India has a unique combination of culture and celebrations depending on various geographic regions. Lesser known Indian festivals are diverse and exploring them is an experience of extreme excitement. The diversity in India has given birth to numerous festivals all over the country. In India, we have an enormous variety of culture and traditions. You will get a different variety as you travel all throughout the country. Indians are known in the whole world as people full of life and merriment. No matter where you are, in India people will always welcome you with a warm heart and smiling face. If you want to explore this country, you will have to experience the ambiance of rich coexistence of a host of cultures, traditions, and beliefs. Here, each festival, whether it is famous or lesser known, is celebrated with grandeur and vibrancy.
Here Are Some Lesser Known Indian Festivals Worth Paying a Visit
- The Bikaner Camel Festival
- Kerala Village Fare
- Kite Festival, Ahmadabad
- The Goa Carnival
- Bihu, Assam
- Ooty Summer Festival
- Hemis Festival
- Champakulam Boat Race
- The Pushkar Fair
- Sula Festival
1. The Bikaner Camel Festival
The princely state, Rajasthan, in India, enjoys a two-day long celebration in Bikaner and it is named after the animal of the desert, the camel. Rajasthan is mainly comprised of desert areas and the camel is an essential animal which helps villagers to travel from place to place. Therefore, naming a festival in honor of the camel is justified and appropriate. The venue of this festival is the Fort of Junagarh. You will find both the camels and their owners present in colorful attires and the villagers celebrate this festival with bright colorful dresses. You can enjoy folk dances, local music, camel races, breed competitions, and more in the backdrop of the sandy deserts of Rajasthan. Taste the famous Bikaner Bhujiya, a famous crispy snack, is a specialty at various tourist destinations in Bikaner.
2. Kerala Village Fare
This festival is celebrated in Kerala every year in the middle of January. The greenery of Kovalam, as well as their unique culture, will mesmerize you. In this festival, you can see a replica of a traditional Keralian village along with the Nalukettu house and the Chayakkada. This festival offers traditional music and folk dances. You can get an opportunity to observe the craftsmen working on the spinning wheels and traditional handlooms. Do not forget to enjoy the “Meen” and the “Kappa”.
3. Kite Festival, Ahmedabad
Do you enjoy flying color kites or watching them against the light blue sky? In Ahmedabad, the Kite Festival is celebrated with loads of excitement. This lesser known Indian festival is famous worldwide as ‘Uttarayan’ and marks the end of the harvesting season. The biggest celebration takes place in Ahmedabad but you can find this festival is celebrated all throughout Gujarat. Everyone celebrates this festival by flying colorful kites and the whole sky exhibits a variety of colors and designs. Tourists from different parts of the globe visit this festival to feel the freedom of a lofty flight. The large variety of delicacies made here, like Undhiyu and Jalebis are worth tasting.
4. The Goa Carnival
In Goa, a week-long event called the Goa Carnival is held every year. Enjoy rock bands and folk music being performed together during these days. You can enjoy music, western dances, vibrant nightlife, live performances, and much more. On the final day of the event, performers dance dressed in traditional black and red costume. Visit Goa during mid-February to be a part of this carnival.
5. Bihu, Assam
Bihu is a festival celebrated to mark the crop harvesting cycle of the Assamese. Visit Assam, the north-eastern state of India where this festival is celebrated thrice every year. Bihu denotes the beginning of a new year in this state. You can join them on their traditional dance, or enjoy their local delicacies, the events of worshipping colorfully dressed cows and pray to the local deity for a successful future. This is one of the most colorful festivals of India.
6. Ooty Summer Festival
The Ministry of Tourism and State Tourism Department celebrate this festival every year in the month of May. You can watch a number of events including flower shows, rose shows, fruit shows, vegetable shows, and dog shows. The Nilgiri Mountains is considered the venue for this festival. You can enjoy boat races and a lot more.
7. Hemis Festival
Join this festival to know the culture and lifestyle of the residents of Ladakh. It is celebrated in the backdrop of the Himalayas every June. Buddhist devotees join this festival from different parts of the globe. You can experience a change in the ambiance of Ladakh changing from dull colors to vibrant ones. It is celebrated in Ladakh Gompa. It marks the tenth day of the Lunar year in Tibet and also Guru Padmasambhava’s birth anniversary. Longhorn drums and cymbals are played and performers dressed up in colorful robes and vibrant masks dance to the traditional tunes.
8. Champakulam Boat Race
This festival is held in Champakulam every year. Champakulam is in Alappuzha district, in Kerala, India. If you are interested in sports events this festival is the one you should not miss. The races are scheduled on the Moolam Day on River Padma. Chundan (snake boat), Nehru Boat Race, Iruttu Kuthi, Churulan, Veppu are some of the categories in the race. Pay a visit to this place in the month of July to enjoy the festive mood. Alappuzha (or Alleppey) is famous for boating, so while on trip do not forget to experience houseboats in Alleppey.
9. The Pushkar Fair
Pushkar Fair is held every year in Pushkar, Rajasthan, the desert state of India. It is a five-day event held during October-November. Enjoy the events like bridal competition, the longest mustache Matka-phod. Witness the cultural extravaganza that enriches the ambiance of this fiesta. A plethora of colors and stylish traditional robes on camels and its owner is sure to make your visit a lifetime experience. You can enjoy a ride in the blue sky by air balloons in Pushkar fair.
10. Sula Festival
This festival is celebrated in Sula vineyards near the city of Nashik in the Indian state of Maharashtra. If you are a music lover you can enjoy the rock, folk, blues, electronic and reggae music performed at the festival. This is one of the most unusual and uncommon festivals and Events in India.
India – the land of many celebrations is a must-visit destination as various major festivals and events take place throughout the year. All these festivals are celebrated with great pomp and pleasure. Be a part of these exotic fiestas and explore the rich cultures and traditions of India, the country with unique unity among diversities.