‘5’ Must Visit Places to Celebrate Holi Festival! Never to miss in lifetime
Holi, also known as the festival of colors is a very popular festival celebrated throughout India among various communities and now around the world. It is a spring festival, which symbolizes the feeling of brotherhood or love between different communities and religion. There are several mythological stories behind the origin of the festival. According to one belief, the festival celebrates the burning of devil Holika, the sister of Hrinyakashyapu (Asura or Demon) but it also draws on the legend of Radha & Krishna and their immortal love.
If you want to see or play Holi in its full glory then you must visit these places and discover more about this lovely festival:
1. Braj Barsana, Uttar Pradesh
Barsana is a truly unique place to visit for Holi in India. Holi here is lot more than just colors. Lath Mar Holi is a very old tradition of this town. In Lath Mar Holi, women use stick to hit men who want to play Holi with them. History behind this tradition is that Lord Krishna once visited his lover Radha at her village on Holi. While here he made fun of, laughed at, and teased her friends. As punishment for this behavior, the women chased him away with sticks. A large number of people from other towns and cities visit this place to see the unique celebration style.
2. Mathura & Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh
The Holi of Mathura and Vrindavan is extremely famous throughout the country. It attracts tourists and pilgrims from all over the world. Mathura is the birth-place of Lord Krishna and Vrindavan is the place where he spent his childhood. In this region of the country Holi Festival lasts for a whopping 16 straight days! Different themed celebrations take place every day. On Holi, the best place to catch the throwing of colors in Mathura is Dwarkadheesh Temple.
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3. The Royal Holi- Udaipur, Rajasthan
Holi is one of the major festivals celebrated in Rajasthan with great patron from royal families of Rajasthan. The celebrations stretch for two days. The first day of Holika Dahan is observed at the City Palace in Udaipur. The customs of lighting the Holika Dahan is traditionally performed by the current custodian of the Mewar dynasty. The following morning, the celebrations of Holi are all out on the streets of Jaipur & Udaipur.
4. Hampi, Karnataka
One of the top heritage sites in India, Hampi in Karnataka turns colorful on the eve of Holi. Hampi is one of the prime faces of Karnataka Tourism. As Holi is primarily a north Indian festival, it’s quite subdued at most places in the south. The focus is mainly on religious aspects and temple rites. However, Hampi is a notable exception! The whole town turns out to play Holi in the morning (perhaps for the benefit of the many western travelers there), amid drumming, dancing, and the evocative ruins of the grand Vijayanagar empire. Afterwards, the crowd slowly moves to the river to wash all the color off.
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5. Shantiniketan, West Bengal
The Holi festival is celebrated as Basanta Utsav or Spring Festival in Shantiniketan, West Bengal. This festival was started as an annual event by famous Bengali poet and Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore in his Vishva Bharati University at Shantiniketan.The celebrations start a day earlier than Holi and are now considered an important part of the Bengali heritage. Students dress up in spring colors and put on a huge cultural program for visitors, including dances to Tagore’s songs. This is followed by the usual throwing of colors. Note that festivities happen a day earlier than the given date for Holi in other parts of India. A huge number of tourists arrive every year at Shantiniketan to witness and participate in these celebrations.