Known as the 'Festival of colors' or the 'Festival of love' , Holi is one of the biggest festivals celebrated in India. It signifies the victory of good over the evil , also the arrival of spring & the end of the winter season.
Celebrated under many names , Holi is a festival without any boundaries of caste , religion , gender , race , in which everyone is equal , & celebrates & enjoys the festival together.
Holi is celebrated mostly in two days , different rituals are been followed for the same.
Rituals associated with Holi :
- Holika Dahan : This is the first event in the festival of holi ,where people gather wood & combustible material for a bonfire. The ritual has a story , which signifies the burning of evil & waking up the good in you.
- Dhuleti / Dhulandi : The next day is celebrated as dhulandi , in which holi is celebrated using the colors (gulaal) & celebrated differently in different form at different part of the country.
Holi is celebrated in Different form in different part of the country , few of such forms are as follows:
- Kumaan Holi of Uttarakhand : Here the festival is celebrated by people singing sings with a touch of melody , fun & spiritualism.
- Cheer Bandhan of Pushkar , Rajasthan.
- Dol Jatra of West Bengal : Here it is celebrated by placing the icon of Krishna & Radha on a palanquin & that palanquin is taken around the main streets of the city.
- Phakuma of Assam.
- Konkani spring festival of Goa.
- Ukkuli of Kerala.
- Bedara Vesha of Andhra pradesh.
The most popular place to celebrate the festival of holi, is in Uttar Pradesh
There are mainly three locations for experiencing holi at Uttar pradesh :
At Brasana , which is an hour drive from Mathura , Lathmar Holi is been celebrated in which the women uses 'Lathis' (sticks) to beat the men on their shield which they carry along while singing provocative songs to get the attention from the women of the village.
Where to visit in Barsana : Radha Rani Temple
How to Reach : Take a bus or auto rickshaw to Barsana from Mathura.
A small town between Barsana & Vrindavan, here you can find the unseen stories by visiting a local akhara & seek into the life of a wrestler in the outskirts of Mathura.
How to reach : Take the bridge crossing the yamuna river & ask the locals to reach the akhara.
Vrindavan has many locations where you can enjoy the festival of holi in a never seen before manner. The most famous of them is at the Banke bihari temple , which is in the heart of the city of vrindavan. A week long celebrations is held at the temple which consists of 'phoolon ki holi' or the holi of flowers , where thousands kg's of flowers & colors been used to , celebrate everyday the magical festival of holi.
Another attraction of holi is the Widows holi played at Gopinath Temple. This is a one of its kind experience anyone can have on holi. Hundreds of widows are gathered & celebrates the festival of color & love with hundreds of travelers. This is a special place to visit , as in the Hindu beliefs , widows usually do not celebrate any festival , but since few years this tradition has been broken on a positive note at Shree Gopinath temple to make them feel equal & joyus on this beautiful festival of holi.
How to reach : Take a taxi or auto rickshaw from Mathura to Vrindavan. It will be half an hour drive to reach Banke bihari temple.
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Holi festival is something every traveler should have on his/her bucket list.
We hope you like this Blog , if so please do share it with your traveler friends & make them hear the untold story of Holi Festival.