Best Places To Celebrate Holi In India

Holi Celebration In India

Holi, the festival of colours, is celebrated enthusiastically throughout India. The heartwarming festival is one of the most important Hindu festivals as it signifies the end of winter and the welcoming of spring in the country. Holi celebration is marked by different communities coming together to apply colours on each other, indulging in delicious sweets such as thandai and gujjiyas and enjoying new beginnings. Several people also conduct Holika Dahan the day before these festivities, a ritual which signifies the victory of good over evil. 

Why Do We Celebrate Holi?

Similar to all other festivals in India, the Holi celebration also comes attached with its legends. It is believed that the colourful festivities were started by Lord Krishna, one of the most important deities of the Hindu religion. The Lord had acquired a characteristic blue colour after drinking the poisonous breast milk of a she-demon, Putana, and as he grew old, he felt sad that Radha and other girls of the Braj region would not like him due to his skin colour. Seeing this, Lord Krishna’s mother allowed him to smear Radha’s face with any colour of his liking and began Holi’s colourful celebrations. 

Another prominent myth associated with the Holi celebration in India is the story of Holika Dahan. The legend is about the evil yet powerful King Hiranyakashipu, who considered himself God and wanted everyone in his kingdom to worship him. However, his son Prahlada refused to worship his father as he was a devotee of Lord Vishnu, and due to this reason, the king tried killing him several times. Hiranyakashipu then asked his evil sister Holika, who possessed the remarkable power of being immune to fire.

Holika tricked Prahlada into sitting with her on a pyre, but her power became ineffective due to her devious intentions, and she was burned to ashes while Prahlada remained alive. The legend is significant of good over evil. Therefore the burning of the pyre, also known as Holika Dahan, is observed as the beginning of the colourful festival of Holi. 

6 Best Places For Holi Celebration In India

Holi celebration in India differs from city to city. While all states and cities observe a few common rituals, there are also a few unique traditions that are observed by different cities. Some of the best places to celebrate Holi in India include. 

1. Mathura

Holi Celebration in Mathura
Image Source:

Since Mathura is the birthplace of Lord Krishna, it is one of the best places to celebrate Holi in India. Several temples in the city host numerous events, and the air is filled with colours and gulaal all day around. The celebrations commence in the morning, with the event at the Dwarkadheesh Temple being the most famous one. People then gather for a colourful and heartwarming procession from Vishram Ghat to Holi Ghat, and the air is filled with chants and prayers dedicated to Lord Krishna. Sri Krishna Janmasthan temple is also a must-visit site during the Holi celebrations in Mathura. 

2. Vrindavan

Holi in Vrindavan
Image Source:

Located north of Mathura, Vrindavan is associated with Lord Krishna’s early life and has the best Holi celebration in India. The centre of the festivities in Vrindavan is the renowned Banke Bihari Temple, where priests shower devotees with flowers, and this tradition is famous as Phoolonwali Holi. Another must-visit temple is the Gopinath Temple, where widows play colourful Holi with each other. The rest of the day is full of powdered colours, with residents and tourists playing around with each other and singing hymns.

3. Pushkar

Pushkar Holi
Image Source:

Holi in Pushkar is a grand and enthusiastic affair. The holy city starts the celebrations by burning a pyre on the eve of the festival, wherein people throw garlands into the fire. Once it is extinguished, they carry the leftover embers to their home as they are believed to bring prosperity and good luck. On the day of Holi, tourists from around the world and residents gather around the main city square to play with colours, revel in lively music and enjoy bhang and thandai.

4. Udaipur

Holi in Udaipur
Image Source:

The city of Udaipur celebrates Holi with a regal touch. The Holika Dahan held at the Manek Chowk of City Palace is presided over by the former Maharaja and the members of the family of Mewar. These festivities also have performances of a local dance called Gair. The ceremony is preceded by a grand procession which involves the royal family and their rides of camels and elephants. The day ends with the night sky illuminated with fireworks, and the day of Holi is celebrated by playing with colours and enjoying good food.

Also Read: Temples in Udaipur

5. Barsana

Barsana Holi Calebration
Image Source:

Barsana is considered the best place to celebrate Holi in India. A small town located nearly 50km away from Mathura, Barsana is believed to be the hometown of Radha and therefore hosts the famous and unique Lathmaar Holi celebrations. It is said that whenever Krishna and his friends visited Barsana, they were playfully beaten by Radha and her friends with sticks. In keeping up with this tradition, a week before Holi, the women of Barsana playfully beat the men here with sticks, and the men save themselves with shields. Another tradition in Barsana is the Laddoo Holi, celebrated at Shriji Temple. The priests here throw ladoos at devotees and then follow it up by throwing gulaal.

6 Hampi

Hampi Holi
Image Source:

While it is assumed that the Holi celebration is confined to North India, Hampi comes alive on this auspicious day with its unique traditions. The festivities begin with Holika Dahan, where people gather around the bonfire to sing and welcome the spring. The colourful celebrations are held around the ruins of the Vijayanagara Empire amidst the beating of the drums. Residents and tourists head to River Tungabhadra’s banks and dip in the waters to mark the auspicious occasion.

Witness the best of Holi celebrations at these amazing spots in India!

February 23, 2023

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these <abbr title="HyperText Markup Language">html</abbr> tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>