25 Famous Festivals in India in March 2020

India is a land of celebration. Owing to the many religions that thrive under the arms of Mother India, all year round you will find the merriment to be alive. March in general is a beautiful season in India. Spring just sets in with its many colors. The temperature is just perfect with a mild breeze reminding you of the winter while the mellow sun welcomes the summer season. This month is not just beautiful in terms of the beauty nature beholds but also has many festivals that magnify the festivity of the season.

Below are the 25 Top festivals in India in march 2020 to celebrate and experience:

1. International Yoga Festival

Date: 1th – 7th Mar, 2020

Location: Rishikesh

The land that gave the world the healing power of Yoga, celebrates world yoga week in style. Rishikesh is one of the most serene places on earth. With the Ganga river flowing on its side this city with its numerous temples gives calmness to anyone that visits. The International Yoga festival is a cherry on top if your objective is to get you mind, body and soul to synchronize. This is a week-long event at takes place at a many ashrams in Rishikesh. Experience this rejuvenating festival at the ashram that calls out to you.

International Yoga Festival Rishikesh

Also Read : Top 10 Things To Do In Rishikesh

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2. Vairamudi Festival

Date: 1st Mar, 2020

Location: Cheluvanarayana Temple of Melkote, Karnataka

This festival is celebrated along with the Brahmotsavam celebration of the temple. This is one of the most lively religious celebrations of Karnataka. The famous diamond crusted ancient crown of Mysore Kings is used to decorate the main deity of the temple and thus, this festival is also called the Diamond Crown Festival. The temples will be decorated and many processions will take place during this festival. The temple premises will have many shops selling simple souvenirs and toys.

Vairamudi Festival Malkote, Karnataka

Also Read : 20 Most Famous Temples in Karnataka

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3. Lathmar Holi

Date: 4th Mar, 2020

Location: Barsana and Nandgaon, Mathura

Another unique way in which the festival of colours or Holi is celebrated in India is Lathmar Holi. Holi is generally celebrated by throwing colours at one another. But here the tradition is that the women use bamboos on men when they charge at the women with colours. The ground becomes a fun battle field where men, women and children engage in the celebration of colours and at the same time show off their agility with the bamboo. This is an extremely fun festival to be part of but also fun if you are an audience. Another compelling reason to visit during this festival is the amazing assortment of food both sweet and savoury. You are guaranteed to go back with some terrific memories from this place and many great photographs.

Lathmar Holi Barsana

Read More : Best Places to Celebrate Holi in India

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4. Parippally Gajamela

Date: 4th Mar, 2020

Location: Paripally Kodimootil Sree Bhadrakaali Temple, Kollam district

Gajamela is a celebration of elephants observed a small district in the state of Kerala which lies in the southern part of India and is lined by the Arabian Sea. The word “Gajam” means elephant and “Mela” means fair. India has always been known to be a land where elephants are worshiped and used in wars. But due to modernization it is difficult to get a glimpse of the old traditions. The Parippally Gajamela is a perfect way to see India as was read in the old tales.

Gajamela was originally a procession where the affluent families of Kerala flaunted their grandeur by ornamenting their elephants and praying for prosperity. However this has now become just about an elephant procession. You will still be able to glimpse of the grandeur with which elephants are treated and decorated for the event. Along with this procession of the majestic beasts you will also experience the harmony of five traditional instruments followed by cultural programs at night. This annual festival is a gorgeous way of turning back time where nature was cared for and worshiped.

Parippally Gajamela Kerala

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5. Brij Festival

Date : 5th – 6th March, 2020

Location: Bharatpur, Rajasthan

Bharatpur becomes more colorful during Brij festival. This festival is associated with color, song and dance. This is the festival of color. Raslila dance is the iconic celebration of this festival. People dress as Lord Krishna and Radha and take part in dance performances. If you visit Banganga River in the morning, you can find many rituals and people taking a holy dip. This festival is also associated with many interesting rituals in temples of Bharatpur.

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6. Chapchar Kut

Date: 6th – 7th Mar, 2020

Location: Mizoram

This is a cultural festival with dance, song and other exciting celebrations by the locals. This festival marks the end of winter and the beginning of the beloved spring. This is also the time when the fields are at the post-harvest stage, where the farmers slash and burn the agricultural remains in the fields. This festival takes place on the first Friday of the month of March, every year.

Chapchar Kut, Mizoram

This festival is famous for elegant cuisine, colorful cultural performances, and unique rituals. Many competitions will be conducted. Tourists are welcome to watch performances and competitions but, they are not included in the competition. Most of the competitions involve fast eating. The first Thursday night is the prime attraction of this festival. Young people of the land create large fires and dance around it. The Chai dance is an important tradition of this festival. A pageant is conducted as the last part of the festival.

