This content was produced for India 100 by the foundry @ MEREDITH CORP. Time editorial staff was not involved in its creation or production.

January

  • 1

    Chennai Dance & Music Festival

    Throughout Chennai
    Jan 1

    One of the largest music festivals in the world offering 1,500 performances of South Indian classical music and dance. Season tickets go on sale in October. Tickets for individual shows can be purchased at venues directly. Runs from the end of December 2018 through January 2019.

  • 6

    International Kite Festival

    Sabarmati Riverfront, Ashram Road, Ahmedabad, Gujarat
    Jan 6

    Millions of colorful kites take to the skies to celebrate the sun’s return to the northern hemisphere as part of Gujarat’s state-wide festival of Uttarayan. In addition to kite flying, you’ll find aerial acrobats, kite-painting competitions and kite-making workshops. January 6–14, 2019.

  • 10

    Pongol & the Mylapore Festival

    Mylapore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
    Jan 10

    Pongol celebrates the harvest in Tamil Nadu state, featuring a special dish made of boiled milk and rice. Combine your visit with the Mylapore Festival, and you’ll get a sense of living locally in Chennai, with the chance to buy local crafts, see a ritual chalk design contest and more. The Mylapore Festival is January 10-13, 2019 and the Pongol Festival is January 14–17, 2019.

  • 14

    National Street Food Festival

    Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Gate 14, Bhishma Pitamah Road, Pragati Vihar, Lodi Colony, Delhi
    Jan 14

    Sample pav bhaji, momos, chaats and other types of street food from all over India at 175 stalls from 25 states.

  • 14

    Kenduli Mela

    Joydev Kenduli village, around 30 kilometers from Shantiniketan in the Birbhum district of West Bengal
    Jan 14

    This is a unique opportunity to meet India’s wandering minstrels, the Bauls. Dressed in saffron robes, they play distinctive West Bengali folk music using a stringed instrument called the ektara. Villagers provide rooms for rent, or visitors may stay in the nearby town of Bolpur. January 14–16, 2019.

  • 18

    Kabir Festival

    Mumbai
    Jan 18

    This is a country-wide celebration of the poet Kabir and various other legendary Sufi poets centered in Mumbai with storytelling, film screenings and song. January 18–21, 2019.

  • 18

    Rajarani Music Festival

    Rajarani Temple, Bhubaneswar, Odisha
    Jan 18

    Well-known Odissi and Hindustani vocal and instrumental maestros perform Indian classical works in the Rajarani Temple, known for its erotic sculptures. January 18–20, 2019.

  • 24

    Jaipur Literature Festival

    Diggi Palace, Jaipur, Rajasthan
    Jan 24

    Rub elbows with well-known Indian and international authors at the largest literary festival in the Asia-Pacific region. Entry is free, but upgrade to delegate status for meals and a better chance to meet writers and agents. January 24–28, 2019.

  • 25

    Ernakulathappan Uthsavam

    Ernakulam, Kochi, Kerala
    Jan 25

    One of Kerala’s best elephant pageants, featuring a parade of decorated elephants, is celebrated on the premises of Ernakulathappan Temple in Kochi. January 25-February 1, 2019.

  • 29

    Kila Raipur Sports Festival

    Ludhiana, Punjab
    Jan 29

    Also known as the Indian Rural Olympics, this sports festival celebrates major Punjabi rural sports such as cart racing and rope pulling. January 29–February 1, 2019.

  • 31

    India Art Fair

    NSIC Exhibition Grounds (Okhla), New Delhi
    Jan 31

    This celebration of India’s high-end modern and contemporary art scene features paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings and various other arts. Tickets go on sale in October. January 31–February 3, 2019.

February

  • 1

    Surajkund International Crafts Mela

    Surajkund, in the Faridabad district a short distance from South Delhi
    Feb 1

    Thirty-two years running, the Surajkund Crafts Mela showcases 400 artisans displaying crafts from all over India and serves a variety of Indian cuisine. February 1–15, 2019.

  • 1

    Sur Jahan World Peace Music Festival

    Mohor Kunja in Kolkata
    Feb 1

    Sufi musicians from all over the world convene to play mystical music that transcends into the spiritual realms. This free event features music workshops all day and free concerts all evening. February 1–3, 2019 at Mohor Kunja in Kolkata and February 6–8, 2019, at International Centre Goa.

  • 2

    Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

    Mumbai
    Feb 2

    This popular free annual arts festival in the Kala Ghoda neighborhood features visual arts, dance, music, theatre, cinema, literature, heritage walks and stalls selling tasty Indian fare and eco-friendly arts and crafts. February 2–10, 2019.

