Rajasthan Fairs and Festivals

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Rajsthan Fairs & Festivals

Royal Rajasthan

Rajasthan is more commonly known for its colourful and exciting Festivals and fairs. Every year thousands of Rajasthani men & women gathers in this festivals and fairs, and people from all across world come here to enjoy these exciting moments. These fairs & Festivals arte organized for religious purpose as well as commercial.

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Camel Festival

(Bikaner, January) A unique celebration highlighting camel & cultural heritage of northern Rajasthan. The camel festival begins with a colourful procession of bedecked camels against the red sandstone backdrop of the Junagarh fort, the festivity advances to the open sand spreads of the grounds, followed by the best breed competition, the tug of war contest, camel dances & acrobatics. The camels dance gracefully to the slightest direction of their trainers their bejeweled necks, jingling anklets cast a magical spell. Glorious Gorbandh dance, local folk performs and dazzling fireworks offer a different tenor & tempo altogether.

Where to Stay : Bikaner

Nagaur Fair

(Nagaur. Jan.-Feb.) Essentially an animal fair is one of the largest in the colmtry. The fair is renowned for the trading in cows, bullocks, camels & horses Mirchi Bazar is the main attraction and wooden items, iron craft & leather accessories are available in plenty during the fair. As the Sun goes down, a joyous atmosphere is created by the folk musicians whose voices echo far & wide across the tranquil desert sand. Nagaur is well connected to the mal or tourist centers of Rajasthan. The nearest airport is Jodhpur (135 Km.).

Where to Stay : Nagaur

Desert Festival

(Jaisalmer, Jan.-Feb.) A unique three day show on the sands, when the desert blooms with the riotous colour of Rajasthan 's desert heritage. The traditional dances (famous Gair & Fire dances) backed by high pitched music take the folk dances and the audience on an Euphoric trip. The turban tying competition & Mr. Desert contest coupled with camel race & acrobatics add a touch of excitement to the celebrations. One can enjoy the pleasure of a camel ride to the sand dances and view musicians & dancers performing.

Where to Stay : Jaisalmer

Baneshwar Fair

(Baneshwar Dungarpur,Jan.-Feb.) A religious festival with simple & traditional rituals. Quaint rhythms conjure up the tribal cultural identity of the Bhils of Rajasthan, Gujarat & M.P. Baneshwar means the master of the delta and this name was given to the Shiva linga. The Beneshwar fair is held at a small delta formed by the river Som & Mahi & prayers are offered to Lord Shiva locally named as Baneshwar. The fair resounds with the gaeity of traditional folk songs, folk dances, Raslila, animal show, magic shows acrobatic feats. Adding to the excitement are me joy ride." on merygo rounds & swings.

Where to Stay : Dungarpur

Elephant Festival

(Jaipur, March) A magnificent spectactle, it unveils the majesty and grandeur of elephants celebrated around Holi. The Mahavats or owners proudly decorate their elephants with bright colours, jhool., (saddle cloth) and heavy jewellary. A royal procession of decorated elephants, a match of elephant polo, an elephant race and playing Holi on elephants are main events.

Where to Stay : Jaipur

Brij Festival

(Bharatpur, March) Held on the eve of Holi in honour of Lord Krishna, this festival is marked by verve & east Villagers, in gay, multitude attire can be seen singing and performing the Raslila dance the immortal love story of Radha & Krishna.

Where to Stay : Bharatpur

Sheetla Mata Fair

(Chaksu, March April) The fair is held in the honour of Sheetla Mata. People believe that epidemics spread because of the wrath of Sheetla mata and hence they worship her and cook one's own food at the site and offer first to the shrine. A temporary market comes up at the fair and rural folk can be seen trading in shoes, clothes, utensils, food stuff & agricultural implements. A cattle fair is also organised during the fair.

