Carabao – Carroza Festival
1st week of May
Municipality of Pavia
2nd District, Iloilo
The family-friendly community and agricultural town of Pavia celebrate the festival of the carabaos through the annual Carabao-Carroza, the longest existing festival in Iloilo Province.
Prior to the race, the festival also features a colourful parade of 18 decorated bamboo carrozas representing the 18 barangays of Pavia. Along with their 18 muses, the carrozas also bear the local produce of these barangays. The grand opening parade will take off at Ungka-I. Parade participants will compete for the top award, the Most Gaily Decorated Carabao and Carroza.
The parade will proceed to the open field of Pavia National High School for a short program to be followed by the race. Visitors and guests flock to the area to witness this annual carabaos race that started forty years ago. It has become a tradition since then as farmers race their strongest and fastest carabaos. The race is of two major types: flat racing and carroza-racing. The flat race is where carabaos driven by farmer run across the 100-meter long parallel grassy track; while the carroza race is driven by farmers with carrozas drawn by the carabaos. The race is based on speed and stamina of the carabaos.
Carabao-Carroza Festival boasts Pavia’s rich cultural meaning and long history as it compose an important part of the Ilonggo culture. It also helps a great deal in preserving this indigenous celebration in Iloilo that despite the advent of modern machineries that are rapidly replacing our carabaos for agriculture making most of the farm work mechanized, the Carabao-Carroza festival continuous to rise for greater heights of progress for Pavia.