  • 10

    Goa Carnival

    Goa
    Feb 10

    Goa’s Portuguese-influenced pre-Mardi Gras carnival parade of colorful floats, music and dance culminates with the Red and Black Dance, a formal ball in Panaji where the dress code is red and black. February 10–13, 2019.

  • 12

    Shekhawati Heritage Festival

    Nawalgarh, Rajasthan
    Feb 12

    Architecture enthusiasts will not want to miss seeing the famous painted havelis, or noble homes, of the region. Local artisans also exhibit their wares. February 12–15, 2019.

  • 18

    Taj Mahotsav

    Agra, Uttar Pradesh
    Feb 18

    This free festival, located in sight of the Taj Mahal, seeks to recreate the Mugal period with arts, cuisine and culture from that era and a noteworthy procession with elephants, camels and drumming. Camel rides and games for children are also offered. February 18–27, 2019.

  • 19

    Pariyanampetta Pooram

    Pariyanampetta Bhagavathy Temple, Kattukulam, Palakkad district of Kerala
    Feb 19

    Located on the site of the Pariyanampetta Temple, this event is the culmination of a seven-day festival with ritual drawings of the goddesses, an elephant procession, shadow puppetry and traditional dance. February 19–20, 2019.

  • 20

    Attukal Pongola

    Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram), Kerala
    Feb 20

    Among the world’s largest gathering of woman, with around two million cooking for the goddess Attukalama. Join in this celebration of women and taste the sacred sweet porridge that is said to bring you blessings for the upcoming year.

  • 20

    Khajuraho Dance Festival

    Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh
    Feb 20

    The Khajuraho Dance Festival showcases dance styles from all over India for free at one of India’s top historical destinations — the ancient Khajuraho erotic temples. February 20–26, 2019.

  • 22

    Kuttikkol Thampuratty Theyyam

    Kuttikkol Thampuratty Bhagavathy Temple at Kuttikkol, Kasaragod district of Kerala
    Feb 22

    Theyyam is a sacred dance ritual in which artists dress up and go into a trance, channeling gods and goddesses through their bodies. This festival showcases most of the theyyam forms of Kerala. February 22–25, 2019.

March

  • 1

    International Yoga Festival

    Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh
    Mar 1

    One of the largest yoga gatherings in the world, with thousands in attendance, over 70 hours of yoga classes with well-known teachers, and a chance to meet spiritual leaders. March 1–7, 2019.

  • 1

    Chapchar Kut

    Aizawl, the capital of Mizoram in northeast India.
    Mar 1

    A bamboo harvest festival featuring a traditional bamboo dance called cheraw, as well as other tribal dance performances, local crafts, music and more. This festival is on the first Friday in March every year.

  • 4

    Paripally Gajamela

    Kollam, Kerala
    Mar 4

    One of Kerala’s most well-known temple festivals featuring around fifty elaborately decorated elephants.

  • 10

    Konkan Velas Turtle Festival

    Velas village, Ratnagiri, Maharashtra
    Mar 10

    See newly hatched, endangered Olive Ridley turtles take their march into the sea at this annual Turtle Festival. Local home stays in the area allow you to experience village life firsthand.

    Note that the dates for this event are not yet confirmed as it is based upon the turtle mating season. For specifics, please check with local guides.

  • 14

    Painkuni Festival

    Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple, Trivandrum, Kerala
    Mar 14

    A 10-day festival put on by the royal family of Travencore, including a ritual featuring large fiberglass statues of the Pandavas (brothers from the Mahabharata epic) which are immersed on the last day at Sanghumugham beach. March 14-23, 2019.

  • 15

    Myoko

    Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
    Mar 15

    A traditional tribal festival focused on friendship that includes rituals for prosperity, fertility and purification performed by the village shaman or priest, as well as folk performance.

  • 17

    Attuvela Mahotsavam

    Elankavu Sree Bhagavathy Temple, Vadayar, Kottayam District, Kerala
    Mar 17

    A 2-day water carnival in which decorated canoes carry temple replicas through the water towards the temple, accompanied by percussion music. Attuvela Mahotsavam takes place during the third week in March.

  • 21

    Holi – Mewar Holika Dahan

    Udaipur
    Mar 21

    The festival of colors, which is celebrated with the tossing of colored powder. In Udaipur the Mewar royal family marks the occasion with a palace procession including decorated horses and a royal band.

  • 21

    Shigmo

    Throughout Goa
    Mar 21

    A colorful Hindu festival with parades featuring elaborately decorated floats, singing and a traditional dance called Ghode Modni, a martial arts horse dance.

  • 21

    Gangaur Festival

    All over Rajasthan, Jaipur has a notable celebration
    Mar 21

    One of the most important celebrations in Rajasthan honoring love and marriage. Colorful processions of images of the goddess Gauri make their way through the state, with a notable celebration in Jaipur. March 21–April 8, 2019.

