UPCOMING EVENTS

Rajasthan, the largest state of India with Jaipur as the state capital was formed on 30 March 1949. Once known as the ‘Land of the Kings’, the state still retains the glory and richness of those times with its spectacular monuments, colourful traditions and customs. It covers most of the area of the Great Indian desert (Thar Desert) with one edge paralleling the Sutlej – Indus river valley along with its border with Pakistan.

Rajasthan Festivals are a symbol of the vivacious spirit of the people of the state. Abundant festivals fill up this dull state with bright colors. Living in the harsh and rough weather, the people of this dry and parched land find an outlet from their dreary lives in the form of the festivals of Rajasthan. They make the most of the few reasons they get to rejoice in life. So, they celebrate festivals for each and every reason, be it religious occasion or a change of season or ripening of a harvest.

Rajasthan has many fairs and festivals, which are celebrated throughout the year. Be it the change of season or some religious occasion there is always a reason to celebrate life in Rajasthan through fairs and festivals. Apart from religious and seasonal festivals, the colorful land of Rajasthan also celebrates numerous traditional fairs.

Regional festivals celebrated in Rajasthan include the Pushkar fair, Camel Festival Bikaner, Desert Festival Jaisalmer, Elephant Festival Jaipur, Gangaur Festival Jaipur, Mewar Festival Udaipur and the Teej Festival Jaipur.

Festivals and Fairs Celebrated in Rajasthan are:

PUSHKAR FAIR

PUSHKAR FAIR
The Pushkar Fair, or Pushkar ka Mela, is the annual five-day camel and livestock fair, held in the town of Pushkar in the state of Rajasthan, India. It is one of the world’s largest camel fairs, and apart from buying and selling of livestock it has become an important tourist attraction and its highlights have become competitions such as the “matka phod”, “longest moustache”, and “bridal competition” are the main draws for this fair which attracts thousands of tourists. In recent years the fair has also included an exhibition cricket match between the local Pushkar club and a team of random foreign tourists.

The fair attracts a great number of tourists from across the world. A temple here is dedicated to Lord Brahma.

Pushkar has three main lakes-jaystha Pushkar, Madhyam Pushkar and Kanishtha pushkar. The fair is one of the largest cattle fairs in the world, in which camel are a special attraction, Here one can see camel been raced and paraded, vendors selling’s dazzling wares and people getting themselves tattooed. In the evening hundreds of oil lamps placed on leaves are floated on the lake by worshippers.

Thousands of people go to the banks of the Pushkar Lake where the fair takes place. Men buy and sell their livestock, which includes camels, cows, sheep and goats. The women go to the stalls, full of bracelets, clothes, textiles and fabrics. A camel race starts off the festival, with music, songs and exhibitions to follow. Between these events, the most waited for is the test of how the camel is able to bring the items. In order to demonstrate, the men go up on the group of camels one after another.

During the fair the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation sets up a tented tourist village offering all basic facilities. Here, tourists are entertained by folk dancers and musicians. There are convenient rail and road connections to Ajmer. The nearest airport is in Jaipur.


Fair & Festival201720182019
Pushkar Fair28th Oct-04th Nov15th-23th Nov22nd-30th Nov


MARWAR FESTIVAL

MARWAR FESTIVAL
The Marwar Festival is celebrated in the Sun City – Jodhpur, Rajasthan. A two days long event, it takes place in the Hindu month of Ashwin (September-October), during the full moon of Sharad Poornima. The Marwar Festival of Jodhpur is mainly dedicated to the folk heroes of Rajasthan. Also known as the Maand Festival, it revolves around the lifestyle of the rulers of Rajasthan.

Jodhpur Marwar Festival brings to the forefront the folk music and folk dance of the Marwar region. Folk dancers carrying pots on their heads as well as the folk singers keep you enchanted with their performances. The days of yore, of battles and valiant heroes appear to be standing still in time. In fact, it seems as if one has gone back to the royal bygone era of the state and is reliving it. The camel tattoo show and camel polo are some of the other attractions at the Marwar Festival of Rajasthan.

This classical folk music is known as Maand. The folk dancers and singers assemble at the festival and provide lively entertainment. These folk artists give others a peek into the days of yore, of battles and of the heroes who still live on through their songs. Among other attractions at the festival, is the camel tattoo show and polo. The venue of this festival includes the famous Umaid Bhawan Palace, Mandore and Mehrangarh Fort.


Fair & Festival201720182019
Marwar festival, Jodhpur04th-05th Oct23rd-24th Oct12nd-13rd Oct


TEEJ FESTIVAL

TEEJ FESTIVAL
Teej is the festival of swings. It marks the advent of the monsoon month of Shravan (August). The monsoon rains fall on the parched land and the pleasing scent of the wet soil rises into the air. Swings are hung from trees and women dressed in green clothes sing songs in celebration of the advent of the monsoon.

