Diwali Celebration in India 2018
Diwali is the festival of lights. People celebrate the day by lighting oil lamps, bursting crackers and enjoying a cultural family time to remember that Good always prevail over Evil. However, the mythology behind the celebration of Diwali has different stories.
Some explain that Diwali is the day when Ram returned to Ayodhya with his wife, brother and Hanuman after killing Raavan. For some communities, Diwali is celebrated as the day when Pandavas returned to their nation after 13 years of exile and hiding. Diwali is also seen as the day on which, Lord Lakshmi came out of the sea of milk. The night of Diwali is celebrated with colors to enjoy the marriage of Lord Vishnu and Lord Lakshmi.
For people of Eastern regions of India, this festival is celebrated as victory of Kali over demons. In northern central part of India, Diwali is the day when Lord Krishna lifted Mount Govardhan to safeguard his village people from the wrath of Lord Indra. Southern people enjoy it as the day when Lord Krishna won over Narakasura.
It is not just about Hinduism. Sikhs see Diwali as the day when Guru Har Gobind freed many people from Gwalior Fort. In Jainism, this is the day when Mahavira attained nirvana.
Here is everything that you need to know and understand about celebrating Diwali in India. First of all, the demand for the tickets, hotels and other services will be at the pinnacle during Diwali. Thus, it is very important to pre-book all your services and amenities before your departure date.
What to enjoy during Diwali?
- Every temple around the country holds unique rituals and celebrations. You can find traditional delicacies served in the temple for the devotees.
- Every house would be decorated with lights, colorful arts in front of the house with color powder and the sound of bursting crackers.
- At night, people prefer bursting colorful crackers and rockets. The best way to enjoy Diwali night is by watching the night sky to spot beautiful burst of colors.
- You can find cultural performances, competitions and others in many places.
- New movies are released during this day. You can enjoy the art of the land by enjoying a show. Many theaters offer English subtitles for tourists to enjoy the local cinema.
- You can find numerous unique and exotic sweets, which are specifically made only during Diwali.
- You can find fairs, exhibitions and mela in all major cities and towns during this celebration. You can find many handicrafts, souvenir items and traditional articles for sale during this exhibition.
Top places to visit to enjoy Diwali
Varanasi is the most spiritual place to enjoy Diwali. Located on the banks of River Ganges, this place is famous for its unique style of celebrating Diwali. People let out thousands of oil lamps to float on the river. You can find numerous rituals taking place around the town.
You can find numerous ethic shows, cultural performances, rural games and much more in Jaipur during Diwali. You can find many light shows from Nahargarh Fort during the celebration. Polo matches and golf clubs are open throughout the night to enjoy the celebration.
This is the place to enjoy an auspicious festival. You can find street processions, masked rituals, temple rituals, unique dance performances, pandals and much more. This is also the best place to enjoy shopping during Diwali.
What does a place like Goa has to do with a traditional celebration like Diwali? You can enjoy the parade of Gods, casino visit, figures of Raavan burnt down with crackers and much more. If you are looking for a greener and cleaner Diwali, this is the best place.
This city turns the temple places into bubbling cultural spots with rangoli competitions, dance performances, music stage shows, rituals and much more. This is also the best place to enjoy shopping, sightseeing and trying unique desserts and delicacies, which are specifically prepared for Diwali.
Pushkar is not just about camels or Camel Fair. The place turns into an open-air stadium with episodic cultural performances, games, activities and much more. You can find numerous styles of celebrations starting from animal processions to bursting crackers in the desert.
Gujarat is the land for quiet celebration. You can enjoy tribal styled celebration with processions, rituals, joint celebrations and much more. You can find many art forms during this celebration.
Each state enjoys Diwali is a quite different manner. If you are looking for a posh styled cultural vacation, Mumbai is the best way. If you were choosing to stick with beautified place, Bangalore and Mysore would be best and, so on.
Best delicacies to try during Diwali
- Samosa – pastry puff stuffed with vegetables.
- Chirote – sugary stuffed deep fried snack.
- Barfi – coconut sweet.
- Karanji – crescent shaped poppy seed coconut sweet.
- Aloo tikki – potato snack served with yogurt and tamarind sauce.
- Mawa kachori – round sweets made with semolina and coconut.
- Anarsa – rice dish made with jaggery and poppy seeds.
- Choddo shak – Bengal based snack made with stir fried greens and herbs.
- Gulab Jamun – flour balls soaked with scented sugar syrup.
Apart from these, you can find the tradition cuisine of the land in almost all the restaurants.
Top temples to visit during Diwali
All temples conduct religious rituals during Diwali. However, a few temples take the celebrations and rituals to the next level. Here are the top temples to visit during Diwali.
- Mahalaxmi temple of Mumbai
- Sitladevi temple of Mumbai
- Golden Temple of Amritsar
- Kanak Bhavan temple of Ayodhya
- Ramaswamy temple of Rameshwaram
- Ram Mandir of Odisha
- Kodandarama temple of Karnataka
Top exotic things to try during Diwali
- Crackers are available for everyone to buy and use in India. Try bursting some crackers along with the locals.
- Get invited to a home lunch by any local. The best way is to choose home-stay accommodation or visit any village regions where serving feast to others is a common activity during Diwali. Some of the traditional dishes are not usually served at restaurants.
- While at the village or rural regions, try to take part in local games. Locals love it when foreigners take more interest in their culture. This goes for rituals and traditions too. You will never feel like an outsider.
- Oil bathing is an important auspicious activity of the day. Many parlors and spas offer traditional oil massage during Diwali. If you want the complete feel of Diwali, it would be a good choice.
Tips for enjoying Diwali
- Bursting crackers is not child’s play. Be safe and if you are not comfortable in bursting them, it is better to take the audience seat and watch them rather than putting yourself in danger.
- If you are visiting any restaurant, ask for a less-spicier food. Many savories and delicacies are hot and spicy in most of the places of the country
- The air pollution would be at the height during Diwali. It is better to bring your respiratory medicines and masks. If you want a cleaner Diwali, choose places like Goa, Gujarat, Coorg, Mount Abu, Kashmir and so on.
- Do not tease or belittle any ritual or process. Every part of the local life is considered as an auspicious element during festivals. Offending those might lead to unfavorable situations.
- If visiting a temple, leave you footwear outside and obey the rules. Foreigners are allowed to enter the temple and take part in all rituals with no regards to the creed, caste or religion unless you create nuisance to their rituals.
- Pubs and nightlife parties do happen in metro cities and at top-notch hotels. Do not expect this everywhere. This is the land of conservative and free spirit people. Social conduct should be at the best during your stay.
- While walking down the streets, be cautious. You never know where kids are playing with crackers.
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