  • 24

    Thirunakkara Arattu

    Thirunakkara Mahadeva Temple, Kottayam district, Kerala
    Mar 24

    A famous temple festival in Kerala featuring a procession of decorated elephants, as well as traditional Kathakali dance, and the Mayilattom (peacock dance) on the temple grounds.

April

  • 1

    Tulip Festival

    Kashmir; Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden, Srinagar, Kashmir
    Apr 1

    In Asia’s largest tulip garden, with over a million flowering bulbs. The festival also features daily cultural programs, including Kashmiri folk songs, sale of local handicrafts, and traditional Kashmiri cuisine. The Tulip Festival takes place within the first two weeks of April.

  • 1

    The Aoling Festival

    Mon district of Nagaland in North East India
    Apr 1

    A celebration by the Konyak tribe, who were once notorious headhunters but now live as peaceful agriculturalists, marking the new year and the beginning of spring. April 1–6, 2019

  • 6

    Gudi Padwa Shoba Yatra (Traditional new year for Marathi Hindus)

    Mumbai, Maharashtra
    Apr 6

    The Maharashtrian new year, featuring parades of floats on the culture of the state, locals wearing their finest traditional clothing and women in saris on motorbikes.

  • 6

    Mewar Festival

    Udaipur
    Apr 6

    Features singing, dancing, music with traditional instruments, and cultural programs, including images of the goddess Gauri being transferred by boat on Lake Pichola. April 6–8 2019.

  • 10

    Chithirai Festival

    Meenakshi Temple, Madurai, Tamil Nadu
    Apr 10

    A popular festival in Madurai that re-enacts the wedding of Sundareswarar and the Goddess Meenakshi. It is one of the longest festivals in India, lasting one month.

  • 13

    Ram Navami

    Religious celebrations and processions take place at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh
    Apr 13

    The festival of Ram Navami marks the birthday of Lord Rama, the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu. It’s celebrated throughout India, but particularly in Ayodhya, said to be Ram’s birthplace.

  • 14

    Baisakhi

    Amritsar, Punjab
    Apr 14

    Bhangra dancing, folk music and Punjabi food are central to this celebration of the harvest, the Punjabi new year and the founding of the Sikh religion. The Golden Temple at Amritsar organizes a particularly noteworthy carnival-like event.

  • 19

    Sankat Mochan Music Festival

    Sankat Mochan Hanuman Temple in Varanasi
    Apr 19

    Long-running music festival taking place as part of the celebration of the birthday of the monkey god, Hanuman, featuring acclaimed musicians from all over India playing in the temple courtyard until dawn.

  • 29

    Mount Abu Summer Festival

    Mt. Abu, Rajasthan
    Apr 29

    Some of the finest qawwali music is featured, in addition to regional folk dancing and sports like boat racing on Nakki Lake and a roller-skating race. April 29–30, 2019.

May

  • 1

    International Flower Festival

    Gangtok, Sikkim
    May 1

    Held at the governor’s residence in Gangtok, this annual flower festival features native plants including gladioli, hundreds of types of orchids, bamboos, and 30 types of rhododendrons. May 1–31, 2019.

  • 1

    Moatsü Festival

    Mokokchung district villages, Nagaland
    May 1

    A tribal festival put on by the Ao tribe of Nagaland, with singing, dancing and feasting around a bonfire, celebrating fertility and the coming of spring. A special visa or permission may be needed to attend. May 1–3, 2019 (first three days in May every year).

  • 1

    Ooty Summer Festival

    Ooty, Tamil Nadu
    May 1

    Set in the lush hill station of Ooty, this 16-day annual festival features a spice show, flower show, vegetable show and fruit show, showcasing the beauty of the region.

  • 1

    Char Dham Yatra

    Kedarnath, Badrinath, Gangotri, Yamunotri (Uttarakhand)
    May 1

    The yatra, or pilgrimage season, gets fully underway in the month of May, when these four important locations high up in the Himalayas become reachable and their temples have opened. Package tours will take you to all four. May–September 2019.

  • 5

    Ramadan

    Delhi
    May 5

    Ramadan is a Muslim observance during which no food or water is taken during the day, but after dark the streets in Muslim areas of Delhi and other major cities are filled with people joyfully sharing food together. May 5–June 4, 2019.

  • 8

    Festival of Bharat

    Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi
    May 8

    A weeklong, free celebration of the best of India, including live music, yoga, meditation, Indian cuisine, literature, and a Holi party with organic colors. May 8–14, 2019.