Chapchar Kut Chai Dance

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7. Holi

Date: 9th – 10th Mar 2020

Location: Throughout India

This festival indicates the end of winter after the Full Moon night of the last winter month. The eve of Holi is celebrated with a bonfire, which is a symbolic representation of burning everything evil from last year. The bonfire starts after sunset. Special rituals are performed on the day before Holi. According to mythology, the festival of Holi is enjoyed to celebrate the death of Holika, the demon aunt of Prahalada, who burnt to death while trying to kill the child.

Holika Dahan India

Read More : Best Places to Celebrate Holi in India 2020

On the day of Holi, people splash colors at each other, take color fights and even ambush strangers with colors. This goes on until the afternoon. This is the most colorful festival of all in India. In the evening, people will start making delicacies. Although the festival is celebrated throughout the country, it is best enjoyed in Mathura, Vrindavan, Mumbai, Delhi, and others.

Holi India

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8. Eternal Mewar Holika Dahan

Date: 9th Mar, 2020

Location: City Palace, Udaipur

Holi is among the most celebrated festival in the country. It is a two day celebration where on the first day the triumph of good over evil is celebrated by lighting a bonfire which is called the Holika Dahan. On the second day of celebration powdered color is used to play. Among all the places across India where Holika Dahan is done none is as grand as that of the Udaipur City Palace. The royal family of Udaipur till date has kept the tradition of grandeur alive with a procession that takes place in the city starting from their royal residence.

Eternal Mewar Holika Dahan

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9. Velas Turtle Festival

Date: 9th – 31st Mar, 2020 (Every year)

Location: Velas Beach of Maharashtra

This is an annual festival celebrated to watch and excite about just-born turtles crawling their way into the sea, where they belong. This is the right time for photo-enthusiasts, tourists, nature lovers and children to watch their life journeys. The best time to visit the turtle walk is from 7 am to 7:30 am and from 6 to 6:30 pm. During this festival, NGOs and animal enthusiasts make sure that the hatchlings make their way towards the sea before getting attacked by animals, birds or even humans. A similar festival takes place at Anjarle Beach too.

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10. Basanta Utsav

Date: 10th Mar, 2020

Location: Shantiniketan, West Bengal

The Basanta Utsav is a festival where music and colours are celebrated together in a small town in Eastern part of the country. This day in rest of the country celebrates the festival of Holi, where evil is burnt and good is celebrated with colours.

Shantiniketan is a quiet place in West Bengal which is dedicated to the study of fine arts. This place is famous for Vishwa bharati University which was started by the renowned Rabindranath Tagore. Every year on this day of the festival of Holi the student of the university perform variety cultural programs. The programs reflect on the long standing cultural heritage of the state of Bengal. The performers sing and dance to fuse the best of the past with the most creative of the present.

The entire ambiance of town during the festival is extremely lively. Even the trees around the area bloom with colourful flowers. It is almost as if the entire place starting from students to the animals are rejoicing in the amalgamation of spring and song. Being part of this occasion is exhilarating and will get you in touch with your inner being.

Basanta Utsav Santiniketan

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11. Gangaur Festival

Date: 10th – 27th March, 2020

Location: Rajasthan

This festival celebrates Goddess Gauri (Parvati), marriage, love, and honor. During this festival, the locals create small clay figurines of Parvathi and Shiva. They dress and decorate them and offer prayers to the figurines throughout the festival. The most extravaganza of the celebrations start on the last day of the festival. In Udaipur, the last day is celebrated with a large boat procession, which takes place on the Lake Pichola. You can watch women carrying a small pitcher on their heads towards the lake. The parade ends with submerging and dissolving the clay figurines in the river. You can find music and dance performances during the procession. This is one of the liveliest festivals of Rajasthan.

gangaur festival at ghat udaipur

In Jaipur, a parade is conducted to end the festival. The parade starts from City Palace and covers important cultural destinations of the land like Choti Chaupar, Tripolia Bazaar, Chaugan stadium, and others before ending at Talkatora. During this procession, Gauri and Shiva are taken on a palanquin. You can find bullock carts, elephants and chariot in this procession along with locals performing folk music and dance as they walk along with the crowd. This is one of the grand processions of Jaipur.

Gangaur Festival Jaipur

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12. Jaipur Elephant Festival

Date: 10th Mar, 2020

Location: Jaipur

Jaipur Elephant festival is about showing respect towards all living being. This festival is dedicated to the Indian deity Lord Ganesha who symbolised by the elephant. This festival takes place on the day of the festival of colours, Holi. During this day there are various cultural programs that take place and the animals are adorned with beautiful ornaments and take part in a ceremonial procession. The city comes alive with colours, music and dance which gives you the opportunity to lose yourself in the merriment.

