"Each one prays to God according to his own light. " ~ Mahatma Gandhi

Festivals of India
Religious Festivals

Festival Calendar
Festivals in India are commemorated with great passion, seemingly as a celebration of life itself. Rich in its cultural inheritance, festivals are an intrinsic part of the Indian ethos. Read More...

Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Lohri... ~ Romola Butalia
On this day, especial importance is given to bathing in the Ganga and to worshipping the sun. This is a harvest festival marked by kite-flying everywhere. Read More...

Basant Panchami ~ Romola Butalia
It marks the end of winter and the advent of spring: a new beginning. Also celebrated as Saraswati Puja, the goddess of learning and wisdom is worshipped. Read More...

Mahashivaratri ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Mahashivaratri is associated with Shiva - the Lord of Mount Kailas who is portrayed as the Destroyer in the Hindu trinity (trimurti) along with Brahma (the Creator) and Vishnu (the Preserver). Read More...

Holi - Festival of Colour ~ Romola Butalia
A spring harvesting festival, Holi is celebrated with gaiety and wild abandon. Read More...

Navaratri - Worship of Devi ~ Romola Butalia
Ram Navaratri in spring and Durga Navaratri in autumn are commonly observed. Romola Butalia writes about the history, cultural and spirtual significance of the nine nights of Devi, when manifest energy is propitiated in time-honoured commemoration of good over evil. Read More...

Sri Ramanavami ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Sri-Ramnavami is dedicated to the memory of Lord Rama. It occurs on the ninth day (navami). The festival commemorates the birth of Rama who is remembered for his prosperous and righteous reign... Read More...

Akshaya Trithiya ~ Romola Butalia
Astrologically one of three most auspicious tithis in the year, it is the day that marks the beginning of the Treta Yuga, the bringing of the Ganga to earth, the birth of Sri Parasuram and the day the Mahabharat started to be written. Read More...

Guru Purnima ~ Romola Butalia
Guru Purnima is celebrated in honour of the birth of Maharishi Veda Vyasa who compiled the four Vedas, authored the Brahma Sutras, wrote the 18 Puranas... Read More...

Nagapanchami ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Nagapanchami is a festival dedicated to the snake-god. It occurs on the fifth day (panchami) of the fortnight as is evident from it's name. Read More...

Raksha Bandhan ~ Romola Butalia
Raksha Bandhan, in its fullest sense is a celebration of higher values: of love, compassion, protection, sacrifice. Read More...

Janamashtami ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Janmastami (also known as Krishnastami or Gokulastami) is a festival dedicated to Lord Sri Krishna and commemorates his birth. Read More...

Ganesh Chaturthi ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Ganesh-Chaturthi is the festival devoted to Ganesh the benevolent, auspicious compassionate one, giver of boons, remover of obstacles. Read More...

Radhasthami ~ Romola Butalia
Radhasthami, celebrated for the birth of Sri Radha is closely associated with the divine mystery of Sri Radha-Krishna. The context and spiritual significance of some of the associated legends. Read More...

Diwali - the Festival of Lights ~ Sudheer Birodhkar
Diwali or Deepaavali means an Array of Lamps (Deep = Lamp, Vali =Array) Lamp, Vali =Array). This is one of the major festivals in the Hindu calendar. Read More...

Regional Festivals

Festivals of Jammu & Kashmir
The tradition of collective celebration continues with every occasion, be it a wedding, birth, harvesting or even the flowering of plants and is marked by community celebration with dancing and singing of folk songs. Read More...

Festivals of Kumaon
Numerous fairs and festivals are celebrated all over Uttaranchal every year. The Kumaon hills celebrate their own festivals apart from the usual ones. Read More...

Festivals of Rajasthan
Rajasthan with its aura of romance and history is the land of colourful festivals and fairs. Read More...

Festivals of Sikkim
Costumed lamas with gaily painted masks, ceremonial swords and sparkling jewels, leap and swing to the rhythm of resounding drums, trumpeting horns and chanting monks. Read More...

Festivals of Goa
Goa celebrates festivals with gusto. In the midst of a year round atmosphere of festivity, here is a list of special festivals. Read More...

Festivals of Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu is a land of many festivals. January marks the festival season in the state. Read More...

Kumbha Mela

Special Feature on Maha Kumbh 2010 Haridwar
The much-awaited Mahakumbh at Haridwar in 2010 saw devotees and pilgrims from all over the world converge at the ancient holy city of Haridwar, the gateway to the abode of the gods. The entire period of the Kumbha is auspicious, but the special bathing dates draw unprecedented crowds at every Kumbha. Read More...

Legends of Kumbha ~ Romola Butalia
A Kumbha procession defies description - it must be experienced to be known. It is heralded by the conjunction of planets at an auspicious time and place, and it is the convergence of a spiritual energy that has it's own compelling power. Read More...

Sadhu-Sanyasins at the Kumbha ~ Romola Butalia
Adi Shankaracharya classified the Adwaitvadi Sannyasins into ten groups : Giri, Puri, Bharti, Tirtha, Wan, Aranya, Parwat, Ashram, Sagar and Saraswati. This organisation is known as Dashnami Sangh. Read More...

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Editor: Romola Butalia       (c) India Travelogue. All rights reserved.