  • 10

    The Yogshala Expo

    Pragati Maidan, New Delhi
    May 10

    This international wellness expo brings together health practitioners and a product showcase including organic food and clothing. Health consultations, workshops, yoga and other activities are available. May 10–12, 2019.

  • 14

    Dhungri Mela

    Manali, Himachal Pradesh
    May 14

    Dhungri Mela is a gathering of the decorated local gods and goddesses from the temples of the region, which are brought to Manali to celebrate the goddess Hadimba. Villagers sing and dance, including performing the Kullu Natti folk dance. May 14–16, 2019.

  • 18

    Buddha Jayanti

    Mahabodhi Temple, Bodhgaya, Bihar
    May 18

    Perhaps the most important day for Buddhists, this full moon celebration marks the birth and enlightenment of the Buddha. Special celebrations are observed at the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodhgaya, where novice monks offer prayers on your behalf.

  • 18

    Saga Dawa Düchen

    Gangtok, Sikkim
    May 18

    An important day for Tibetan Buddhists, this notable celebration begins at Tsuklakhang Monastery in Sikkim. The monks light butter lamps and chant holy scriptures as they travel throughout the town.

  • 26

    Kottiyoor Utsavam

    Kannur, Kerala
    May 26

    This 28-day pilgrimage and rite takes place during the rainy season in Kerala, when thousands of people gather on the Vavali River to perform rituals and circumambulate the shrine. Runs from late May through late June.

June

  • 1

    Uttar Pradesh Mango Festival

    Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
    Jun 1

    Taste fresh mangos and other dishes made from India’s favorite food at this annual event. There will be games for kids, folk music performances, and plenty of boxes of fresh mangos for sale.

  • 2

    Shimla Summer Festival

    Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
    Jun 2

    Travel by toy train to Shimla to beat the heat and enjoy this long-running festival in the Himalayas, with local food and crafts, musical performances and more. The Shimla Summer Festival takes place during the first week in June.

  • 9

    Sital Sasthi

    Sambalpur district, Orissa
    Jun 9

    A 400-year old carnival in Sambalpur featuring folk dancing, folk music and a reenactment of the marriage of Parvati and Shiva, two of the primary Hindu gods.

  • 12

    Ganga Dussehra

    Haridwar, Uttarakhand
    Jun 12

    This festival celebrates the descent of the Ganges River from heaven to earth, with pilgrims all along the sacred river taking a ritual bath and making offerings. Haridwar is a holy city on the Ganges with a notable celebration at the Har Ki Pauri ghat.

  • 16

    Ochira Kali

    Ochira Parabrahma Temple, Kollam, Kerala
    Jun 16

    A battle reenactment on watery ground, featuring a thousand or more locals using sticks and regional martial arts techniques. June 16–17, 2019.

  • 22

    Ambubachi Mela

    Kamakhya Temple, Guwahati, Assam
    Jun 22

    A fertility festival honoring the goddess Kamakhya, where you can see thousands of ash-covered tantric mendicants gathered at the temple doing rituals in this highly photographed spectacle. June 22–26, 2019

  • 24

    Sao Joao Festival

    Throughout Goa
    Jun 24

    Goans celebrate this Catholic festival, dedicated to St. John the Baptist, with colorful boat races and other merriment. Young men jump into wells and other water sources to retrieve gifts deposited there by villagers.

July

  • 1

    Yuru Kabgyat

    Lamayuru Monastery, Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir
    Jul 1

    Sacred masked dances with ornate costumes and music take place during this two-day festival at one of the oldest monasteries in the region, high on a hill with a view of the surrounding area. The Lamayuru Monastery is about two and a half hours from the town of Leh, on the Srinagar-Leh Highway, and can be visited on a day trip by cab.

  • 1

    International Mango Festival

    Dilli Haat market in Janakpuri, New Delhi
    Jul 1

    At least 500 varieties of mangoes will be available to sample and buy, fresh and in chutneys and other preparations. There will also be a mango-eating contest.

  • 1

    Nishagandhi Monsoon Music Festival

    Nishagandhi Auditorium, Kanakakunnu Palace Grounds, Trivandrum, Kerala
    Jul 1

    This festival features popular and traditional music and dance from some of Kerala’s most well-known performers. Last year was the inaugural year, and the state of Kerala is looking to make it annual.

  • 4

    Rath Yatra

    Jagannath Temple, Puri, Odisha
    Jul 4

    Decorated chariots representing the deities Lord Jagannath, Lord Balarama and Devi Subhadra are pulled by devotees in this annual spectacle.

  • 4

    Dree Festival

    Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
    Jul 4

    This Apatani tribe agricultural festival features folk songs and traditional dances, as well as a “Mr. Dree” competition in which men show off their strength and stamina. July 4-7, 2019.