Elephant Festivals Jaipur

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13. Doljatra

Date: 10th – 11th Mar, 2020

Location: Sikkim

Doljatra or Dol Purnima is a full-moon celebration dedicated to Lord Krishna. According to the Bengali calendar, this is the last festival of the year. This festival celebrates the cosmic love between Lord Krishna and Radha. This festival is also celebrated in Assam, Odhisha and other regions. This is similar to the festival of colors. According to mythology, Lord Krishna expressed his love for Radha on this day and to celebrate this love, people enjoy drenching each other with colors.

This festival is also called the Swing Festival. During this festival, the deities are decorated and are paraded around the city on the large palanquin. While women sing traditional ritual songs, the men in the procession spray colored powder on everyone in the procession.

Dol Jatra, West Bengal

Also Read : Sikkim International Flower Festival

14. Hola Mohalla

Date: 10th -12th March 2020

Location: Punjab; especially in Anandpur

This Sikh festival is celebrated as a tradition of Guru Gobind Singh. This festival is considered as a masculine version of Holi. In Holi, people smear each other with colors and during Hola Mohalla, the Sikhs express their martial arts. Many simulated battle scenes will be conducted during this festival. Army processions, war drum performances, and other elements start from one Gurudwara and end in another. This festival started in the early 18th century and is continued until today.

Hola Mohalla Punjab

This three-day celebration holds music competition, display of war weapons, exhibitions, mock battles, poetry competition, feats, horse riding competition, horse-based gymnast performances, and others. Many religious activities including rituals and lectures take place during this festival. Traditional cuisine of the land is served to the visitors of the temple during this festival. This festival concludes at Holgarh Fort where color fights take place similar to the Holi festival. You can also find many simulated fights during this festival.

Hola Mohalla Martial Art

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15. Arattu Festival

Date: 11th – 20th March 2020

Location: Ambalapuzha, Kerala

This ten-day festival is celebrated in the famous Krishna temple of Ambalappuzha. The festival starts with kodiyettam, a flag hoisting ceremony and ends with a holy bath. You can find many processions from the temple to the streets of the city and then back to the temple. Elephants, musical instruments, deities, dancers and much more will accompany the procession. Velakali martial art and local instrumental music are performed during all the processions.On the Pallivettu day of this festival, a grand feast is served in the temple premises. Any visitor with no regard to religion or creed can take part in the feast. During this festival, the best delicacy of the region, paalpayasam is served to the visitors.

Numerous stalls will be erected outside the temple throughout the festival. These stalls are the best places to buy cultural souvenirs, religious articles, small statues of deities and much more. You can find many cultural performances throughout this festival.

Arattu Festival

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16. Myoko Festival

Date: 17th Mar – 2nd Apr 2020

Location: Ziro of Arunachal Pradesh

This festival is a celebration of fertility, sacrifice, and honor. This is celebrated by the tribes of the region and the main elements of this festival are dance music and cuisine. You can watch martial art performances, fireworks, drum performances and so on. This festival is celebrated in Apatani villages in the region. This festival indicates the time of paddy sowing. Animals are sacrificed to the god and the shaman of the village recites rituals while newlywed women take part in the process.

17. Hoysala Mahotsava

Date: 16th Mar, 2020

Location: Hoysala Temples and Halebidu Karnataka

This is an interesting tradition of music and dance, which is celebrated in the ancient temples of Hoysala, which were built in the 12th century. You can find interesting carvings, sculptures and other architectural features in this temple. This festival’s main aim is to celebrate this temple. The festival focuses on traditional performance arts and fine arts. You can find many programs related to this genre conducted in and around the temple premises. You can also find similar smaller celebrations in hamlets of Halebidu too. This sacred festival provides a platform for the heritage art styles of the land. People from around the state and even other parts of the country visit Hoysala temples to enjoy this celebration.

The temples in this region will be decorated with lights, earthen lamps, and others. Thus, stay back after sunset to watch the place glitter.

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18. Ugadi or Gudi Padwa

Date: March 25th, 2020

Location: Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka and others

This is a celebration of the local new year in many states. Just like any other cultural celebration, this festival is filled with cultural activities, colorful cuisine, performances, rituals and much more. This festival is famous for dishes prepared only during this day. The Pachadi is the dish, which is said to have all six tastes into it to reflect that life has all sorts of elements in it. Other important delicacies to try during this celebration are Bobbattu, Holige, and others. In Maharashtra, this festival is celebrated with processions, decorations on floor, dancing, singing, flag-waving, and others.