This festival is dedicated to the Goddess Parvati, commemorating her union with Lord Shiva. Goddess Parvati is worshipped by seekers of conjugal bliss and happiness. An elaborate procession is taken out in Jaipur for two consecutive days on the festive occasion which is watched by people in large numbers. The Teej idol is covered with a canopy whereas the Gangaur idol is open. The traditional Ghevar sweet is also associated with the festival.

The colourful procession with the image of Gauri starts from the palace gate known as Tripolia and moves through the main streets, passing Chaughan before reaching Talkatora.


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Teej Festival, Jaipur13rd-14th August03rd-04th August23rd-24th July23rd-24th July


GANGAUR FESTIVAL

GANGAUR FESTIVAL
Gangaur is a festival celebrated in the Indian state of Rajasthan and some parts of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.

Gangaur is the colourful and the one of the most important festivals of people of Rajasthan and is observed throughout the state with great fervor and devotion by womenfolk who worship Gauri, the consort of Lord Shiva during March–April.

It is the celebration of spring, harvest and marital fidelity. Gana is a synonym for Lord Shiva and Gaur which stands for Gauri or Parvati who symbolizes Saubhagya (marital bliss). The unmarried women worship her for being blessed good husband, while married women do so for the welfare, health and long life of their husbands and happy married life.

Women gather to dress the images of Isar and Ganguar and then carry them in a ceremonial procession through different parts of the city. The procession winds its way to Gangur Ghat at Lake Pichhola. Here, the images are transferred to special boats amidst much singing and festivity. Once the religious part of the festival is over it is time for cultural events where Rajasthan’s culture is portrayed through songs, dances culminates with an impressive fireworks display.


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Gangaur festival,Jaipur30th-31st March20th-21st March08th-09th April27th-28th March


DESERT FESTIVAL

DESERT FESTIVAL
Held in the month of January -February, the Desert festival exudes the delightful spirit of the desert land. For three days, the otherwise barren land of Jaisalmer comes to life and us clustered with hordes of colorfully dressed people. Some cherished moments of the glorious and illustrious past and a rich culture are on display. The traditional dancer and the audience seem to be on a euphoric trip.

The turban Tying competition and Mr. Desert contest add a touch of excitement to the celebration. The traditional Gair dancer leave the crowds enchanted by their thrilling performance.

There are convenient rail and road connections to Jaisalmer from Jodhpur (about 285 kms). Jaisalmer is situated National Highway no 15 and the nearest airport is at Jodhpur.


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Desert festival, Jaisalmer08th-10th February29th-31st January17th-19th February07th-09th February


CAMEL FESTIVAL

CAMEL FESTIVAL
The Bikaner Camel Festival is organized in the beautiful city of Bikaner, by the Rajasthan Tourism Department. The festival is organized every year in the month of January or late December to emphasize the value of ship of the desert – “Camel”. The two day festival is marked by different interesting activities.

This festival starts off with a magnificent procession of bedecked camels against the red sandstone backdrop of the Junagarh Fort (1588-1593) in the town. The festival starts with the motorcade of beautifully decorated camels. The procession heads towards the open sand grounds. Here, the festivities begin in earnest. The Camel Spectacle is held on the first day wherein the camel owners show off their Camels’ decorations and jewellery. Camel dance performances are also held. A competition for best decorated camel, fur cutting design, camel milking and the best camel hair cut is organized. The camels display amazing footwork, dancing gracefully to the slightest direction of their drivers. Colourful bridles, bejeweled necks, jingling anklets and long, lanky camel shadows on dusky sands, cast a magical spell.

It is a colorful spectacle of beautifully decorated camels that fascinates the onlookers with their charm and grace.

The festivity advances to the open sand-spreads of the Polo Grounds, followed by camel races, camel milking, fur cutting design, the best breed competition, camel acrobatics, camel bands and so on.

The Bikaner Camel Festival activities define the culture and traditions of Rajasthan, and in the evening, you can enjoy the gypsy dance or folk songs of the state. No matter what part of the world you come from, the music will cast its spell on you. Evenings at the Bikaner Camel Festival are lit by campfires, as folk dancers and musicians lure droves of eager spectators. A desert fireworks spectacle concludes the festivities on the second evening. Enjoy the lustrous traditions of Rajasthan while celebrating the humble camel, ship of the desert, at the annual Bikaner Camel Festival.


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Camel festival10th-12th Jan31st Dec -02nd Jan19th-21st Jan08th-10th Jan


BENESHWAR FESTIVAL

BENESHWAR FESTIVAL
Beneshwar Fair is a five days fair starting from Shukla ekadeshi of Magh month of Hindu calendar. This is the unique and biggest tribal fair of the country attracting lakhs of devotees.

