Top 5 Festivals of India for Foreign Tourists

India is the land of rich traditions and cultures. Many festivals are celebrated in the country and the festivities and celebrations show the warmth of Indian culture.

Some of the festivals that are very popular in India are:

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Holi – The festival of colours ‘ Holi ‘ is celebrated all over India. But the celebrations in the north Indian states are very interesting.This festival is celebrated as the victory of good over evil. The tales say that Holika had the power and cannot be burnt in the fire so Holika sat in the fire with Prahlad, the prince was not harmed by the fire but Holika was burnt till become ash. Holika signifies the evil and prince Prahlad the good.On the evening of Holi, the people lit bonfires and call them as Holika and then sing and dance around it. On the next day, people apply colours on each other. These may be dry or wet colours that are played with water guns or balloons.  People also drink bhang and thandai and share sweets.

Diwali– This is the festival of lights and is celebrated all over India with a lot of enthusiasm. The festival is celebrated to mark the return of Lord Ram along with wife and brother after 14 years of exile.On this festival the houses are decorated with clay lamps, candles, lights and children burst crackers. People wear new clothes, worship Goddess of wealth Lakshmi and also give sweets to family and friends.Diwali is celebrated on the Amavasya (no moon night) of the Karthik month which usually falls in between October and November. Many people buy gold and silver on this festival. If you want a unique experience then visit the Transgender Festival at Koovagam village.

Pongal– This is the harvest festival celebrated in South India and particularly in Tamil Nadu and is quite popular. It is a four-day long festival. It is celebrated to thank the nature before the harvest for a good crop. People put rangoli or Kolam designs in the houses. The celebrations happen with bonfire, cattle race, savories and sweets. People wear their traditional dresses and make Pongal at home.

Ganesh Chathurthi– This festival is one of the very important in Hindu festivals. It is celebrated for 10 days with colourful festivities. This festival is the celebration of Lord Ganesha’s birthday.Ganesh idols are brought and kept in the home or for the community in decorated pandals. The idols are worshiped every morning end evening for 10 days and on the last day, the idol is immersed into a water body. Many Cultural activities like singing, dancing, and plays are done during the celebration days.Though this festival is celebrated all over India, celebrations in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh states are especially worth watching.

Raksha Bandhan– This festival celebrates the brother–sister bond. Sisters tie rakhis that are like beautifully decorated bands on the wrists of their brother and pray for their well-being. The brother in return vows to protect his sister. The festival is celebrated in North, West, and the central Indian states. The sisters and brothers get together and celebrate this festival.

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