India’s Most Celebrated Festivals and Events

India is a land of diverse culture and traditions that has been in existence since the dawn of civilization. With its rich history, lush landscapes, and colorful culture, India is a vibrant and exciting place to be. It is the birthplace of some of the world’s most celebrated festivals and events, from the ancient Hindu festivals of Holi, Diwali, and Durga Puja, to the modern-day film festivals and cricket events. Here are some of the most celebrated festivals and events of India.

Holi

Holi is one of the biggest Hindu festivals celebrated across India, particularly in the northern states. Held in the month of March, this colorful and joyous festival is also known as the “festival of colors”, where people gather to put color, dance, and enjoy numerous activities such as Holi songs, sweets, and water play. People play with colors, running into the streets and splashing each other with different colored water and homemade dyes.

Diwali

Diwali, the five-day festival of lights, is an important Hindu religious festival celebrated with fireworks and lanterns across India. Diwali is celebrated with family gatherings, sumptuous feasts, and exchanging gifts. During this period, Hindus also perform various religious ceremonies such as puja, or prayers, and decorating their homes with lanterns and earthen lamps.

Durga Puja

Durga Puja is a nine-day festival that celebrates the goddess Durga and her victory over the demon Mahisasura. The festival is celebrated in the month of October and is celebrated with pujas, processions, and other religious ceremonies. The festival culminates with the procession of an image of Durga, astride a lion, riding through the streets with music and fireworks.

Uttarayan

Uttarayan is an Indian festival celebrated every year on 14 January, when the sun enters the Zodiac sign of Makara. This festival is celebrated in India and Nepal. Participants fly colorful kites, or locally called patangs while partaking in delicious snacks and drinks, and enjoying the view of the clear skies and colorful kites.

Ganesh Chaturthi

Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival celebrated to honor the Lord Ganesha. It is a ten-day festival, in which large and colorful idols of the deity are placed in public pandals and devotees offer their prayers and invite friends and family to their house to partake in the festivities. Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated all over India, but it is best celebrated in Mumbai where hundreds of pandals are set up and millions of people come together to celebrate.

Onam

Onam is a major harvest festival celebrated in the Indian state of Kerala, during the first Malayalam month of Chingam. It is an elaborate ten-day festival comprising activities like games, dances, processions, and traditional cuisines. The festival centers around the myth of King Mahabali, where people pay homage to the god Vasudeva for granting his wish of visiting his kingdom one last time.

Raksha Bandhan

Raksha Bandhan, or Rakhi, is an ancient Indian festival celebrated to honour the bond between siblings, brothers, and sisters. It is held on the full moon day of the Hindu month of Shravan, where the sisters tie up a sacred thread called Rakhi around their brothers’ wrists, to symbolize their love and affection. The brothers in return offer their sisters gifts and treats.

Pushkar Fair

The Pushkar Fair is held in Rajasthan every year in the Hindu month of Kartik, between October and November. It is an extravagant five-day fair featuring traditional Indian melodies, folk dances, and vivid art and craft displays. During the fair, thousands of devotees and traders come to the city of Pushkar to take part in activities such as camel races and camel trading, cultural programs, and spiritual activities such as a dip in the holy lake to cleanse the soul.

Kumbh Mela

Kumbh Mela is one of the largest religious gathering of humanity in the world. Held every three years, alternating between Haridwar, Allahabad, Nasik, and Ujjain; the festival sees pilgrims take a dip in the sacred river to search for enlightenment. Kumbh Mela attracts over 10 million people from all walks of life who come together to experience the ancient spiritual traditions and teachings.

India is a land full of vibrant cultures and traditions. From the ancient Hindu festivals to the modern-day film festivals and cricket tournaments, India has a wide range of events and festivals that attract residents and visitors from all around the world. Each of these festivals are characterized by different rituals, customs, and activities, and it’s easy to get lost in the revelry and excitement of it all. All in all, India provides endless celebrations filled with a wealth of joy and festivities, making it an ideal place to enjoy yourself.