Unique Holi Celebrations Across India!

Holi is one of the most anticipated festival throughout India, for the reasons that we all know… The frequent blasts of colours and water-guns, the yummy delicious food and the carefree spirit it carries with itself! But did you know, Holi is not celebrated in one way but rather in many unique ways across India? Yes, we were surprised too. So, let’s take you through a virtual tour of places where Holi is celebrated differently!

GoaBeing the Party Capital of the country, Goa makes sure to keep up to its name. Celebrated with huge pomp and show, people in Goa dress up in vibrant colours and dance to traditional songs during Holi, which is part of  the ‘Shigmo Spring Festival’. Consisting of traditional folk and street dances by the labour class, farmers and the rural population. Holi for Konkani community is a big festival filled with excitement and festivities…

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Uttar PradeshThis is one Holi celebration you might not want to miss… People in Saunthana, a village in Etawah, Uttar Pradesh, take the Holi celebrations to another level: by catching Scorpions and holding them with their bare hands, and wait for it… Put Scorpions on different parts of their bodies! The festivities begin by beating the drum and singing folk songs. Holi here, is not what it is assumed to be!

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KeralaMany of us think that Holi down South hardly exists. But not many know that Holi in Kerala is actually celebrated with Turmeric. The festival especially happens at the Konkani temple of Gosripuram Thirumala and is celebrated over four days. They call it ‘Manjal Kuli’, which literally means turmeric bath and dance to traditional percussion instruments.

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Jaipur–Holi at Jaipur is played in the most fun way. That is, with elephants at the ‘Elephant Festival’. Stunning painted elephants, with a game of elephant polo, a tug-of-war between men-women and elephants is a sight to see! This destination is definitely a photographer’s delight, with hundreds of decked up horses along with the Royal family…

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Punjab–’Hola Mohalla’ (Warrior Holi) is what Holi is called in Punjab. A week long fair, the festival is a place where members of the Khalsa army showcase various skills like Kushti, martial arts and strength, acrobats and sing their heart out. This is another such place for photographers to have the time of their lives!

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Manipur‘Yaosang’ is Manipur’s version of Holi festival which is a whole six-day affair! People begin the celebration by asking for money to spend on the festival, afterwhich a thatched hut is set ablaze. The next thing that happens is that groups of boys turn to girls to play Holi with, but in return, the girls extract money for playing with the boys, making the Raasrang Holi Utsav even more fun and exciting… 

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BrajHow can we forget, the famous Braj Holi where the century old tradition of ‘Lath Mar’ Holi is the main attraction for so many tourists every year! The celebration here in Braj continue for almost a month, where women chase men away with “Lathis”. But instead of being a beating session, this is a rather fun session to watch. It is infact, better to reach the place much in advance to also witness the ‘Laddoo throwing’ Holi tradition as well…

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Indian women beat men with wooden sticks during the Lathmar Holi festival in Barsana, some 100 km from New Delhi, 25 February 2007. During the Lathmar Holi festival, the women of Barsana, the legendary hometown of Radha, consort of Hindu God Krishna, attack the men from Nandgaon, the hometown of Hindu God Krishna, with wooden sticks in response to their efforts to put color on them. AFP PHOTO/ MANAN VATSYAYANA

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