM City, and Megaworld.

More than just the dazzling display of Ilonggo craftsmanship and creativity, this year’s Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo is also ready to witness the Floats Parade of Lights with a bigger purpose and more profound meaning as homage and gratitude to Señor Santo Niño for guiding everyone amidst the pandemic.

This year, Iloilo also reminds the public to be prepared for an excellent and spectacular show compared to the past years of celebrating the Dinagyang Festival. Expect a grand display of state-of-the-art floats, lights, and dancing—showcasing the art and expression of Iloilo artists! The Dinagyang ILOmination will light up the night as seven tribes representing the seven districts in Iloilo will compete using bright and lighted costumes and present show-stopping performances to entertain you for this year’s Iloilo festival. The seven districts of Iloilo to be represented are Arevalo, Iloilo City Proper, Jaro, La Paz, Lapuz, Mandurriao, and Molo.

2. More barangay tribes to compete and showcase entertaining performances!

Dinagyang Festival – Iloilo Festival – Iloilo City –, Iloilo festival

Witness the official live festivities of the Dinagyang Festival after being digital for the past years.

Image: Iloilo Dinagyang Facebook page

Other than the activities during the night, daylights in Iloilo City will also be filled with fun, drumbeating, and joyful noise during the Dinagyang sa Barangay Tribes Competition at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand on January 22, 2023, from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Eight competing tribes will set their eyes on the championship prize as they vie for the trophy and give entertainment to the festival goers. These tribes are Tribu Molave, Tribu Parianon, Tribu Panaad, Tribu Familia Sagrada, Tribu Sagasa, Tribu Ilonggohanon, Tribu Kanyao sang Baybayanon and Tribu Halimau.

To add to the excitement, the Iloilo Dinagyang Festival entices you to come and witness the festivities and check out why the festival was recently awarded as the winner in the 2022 Association of Tourism Officers of the Philippines, Inc. Pearl Awards. This award is in recognition of the hard work of every individual during the Iloilo Dinagyang 2020. The award granted the Iloilo City festival as the Best Tourism festival under contemporary, non-traditional expression. The Iloilo Festivals Foundation Inc. (IFFI) thanks the efforts of everyone who participated and the thanking Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas for his unwavering support.

3. Full face-to-face festivities live on the streets!

Dinagyang Festival – Iloilo Festival – Iloilo City –, Dinagyang Festival

Are you excited to see the face-to-face smiles and, thankfully, celebrate the Dinagyang?

Image: Iloilo Dinagyang Facebook page

The IFFI announced they are almost ready for the face-to-face festival celebration on January 13 to 22, 2023. Iloilo City is more than excited to celebrate the Dinagyang festivities physically on the streets and stages after going virtual due to the pandemic. All pre-pandemic activities are anticipated to return and wow everyone with performances and expressions of art. You will also have fun revisiting food fests in the city again and more activities in line, which the Ilonggos surely have missed. Some reviving Dinagyang Festival entertainment includes the ati-ati tribe competition, liturgical activities, float parade, religious sadsad, and many more. The IFFI also ensures that while you are out in the city celebrating, minimum public health and safety protocols mandated by the government are still to be implemented for the duration of the festival.

Part of the goals of the returning face-to-face Iloilo festival is to highlight the gratefulness of Ilonggos to Señor Sto. Niño, making the celebration as joyful as possible while staying true to the meaning of ‘dinagyang’, which is to make merry. The Dinagyang Festival is set to be a celebration of thanksgiving amidst the adversities faced during the pandemic, and until now, Iloilo still thrives as a progressive city.

For the highly-anticipated face-to-face Dinagyang, here are the on-site activities that you should be excited about, along with their locations and schedules:

January 13, 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM – Grand Opening Salvo at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand;
January 18, 6:00 PM – Miss Iloilo 2023 at the Iloilo Convention Center;
January 20, 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM – Sto. Niño Fluvial Procession and Solemn Foot Procession at Muelle Loney;
January 21, 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM – Kasadyahan sa Kabanwahanan at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand, Muelle Loney St., at Iloilo City, and at three other stages;
January 21, 1:30 PM to 5:30 PM – Sponsor’s Mardi Gras at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand;
January 21, 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM – Grand Religious Sadsad at San Jose Parish Placer;
January 22, 6:00 AM to 7:00 AM – Feast Day of Señor Sto. Niño de Cebu Concelebrated High Mass at San Jose Parish Placer;
January 22, 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM – Dinagyang Festival Awarding Ceremony at the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand

4. A feast of Ilonggo favorites at Dinagyang Food Festivals

Dinagyang Festival – Iloilo Festival – Iloilo City –, Iloilo festival

Replenish that hyped-up energy when you take a break and have some bites at the kiosks and stalls during the Iloilo Dinagyang Food Festival.


Following the official announcement of the grand Iloilo festival, the IFFI, together with the festival organizers, did not forget to include an event that will showcase the favorite food and delicacies of the Ilonggos during the festival! The organizers are also prioritizing the return of the Dinagyang Festival food fests in the prime spots of Iloilo as an efficient way to help the micro, small and medium enterprises and startup businesses in Iloilo City. Enjoy a day of enjoying the festival with the best Ilonggo eats during the Iloilo Dinagyang Food Festival on January 19 to 22 at the Iloilo downtown area and the malls of Iloilo City.

5. Bigger and livelier than the previous years!

Dinagyang Festival – Iloilo Festival – Iloilo City –, Dinagyang Festival

The opening was just a glimpse of the famed Queen of Philippines Festivals.

Images: Iloilo City Government Facebook page

This year’s Dinagyang in Iloilo will excite you as Iloilo’s prosperous and inclusive fiesta revives to give tourists and travelers a first-hand experience with the grand merrymaking, food fest, competitions, and tribe showcase in the city’s main grounds. More than just making the streets alive, the 2023 Dinagyang Festival is expected to be bigger than it usually is as part of its grand comeback after dormant and digital years of holding the festival. The theme centers around ‘Iloilo Dinagyang 2023: Pasalamat kay Señor Sto. Niño.’ According to a statement by honorable Mayor Jerry Treñas, Dinagyang 2023 will surpass all festivals this year. Treñas also added that the Iloilo City Government and the Iloilo Festivals Foundation Inc., in cooperation with the tribes and sponsors, are making sure that the Dinagyang 2023 will further prove itself as the best festival in the Philippines.

As one of the biggest and world-class festivals in the Philippines, the Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo City is set to bewilder every Filipino with striking shows and an impressive array of displays and performances. It is a celebration of gratitude and a reflection of every Ilonggo surviving and rising amidst the challenges brought about by the past years.

Visit Yoorekka Magazine for more festival updates and exciting activities in Iloilo!

Stay safe as you travel! Make sure to follow social distancing protocols and observe health precautions. For now, keep safe!

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About Mira Maestrecampo
Mira - with a long surname - is a girl who dreams of becoming a news anchor someday, in God's perfect time. She loves to read books and eat different kinds of cheesy or saucy food. A coffee addict and a dog lover, she loves long hugs, hot coffee on an afternoon break with friends, or simply sleeping all day with her stuffed unicorns.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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