festivals

Fairs and Festivals of India

Fairs and Festivals of India are its pride that tends to exhibit the true colors of its conventional treasure. Every state, city or town has certain festivals that highlight the cultural background of that particular area. The honeymoon couples can get to be familiar with them and take part in the celebrations that would bring them closer to newer lifestyle that they might not have known before. The canvas of Indian tradition is filled with the glitters of these fairs and festivals to make it a country full of vivacity. Besides celebrating Holi, Raksha Bandhan Dussehra, Diwali, Eid, Gurpurab, Baisakhi, Christmas and other well known festivals, India has opened its arms to various cultural festivals that are subject to certain areas.

Agni Utsav (Orissa): It is a special festival that is celebrated in the state of Orissa to worship fire god. In this festival, the farmers collect straws that have to be burnt on this auspicious day. The ladies of the family start cleaning their homes a week before this festival. On the special day, all the straws are collected from different houses and huge heaps are made. Then, the fire is lit to the heaps that are considered good by the farmers. As per the legends associated with it, this ceremony helps the farmers to predict about their crops. While burning, the eastward side means high tides; the westward tilt of heap means floods and northeast tilt mean good crops. It is celebrated during the month of mid January to mid February and the honeymoon couples can enjoy the traditional celebrations to the best.

Agni Utsav

Bikaner Camel Festival (Bikaner): Rajasthan is well known for its traditional imperialism that is reflected in the Camel festival celebrated in the magnificent city of Bikaner. As they say, "Padharo Sa Mhare Des", Bikaner welcomes the honeymoon couples and other tourists in the celebrations meant to highlight the value of Camel (Ship of Desert). It is a two day festival in which the honeymoon couple gets to enjoy Camel dance, procession of bejeweled camels, fire dance and camel acrobatics. Celebrated in the last phase of December or in January, this festival is unique in its celebration, colors and conventional music.

International Kite Festival (Ahmadabad): The festival of kites is celebrated in the city of Ahmadabad in Gujarat on the same day of Makar Sankranti (14 January). On this auspicious day, the kite enthusiasts from the world over are invited to test their kite flying skills. Honeymoon couples can see a variety of designs and colors of kites that look extremely magnificent. It is the tourism corporation of Gujarat that sponsors this festival that invokes the spirit of merry making in the people.

Kite Festival

Jaipur Literature Festival: The essence of creativity prevails in the atmosphere of Jaipur on Jaipur Literature Festival that is held in the month of January. This festival takes place in the majestic Diggi Palace that invites numerous world renowned poets, authors and creative people to share ideas and newer thoughts. The honeymoon couples can enjoy sensing the literary innovations at its best.

Bihu (Assam): It is an important festival of Assam that signifies and honors the field of farming. The spectacular hills and valleys of Assam come alive with the celebrations of Bihu, thrice in a year - Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu in January, Bohag Bihu or Rongali Bihu in April and Kati Bihu or Kongali Bihu in October or November. It is a regional festival that brings a sense of cohesion and unity among people of Assam.

Bihu

Mamallapuram Dance Festival (Mahabalipuram): This particular festival is organized in the months of January or February by Tamil Nadu tourism department as a cultural tourist attraction. The honeymoon couples can enjoy the magnificence of Indian classical dances, such as Kuchipudi, Bharat Natyam, Kathak, Odissi and Mohiniyattam. It is a four week festival that is held at Arjuna's Penance, which is a beautifully sculpted rock monument.

Pongal (Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh): It is the festival of Sankranti that is known as Pongal in South India. This festival is celebrated with much pomp that continues for four days in January. In some part of the cities, cattle race still enlivens the celebrations. All the maintenance tasks and cleaning is completed before this festival, in which, Sun god is offered prayers. The reason behind this is that Sun god helps in the growth of paddy fields and other forms of plantations. People make different designs of Rangolis in front of their homes. The four day festival is marked by the names of Bhogi Pongal, Surya Pongal, Mattu Pongal and Kaanum Pongal. By attending these festivals, honeymoon couple will get an opportunity to be familiar with rich celebrated culture of South India.

