India is well-known for its diversity and different cultures. The country has many religions and hundreds of customs and festivals. Many of these festivals are shared by communities across the country. The country is a spiritual one and has a population of different cultures. Because of this, it comes as no surprise that India is famous for celebrating several festivals the entire year. The festivals are spectacular and happy times to bond with your near and dear ones. The rituals and values that are imbibed in us make the time of festivals even more memorable as India is famous for its diverse and old traditions. People celebrate festivals and share the feeling of belongingness. These festivals offer magnificent experiences to cherish the moments forever. Almost every month is packed with some of the other festivals in India and each festival has its own different mythological story due to which it came into being.
These are one of the biggest festivals of India that celebrate the history, culture, traditions and different religions across the subcontinent. There are some of the fairs and festivals that are celebrated in various regions of India. These festivals not only add zing to the monotonous life but also depict the vibrant and dynamic culture of the county. Celebrating them harmoniously enables people to rekindle the bond of joy and togetherness. Festivals are also one of the feelings that unite the whole family and people with each other. So, be a part of the amazing vibrant fairs and festivals to witness the cultures of India and traditions to the fullest. At this time, you will see the different colors of the country through these festivals that will make you fall in love with its legacy that it still follows.
If you visit India at this time then spend some time with these splendid festivals for the unforgettable memories and mingle with the locals to know more culture and the traditions of India. We make sure that visiting the country at the time of fairs and festivals will keep you engrossed and will certainly mesmerize you with its charm. That is why we would like to run down some of the important and famous festivals of India that you might witness without the country.
Makar Sankranti is believed to be a time for peace and prosperity. Celebrated in North India, on this day, the people worship God and they all seek blessings for the New Year. The people celebrate this day by flying kites and making sweet ladoo. Uttarayan, Maghi, Khichdi are some other names of the same festival. The day is regarded as important for spiritual practices and accordingly, people take a holy dip in rivers, especially Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, and Krishna. The people believe that it is the best time to wash away their sins. So, if you wish to come to India, you can visit here at the time of Makar Sakranti to witness the real culture in North India.
Celebrated in – January in North India.
Pongal is the harvest season in South India where people make merrymaking by celebrating this festival. It is celebrated for almost three days and a Puja is performed on the first day before cutting the paddy. The farmers worship the sun and the earth before cutting off the paddy. Boiled milk and jaggery are offered to the Sun God. The third day of Pongal, Mattu Pongal, is for the worship of the cattle known as Mattu. So, come along with your family for a perfect vacation and see one of the beautiful traditions of South India that will totally keep you hooked throughout the festival. The people of South India celebrate this festival with full enthusiasm and spirit.
Celebrated in – January in South India.
Kumbh Mela is one of the largest gatherings of the pilgrims across the nation. The Prayagraj Kumbh Mela, the Nashik-Trimbakeshwar Simhastha, Haridwar Kumbh Mela and Ujjain Simhastha are the four fairs that are traditionally recognized as Kumbh Melas. These fares are hosts at states Varanasi, Allahabad, Haridwar and Ujjain in every three years. During this occasion, devotees from all around the world take a dip in the holy river to wash away all their sins and purify their souls. Religious discussions, devotional singing, and mass feeding are some of the activities that pilgrims can indulge in at the meal.
Celebrated in – January in Varanasi, Allahabad, Haridwar, and Ujjain.
The festival of Basant Panchami falls usually in the month of January or in February. On this day, the people worship the Goddess Saraswati and considers as one of the big festivals for all the students and scholars. The festival is widely celebrated in several states of India. People offer jasmine garlands to the Goddess after the Puja. Also, according to Hindu Mythology, Lord Brahma is believed to have created the universe on this day. There is also huge importance of yellow color as people deck up wearing that color. The color marks the harvest time of mustard crop that has yellow blooms and it is also Mata Saraswati’s favorite color. The people who make dishes that are usually yellow in color are preferred. So, if you are planning a trip to India, you can come over at this time to discover the never seen before things and get to know the culture to the fullest. Head to India for a blissful a perfect vacation and experience the vibrant culture.
Celebrated in – February in Bihar, Punjab, West Bengal, Orrisa.
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this festival holds a lot of devotees of God. People keep fast from the early morning of the festival day. The devotees bring holy water Ganga in a pot to offer it to the Shivalingam. It is believed that a person who offers the holy water to the Shivalingam washes away his/her sins. Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi is one of the special places where the thousands of devotees flock around at the time of Maha Shivratri to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva. So, traveling to Varanasi would be a perfect plan to see the different colors of Indian culture.
Celebrated in – March in Varanasi and North India.
