Mid-Autumn Festival, affectionately and more commonly known as the Mooncake Festival (Singaporeans love food!), is celebrated on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month.

As the moon is closest to the Earth on this day, it’ll appear brighter. Hence, this festival is also traditionally associated with “moon appreciation” parties, or shangyue. Mooncakes are round in shape, just like the full moon, therefore signifying reunion. Because of the belief that the Moon Goddess extends conjugal bliss to couples, the festival is also a popular day for marriages.

In the olden days, people would prepare offerings like mooncakes and pomelos for the moon. They’d also burn joss sticks in hopes that the moon would bless the family. Over time, the festival’s celebration in Singapore slowly evolved. Nowadays, family and friends gather to enjoy mooncakes, go for lantern walks, moon-gaze, solve lantern riddles and more.

Info source: 

  1. Kaki Says: Mid-Autumn Festival
  2. Singapore Infopedia – Mid-autumn Festival (Zhong Qiu Jie)
  3. Singapore Federation of Chinese Clan Associations, Chinese Customs and Festivals in Singapore, “Zhong Qiu Jie (Mid-Autumn Festival)”, p.68
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Other than Singapore, countries such as China, South Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines also celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival. In Singapore, you might have seen the annual Mid-Autumn light-up celebration at Chinatown and your neighbourhood community centres. It’s commonly celebrated with lantern-carrying, moon-gazing and watching performances.  The tradition of moon-gazing, most likely to have evolved from the practice of worshipping the moon during the festival, occurs to appreciate the moon as it’s known to be the fullest and brightest on this day, symbolising completeness and is associated with family reunion.




Eating mooncakes during the Mid-Autumn Festival signifies “reunion”. Mooncakes have a long history and it’s believed to be related to Zhu Yuanzhang’s overthrowing Mongol tyranny. Over time, mooncakes have taken on different looks and flavours in various places.

Similarly, mooncakes have changed in taste and appearance since our ancestors brought them to Singapore. Let’s take a look at the characteristics of mooncakes from the different dialect groups in Singapore!

In China, mooncake varieties are categorised into the southern and the northern kind. The ones found in Singapore are mostly the Cantonese, Teochew and Hokkien styles. Cantonese mooncakes such as the traditional lotus paste mooncake, are usually recognisable by their golden and glossy crust. The Teochew and Hokkien styles, such as the Teochew yam paste mooncake, have layers and layers of flaky pastry crust. The less common Hainanese mooncake such as the savoury and peppery su yan bing, has a delicate crisp and is slightly flatter than the Cantonese mooncakes.


in singapore!

We see a huge variety of mooncakes in Singapore today. But did you know? Cantonese mooncakes are the most widely-seen baked mooncakes in Singapore. During the early days, there were many Hong Kong chefs of Cantonese dialect groups among the Chinese immigrants, so naturally, they brought along their mooncake-making skills to Singapore as well.

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