Top Famous Fairs and Festivals in India in May
The month of May is an interesting time to visit India. A tropical land like India would be at its upper scale on temperature during May. To ease down the heat and humidity, numerous fairs and festivals in India are celebrated. May month is also the best time to visit hill stations for tourism festivals. Are you planning an off-beat tour to India in May? Here are the top fairs and festivals in India.
1. Third International Yoga contest
This festival or contest has been celebrated annually since 2018. 2020 holds the third installment of this celebration. The festival’s primary objective is to promote Yoga and its benefits. Many philosophers and performers visit New Delhi to take part in this three day festival.
The festival takes place in Pragati Maidan. The main event of this celebration is the contest. Yoga performers from around the world take part in this contest and the winner is recognized with cash prize.
Read more – International Yoga Festival 2020
2. Moatsu Festival
This festival takes place every year on the first week of May. This is a tribal festival celebrated in Mokokchung of Nagaland. This celebration marks the planting season’s completion. The locals enjoy the day with dance, music, merry marking, and others.
The bonfire ritual, Sangpagtu is the main element of this celebration. A large bon-fire is lit and people sit around the bonfire and enjoy meat and wine. The locals can be seen in their colorful and unique local attire.
3. Thrissur Pooram, Kerala
This festival takes place in the beginning of May. In 2020, Thrissur Pooram is celebration on 3rd of May. This festival is one of the grandest celebration with a procession participated with more than 250 musicians who would lead the way for 30 decorated elements, and thousands of locals participate it with drums, music, and dance.
The festival takes place in Thrissur’s Vadakkumnathan Temple. The festival is ended with a grand display of fireworks. People stay back in the temple to watch the fireworks. During this celebration, many religious based cultural programs will be conducted.
4. Meenakshi Thriukalyanam, Madurai
This is the celestial marriage between Lord Sundaresan and Goddess Meenakshi Amman, the main deity of the famous Madura Meenakshi Amman Temple. The festival takes place as two events.
The first event is the celestial marriage in which, the deities are taken on a marriage procession on palanquin and are decorated with gold ornaments. Special rituals and cultural activities take place during this festival.
According to mythology, Lord Vishnu ends up missing the ceremony as he reaches late. This event is recreated with a procession for Lord Alazhagar. The temple will be decorated and you can find numerous stalls around the temple for souvenir shopping and merry making.
Read more – Famous Festivals and Event in December in India
5. Summer Festival of Mount Abu
As mentioned before, the hill stations will be conducting tourism festivals during May. In Mount Abu (the only hill station in Rajasthan), the summer festival is celebrated in May. In 2020, the festival is celebrated on 6th and 7th May.
This celebration marks the end of tourism season. Main attractions of this festival are folk dance, music, ballad singing, procession, roller skating, Sham-e-Qawwali music event, boat race, and others.
Read more – Famous Festivals of Mumbai – Ganesh Chaturthi
6. Buddha Purnima
Buddha Purnima is celebrated as the birth anniversary of Lord Buddha. It is also the day on which Lord Buddha attained his enlightenment. The day is celebrated based on lunar cycle and it could fall in May or April.
In 2020, Buddha Purnima is celebrated on 7th May. The festival is celebrated in the monasteries, gompas, and other religious sites. The spiritual destinations celebrate this day with religious activities like scripture recitation, prayer meet, meditation, religious seminar, rituals, and others. In some place, dance, and processions take place too.
Read more – Top 10 Famous Monsoon Festivals of India
7. Rabindra Jayanthi
On 7th May, the birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore is celebrated. This festival is very common in West Bengal, especially in Santiniketan, the educational institute inaugurated by Tagore. Tagore is a famous freedom fighter, and poet.
He is the author of national anthem of India. During this festival, cultural programs related to the life and work of the poet will be conducted at several places. Each institute in West Bengal celebrates the day with unique set of events.
8. Yercaud Summer Festival
Yercaud is one of the lesser known hill stations of Tamil Nadu. On the second week of May, a weeklong celebration of summer festival takes place. This festival promotes the floral beauty of the land.
