Cue Card 64 - Describe a festival that is important in your country

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe a festival that is important in your country.

You should say:

  • what festival it is and when it occurs
  • what is the significance of it
  • how people celebrate this festival

and explain why this festival is important.

Follow-up Questions:

  • What are some important festivals in your country?
  • What special foods and activities are connected with this festival?
  • What do you most enjoy about a festival?
  • Why are festivals important for a culture/ country?


Model Answer 1:

We, the Australian people, love life and love to celebrate, whenever there is an opportunity. We also happen to be a country of many festivals, which are enjoyed by all Australians, regardless of their race, religion and culture, and this cue card topic offers me a great opportunity to talk about one such festival of my country.

The name of this festival is called the “National Folk Festival”. It is an Australian family-oriented celebration which is attended by a significant number of people from all over Australia. Being held in Melbourne for the first time in 1967, it has been taking place at Exhibition Park in Canberra (EPIC) every Easter from Easter Thursday - Easter Monday, every year. It was inspired by the Newport Folk Festival in the United States, apparently in an effort to recognize the folk culture of Australian people, so that the people in my great country can gain valuable insight into their cultural identity through grassroots and community activities.

This also seems to be a festival which is renowned among players of traditional music as a place to go and meet their friends, see some excellent performances, and attend some workshops or training sessions with some of the best musicians in this half of the world. Anyway, people celebrate this festival by organising concerts, a film festival, numerous impromptu street performances, workshops on making, playing and repairing musical instruments, visual art, storytelling and poetry, and many dance workshops. There are also many craft stalls on this festival site to introduce people to Australian handicraft works.

Anyway, this is an important festival in my country, because it allows regular Australian folks like us to understand and appreciate our cultural identity and features so that we can bring the much-needed sense of unity and solidarity among our people – people who come from different races, religions, cultures and backgrounds from all over the world.  Besides, this festival also allows us to have some fun and a good time together with our friends and family while also learning about our folk culture at the same time.


Cue Card Answer 2:

China is a country of numerous festivals and we love to celebrate different occasions wholeheartedly. In fact, there are so many festivals in China and it is quite tough for me to pick a particular favourite. I would love to talk about the Spring Festival, which is also known as Chinese New Year, as I personally enjoy it quite a lot. Other prominent festivals like National Day, Yung Xiao Festival, Lantern Festival, Dragon Boat Festival, Mid-autumn Festival etc are also widely celebrated in our country.

The Spring Festival is the biggest festival in our country and this festival touches every single street and every single citizen of China. The first day of the Chinese New Year begins on the new moon that appears between 21 January and 20 February.

I suppose it is somewhat like the "Christmas" festival in Western countries in terms of celebration, and the "New Year" festival in terms of its norm. If someone visits our country during the Spring Festival, he will surely notice the colourful and distinguishable look of the houses and streets. This is the time for families to gather together and enjoy their time.

People get together with their family members during this time and they seem happy about that. Many stores and businesses remain closed during this time and people cook delicious food, visit relatives & friends, watch TV, gossip together, wear new dresses and welcome New Year. Many traditional food items are cooked during this time and the aroma of delicious foods could be easily found during this time.  

Visiting relatives and friends is a custom I really like about this festival. This is a festival that remains for several days and personally, I find it very enjoyable as I get together with my family. I also contact some of my friends and enjoy our time together. I invite them to have dinner with us and I often roam around the streets with them. Welcoming the New Year is another important aspect of this festival. We wish each other a happy and prosperous new year and exchange gifts with friends and family members.


Sample Answer 3:

Bengali New year day, which is the first day of the Bengali calendar, is a very important festival in our country. This usually occurs on the 14th or the 15th of April, and is celebrated among the Bengali people, minor Bengali communities and in some states of India. The famous Mughal Emperor Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar introduced the Bengali Calendar most probably because of easier tax collection at that time.

This is possibly the most widely celebrated festival in our country. People from all social-economic states, from all ages and religions, celebrate with great joy, festivity and happiness. The rally, the song, the traditional dresses, the traditional foods, the boat racing, cock-fight, pigeon racing and many more activities are very common in this festival.

The people celebrate this festival the whole day starting from the early morning. Men, women and children all wear traditional dresses, draw some temporary arts and tattoos, go to the central University campus and enjoy the festival greatly. I also enjoy the day and visit my friends and family on this day, and celebrate it with them. Eating traditional foods and wearing traditional dresses is something I also enjoy a lot. 

The whole capital city, as well as other places of the country, warmly welcome the New Year and as a long tradition cook delicious dishes. This is a festival which is rooted in our history. Usually, people get their harvest at that time and make different delicious foods. After emperor Akbar introduced this Bengali New Year, we are celebrating with great enthusiasm and in a distinctive way. No other festival depicts the true traditions and cultures as does the Pohela Boishak.


Part 3 - Two-way Discussion:

Discussion topic: "Purpose of festivals and celebration"

Q.  Why do you think festivals are important events in the working year?
Q.  Would you agree that the original significance of festivals is often lost today? Is it good or bad, do you think?
Q.  Do you think that new festivals will be introduced in the future? What kind?

Discussion topic: "Festivals and the media"

Q.  What role does the media play in festivals, do you think?
Q.  Do you think it's good or bad to watch festivals on TV? [Why?]
Q.  How may globalisation affect different festivals around the world?

Click here for the answer to those Part 3 Questions


Tips for answering this Cue Card topic:

An important festival of a country can be a major religious festival, music festival, seasonal festival, traditional and cultural festival etc. which is celebrated in the whole part of the county. For this cue card topic, you can talk about any festival which is celebrated in your country nationwide. Do not talk about a festival which is only celebrated in a particular region of your country or among a tribal nation which is not widely celebrated in the whole country.

For the first question sat the festival name (i.e. New Year's eve, Christmas, Eid day, Independence Day etc.) and when it is celebrated. If the festival is not widely known and might be unknown to the examiner, say a little background of the festival. Mention if this is a national festival, celebration, cultural or historical celebration or a religious festival and then say the significance of this celebration in your country.

To mention the significance of the festival, give the historical/ religious/ cultural origin of the festival and also mention how this is an integral part of the people in your country. Also, mention what you usually do on this festival day and why you like it so much.

For the final two parts of the questions, you need to give details of the festival and talk about how you celebrate this festival. Mention the following points to give details about the festival and your activity:

  1.    Duration of the festival.
  2.    How widely is it celebrated?
  3.    Preparation for the festival.
  4.    What are the customs and rules of the celebration?
  5.    What do people cook, and wear during the occasion?
  6.    What are the norms of this celebration?
  7.    What do you like to do during this celebration?
  8.    What is the tradition of it?
  9.    How do you feel about his celebration?
10.    How important is this celebration for your countrymen?

Finally, mention why this is an important festival for the people of your country.


Similar Cue Card Topics:

1.    Describe a festival that is important in your country.
2.    Describe a national festival in your country.
3.    Describe a widely celebrated programme in your country.
4.    Describe a historical celebration in your country.
5.    Describe a festival you have recently celebrated.
6.    Describe the most important festival in your country.


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