As a child, I used to look forward to the Diwali vacation so that we could travel to new destinations every time. Why? To be able to not only enjoy the festivities but also to take advantage of the holidays that follow the festival, to be able to snag a few days for a Diwali vacation with my family. Although not as elaborate as the summer breaks, they were sufficient to do a touch-and-go to some local, domestic travel destinations.
Here are some of the best destinations to visit during the Diwali vacation in India. A huge festival also draws a large number of travellers. Because Deepavali is a major festival, many people, whether they are children, students, or professionals, have a number of holidays to spend with their loved ones. And what better way to do so than to take a vacation to places in India that also celebrate the festive season’s cultural mood?
India, a land of cultural diversity and variety, is also a place where the majority of castes and religions coexist as one. Yes, we have the most festivals, which we celebrate with great zeal and pomp.
Of the lot, Diwali or Deepavali as it is referred to, the festival of lights happens to be the one where people bring in the festivities with happiness and joy, lighting up their homes, eating and distributing sweets and bursting crackers.
Yes, vacationing too, has been a part of the holidays that follow these Diwali days and I believe most of us surely want to try and whisk away to a mini local vacation for a couple of days or more, just to be able to rejuvenate and hit back on our adrenaline. Be it children or even elders, we all want that mini Diwali vacation, don’t we?
Diwali, one of the most widely celebrated festivals, is one of the most important occasions, with different cities across the country celebrating it in unique ways. Because of the extended vacation that children enjoy during this time, we thought we’d share the top ten destinations to see in India during the Diwali vacation:
Of course, the birthplace of Lord Rama, it also marks the iconic return of the Lord alongwith Sitaji and Laxman post-exile (Vanwaas) of 14 years. Whilst people from different parts of UP come and light lamps and diyas on the banks of the river Sarayu, did you know that there is even a Guinness Book of records for lighting almost 3 lakh diyas at one point in time here?
With the festival being celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm, this should surely be on your list. A humongous celebration in place for 4 straight days, whilst women light beautiful diyas to get to the river banks, the entire city is brilliantly decorated with colourful lanterns, lights, as well as hand, made decorative.
Banaras or Varanasi is considered to be one of the holiest places for Hindus in the world, it is the spot where the river Ganga meets the great ocean. The special famous Ganga Aarti on the Dashashwamedh Ghat of Varanasi is a sight to behold and remember for life, especially with the earthen lamps and candles which are floated in the river later on. And the firecrackers here? Crazy ya! And the best part? Well, Dev Deepavali or Dev Diwali, which is celebrated a fortnight after Diwali is an even bigger affair, when the Ganga Mahotsav kicks off where the ghats and streets are bedecked with more than a million lamps and lights.
Did you know there is a competition hosted by the government every year in Pink city where they pay the bill for the most beautifully decorated market? The Johari bazaar held here has earned the accolade of “The Strip” like in Las Vegas owing to its dazzling brilliance. And don’t forget to experience the splendour with a special walking tour titled the “Vedic Walks”. The glow of lights and lamps illuminating the streets is unmissable here, during Diwali.
I know you guys are going to be like Pushkar is anyways a strong itinerary to visit all around the year, thanks to the fact that you get to visit the only Brahma temple in the country and take the holy dip along with its mesmerizing sunrises and sunsets, visiting this oasis town during Diwali you can experience the Camel fair where approximately 50000 camels participate in the fair, dressed up in colourful clothing and embellishments. They are then,alongwith being made to drift the ramp also made a part of the races alongside being traded here.
Here Diwali is celebrated for the destruction of the demon Narakasura by Lord Krishna. Did you know they actually hold a competition in every village and place herein to see who can make the biggest, most fierce looking and nasty demon which is later burnt down on the Narakasura Chaturdashi aka a day before Lakshmi Pujan? And yes, you wouldn’t want to say no to a spot bit of indulging in the casinos here as card games anyways are a “Shagun”- a customary ritual of sorts during Diwali right? But be sure to book a slot for one of them well in advance as they tend to book off completely.
In the third largest city of Tamil Nadu, Diwali here is celebrated on the 2nd day which is the Chaturdashi day of the 5-day long celebrations. In the south, they celebrate this festival one day before the North Indians. An oil bath which is first done for the stove followed by the heads of the younger ones being stroked by the elders with gingelly oil is the main ritual which is considered to be as holy as taking a dip in the Ganga. Alongwith yummy sweets and savouries, the usual celebrations with firecrackers and new clothes alongwith festive decorations also adorn the city.
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Well, did you know that Amritsar was actually founded on Diwali in 1577? Here, the celebration generally coincides with those of the Bandi Chor Diwas which also happens to mark the liberation of the sixth Sikh Guru, Guru Hargobind from the Mughal prison. With special prayers held throughout the city, Diwali is a great time to visit the temple city owing to the mesmerizing brilliance of candles, lights and fireworks across the city. The cool weather, the beautiful mustard fields as well as the enthusiasm of the locals make the place worth a visit during this time.
Yes, the city of lakes also happens to host the Udaipur light festival which not only features performances from great singers, fun activities, art and more but also incorporates a small lantern festival where people release flying lanterns into the air during Diwali. This event takes place usually at Shouryagarh Resort & Spa just outside Udaipur. There is also the famous Mahalakshmi temple in Bhatiyani Chohatta in case you want to pray to the Goddess for luck and wealth for the coming year. I say go visit this place
What can I say about this one? Here is a city which is full of life even on regular days. The city that never sleeps, Mumbai is one of the best places to experience the Diwali vibes. Mumbaikars who go out of the way to illuminate not only their homes but also their lives as well as the lives of others with happiness and positivity, Mumbaikars are always in the highest of zest, zeal and spirit to bring in the festivities for this one. Major tourist spots like the Gateway of India and many other spots are lit up to match the festivity of the occasion.
So, along with ziplining and camping and other such adventurous activities, here’s to a brilliant week’s worth of celebrations in the form of a huge array of fireworks as well as a tirade of lights as well as firecrackers. There are numerous camps here where the festival is celebrated in an adventurous, exciting and new manner. So, pack your bags to combine fun, entertainment and festive celebrations all rolled in one.
So, these were the 10 best destinations to visit in India during the Diwali vacation.
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