  • 4

    Bonalu (Ashada Jatra Utsavalu)

    QSecunderabad, Hyderabad ( Telangana)
    Jul 4

    A 200-year-old celebration of female energy and the Mother Goddess in which women carry decorated pots on their heads to the temple, along with offerings of sweet rice porridge. Takes place over four Sundays at different temples in the region. July 7–28, 2019.

  • 11

    Hemis Festival

    Hemis Monastery, Leh, Ladakh
    Jul 11

    A two-day festival commemorating Padmasambhava, one of the founders of Tibetan Buddhism, featuring masked dances, traditional music, crafts for sale and more. July 11–12, 2019.

  • 15

    Champakulam Boat Race

    Pampa River at Champakulam village, near Alleppey, Kerala
    Jul 15

    The first in a series of boat races in long traditional canoes in Kerala, also called snake boat races, which are among the most exciting events in the region during the monsoon. The festivities include water floats, decorated boats, and special songs sung by oarsmen.

  • 15

    Behdienkhlam

    Jowai, Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya
    Jul 15

    This popular festival is put on by the Pnar tribe of Meghalaya to mark the end of the planting season and request protection for the crops. Tribal dances and a competitive local ball game played with a wooden ball, often in the rain, are some of the main activities.

  • 15

    Royal Enfield Himalayan Odyssey

    New Delhi to Leh
    Jul 15

    This 18-day journey takes serious motorcycle riders through rough terrains and mountain passes from Delhi to Leh. Arranged by the Royal Enfield motorcycle company.

  • 16

    Guru Purnima

    Mathura, Uttar Pradesh
    Jul 16

    The day of the guru, or teacher, is honored across India. You’ll find celebrations at many of the ashrams and temples throughout the country, including a notable celebration in Mathura, where millions of devotees come to pay tribute to their teachers.

  • 30

    Karsha Gustor Festival

    Karsha Monastery, Zanskar region, Jammu and Kashmir
    Jul 30

    In this festival, an oracle speaks through a local layman after he or she is spiritually cleansed by a lama. The monks at the monastery also perform the Black Hat Dance. July 30–31, 2019.

August

  • 1

    Drupka Teshi Festival

    Yumthang Valley, Sikkim
    Aug 1

    The village lights up as many people illuminate lamps at local monasteries to honor Gautama Buddha and his first teachings to disciples in Sarnath.

  • 1

    Covelong Point Surf, Music and Yoga Festival

    Kovalam village, Tamil Nadu
    Aug 1

    This festival features a surf competition, music from around the world, yoga classes, wellness therapies, organic food stalls and more. The Covelong Point Surf, Music and Yoga Festival takes place in August annually.

  • 3

    Teej

    Jaipur, Bundi ( Rajasthan )
    Aug 3

    A series of monsoon festivals primarily for married women, celebrated with great fanfare in Jaipur and Bundi, Rajasthan. Women dress elaborately in red and green and seek out the blessings of the goddess Parvati to ensure marital bliss. Hariyali Teej: August 3, 2019; Kajari Teej: August 18, 2019; Hartalika Teej: September 1, 2019.

  • 10

    Nehru Trophy Boat Race

    Alleppey, Kerala
    Aug 10

    The most popular snake boat race in Kerala, in which villagers’ race in traditional 100-foot-long boats while singing folk songs along with the crowd.

  • 15

    Independence Day

    Red Fort, Delhi
    Aug 15

    A celebration of India’s independence from British rule in 1947, involving a flag-hoisting ceremony, kite flying, and cultural programs centered around the Red Fort in Delhi.

  • 17

    Parsi New Year

    Mumbai, Maharashtra
    Aug 17

    A day of celebration for Zoroastrians (many of whom live in Mumbai), in which houses are cleaned and decorated with flowers, families dress their best and give offerings at the fire temple and eat special fish dishes and sweets.

  • 18

    Madras Week

    Chennai, Tamil Nadu
    Aug 18

    A celebration of what Chennai has to offer, including heritage walks, food festivals, photo exhibitions and bike tours.

  • 22

    Jhapan Mela

    Bishnupur, Bankura district, West Bengal
    Aug 22

    Snake charmers assemble with their king cobras and other snakes in woven baskets to do tricks and worship the goddess of fertility and rainfall. This celebration takes place on the last day of Shravana in the Hindu calendar.

  • 23

    Tarnetar Fair

    Tarnetar, near the town of Thangadh, Gujarat
    Aug 23

    This popular festival is a celebration of Gujarat’s ethnic folk dancing, music, costumes and the arts. You can also find unique traditional crafts for sale, including jewelry and embroidery. Anticipated to take place August 23 –26, 2019, this fair is held during the first week of Bhadrapada in the Hindu calendar, three days over a weekend.

