The Festival of Lights, Diwali or Deepavali is the much-awaited festival for everyone, right from children to the grownups and it’s a special occasion for prosperity and family togetherness. Everyone is fond of this festival as it is a celebration of colours, cuisine, lights and culture. Dark sky glittering with the colourful fireworks; Houses illuminated with a million sparkling Diyas; Joy and Excitement everywhere; Sweets and Gifts to celebrate; Its Diwali – the festival of lights, a gladsome moment to celebrate the triumph of light over dark. It commemorates Lord Rama’s return to Ayodhya after spending 14 years in exile. Diwali in India is an occasion for family togetherness and to create timeless memories with loved ones.
To witness the diversity of India, festivals are the best time. Diwali is one of the fantabulous festivals Indians have a great liking for. Though the theme of Diwali remains the same everywhere, the celebrations vary from one region to another. Spreads over five days, this spectacular festival of lights falls on October 27, 2019.
It’s an occasion for prosperity and family togetherness. If you’re wondering where to spend Diwali this year, check out these diverse destinations and ways to celebrate for a memorable time.
Here is our pick of best places to celebrate Diwali in India:
The holy city of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh is where you can experience the real splendour of the Diwali festival. It is the birthplace of Lord Rama and where he and his wife Sita returned after 14 years in exile. During the festival, lamps are lit snaking along the Saryu River, through streets, houses, temples and monuments.
Shobha Yatra, Ramlila Performances, Maha Aarti at the Ghats of Saryu River and the light-and-sound fireworks shows are the main highlights of Diwali celebrations at Ayodhya. This spectacular festival of lights at Ayodhya has also earned a place in the Guinness Book of World Records in the year 2008 for illuminating more than 300,000 earthen lamps along the banks of the Saryu River. It will be a great privilege to celebrate Diwali in the birthplace of Lord Rama, Ayodhya.
The mystical city of Varanasi celebrates Diwali in a very special way. Devotees throng near the River Ganges and set afloat thousands of diyas in the serene waters. The breathtaking view of fireworks over the Ganges is mind-blowing.
The Ganga Aarti is the main highlight which is sure to give you goosebumps and it creates a spiritual vibe. 15 days later, Varanasi also celebrates another festival of lights known as Dev Deepavali, ‘the Diwali of Gods’ which is an extra-special event that coincides with Ganga Mahotsav. Visit Varanasi during Diwali and enjoy a memorable festival time.
Diwali is one of the grand festivals celebrated in Amritsar. Diwali coincides with the Bandi Chhor Divas which marks the return of the sixth Sikh Guru, Guru Hargobind Sahib from Mughal imprisonment. Amritsar is home to the magnificent Golden Temple whose stupefying beauty cannot be expressed in words.
But the most wondrous spectacle you could witness during Diwali when the Golden Temple is draped with a million brightly lit diyas, the sky above offering a colourful display of fireworks and the lake face lined by countless oil lamps and candles lit by the devotees. And you could be sure of getting amazing picture-perfect memories to last you for long at Diwali celebrations at Amritsar.
You can witness unique Diwali celebrations in Goa. The main focus of Diwali celebrations in Goa is regarding the destruction of demon Narakasura by Lord Krishna.
Every village and city competes to make the biggest and scariest effigy of the demon which is burned at dawn on the day before the main day of Diwali known as Narakasura Chaturdashi. Another popular activity in Goa during Diwali is Gambling. For an exotic Diwali celebration, Goa is an ideal pick.
Delhi will be dotted with Diwali markets and fairs during Diwali. Dilli Haat at INA is a great place for shopping that holds a renowned Diwali Bazaar where you can shop for colourful lamps, glitter-dipped diyas and luxurious fabrics.
The Diwali carnival at Delhi’s upmarket Sundar Nagar neighborhood, Dastkar Nature Bazaar Festival of Lights, and Blind School Diwali Mela are a good choice for Diwali shopping. If you are a shopaholic, visit Delhi to indulge in shopping as well as to celebrate the festival of lights.
