Vivid hues taint the sky as India ushers in the season of spring with the kaleidoscopic festival of Holi. The vibrant festival is known by a variety of names depending on which region you care to visit. From Rangpanchami in Maharashtra to Lathimaar Holi in Mathura, Holi is a festival one must experience.
What originated as a Hindu festival in India has quickly gained global attention and is now celebrated around the world.
The evening before the riot of colour takes over, the air is filled with the scent of charring wood as a bonfire is lit which is symbolical of the destruction of the demoness Holika by the God Vishnu. Prayers are recited, songs are sung and people dance around the bonfire as they celebrate the victory of good over evil.
On the morning of the Holi, people of all ages and religions gather together in their areas and smear each other with colour. Traditional sweets, intoxicating drinks coupled with a multi-coloured cloud of colour and Typical Bollywood music can be seen and heard for miles. Differences, past arguments and fights are forgotten as colour is smeared on everyone – friend and foe alike.
Having said that there are different forms of Holi played all around India and a treat to watch so this Holi why don’t you head over to these places to Celebrate Holi
Lathmar Holi at Barsana and Nandgaon
A local celebration of the Hindu festival of Holi. It takes place days before the actual Holi in the neighbouring towns of Barsana and Nandgaon near Mathura in the state of Uttar Pradesh, where thousands of Hindus and tourists congregate, each year. The name means “that Holi in which [people] hit with sticks” (laṭh is a thick traditional staff).
Its a huge event and attracts thousands of participants as well as tourists who come to enjoy the fun filled beatings.
On Ekadashi prior to the Holi, the Banke Bihari temple at Vrindavan celeberates a unique Holi which uses only flowers .Unlike other Holi festivities this is a short affair of just about 15-20 minutes during which flowers are thrown at the devotees by the temple priests. If you are not on time, it’s very easy to miss it. In case you planning to capture it with your camera, reach early and be at the gate just when it opens.
Since Vrindavan is one of the places with strictest rule for a widow living. Therefore three years back this Holi was introduced to add some colors to white lives of widows of Vrindavan. All the widows in Vrindavan meet and play colours at Pagal Baba Widow Ashram.
And do not forget to munch down on whole lot of sweets and delicacies when in Mathura
However remember for a safe and enjoyable Holi:
- Use generous amounts of coconut oil or moisturizing lotion on every part of your body and hair. Use a waterproof sunscreen to protect your skin from sun damage.
- Play Holi in groups and with people you know. You never know when tragedy will strike if you are not careful.
- And do remember to visit the local tourist spots for its rich history, and mesmerizing story from the local tourist guides … and its even easier to book a tourist guide via Hola Guide App where you can just select the destination, chose from the array of Experienced Tour Guides
- Lastly do not forget to let go and just have FUN!