  • 24

    Bonderam Festival

    Divar Island, near Panjim, Goa
    Aug 24

    Property disputes of the past are playfully reenacted with parody fighting, and the state of Goa is celebrated with a street parade, music and a carnival. This festival takes place annually on the fourth Saturday in August.

  • 24

    Janmashtami

    Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh
    Aug 24

    A celebration of the birth of Krishna, an avatar of the god Vishnu. Celebrations include reenactments of stories from Krishna’s life and devotional.

  • 25

    Gogamedi Fair

    Gogamedi village, Hanumangarh district, Rajasthan
    Aug 25

    A traditional cattle and craft fair featuring local songs, dances and handicrafts, putting the rural charm of village life in Rajasthan on full display.

September

  • 1

    Athachamayam

    Tripunithura, Kochi, Kerala
    Sep 1

    This colorful event kicks off the Onam Festival with a street parade featuring decorated elephants and floats, musicians, traditional dances and other arts from Kerala.

  • 1

    Onam Festival

    Kochi, Kerala
    Sep 1

    Highlights of this major harvest festival include several kinds of dancing, boat races, decorative flower arrangements in front of homes, temple offerings, music and more. It is celebrated all over Kerala, but bigger cities like Kochi will have more cultural programs available. September 1–13, 2019.

  • 2

    Ganesh Festival

    Mumbai, Maharashtra
    Sep 2

    The elephant-headed god Ganesh gets feted in grand style for 11 days, with locals packing the streets to visit specially erected temples all over town. At the end of the festival, giant statues of Ganesh are paraded with great fanfare to the ocean, where they are immersed. September 2–12, 2019.

  • 2

    Chakradhar Samaroh

    Raigarh, Chhattisgarh
    Sep 2

    A classical music and dance festival featuring artists from all over India, in honor of Chakradhar Singh, the former raja of Raigarh, who wrote several books on music and dance. Chakradhar Samaroh takes place during the Ganesh Festival and is anticipated to run from September 2–12, 2019.

  • 4

    The Monsoon Festival

    City Palace, Jaipur, Rajasthan
    Sep 4

    This exhibition celebrates art from multiple disciplines inspired by the Indian monsoon, or rainy season, which looms large in the Indian consciousness.

  • 4

    Onam Pulikali

    Swaraj Round in Thrissur, Kerala
    Sep 4

    As part of the festivities of the Onam Festival, hundreds of people dress up in elaborate costumes and body paint to perform the Tiger Dance, which includes a mock tiger hunt. Onam Pulikali takes place on the fourth day of the Onam Festival.

  • 10

    Muharram Festival and Tazia Procession

    Udaipur, Rajasthan
    Sep 10

    A Muslim holiday commemorating the martyr Hazrat Imam Husain, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad. It takes place on the 10th day of the Muslim new year, when tazias, or shrines to the dead, are taken in a procession and immersed in Lake Pichola in Udaipur.

  • 12

    Ramlila

    Ramnagar, Varanasi district, Uttar Pradesh
    Sep 12

    One of the oldest reenactments of the famous Hindu epic Ramayana, this play features lavish sets and costumes and takes place over 31 days along the Ganges River in Varanasi. Ramlila starts on Anant Chaturdashi and ends on the following month’s full moon (anticipated to conclude October 13, 2019).

  • 25

    Ladakh Festival

    Leh, Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir
    Sep 25

    Polo matches, music, local dances, archery, river rafting and art exhibitions are all part of this yearly festival celebrating the region of Ladakh. September 25–28, 2019.

  • 27

    Ziro Festival of Music

    Ziro Valley, Arunachal Pradesh
    Sep 27

    A popular outdoor music festival located in the scenic and off-the-beaten track countryside of Arunachal Pradesh. Folk acts from the northeast of India as well as musicians from all over the world are featured.

  • 28

    Pune International Literary Festival

    Pune, Maharashtra
    Sep 28

    A chance to meet and interact with more than 100 authors from India and abroad who come together at this annual literary festival. The event includes panel discussions, book launches and workshops.

  • 29

    Bathukamma

    Hyderabad, Telangana
    Sep 29

    A flower festival during the annual Navaratri festivities, in celebration of the Mother Goddess, featuring flower shrines where women gather and sing devotional songs. On the last day, the shrines are paraded through town and immersed in local bodies of water. Bathukamma is anticipated to occur September 29–October 7, 2019.

October

  • 2

    Gandhi’s Birthday

    Raj Ghat, New Delhi
    Oct 2

    A national holiday celebrating the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule. Prayer meetings take place at the site of his cremation, Raj Ghat in Delhi, where a memorial now stands.

