What makes Malaysian Raya unique

What makes Malaysian Raya unique

Cultural delight

Text: Gwen Ong

Image: iStock

There’s a truth in the saying “there’s no place like home”

Living in a multicultural society means that we're privileged to be culturally diverse and experience truly unique celebrations all year round. It's a blessing that we can hold on to when the going gets tough. There's really no other place like Malaysia. With Hari Raya Aidilfitri just around the corner, Buro 24/7 Malaysia takes a look at the traditions we love about the Eid holiday here in this country.


Balik kampung 

If you're living in the big city, a joy to look forward to is the trip back home (even if home is just a short ride from Shah Alam to Ampang). Grumble as we might about the horrendous balik kampung traffic, there is no better feeling than to see the faces of your loved ones anticipating your return.


Every family's uniform – on point!

In the spirit of the festivity, many families take this opportunity to show a united and fashionable front. It's rather heart-warming to see every member of the clan, from the Tok to the Mak Ngah and cucu, dressed in the same hue for Hari Raya. From bright colours to fierce prints, the Raya dressing game is a level of its own.


Bright lights everywhere

In the days leading up to Syawal, it is a tradition to light up oil lamps known as pelita. In the olden days, this was used as a way to mark the route to the mosque and it is believed that the lights will bring blessings to the house. Today, we see lights in the fireworks and the sparklers, which do bring out the child in us.


Wonderful food for the soul

No Hari Raya is complete without ketupat and rendang. Sure you can get these all year round now but it's a different kind of satisfaction when you taste the good spread prepared by the matriarch of each family. These are our must-haves along with lemang, serunding, satay and curry chicken.


Open house; house after house

As with any Malaysian celebration, the festive period is the perfect reason to don our best outfit and visit our friends. In fact, it is customary. Food and laughter are given generously in each home. We find that this is the time where we really get to foster goodwill and bond over traditional delicacies. 


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