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19. Chaitra Navratri or Vasanta Navratri or Rama Navratri

Date: 25th Mar – 3rd Apr 2020

Location: Andhra Pradesh and Telangana

Do not confuse it with the Navaratri celebration involving Dusshera. This is a similar nine-day festival celebrated as Rama Navratri to indicate the birth of Lord Ram. This festival starts with the celebration of New Year in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. On each day, a form of Durga is celebrated and special rituals are conducted for the deity. During this festival, many unique cuisines will be served like buckwheat poori, ragi delicacies, singhare ka halwa, sago, and others.

On the ninth day of the festival, the fasting is broken and the feast is conducted in many temples and households. This nine-day festival comes to an end on the tenth day called Navratri Parana. It is a farewell ceremony praying to Durga for her return, next year. This festival is celebrated as the beginning of the summer season and to prepare the human body for the change of climate.

Navratri

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20. Attuvela Mahotsavam

Date: 26th – 27th Mar, 2020

Location: Elankavu Bhagavathy temple of Kerala

This is a temple fair combined with processions and traditional art forms celebration. This festival is celebrated as a water carnival and as a dedication to Goddess Kodungalloor. A huge replica structure of the temple is designed and let to float on the water to indicate how the Goddess and her sister reached the region. The procession of canoes is the main part of the festival and it starts 2 km away from the Elankavu Bhagavathy temple.

Attuvela Mahotsavam, Kerala

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21. Godwar Festival, Udaipur

Date: 27th – 28th Mar, 2020

Location: Udaipur

Godwar festival near Udaipur is the traditional mela that we were used to back in the 80s and 90s. First of all, the venue of this fiesta is the dry valley region Ranakpur. It brings out the best of Rajput heritage and opens up for an adventurous week. From turban-tying competition to bullock cart rides, Godwar festival imbibes the true show of a culturally rich country. The Rajasthani songs are accompanied with some heavy feasts ultimately letting you relax in the wildlife safaris. This festival will define a new meaning of party for you, which by the way is a million miles ahead from our lame booze discs.

Godwar Festival, Udaipur

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22. Mewar Festival, Udaipur

Date: 27th – 29th Mar, 2020

Location: Udaipur

This festival is perfection in itself and often coincides with the arrival of March. The enticing fact about the festival is that its history takes us to the foundation of Udaipur. The people of this city celebrate and love this commemoration as their very own. The occasion starts with a procession that is taken in various parts of the enigmatic city and culminates at the Lake Pichola. The event is marked by the confluence of graceful dancing, joyful singing and an exuberant celebration of cultural programmes. The forts and palaces of Udaipur just add to the charisma of Mewar festival.

Mewar Festival Udaipur e1546668019666

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23. Kochi – Muzhiris Biennale

Date: 12th Dec – 29th Mar, 2020

Location: Fort Kochi

This is an extravaganza of contemporary art celebration in the country. This international festival takes place on the island of the Fort Kochi. During this festival, many art forms are expressed to the audience like sculptures, contemporary paintings, installations, media, and many others. This festival will be bombarded with trending youngsters and budding artists. More than 12 venues are set up and more than 76 artists will be participating in this festival, this year. This fiesta started in 2012 and has gained more hip popularity. Many art enthusiasts from around the world flock to the island to enjoy and explore the art forms. You can find endless galleries, exhibitions, shows and much more, throughout the day. The next celebration of the fiesta starts in December 2020.

24. Panikuni Festival

Date: 30th Mar – 8th Apr, 2020

Location: Shree Padmanabha Swamy temple of Kerala

This festival is linked with the history of the ancient princely state of the land, Travancore. This festival was initially celebrated by the Travancore’s royal family. This annual festival starts with flag hoisting. Large glass figurines of Pandava brothers (Mahabharatha) are made and are placed at the eastern gate of the temple. According to locals, these figures would please the rain god.

This ten-day festival celebrates unique rituals, every day. On the ninth day, a pallivetta (a royal hunt) ritual is conducted in the fort area. This is one of the iconic rituals to enjoy during this festival. On the last day, Aarattu procession takes place from the temple to the Shanghumugham Beach to dissolve the idol in the water. The royal families, dancers, music performers, elephants, palanquin and other elements can be easily identified in the procession.

25. Virupaksha Car Festival

Date: March-April

Location: Hampi

One of the numerous festivals related to Hampi is the Virupaksha Car Festival, which takes place inside the VIrupaksha Temple. This is the annual chariot festival of the temple and it is a religious celebration. The statues of the main deities are decorated with traditional jewelry and are taken on a procession through the region. This festival is also the annual wedding celebration of the main deities. Thus, a wedding ceremony is conducted for the two statues. People from around the country visit Hampi to take part in this festival. The giant wooden chariot procession is the main element of this festival, which starts from the temple and goes up to the bazaar region and back to the temple. The bazaar region will be filled with shops selling unique souvenirs, religious items, and others.

Virupaksha Car Festival

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