  • 2

    Kabir Yatra

    Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner (Rajasthan)
    Oct 2

    A national holiday celebrating the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule. Prayer meetings take place at the site of his cremation, Raj Ghat in Delhi, where a memorial now stands.

  • 4

    Durga Puja

    Kolkata, West Bengal
    Oct 4

    A celebration of the goddess Durga, during which people take to the streets to see handcrafted statues installed all over Kolkata, listen to live performances, and eat food from local food carts. On the final day, the statues are paraded around town and submerged in the river. October 4–8, 2019

  • 10

    Abhaneri Festival

    Abhaneri village, Bandikui Dausa district, Rajasthan
    Oct 10

    A celebration of Rajasthani song and dance, featuring cultural performances from across the state, as well as puppet shows, camel cart rides, and a fair. The festival takes place in the historic and beautiful Harshat Mata Temple and Chand Baori stepwell.

  • 10

    Rajasthan International Folk Festival

    Mehrangarh Fort, Jodhpur, Rajasthan
    Oct 10

    Wildly popular folk festival in which local performers and internationally recognized artists come together to perform against the backdrop of the Mehrangarh Fort. Featuring interactive educational events, scheduled performances and late-night jam sessions. October 10–14, 2019.

  • 10

    Marwar Festival

    Jodhpur, Rajasthan
    Oct 10

    This festival focuses on the historical culture of Marwar, a desert region in Rajasthan. Highlights include folk music and dancing, polo matches, and a turban-tying competition. October 12–13, 2019.

  • 12

    The Sacred Pushkar

    Pushkar, Rajasthan
    Oct 12

    A wellness gathering with yoga classes, sound healing, devotional music, cooking classes and similar experiences available to participants. Takes place in the popular backpacker haunt of Pushkar.

  • 17

    World Living Heritage Festival

    City Palace, Udaipur, Rajasthan
    Oct 17

    This festival is all about the local heritage of the notable city of Udaipur, with experts, artists and enthusiasts gathering for talks, music and other performances, a market of local arts and crafts, and heritage walks.

  • 26

    Tawang Festival

    Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh
    Oct 26

    Locals and tourists alike gather for a celebration of the culture of Arunachal Pradesh, featuring a colorful street fair, folk dancing, and chanting by the monks of Tawang Monastery.

  • 27

    Diwali

    Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab
    Oct 27

    This annual festival of lights marks the new year in the Hindu calendar, as families light lamps and place them outside of their homes. See Diwali celebrated on a grander scale in Amritsar, where the Golden Temple shines brightly, draped with lights.

November

  • 1

    International Yoga & Music Festival

    Rishikesh, Uttarakhand
    Nov 1

    A free festival featuring many different styles of yoga and classical Indian music, located in one of the most renowned cities for yoga in all of India. November 1–7, 2019.

  • 1

    Rann Utsav

    Great Rann of Kutch salt desert, Dhordo, Gujarat
    Nov 1

    A festival dedicated to the culture of the Kutch region of Rajasthan, with tours of the area, music, crafts, folk dancing and opportunities to stay in luxury tents in the salt desert. The most popular time to attend is during a full moon. Rann Utsav runs from November to late February.

  • 2

    Chhath Puja

    Assi Ghat, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
    Nov 2

    An evening festival on the Ganges River, where people gather to chant prayers and give offerings to the river in order to appease the Sun God. Chai and handicraft sellers line the ghats with their wares.

  • 3

    Hampi Utsav

    Hampi, Karnataka
    Nov 3

    The ancient city of Hampi comes alive for this three-day festival featuring traditional Indian music, dance, puppet shows, fireworks, local crafts, and guided heritage walks through the ruins. November 3 –5, 2019.

  • 4

    Pushkar Camel Fair

    Pushkar, Rajasthan
    Nov 4

    Herders and traders from the surrounding region bring approximately 30,000 camels to this world-famous fair. In addition to camel trading, there is also a camel-decorating contest, camel races and evening celebrations with singing, dancing and bonfires. A hot-air-balloon festival happens concurrently for a bird’s-eye view. November 4–12, 2019.

  • 8

    Wangala Festival

    Garo Hills, Meghalaya
    Nov 8

    This harvest festival celebrates the culture of the Garo tribe of Meghalaya, with elaborate drumming and a traditional dance competition, a local crafts fair and exhibition, and a slow-cooking competition. Wangala is a two-day festival.

  • 9

    The Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday

    Srinagar, Kashmir
    Nov 9

    The Islamic festival of Eid-Milad-un-Nabi celebrates the birth of the Prophet Mohammed with prayers and processions, especially in Kashmir, where thousands of devotees gather at the Hazratbal Shrine and in mosques throughout the city.