You can find flower displays, botanical garden shows, and others. Every year, grand displays will be created with millions of flowers. Apart from the flower shows, you can find numerous other attractions like boat races, dog contests, village trips, dance competitions, and other cultural programs.
During this festival, you can find many service providers offering interesting activities like horse riding, carnival rides, and others.
9. Dhungri Mela
This festival is celebrated in the mid of May. In 2020, the Dhungri Mela is celebrated from 14th to 16th May. This festival is celebrated for Goddess Hadimba. According to mythology, Hadima is the wife of Bhima, the Pandava brother.
This festival is an iconic celebration for many villages around the temple. Main attractions of this festival are Kullu Natti dance, carnival ride, rituals, dancing, religious singing, shopping, and much more.
10. Electric Mahadev Festival
This is a music and cultural festival for Psychedelic art form. This festival takes place for three days from 22nd of May to 24th of May. The festival is enjoyed by younger generation with activities like meditation classes, cultural events, flea market, art exhibition, music shows, and others. Some tourists camp in the festival ground overnight to enjoy late-night activities and events. This is one of the energetic festivals of India.
This is the fast and feast festival of Islamic community. This is a month-long fasting event in which, feasts are conducted before sunrise and after sunset in Islamic communities. On the 30th day, the grand feast of Ramadan takes place.
Apart from interesting food festivals, the festival is famous for shopping too. The month of fasting varies with lunar cycle. In 2020, the Ramadan month falls between 23rd of April and 23rd of May. Best places to celebrate Ramadan are Delhi, Mumbai, Lucknow, and Hyderabad.
12. Maharana Pratap Jayanthi
This festival is celebrated on 25th May. This is the celebration of the birth anniversary of Maharana Pratap, a freedom fighter and Rajput ruler. The celebrations are best enjoyed in Haryana, Rajasthan, and Himachal Pradesh.
To celebrate the life and achievement of the king, many dance, drama, and music events take place to spread the stories of bravery of Maharana Pratap. The memorial statue of Maharana Pratapa in Udaipur is commonly visited during this festival. A few cities conduct honor parades during this day.
13. Ooty Summer Festival
Although named as Ooty summer festival, this festival covers surrounding hill stations like Kotagiri, Coonoor, and others along with Ooty. This festival takes place in the second and third week of May and is famous for vegetable show, rose show, fruit show, flower show, shopping stalls, markets, and many tourism activities like horse riding, carnival rides, and others. The timing of each show is different and every year, the region celebrates this tourism festival with more grandness.
14. International flower festival
In May, Gangtok and surrounding region will have a pleasingly warm climate, which is famous as the blooming season. The orchids, gladioli and other species local to the region will be at bloom. Thus, May is the month of the famous flower festival.
You can find a large flower show of numerous species of flowering plants and other flora like alpine species, climbers, roses, gladioli, and others. You can also find stalls where you can buy jelly, jam, fragrance, and other items made from these floras.
You can also find lectures and seminar in several genres of botany. This flower festival is also the time for yak safari and rafting.
15. Sital Sasthi
This is the celebration to pray for an abundant rainfall to cool down the place. SitalSasthi is the celestial marriage ceremony between Lord Shiva and Parvathi. This festival is celebrated with processions and carnival activities. The festival takes place in the end of May. In 2020, the celebration takes place on 28th of May in Sambalpur of Western Odisha.
16. Igitun Chalne
This extreme Goan festival is translated as fire walking. This festival is celebrated in May (exact date varies every year) in Sirigao temple, located a little away from Panjim, Goa. Pilgrims conduct rituals and take turn to walk through a pit of scorching hot charcoal. This is the highest ritual for Goddess Lairaya. Tourists take part in this festival to watch the rituals and the fire walking.
May is an interesting time to visit India to enjoy the top fairs and festivals in India. However, it is also the time of scorching heat and dehydration. Remember that India is a very hot and humid climate during summer. Thus, learn about the destination you are about to visit and the temperature in that location. Pack your clothing and accessories, accordingly.