Pongal

Thai Pusam: This celebrated festival is dedicated to Lord Murugan, in which, a large number of Tamil community devotees take out a procession by carrying "Chhatris" (Kavadi) and chanting "Vel Vel Shakti Vel". The electrifying sounds of chants spellbind the onlookers. Some devotees pierce their tongue or cheek with small lances; while others insert hooks in their body. In order to show their devotedness, they go to various extremities.

Nagaur Fair (Rajasthan):Also popular as Ramdeoji Cattle Fair, this fair was started by Rajput Maharaja Umaid Singh 56 years back. Since then, the fair has been regularly organized in the month of January or February. In this particular fair, people sell or buy cattle and enjoy the richness of Rajasthani culture depicted through folk dances. The honeymoon couples can enjoy the scenic beauty of brightness exhibited by the people taking part in this fair.

Nagaur Fair

Suraj Kund Crafts Mela (Haryana): It is a handicraft fair that is organized by Haryana Tourism Department in the month of February. The location is near Faridabad and couples can enjoy the cultural fest from all over India. With rural ambience, the visitors can shop for excellent souvenirs, check out folk dances and feast on the delicacies from different pats of India.

Island Tourism Festival (Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Islands): It is a 10day long festival that gives way to music, dance, exhibitions and dramas. Organized by Andaman and Nicobar Administration every year around December-January, this colorful festival of merry making is a cultural tourist attraction. Besides the exhibition of art and craft, people from different parts also exhibit about marine life, flora and fauna. It is, basically, about the cultural and economical development of this scenic town that is highlighted in this festival. Apart from all this, honeymoon couples can also try hands or enjoy watching aqua sports, para sailing, Nicobari Hodi race and Canoe race.

Island Tourism Festival

Taj Mahotsav (Agra): It is a much awaited event that happens every year on 18th February at Shilpgarm, near Taj Mahal of Agra. This 10 day long festival has a special place for art and craft of entire India, folk music, Poetry recital and cultural displays. The honeymoon couples can enjoy the procession that is taken out with much pomp, bedecked elephants and trumpets that enlivens the atmosphere of Mughal Era. Apart from cultural and traditional work or dance being presented, the affluence of intricately carved marble items keeps ruling this festival.

Khajuraho Dance Festival: The city of temples comes alive with this dance festival, where couples can take pleasure in enjoying Kathak, Bharatanatyam, Manipuri, Odissi and Kuchipudi dance forms. Besides these folk dances that take place in front of Chitragupta Temple and Vishwanath Temple, one can also check out different forms or art and crafts that are sold in an open market. This festival takes place in the month of March, between 6th to 12th day of the month and is held to celebrate the glory of the temples.

Khajuraho Dance Festival

Garden Tourism Festival (Delhi): It is the festival to celebrate the exotic beauty of flowers, its mesmerizing fragrance and its excellent variety. The festival is organized in Delhi's "Garden of Five Senses", which is located in Said-Ul-Ajaib near Qutab Institutional Area. In this particular festival, taking place in February, the honeymoon couples can take pleasure in watching numerous varieties of flowers, bonsai plants, medicinal plants and designer garden accessories. Apart from this, painting competitions for children, art camp for aspiring artists and thematic cultural shows are also organized by Delhi Tourism.

Chapchar Kut (Mizoram):Celebrated b Mizo people to honor the harvest time in farming, this festival has three ranges - Mim Kut (September), Pawl Kut (December) and Chapchar Kut (March). On this auspicious day, the farmers get dressed in their traditional attire to represent the belonging clans and perform folk dances, especially bamboo dance. It is because this festival is associated with harvesting of Bamboo. This festival is celebrated with enthusiasm to represent the traditional tasks carried out in farming.