  • 12

    Guru Nanak Jayanti

    Amritsar, Punjab
    Nov 12

    A festival dedicated to the founder of the Sikh religion, Guru Nanak Sahib. The Golden Temple in Amritsar is illuminated for a notable celebration that includes singing, dancing and a demonstration of Sikh martial arts. Guru Nanak Jayanti is a three-day festival occurring November 12–14, 2019.

  • 12

    Ganga Mahotsav and Dev Deepawali

    Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
    Nov 12

    A traditional craft bazaar and classical music performances take place nightly along the Ganges river, leading up to the evening of Dev Deepawali. On that night, locals come out to see elaborate chalk drawings and light lamps along the river, while priests chant Vedic mantras. The best viewing is by boat. November 12–22, 2019.

  • 15

    Bundi Utsav

    Bundi, Rajasthan
    Nov 15

    A three-day celebration of traditional arts and crafts in Rajasthan, taking place in the charming town of Bundi. The festival also features traditional rural sports, a classical music and dance program, and a turban competition. November 15–17, 2019

  • 22

    Potters Market

    Gohar Mahal, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
    Nov 22

    Potters from across India convene to exhibit and sell their work, with top potters conducting workshops and doing demonstrations. Live music and local food stalls round out the event, and other handicrafts are also available for purchase.

December

  • 1

    Kumbhalgarh Festival

    Kumbhalgarh, Rajasthan
    Dec 1

    Three-day festival at the majestic Kumbhalgarh Fort, celebrating the art and culture of Rajasthan, with classical music and dance, puppet shows and a puppet-making exhibition, and art exhibitions.

  • 1

    Delhi International Arts Festival

    New Delhi
    Dec 1

    A multidisciplinary festival for Indian and international arts, including dance and music performances, art exhibitions, film, food and more.

  • 1

    Konark Festival

    Konark Sun Temple, Puri, Odisha
    Dec 1

    Classical Indian dance festival with performances in the Konark Sun Temple in Odisha. Includes a local crafts fair, a sand art competition on Chandrabhaga Beach, and an exhibition of local art and temple sculptures. December 1–5, 2019.

  • 1

    Hornbill Festival

    Kisama Heritage Village, Nagaland
    Dec 1

    A remote village festival celebrating the traditional arts, dance, music, and crafts of the local indigenous warrior tribes of the region. December 1–10, 2019.

  • 2

    One Earth Festival

    JVPD Ground, Juhu, Mumbai, Maharashtra
    Dec 2

    Free festival where you can nosh on vegan food and peruse a cruelty-free product showcase, as well as shop at an organic marketplace with more than 100 stalls.

  • 14

    Magnetic Fields Festival

    Alsisar Mahal, Shekhawati region, Rajasthan
    Dec 14

    A contemporary music and arts festival featuring musicians and artists from all over the world, which takes place at an exquisitely restored 17th-century palace hotel in Rajasthan. Stay locally in luxury tents or in rooms on the property.

  • 15

    Serendipity Arts Festival

    Panaji, Goa
    Dec 15

    Contemporary, traditional and folk arts are celebrated at this free annual festival in Panaji, Goa, with theatrical performances, art exhibitions, culinary experiences and more, all throughout the city.

  • 21

    Shilpgram Art and Craft Fair

    Udaipur, Rajasthan
    Dec 21

    This village just outside of Udaipur is the perfect place to shop for local Rajasthani arts and crafts, as this festival brings together more than 400 artisans and craftspeople to display and sell their work. Music and cultural performances add to the atmosphere of this annual event.

  • 22

    Chhau Jhumur Utsav

    Bamnia village, Purulia, West Bengal
    Dec 22

    Around 2,000 dancers gather for this celebration of the Chhau dance form of northeastern India, wearing decorative masks for this acrobatic performance. Guests can also visit the nearby village of Charida to see the artisans who make the masks at work.

  • 24

    Poush Mela

    Shantiniketan, West Bengal
    Dec 24

    A Bengali folk music festival featuring the music of the Bauls, the wandering musicians of the region. The event features dancing and traditional sports, as well as thousands of vendors selling local crafts.

  • 25

    Christmas Day

    Basilica of Bom Jesus, Old Goa, Goa
    Dec 25

    Celebrate Christmas Day in Goa, where much of India’s Christian population lives, with feasting and fireworks. Attend a midnight mass at Basilica of Bom Jesus, a UNESCO World Heritage site that contains the remains of St. Francis Xavier.

Lunar Events Note that this is a lunar event/based upon the moon cycle. For specific dates, please check with local guides. Not Yet Confirmed Note that the dates for this event are not yet confirmed. For specifics, please check with local guides.