Pongal 2023 in Singapore takes place from 14 to 17 January 2022. The harvest festival gets its name from the dish of sweet boiled rice. The pot of rice overflowing signifies prosperity and abundance.
The festival marks the end of the winter solstice and is named for its signature dish pongal, where rice is boiled with milk and brown sugar in new clay pots till it overflows. Cheers of “pongalo pongal!” (hail Pongal!) erupt when the pot of rice froths and boils over, to signify wishes for overflowing fortunes for the new year.
As part of the Pongal celebrations, households will be decorated and, on the first day, old belongings will be cleaned out, symbolic of a fresh start.
Cows are also honoured for their part in the harvest. They are usually pampered and washed on the third day of the festival. They are also dressed in fresh flowers, embellished garments and given lots of treats.
Here are some events and activities taking place as part of Pongal 2023 in Singapore.
Pongal 2023 in Singapore: Events & Activities
Indian Heritage Centre Pongal Open House 2023
The Pongal Open House 2023 at Indian Heritage Centre. This year, the IHC Pongal Open House welcomes everyone to join in the festivities with an array of programmes on 7 and 8, 14 and 15 January 2023.
Themed Farm-tastic, this year’s open house takes visitors back to the festival’s agricultural roots. There will be performances and hands-on activities taking place as part of the open house.
Free Pongal Craft Activities & Photobooth
On 7 & 8, 14 & 15 January 2023 mark Pongal by making your own personalised stationery at Indian Heritage Centre. As part of the Open House, you can print intricate kolam designs on notebooks or design your own cow fridge magnets, let your creativity flow! Get your picture printed instantly against our special Pongal backdrop and decorate the frame with stickers of your choice.
Little India Heritage Trail
The Little India Heritage Trail – Pongal Edition will give visitors a taste of the early days of the precinct when it was bustling with cattle and bullock carts. This is an apt introduction to the significance of cattle in the festival. Get a taste of the early days of the precinct when it was bustling with cattle and bullock carts, and find out how Buffalo Road, Kerbau Road and Belilios Lane got their names. Register here.
Kranji Farm Tour
Enjoy a retreat in nature with hands-on experiences in the art of jaggery (unrefined cane sugar) making and thoranam (hanging decorations) weaving, amongst other fun activities in this Pongal 2023 activity organised by the Indian Heritage Centre. This cultural farm tour will whisk you away from the bustle of the city to bask in the essence of Pongal. Register here.
Pay a visit to Poli @ Clive Street between 7 to 16 January, 9 am to 8 pm daily, to view the cattle that are on display for Pongal 2023.
Pongal Light Up
Head down to Little India to enjoy the Pongal 2023 street light up that will be taking place till 5 Feb 2023. Get more details here.
Find out more about the Pongal events in Singapore.