Mumbai is one of the ideal places to visit during Diwali. The best part of Diwali celebrations at Mumbai is the spectacular fireworks that illuminate the dark sky.
Marine Drive, also known as the Queen’s Necklace, offers an excellent backdrop for the explosion of Diwali fireworks in Mumbai. The dazzling city adorned with myriads of lights is an arresting sight to behold.
When it comes to celebrating Diwali, Kolkata has its own style of celebration. While Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped on Diwali in most parts of India, the festival is dedicated to Goddess Kali in Kolkata which is celebrated as Kali Puja.
Temples like Kalighat, Belur Math and Dakshineswar, dedicated to Goddess Kali witness a large number of devotees during the festival time. Also, devotees decorate their homes with clay effigies of fearsome Goddess Kali. You can also find huge decorated idols of Goddess put on display across the city.
Visit Kolkata and celebrate Diwali in a unique way by attending Kali Puja.
The glittering lights that adorn the homes and streets, as well as the sky punctuated with the colourful crackle of fireworks, make the Diwali celebrations at Jaipur genuinely an unforgettable experience.
The regal Nahargarh Fort offers a stunning sight of the illuminated walled city during the festivity. Ethnic shows, performances, golf clubs, and polo matches are also held that captures the attraction of visitors.
Udaipur is a must-visit place during Diwali. Pay a visit to Udaipur and experience the festive mood the place has to offer by yourself. Marvel at the astounding sight of houses and palaces decked with lamps and lights, scintillating lakes gleaming with the reflection cast by the palace light and the bursting fireworks.
Devotees pay respect to the Goddess Laxmi at the Mahalaxmi Temple in Bhatiyani Chauhatta. Udaipur Light Festival is another captivating factor that brings everyone together to celebrate Diwali with great fun and enthusiasm.
- Tamil Nadu
The flavors of Diwali is completely unique in Tamil Nadu. South Indians celebrate the festival of lights one day before the actual Diwali. Houses are lit with diyas and adorned with beautiful Kolam (Rangoli). Everyone in the family takes an oil bath before sunrise. It is believed that having an oil bath in the morning on the day of Diwali is equivalent to taking a bath in the Ganges. The elders in the house apply gingelly oil on the heads of the younger members before the bath. Items like flowers, sandal paste, Kumkum, betel leaves, fruits, betel nuts, turmeric and scented powder are kept in the place of worship in the house for the Pooja after the ritual oil bath. Then they celebrate Diwali by bursting crackers, eating sweets and other special delicacies.
The marvelous Madurai Meenakshi Temple is lit up as a bride and looks extraordinarily gorgeous during Diwali which highlights its architectural beauty. Colourful Rangolis and flower decorations embellish the Temple. It is also a great place to be during Diwali.
Diwali celebrations in Hampi is grand and worth experiencing. Inducing a feel of erstwhile Kingdom with many architectural marvels and temples scattered all around, Hampi forms an ideal setting for Diwali celebrations. Towns and streets dazzle with millions of lights creating a wonderful spectacle and the spirit of Diwali can be experienced everywhere.
Enthusiastic people and kids are seen playing with firecrackers and sparklers. Another highlight is the special ceremonial functions at the Virupaksha Temple in the evening. The major crowd-pleaser of the function is the local procession in which the temple elephant is beautifully decorated and participate in the celebrations.
Why not go around the country this Diwali to see how different cities celebrate the Festival of Lights? Visit India this Diwali to be part of the colorful Diwali celebration in India 2019. See the Diwali celebration across India and how Diwali is celebrated in India.
Diwali is a festival of spreading love and happiness. Make this Diwali special for you and your loved ones by exploring some of the incredible destinations in South India with our holiday packages. South Tourism offers you amazing Diwali tour packages at affordable prices and wishes you and your family A Very Happy Diwali!
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For More Information About The Diwali Festival
Find out more about the Diwali festival and how it’s celebrated in this Complete Diwali Festival Guide and plan a trip to India with South Tourism to celebrate the colourful festival of lights, Diwali.