Events and Festivals in Tonga in 2020
Tonga sure knows how to party, with amazing street parades, competitions for singing and dancing, as well as spiritual Christian celebrations. Attending one of the Tonga events in 2020 is a great way to immerse in the local culture. So check out the top events this year in the list of events below!
Plus, check out the 10 Biggest Events in Tonga for more events to check out.
5 Things That Make Tongan Events Special
How do Tongans celebrate? A Tongan festival or event often has the following features:
- Beauty pageants
- Singing competitions
- Traditional dance performances, such as “lakalaka“
- Colourful parades
- Marching brass bands
For more ways to experience the local culture, see our 10 Best Ways to Experience the Tongan Culture.
2020 Festivals in Tonga
The biggest festival in Tonga returns in 2020! The Heilala Festival starts June 22, lasting for three weeks until July 11. The festival has a wealth of shows and events happening throughout the three weeks, including a “Tradition & Tongan Night”, a parade, a “Block Party”, gospel service, a “Grand Ball” and the highlight of the event, the Miss Heilala Beauty Pageant. The festival takes place in Nuku’alofa in Tongatapu.
The Vava’u Blue Water Festival is back, making it the largest event on Tonga’s cruising calendar. The event is essentially Tonga’s regatta festival, complete with yacht races, as well as other events. Join in on a charity auction, watch school children perform cultural song and dance, attend charity dinners, community barbecues and more! Catch it in Neiafu at the end of September.
2020 Religious Events in Tonga
Some of the top events in Tonga in 2020 are events surrounding the Christian calendar. One of the highlights is the week-long Free Wesleyan Church Conference. The event takes place in Nuku’alofa, Tongatapu, starting July 06 and ending July 13. Prominent members of the church get together to make speeches, while other public events include marching bands.
An interesting church event happening around the end of September is Faka-Sepitema. Women members of the Wesleyan church denominations attend a sort of “roll call”. Interestingly, the event sees women dressed all in white, rather than their usual formal Tongan dress wear such as a waist mat.
Of course, Christian holidays are also celebrated with enthusiasm in Tonga, including Christmas and Easter. Church services are in full swing on Good Friday (April 10), Easter Sunday (April 12), Easter Monday (April 13), Christmas Eve (December 24) and Christmas Day (December 25). The period between Christmas and New Year also sees communities in Tonga celebrating with singing competitions and gifting food. See Where to Spend Christmas in Tonga for more information.
2020 Public Holidays in Tonga
Tonga enjoys a series of public holidays each year, which means many businesses are closed during these days. The public holidays in Tonga in 2020 include:
- New Year’s Day – January 1 2020
- Good Friday – April 10 2020
- Easter Monday – April 13 2020
- ANZAC Day – April 25 2020
- Emancipation Day – June 8 2020
- King Tupou VI’s Birthday – July 4 2020
- Birthday of Crown Prince – September 17 2020
- Tonga Day – November 2 2020
- King Tupou I Day – December 7 2020
- Christmas Day – December 25 2020
- Boxing Day – December 26 2020
For more information on the public holidays, see Public Holidays in Tonga (& Other Important Dates).