This fair is annually held in Dungarpur, Rajasthan. The name Beneshwar is derived from the holy Shiva Linga located in the Shiv temple in Dungarpur. ‘Beneshwar’ in the local language (Vagdi) means ‘master of delta. The fair is organized at delta shaped by rivers Mahi and Som. The fair continues until Shukla Purnima of ‘Magh’ month.

The Beneshwar fair is in fact the combination of two fairs. One fair is organized to pay tribute to the Lord Shiva, known as Beneshwar Mahadev. Another fair is held to celebrate the finish of the construction work of the Vishnu temple by Jankunwar, the daughter-in-law of saint Mavji.

The priest or Mathadish arrives in a massive procession to the fair site from Sabha and take a dip into the river water. Then aarti of the Mathadish are performed and Raslila are renovated during the night in the Lakshmi Narayana temple.

Bhils or tribal people from Dungarpur, Udaipur and Banswara constitute the major part of the gathering. The fair is very famous and is organized at very large level.


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Beneshwar Festival07th-10th Feb31st Jan-02nd Feb19th-22th Feb09th-12nd Feb


BRAJ FESTIVAL

BRAJ FESTIVAL
Brij festival is celebrated for three days in Shukla paksha of Phalgun. It is celebrated in the Brij region, located in the Bharatpur district. The festival derives its name from the region where it is celebrated. This festival is also known as Brij Mahotsava. Entire Bharatpur are absorbed into the ecstasy during this festival The festival is celebrated with lot of fervor and zest.

Brij festival is celebrated in nobility of Lord Krishna. The festival is celebrated a few days before Holi- the festival of colours.

Raslila performances are the centre of attraction. The villagers dress themselves in multicolor attires and perform the Raslila that give a picture of the eternal love story of lord Krishna and his beloved Radha.

People welcome spring with festivities and happiness. The fair reflects the true traditional culture of Rajasthan. Brij Festival of Bharatpur is a major and famous festivals, celebrated by the local people as well as tourists from all over the world come here to witness the saga. Tourists take part in this colorful festival and enjoy and witness the festivity.

The rhythm of folk songs fills the atmosphere with the fragrance of romance. All the people, men or women, young or old, irrespective of their caste or creed participate in the Brij Mahotsav and drown in its spirit. The entire place is painted in brilliant colors and no one is spared from being splashed with colors.


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Brij Festival07th-08th March25th-26th February16th-17th March05th-06th March


GHOOMAR FESTIVAL

GHOOMAR FESTIVAL
The popular ghoomar is the representative dance of the Bhils, although it is especially associated with the royal ladies of Jaipur, who perform it on certain auspicious occasions. The reason for that might be that the Bhils and the Jaipur royalty have been close for centuries.

The Bhils were accorded the honour that unless their chieftain put a tilak (a vermillion mark put on the forehead on an auspicious occasion) on his forehead, the coronation of no future Kachhwaha king would be considered legal. Since then, by all accounts, the Bhils have remained loyal to the side of the Kachhwahas.

The ghoomar is one of the legacies that they passed on to the Rajput royalty. Derived from the word ghoomna (pirouette), this is a very simple dance where the ladies, dressed in resplendent voluminous ghagras, move smoothly and gracefully in circles. The accompanying songs are sung alternately by both men and women, as the dancers move both clockwise and anti-clockwise. The effect of the free play of the folds of the ample and colourful ghagra is dazzling. If you are in Jaipur during festival time, don’t miss a ghoomar recital at the City Palace.

The Thar Desert of Rajasthan comes alive when its dancers take the center stage. Rajasthan has great variety of dances, which are simple expressions of celebration and festivity. The dancers, the dances and costumes have made Thar the most colorful desert in the world. Each region adding its own form of dance styles and performers. There are dances that follows a lineage of age old traditions, adhere to religious significance, display their daring attitude as well as complimenting various fairs and festivals.

Ghoomar, a community dance for women performed on auspicious occasions. Gair Ghoomar, Raika, Jhoria and Gauri are particularly of Bhil tribe. Gair is performed on Holi but only by the men folk. Chari dance, with pots on the head and a lighted lamp, is popularly performed on marriage occasions or on the birth of a male child. Kalbelia dance is of the kalbelia tribe, the snake charmers. With numerous pots on the head, women excel the balancing act in the Matka-bhawai. Terah taali, is a ritual for Baba Ramdev, a dance with thirteen manjiras. Other dances are Kachhi-Ghodi, Kathputli (the puppet dance), Fire dance, drum dance and various others pertaining to the particular tribes. Kathhak, a popular dance form being imported from Uttar Pradesh have been revived by the rajputana courts, with a style and theme of its own.