Dates: May 30th – July 28th, 2018
Location: Compound of Mahamuni Pagoda, Mandalay
Waso Chinlone Festival is the longest and oldest festival for Buddhists in Myanmar. It is held annually during the Burmese month of Waso (usually in July), specifically the day after the full-moon day of Waso, as part of the general Waso full moon festival to pay homage to the Buddha. This festival involves competitions of the sport of chinlone (caneball in English) with a six-member team moving in a circle. One member at a time moves to perform in the middle of the group and the others support him and walk around him in a circle. He performs his best moves and tricks keeping the caneball moving through the air by bouncing it using his head, shoulders, arms and legs but never the hands before passing the ball onto the next player who continues in the display of skill.
The most well-known event of Waso Chinlone Festival takes place at Mahamuni Pagoda in Mandalay, the cultural capital of the country. Most of best chinlone teams from other parts of the country travel to Mandalay to take part in the event. The coming event will be the 90th annual event.