North India represents the most-ancient Indus Valley Civilization of City-State. This region was invaded by the Aryans followed by Huns and other tribes from Central Asia. During their invasion they also established and developed their settlements. The Northern region was also invaded by the Greek and Afghans and made it their capital. The region adopted traditions and customs from these ethnic groups and thus celebrates and observes the events or festivals accordingly.
Events and festivals are held with much pomp and splendor in North India (which is considered to be a land of festivity). The festive events of North India include various ethno-cultural groups and the North Indians do not object or prevent the strangers from participating in their celebrations.
Plan a trip to North India and witness the variety in festivities. Here are a few popular festivals and events held in the Northern region of India.
Taj Mahotsav is held every year in the month of February in Agra, Uttar Pradesh. It is during the spring season that Agra looks colorful and the colors of celebration spread everywhere. It is a 10 day celebration which includes the rich heritage of arts & crafts, culture, dance & music and cuisine of Uttar Pradesh.
Read about the Mahotsav in details:
Urs Fair is observed in Ajmer Rajasthan, Marking the death Anniversary of Khwaja Moin-ud-din Chishti- the great Sufi saint. Followers from different communities visit the shrine, by the lakeside city of Ajmer, during the first six days of the 7th month called Rajab according to Islamic Calendar. Visitors can enjoy the Qawwalis and Mushairaas during Urs.
Pushkar Cattle Fair is regarded as the largest camel fair in the world. It is held in Pushkar, Rajasthan. This fair is known worldwide for holding cultural significance. It has a wonderful location with valleys, hills and deserts.
This fair is held on Karthik Shukla Ekadashi according to Hindu calendar in the month of October- November every year. Many cultural activities are held and several stalls are organized for shopping during the fair.
Nagaur Fair is considered as one of the largest cattle fair within the country that exhibits cows, camels, bullocks and horses. It is held in Nagaur, Rajasthan. This fair is well-known for its trading of various animals.
Nagaur is a place which is located between Bikaner and Jodhpur organizes this fair from late January to Mid-February
Desert Festival is held in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan that brings back life to the Thar Desert. During your trip to the rich cultural heritage in Rajasthan experience the Desert Festival. Gair and Fire dance are considered as the major attractions of this fair.
Snake charmers, puppeteers and acrobats also participate in the fair along with the folk performers; Camel rides, camel dance and camel polo are the popular activities among the visitors. Mr. Desert contest is organized during the fair which adds charm.
Eid ul Fitr which is one of the major festivals of the Muslims celebrated in all over India and other Muslims countries of the world. In the northern part of India, this festival is celebrated with much enthusiasm.
The Muslim culture in its purest form can be experienced during this time. The date of Eid-Ul-Fitr is generally decided on the basis of viewing Crescent Moon according to the Muslim calendar. It marks the end of Ramadan- the fasting season of the Muslims through celebration and feast.
Diwali, the festival of lights is celebrated all over India with pomp and splendor. Diwali is one of the most popular festivals of North India.
On this day, people worship and offer prayers to Goddess Lakshmi. It is marked with new dresses, lamps and lights, crackers, varieties of sweets and gifts. Stage shows and drama are also organized in societies and colonies. Thus all these together make a stunning celebration.
Read about the major festivals of India:
Lohri is one of the major festivals of Punjab. It is also celebrated in other region of North India. This crop festival of Punjab marks the end of winter. Children go singing from door to door collecting lohri which includes munchies and savories.
The collection is then thrown into the bonfire in the evening and distributed among the people gathered around the bonfire, singing and dancing.
Baisakhi is considered as Punjabi’s New Year day. It is observed in Mid April after harvesting. People rejoice by singing, dancing and offering prayers along with the first harvested crop to the Gods and Goddesses.
Sindhu Darshan festival is another of North India which is majorly observed by the Kashmiris. According to rituals, the people from all over Kashmir visit River Sindhu in Leh to worship its source. It is held in the month of June on Guru Purnima according to Hindu calendar. The celebration is a means of promoting the river and paying tribute to the soldiers, who sacrificed their lives for the nation.
In the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh is celebrated the Phulaich Festival.This unique tradition is carried during the month of September. This festival is considered as flower festival which is celebrated for four days by the people of Himachal.
It is said that Rajputs go to pluck flowers from a particular mountain. They collect flowers from the mountain and return back the next day. Whole night people sing and dance around. The village deity is taken out for a procession decorated with the selective collection of flowers. An animal is sacrificed on the following day.
Teej is one of the major festivals celebrated by the people of Haryana with great fervor. According to Hindu calendar, it is celebrated during the month of Sawan that is in between July and August. The significance of this festival is welcoming the month of Sawan that brings in rain. They worship Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati during this festival.
The female folk in the state enjoy the festival of Teej more than men. They wear dupattas of red and pink colors ornamented with golden thread. They also apply mehandi on their palms and swing all through the day while singing.
One of the unique festivals in India is the Lathmar Holi which is celebrated at Barsana in Uttar Pradesh. According to belief, Krishna used to visit Barsana from Nandgaon to play Holi with Radha and her friends.
Krishna and his friends were later chased by the Gopis. They used to beat them with bamboo sticks or lathis so carrying the tradition, the village women chase and beat the men coming from Nandgaon to Barsana.
Know the different ways of celebrating Holi:
The Kumbh Mela is held in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh for almost a month. It is considered as one of the largest fairs in the world which is attended by large number of Pilgrims from all over the world.
This religious gathering is held on the sacred banks of confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati, in between January-February. Legends say, a holy dip in the water during Kumbh Mela washes away sins.
The holy city of India, Varanasi is known as a land of festivals. During Kartik Purnima in between November and December, Dev Deepawali is celebrated which is considered as a visual delight for the spectators.
On this full moon night, the ghats of Varanasi looks sparkling as it is ornamented with earthen lamps which are then gently left on the River water and allow them to float. The place is thronged by tourists and visitors from all over the country to attend this spectacular event.
Ramnavami is celebrated to mark the birth of Lord Rama. It is the major festival of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh. Likely, Janmashtami is celebrated with pomp and show in Mathura, the birth place of Krishna.
In the month of September, the Mata Murti Ka Mela is held every year in the Champavat region of Uttarakhand. Mother of Badrinath is worshipped on this unique festival. A fair is also held at Badrinath Temple on this day.
The Magh Mela is held in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand during Sankranti. It is another important festival of North India.
We have a range of exquisitely crafted pilgrimage tour packages which includes Chardham Package, Golden Triangle with Golden Temple Tour, Golden Triangle with Varanasi Tour (Ganges Tour) and many more that will give you an ultimate experience of the events and festivals held in North India.