Holi is another one of the popular festivals in India. It is also known as the festivals of colors where people put colors on each other’s faces. It is one of the most joyous occasions for the people in India and is celebrated with Gulal, Pichkari, and buckets of colored water guns. The festival is largely celebrated in all parts of India and people make Gujiyas and pakoras. A lot of people from different parts of the globe celebrate this festival on a large scale. So, if you are waiting for the perfect time to visit India, then Holi is one of the best times to come here. If you love solo traveling then you can head to Mathura and Vrindavan and the best part is that the people celebrate the festival with flowers and not with water. You will get to see a lot of people celebrating Holi to the fullest.
Celebrated in – March in Vrindavan, Mathura & other parts of North India.
Baisakhi is considering the harvest festival of India which is mainly celebrated by the Sikhs. They enjoy the festival with full enthusiasm and zeal by performing local folks. People of Assam celebrate April 13 as Rongali Bihu, while those in West Bengal celebrate it as Naba Barsha. Bihar celebrates Baisakhi as Vaishakha in honor of the Sun God, Surya while Kerala celebrates it as Vishu and Tamil Nadu as Puthandu. Major attractions of Baisakhi Fairs are the bhangra and gidda performances besides wrestling bouts, singing, and acrobatics. So, heading to India at the time of Baisakhi then you must visit to Punjab to experience the culture of the country and indulge in the richness of Baisakhi.
Celebrated in – April in Punjab and North India.
This festival is mainly celebrated within the Muslim community. The people wear new clothes and go for the prayers in the mosques in the early morning. Then they go to the house of their relatives and exchange sweets and give eidi to the younger people. It mainly celebrates in the holy month of Ramzan where the devotees keep fast for the whole month and end it with celebrating Eid.
Celebrated in – June-July celebrated by Muslims all over India.
Hemis Festival is one of the festivals of Ladakh that depicts the tradition and the past of the destination. On this auspicious day, the people celebrate the festival with full enthusiasm and wear masks and colorful cloths. They also perform the local dance which reflects the victory of good over evil. The sacred environment during the festivals fills the people with joy and adds a new charm to the festival. So, if you are traveling to Ladakh any time soon then, be a part of this spectacular cultural fiesta, pay homage to the almighty, enjoy an enthralling adventure safari ride on yaks while you are on a vacation and attain good health and spiritual strength.
Celebrated in – July in Ladakh.
As per the Hindu mythology, it is said that on this auspicious day, Lord Shiva became the guru of seven Rishi’s and he imbibed the knowledge of yoga to them. Ever since that time, the Hindu devotees celebrate this day as Guru Purnima. Human beings are just flesh and bones without the enlightened mind and soul. Their guru plays an important part in their life to take them to a good path and also imbibe good qualities in them. People usually celebrate this day with their guru's thanking them for making them who they are not right. So, if you want to see how this festival is celebrated then become a part of this and you too can thank your Guru for the knowledge and wisdom, they enlightened you with. You will witness a pure bond between the Guru and the students.
Celebrated in – July in all parts of India.
Raksha Bandhan is one of the famous festivals in India that is celebrated across the nation. This festival is also known as Rakhi Poornima, Nariyal Poornima and Kajari Poornima in different states in India. On the occasion of this festival, sisters apply tilak to the forehead of their brothers, tie the sacred thread called Rakhi to the wrist of their brothers and chant the Aarti and pray for their good health & long life. This thread, which represents love and sentiments, is called the ‘Raksha Bandhan’ means ‘a bond of protection’. You can come to India at the time of Raksha Bandhan with your siblings and can perform the rituals and create a strong bond. You can head to any part of North India to witness the power of the festival. Create a bond with your siblings.
Celebrated in – August in Central and North India.
Janmashtami is another Indian festival dedicated to Lord Krishna. It is celebrated because the lord was born in midnight. The devotees keep fast for Krishna and offer a lot of fruits and other things. Vrindavan and Mathura are the two popular places where the celebration takes place in a very grand way. A lot of devotees visit the temple on Janmashtami just to seek the blessings of Lord Krishna. Krishna temples are decorated; processions are taken out, while religious sites dedicated to the Blue God see a host of bhajans and kirtans taking place along with Satsang. Explore the purity of Janmashtami by visiting and surrendering yourself to Lord Krishna.
Celebrated in – August in Vrindavan and Mathura, North India.
