Social Media


How To Celebrate Diwali In Hong Kong 2023: Dates, Restaurant Menus, Gifts And More

How To Celebrate Diwali In Hong Kong 2023
Family LifePost Category - Family LifeFamily LifeParties & PlayPost Category - Parties & PlayParties & PlayWhat's OnPost Category - What's OnWhat's On

With so many Indians and South Asians in Hong Kong, celebrating Diwali in the city can be a unique, larger-than-life experience. We tell you the history and customs of this Hindu Festival of Lights.

Hong Kong may be small but it sure houses a diverse community of people celebrating different festivities. And given the city’s number of Indians, Nepalis and other South Asian communities, it comes as no surprise to see the diaspora embracing festivals like Diwali and flaunting glamours traditional attire. And of course, Hongkongers don’t need a reason to dress up and party, so chances are that you have been to (or been invited to) some of the parties happening across the city! So how can and should you celebrate this bright and beautiful festival? Here’s the Sassy Mama guide to celebrating Diwali in Hong Kong.

Jump To:
Background Of Diwali
Gifts To Give During Diwali
Where To Shop Diwali Sweets
Festive Menus To Celebrate Diwali
Where To Buy Diwali Lights And Diyas
Where To Buy Dresses For Diwali

Read More: Sassy Mama’s Guide To Festivities Around The Globe

Diwali: The Background Of The Festival Of Lights

Diwali or Deepavali is known as The Festival of Lights and celebrates the triumph of good over evil. Legend has it that Lord Rama returned home after defeating the demon-king Ravana (perfectly timed with the end of a long period of exile imposed by his evil stepmother). The three major religions that celebrate Diwali include Hindus, Sikhs and Jains but the reasons for their celebrations slightly vary.

The Diwali celebration typically lasts five days. This year, it’s from Friday, 10 to Tuesday, 14 November 2o23. Here’s a lowdown on what each day symbolises:

  • First day: Dhanteras, when businesses in India mark the first day of their financial year.
  • The second day is Chotti Diwali (small Diwali), a lead-up to the big celebration the following day that is associated with Lord Krishna’s defeat of the demon Narakasura.
  • The third day is Diwali, the big daddy of Hindu celebrations almost everywhere in India. On this day, families worship Lakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth and have a pooja (prayer ceremony) in her honour.
  • The fourth day has more low-key celebrations and is celebrated in different ways in various parts of India and South Asia — it’s also considered the first day of the Indian New Year in Gujarat.
  • The last day is Bhai Dooj, which honours the special bond between brothers and sisters.

In all, it’s five days of partying, prayer, being with family and friends, eating well, dressing up and gifting.

Each family has its own traditions, some call friends over for a game of poker and others love a Bollywood movie marathon. Follow our list below and maybe you can create your own Diwali traditions! But plan wisely — tradition says that whatever you are doing on the first day of a New Year is an indication of how you’ll spend the next 12 months!

Teaching Kids About Diwali

If you want to teach your kids more about Diwali, we’d recommend “Amma, Tell Me About Diwali” from the “Amma, Tell Me” series by Hong Kong-based author, Bhakti Mathur. These books can be found in libraries in almost all international schools in the city and narrate the stories of Indian mythology very easily to young learners.

Read More: That Mama – Bhakti Mathur, Author Of The “Amma” Book Series

Diwali Gift Guide

Gifts To Give During Diwali 2023

Diwali is a great time for shopping for gifts. All the items mentioned below make for beautiful festive presents. Alternatively, you can head to Light it Up, a one-day festive bazaar selling Diwali-related products. You don’t always need to look for Indian or South Asian-inspired gifts but if you are an uncle or aunt giving a Diwali present to the little ones in the family, ethnic wear and handicrafts are always a good idea.

Sassy Mama Tip: Even if you are not South Asian, if you are a close friend of the family, you will become an Uncle or Auntie by default!

Diwali Hamper Baking Maniac

Diwali Hamper

Baking Maniac, $1880

Shop now

Ankyra Home Lamp Diwali Gifts

Handmade Turkish Lamp

Ankyra Home, $490

Shop now

The Kohinoor Candle Set

Candle Up, From $650 for a set of two candles

Shop now

Decorative Box Diwali Gift

Sea Shell Inlaid Wooden Trinket Box

Etsy, $399

Shop now

Flower Candle Holder

Indigo Living, $990

Shop now

Where To Buy Diwali Sweets In Hong Kong

Where To Buy Diwali Sweets In Hong Kong

Bengal Brothers

Bengal Brothers have curated a special handcrafted sweet box with a Rose Pistachio and Cardamom Soan Papdi chocolate crafted by the talented chocolatiers at Conspiracy Chocolate plus two made-to-order pecan bars. Priced at $288, you’ll have to pre-book with a minimum 48-hour notice for delivery on 30 October.

Bengal Brothersvarious locations across Hong Kong,


At Dilliwale, you’ll find all the traditional Indian sweets and snacks on offer, from Kaju Katli and Motichoor Ladoos to Dry Fruits Barfi and Assorted Masala Dry Fruits.

Dilliwale, 6073 4268,

DESI Bazaar

Mid-level Mamas can now place orders for their Diwali sweets at this Caine Road grocery store. Since DESI Bazaar opened on Caine Road, it’s become a firm favourite amongst the Indian community (and other expats too!) for both its range of products and excellent customer service.