Chapchar Kut

Hola Mohalla (Anandpur Sahib and Kiratpur Sahib, Punjab): It is a Sikh festival that is celebrated one day after Holi in Anandpur and Kiratpur Sahib. The day is marked by a procession lead by Nishant Sahib, followed by Paanch Pyaare and other troops plating drums. In this procession, honeymoon couples can also take pleasure in enjoying the powerful Sikh martial art form, known as "Gatkha". This festival was started by tenth guru of Sikhs, Guru Gobind Singh Ji to gather Sikh men for making army troops. The celebrations last for three days that exhibit excellence of Sikh tradition and faith, along with poetic recitations and musical competitions.

Ugadi/ Gudi Padwa (Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka): It is the marked New Year for people residing in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. In Maharashtra, it is known as Gudi Padwa and in other two states, the festival enjoys the privilege of Ugadi. This festival is considered auspicious to buy house, ornaments and other important new things. On this day, a banner with swastika marked metal pot is raised to the height to announce victory and joy. The festival is also celebrated to mark the harvest season, where people clean their homes and make numerous designs of Rangoli to depict their happiness.

Ugadi

Kumbh Mela: It is a religious fair that is celebrated after a span of 12 years at one of the following locations - Prayag (Allahabad), Hardwar, Ujjain and Nasik (Maharashtra). On this auspicious day of Hindu traditional festival, people from world over visit these places for a holy dip, taking part in prayers or hymns and enjoying the rides, along with shopping for souvenirs.

Hemis Festival (Ladakh): This Buddhist festival is celebrated in Ladakh at the courtyard of Hemis monastery to celebrate the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava. On this day, Buddhist monks called Lamas perform masked dance and are dressed in best traditional garbs. It is a two day festival that falls on the 10th day of Tibetan Lunar month. In this festival, the honeymoon couples can enjoy the exotic colors of traditional Buddhist celebration with rituals and prayers.

Hemis Festival

Tarnetar Mela (Saurashtra, Gujarat):It is a three day fair, which is held in Tarnetar (Saurashtra, Gujarat) and coincides with Trinetreshwar festival taking place at Trineteshwar temple. This fair is carried out to celebrate the wedding of legendary archer Arjuna with Draupadi. The fair and festival is marked by full pomp and celebrations include the use of Chhatri (Umbrella). Honeymoon couple can also take pleasure in enjoying folk dance and music.

Chappar Festival (Ludhiana): This festival is celebrated to honor Guga Pir, who was believed to protect people from snakes. It, usually, falls on the fourth day of Bhadas month and is celebrated with bright colors, along with performing certain rituals.

Chappar Festival

Onam (Kerala): This particular festival is celebrated to honor the time of harvesting. People dress in best, enjoy dancing, traditional music, carry out boat races, feast on good food and worship their deities. It is celebrated between end of August and beginning of September, which may last from 4 days to 10 days.

Lavi Fair (Rampur, Himachal Pradesh): This fair is organized in the month of November, where artists and craftsmen gather to lure customers with their designer Indian art and craft products. Each and every person taking part in it or visiting is full of enthusiasm and enables others to get colored in the colors of merry making, singing, dancing and enjoying cultural exhibits.

Lavi Fair

Lumbini Festival (Andhra Pradesh):This particular festival is celebrated to honor the heritage of Buddhism. Lumbini was the birth place of Gautam Buddha and is known to be a religiously heritage site. The festival lasts for three days and is celebrated with dance, music and eventful activities. It is, generally, organized at Magarajunasagar Dam towards the end of December and honeymoon couple can get a chance to glance over the rich heritage of Buddhist culture.

Sair Festival (Shimla): The festival of Sair is celebrated with extreme liveliness and enthusiasm in the month of September. Its main attraction is Bull Fight that reminds of Athens' bull fight. Along with this, the honeymoon couple can enjoy the music shows, dance performances and buy craft gifts for near ones.

Pushkar Fair (Pushkar): This festival exhibiting Rajasthani tradition and culture is celebrated in the month of November-December at the side of Pushkar Lake. In this festival, a large amount of camel and other types of cattle's buying or selling is carried out. Along with this, the honeymoon couple can enjoy the folk music and dance of Rajasthan and get mingled in its splendor. Apart from buying or selling cattle, people can also buy handicrafts and accessories in terms of traditional jewelry for making the mode of shopping more interesting for women.

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