The festival of Onam is celebrated to honor the home-coming of the mythical-demon king Mahabali. Mahabali was considered a demon but he was good at heart. Because of his good heart, the gods were insecure so they all asked Lord Vishnu to help them. As Mahabali worshipped Lord Vishnu so, Vishnu told Gods that he would aid them but did not involve in a battle with Mahabali. The devotees make flower rangoli in front of their house to welcome King Mahabali to their house. People cook delicious delicacies and serve those dishes on the banana leaf. Onam is the perfect reason to head to India and be a part of the enthralling festival for a Perfect Weekend Getaway in Kerala.
Celebrated in – September in Kerala and South India.
Ganesh Chaturthi is a total ten-day affair of the colorful festivals. The festival is mainly celebrated in Maharashtra and huge idols of Lord Ganesha are installed at home. It is believed that the devotees who pray to Ganesha at the time of 10 days festival, they are able to fulfill their desire and they are set free of sins. This would lead them to the path of wisdom and knowledge. On the tenth day, the people immerse the deity of Lord Ganesha in the water which is called Visarjan in Hindi. If you are planning to visit India, then you can come over here at the time of Ganesh Chaturthi and spend a perfect vacation.
Celebrated in – September in Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Kerala, & Karnataka.
Navratri is one of the important festivals in India and this lasts for 9 days in total where the devotees worship Goddess Durga. These nine days are filled with special Pujas, Yagnas, Homs, fasting, meditations, silence, singing, and dancing honoring Mother Divine, her entire creation- all forms of life, all forms of art, music, and knowledge. In West Bengal, the people form groups and organize the Durga Puja and it remains throughout the nine days. The devotees surrender them to the Goddess Durga. In Western India, particularly in the state of Gujarat, Navratri is celebrated with the famous Garba and Dandiya-Raas dance. Garba is a graceful form of dance, wherein women dance gracefully in circles around a pot containing a lamp. So, visiting India for you at Navratri is one of the best times when you can explore the country to the fullest and be a part of the devotion.
Celebrated in – October in Gujarat, Maharashtra, West Bengal, & Northern India.
Dusshera, which is also known as Vijaydashmi, is also one of the important festivals in India. The festival is celebrated because, on this day, Lord Rama killed the demon Ravan in Lanka who kidnapped Lord Rama’s wife Sita. This is the reason why the Dussehra festival is celebrated as a victory of good over evil. This festival signifies that wrongdoings on some of the other day come in front of everyone. On this day, the burning of huge effigies of Ravana, Meghnath, and Kumbkaran takes place. If you are planning for a trip to India then Dusshera is one of the best options to stay back in India.
Celebrated in – October in North and South India.
Diwali is considered the most important festival in India. This is also known as the festival of the lights. People decorate their houses with Diya and lamps to make their homes look beautiful. People wear new clothes and participate in Puja in the family. Diwali symbolizes the victory of good over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance. If you want to see how India looks, then you must visit the country at the time of Diwali.
Celebrated in – October & November in North and South India.
The prominent festival of Chhat Pooja is commonly celebrated in the state of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh in India. The Pooja spans over for four days where the devotees worship the God sun and pray for the well-being of the family. The people also take a dip in the holy water of Ganga along with keeping the fast. It is believed that the festival is celebrated after coming back home from exile, Lord Rama and Goddess Sits took fast for the God Sun and opened the fast at the time of dawn, the next day. Ever since that time, this festival is considered as Chhat Pooja and people of Bihar and U.P celebrate it with all the zest and fervor. If you like to know Bihar more, then you must visit at the time of Chhat Pooja as there are a lot of people that will let you know the importance and the origin of the festival.
Celebrated in – October & November in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
Christmas is one of the most important as well as popular festivals celebrated throughout the year. Christmas is the kind of festival that is so popular that is celebrated in more than 160 countries and this is the best part of this festival. The people make several dishes but if we talk about India, then people make a lot of amazing dishes and go party with their family or friends to enjoy the day. Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, who in the Christian religion, is also known as 'The Son of God’. If you want to know how India celebrates Christmas then you must visit here at the time of Christmas to embrace yourself.
Celebrated in – December in Pondicherry.
New Year's Eve is one of the famous festivals in India as well as all over the world. But talking about India, the New Year celebration mainly takes place in destinations like Goa and other major metro cities. New Year is the perfect time to head somewhere for a trip. While others stay at home with their family and celebrate the special eve with them by making some New Year resolutions. If you want to visit India then you must visit the country at the time of New Year as there are a lot of places where the New Year parties keep on happening.
Celebrated in – December in Goa.
Boasting the top 19 famous festivals, India shows its rich heritage and varied culture. Fulfilling the religious sentiments of people, these festivals are celebrated with complete enthusiasm in India. And if you enjoy the urge of traveling India, don’t forget to be the part of these celebrations sparkled with love and warmth.