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TravelGoIndia » Culture of India » Festivals of India

Festivals of India

Indian festivals are both colorful and extremely joyous. People enjoy the festivals with family and friends. The religious significance of the festivals too can hardly be denied. Here are some of the very popular festivals that take place throughout India.


Ganesh Chaturthi

Maharashtra is the place where you should be at Ganesh Chaturthi. The preparation of the event starts much before the actual festival and the magnitude of the preparation is to be seen to believe. The huge idols of Lord Ganesha are worshipped almost everywhere. The whole city is decorated dazzling light. On the last day of the festival a long procession of the devotees take the deity for immersion with the beating of drums in tune with the devotional songs. more...



The first day of the Hindu New Year is marked by Baisakhi, a festival celebrating bountiful harvest. This festival has special significance in all those areas where agriculture is a way of life. In Punjab, the occasion is marked with wild celebrations. Bhangra dancers perform with gusto. The energy and vigor of the people can be seen in their joyous dance and merriment. In West Bengal the day also marks the beginning of Bengali new year. more...


Diwali – The Festival Of Light

If Holi is the celebration of color, Diwali is the celebration of light. According to the legend, the people of Ayodhya lit lamps to celebrate the victorious return of Prince Rama after defeating the terrible demon Ravana. The celebration, however, is not limited to lighting lamps. Now-a-days, Diwali is an occasion to behold. Different types of fireworks lit up the night sky. Crackers are burst almost throughout the night. People enjoy this night as if there is no tomorrow. more...



When the sun moves into the northern constellation, the Hindu almanac marks the passage with Makar Sankranti. The day is celebrated as Pongal in South India and as Makar Sankranti in North India. Pongal is the most important harvest festival that is observed with much enthusiasm all over South India. On Pongal, rice is ritually cooked and allowed to boil on, symbolizing the ushering in of plenty. more...



The festival of Dussehra is the principle ceremony of Hindus. The three places where it is celebrated with special grandeur are in Kullu in Himachal Pradesh, Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and Mysore in Karnataka. Dussehra is the tenth day and the climax of nine daylong festivities of Navaratri when the effigy of Ravana is burnt to mark the defeat of the evil spirit on the earth. more...


Goa Carnival

Symbolic to its name, the Goa Carnival is uninhibited revelry full of festive feasting, music and dance. The carnival is held in February for three days and nights, when the legendary King Momo is believed to take over the state and the streets come alive with music and color. This weeklong event has been celebrated since the 18th Century. more...


Holi – The Festival of Color

Holi heralds summer and marks the end of winter. Just when the cold nip in the air slowly fades, the festival of Holi welcomes you with a riot of color. Spring is symbolic of life. Nature too is bedecked in a riot of color as flowers bloom all around. The setting cannot be more perfect to smear each other in color and enjoy the day in camaraderie. Though Holi is essentially a festival of the Hindus, you will only have to come to India to see the secular nature of the festival. People from all religion gather together and have fun exchanging pleasantries and smearing each other with color. more...


The Buddhist festival

The Buddhists in Ladakh and in the Northeast celebrate the birth of the Lord Buddha, Guru Rimpoche Padmasambhava (Lotus Born) with frenzied mask dances - Chaams, and ritual display of painted scrolls (Tangkhas). The monasteries of Hemis in Ladakh, Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh and Rumtek in Sikkim, are particularly renowned for these performances. more...



Onam is the biggest festival in Kerala. celebrated on a particular day in August or September. Onam is celebrated to welcome King Mahabali, a legendary ruler of Kerala, who was renowned for the justice and benevolence. People buy new clothes and exchange gifts. Houses are cleaned and beautiful flower carpets and decorations are made at the entrances of houses and in courtyards. Traditional oil lamps are lit in the courtyard and women dressed in traditional saris dance around a lamp. The main event on Onam day is a grand feast at lunchtime, called sadya. Snake Boat races, Kathakali and Mohiniattam dance recitals and musical performances are also essential parts of Onam. more...

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