DESI Bazaar, G/F, Sussex Court, 120 Caine Road, Mid-Levels, Hong Kong, 2987 4555,

Gift Hampers – Diwali Hamper

Wondering how to make Diwali an extra special occasion? This gift hamper will keep the whole family happy and full, filled with seasonal fruits, a traditional gold Minakari dry fruit box, Godiva Chocolate G Cube Truffles and more! You can opt to add a bottle of Champagne or whisky to get the Diwali party started!

Gift Hampers,

Spice Store

This store is a good place to stock up on everything you need for Diwali, from boxes of the ever-popular kaju katli (sweet cashew nut paste) to the mixed mithai boxes, as well as beautifully decorated thalis (plates) and diyas (lamps).

Spice Store,  2944 2336, WhatsApp: 9888 3559,

And One Of The Many Indian Grocery Stores

Indian grocery stores are scattered all across the city and the majority of them will have Indian sweets right out at the front of the shops, yes they really are luring you in that way. It’s a win-win for all!

Read More: Indian Grocery Stores And Supermarkets In Hong Kong

Festive Diwali Menus To Book In Hong Kong


Treat your family to a Michelin-starred Diwali tasting menu at CHAAT featuring Crab Coconut Soup, Lehsuni (Garlic) Salmon Tikka and Smoky Tandoori Quail amongst other delicacies. Plus, there’s a wine pairing option for Mamas and Papas!

When: Sunday, 12 November 2023, 6pm to 10pm
Where: Level 5, Rosewood Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
How Much: $1,688 per guest
Booking: CHAAT
Contact: 5329 9220,

Uncle Desi Food & Sons

Looking to feast at home this Diwali? Order from Uncle Desi Food & Son’s Diwali menu featuring a slow-cooked lamb shoulder and Chicken Biryani with Gravy; it even has vegetarian-friendly delights including Kadhai Paneer and Sweet Corn Chaat.

When: From Sunday, 5 to 12 November 2023; pre-order with 48-hour notice
How much: Starting from $598 per person; Vegetarian menu starts from $488 per person
Order Online: Uncle Desi Food & Sons

Rajasthan Rifles – Diwali Feast

Light up your Diwali with a journey up to The Peak! For one night only, Rajasthan Rifles will be joining in the festivities with street food, tandoor selections and an assortment of braised meats and curries along with unlimited servings of beverages.

When: Sunday, 12 November 2023
Where: Shop G01, G/F, The Peak Galleria, 118 Peak Road, The Peak, Hong Kong
How much: $798 per person
Booking: Rajasthan Rifles
Contact: 2388 8874‬,

Read More: The Best Indian Restaurants In Hong Kong

Where To Buy Diyas For. Diwali In Hong Kong 2023

Where To Buy Diyas, Candles And Lights For Diwali

Most Indian stores across Hong Kong stock diyas (clay lamps) almost all year round. You can choose the plain ones and paint them with your kids for an easy and fun DIY craft exercise, or buy fancier decorative pieces. The good news is that these can be reused year on year.

Check what’s available online or in-store at Shop Easy. You can also make the trek up to the infamous Chungking Mansions to get a large stock of diyas from the stores there. But if that proves too much of a mission, you can always depend on places like The Candle Company to stock up on candles instead. Many of them are shaped like diyas and fit in perfectly well with the Festival of Lights. You can also find electric tea lights or fairy lights that you can put up around Diwali and keep on till Christmas. Partytime also stocks colourful Diwali decorations for your home.

Read More: Mindful Gifts – Wrapped With Love From Hong Kong

Where To Buy Diwali Outfits In Hong Kong

Where To Buy Ethnic Indian Wear And Dresses For Diwali

Now that we have checked off food and lights, let’s get you dressed for Diwali! You may not have many occasions to feel like an Indian Maharani, but this is one time of the year when too much bling feels just about right!

We are certainly not short of options in Hong Kong. If you’re looking for affordable yet stylish outfits, head to the first and second floors of Mirador Mansion in Tsim Sha Tsui where you’ll find many stores selling everything from sarees, sherwanis and lehengas to jootis, bangles and bindis to complete your look. For online shoppers, ASOS has also started selling gorgeous lehengas and kurtas perfect for any Diwali party.

If you are looking for a statement piece, look at Sanskrit where viewings are by appointment only. If you want something equally dazzling (both in detail and price!) but can wear even while mixing and matching a Western look, check out Tabla. If you want something that you can wear not just on Diwali but also at your Indian best friend’s wedding, head to Kanta Trading Company or Nanak Clothes House.

If you are a fan of sarees, you must check out the gorgeous collection at Ethnica. This mama-run venture has collected the finest hand-woven sarees from all parts of India and is sure to impress. Want to order from India? Our Indian Sassy Mama Editor loves the kid’s clothes from Little Muffet and the beautiful sarees and blouses from Suta (our lovely That Mama Bhakti Mathur is often seen looking gorgeous in sarees and blouses from Suta). You can also browse on Etsy for Indian outfits and accessories!

Read More: Eco-friendly Fashion – Where To Get Sustainable Clothes For Kids In Hong Kong

Editor’s Note: This post was originally written in October 2013 by Simran and most recently updated in October 2023 by Najuka Redkar. Special thanks to Anita Balagopalan and Fashila Kannaka for their contribution.

  Main image courtesy of Getty, image 1 courtesy of Getty, image 2 courtesy of Getty, image 3 courtesy of Baking Maniac, image 4 courtesy of Ankyra Home, image 5 courtesy of Candle Up, image 6 courtesy of Etsy, image 7 courtesy of Indigo Living, image 8 courtesy of Dilliwale, image 9 courtesy of CHAAT, image 10 courtesy of Getty, image 11 courtesy of Getty.  

more sassy mama

What's New

We're social

We're social

What we're up to and what inspires us