Gangaur Festival

(Jaipur, MarchApril) A festival devoted to Goddess Parvati, the consort of Lord Shiva. Ishar & Gangaur are the divine male and female ho embody marital love. Dedicated to goddess Gauri (Parvati), the festival commences on Holi/ Young girls pray for ;rooms of their choice while married women seek a long life for their husbands. rhe ladies decorate their hands and feet )y drawing designs with Mehendi (Myrtle Jaste). On the evening of the 7th day after -ioli, unmarried girls go around singing songs of ghudlia (earthern pots with numerous holes all around with a lamp lit aside) carrying the pots on their hands. )n their way they collect small presents ,f cash, sweets, jaggery, ghee, oil etc. The women do these while chanting hymns to the Goddess. Festivities continue for 18 days culminating with the arrival of Lord Shiva to escort his bride home. A grand process Ion with the ideal of Gauri in beautifully decorated gold and silver a palanquin caparisoned elephants, camels, horses, dances, drummers & joyous children, goes through the city streets. In Jaipur procession forms at the Palace Gate known as T ripolia and moves on the city streets on to Talkatora. A vast gathering of jaipurites & villagers from nearby areas witness the procession. A sweet dish called Ghewar characteristic of the Gangaur festival is distributed among friends & relatives. In Jodhpur early in the morning thousands of maidens, clad in their best attire, singing melodious songs, bring water and durba grass in silver or brass pots to a place known as Girdikot. In Udaipur the images of Isar & Gauri are taken in a procession to the Pichola lake there after in a boat for an hour they go around the lake and the ceremony comes to an end with a display of fireworks on the banks. The Girasia tribe eligible boys & girls in Sirohi, Mount Abu region during Gangaur festival select their life partners & elope with them. This form of marriage has the sanction of the community.

Where to Stay : Jaipur

Mewar Festival

(Udaipur, MarchApril) Coinciding with the festival of Gangaur the Mewar festival is celebrated to welcome the advent of spring. Once the religions part of the festival is over it is time for potrayal of Rajasthani culture through songs, dances and other programmes. The festival culminates with an impressive fire works display.
Kaila Devi Fair

Where to Stay : Udaipur

Kaila Devi Fair

(Kaila-Karauli, March April) The temple of Kaila Devi popularly known as Mahalakshmi (the goddess of wealth) is the venue of the fair lasting for a fortnight. Kaila Devi has been regarded as the guardian deity throughout the ages by the Khinchis the Yadavs & the princes of Karauli. The ritual of Kanak-Oandoti is observed by the staunch devotees. They cover a distance of 15 to 20 Kms. to reach the temple lying prostrate, making lines with their hands in that position, advancing upto the line drawn and repeating this procedure till they reach the temple.
Groups of M i n a tribemen arrIve ill a spirit gaiety singing and creating a lively Kaila is 24 Kms. to south west of Karauli & Mahavirji. The site is approachable by motorable road from Karauli, Hindaun (rail-head also)

Shri Mahavirji Fair

(Chandangaon, March-April) : Followes of Mahavir Swami -24th tirthankara (Saint) of digambar Jains come from far & wide to pay homage at the shrine at Chandangaon. There is a Manstambha (tower of glory) made of marble in front of the temple. The pilgrims gather at the temple to workship, meditate & seek the blessings of the saint. The image of Mahavirji is washed early in the morning, the ritual called prakshalan. This is followed by pujan & evening aarti. The fair reaches its peak when the image of the deity is taken to the bank of river Ganlbhiri in gra~d processIon for Kalash Abhishek. The procession with the golden chariot returns with the same grandeur & the image is restored at the vedi of the temple. Students of Jain schools stage plays based on Jain philosophy. Chandangaon the site of the fair is 6.5 km. away from Shri Mahavirji Railway Station of the Western Railway Delhi-Mumbai line. Buses ply regularly between Jaipur & Mahavirji.


Summer Festival

(Mt. Abu, June) The steep rocks, tranqillake, mango grooves, bauhinia trees & thickets of wild berries cover this hilly mount. The three day festival is a feast of folk & classical music and a window to the tribal life & culture of Rajasthan. Cail; Choomar & Dhap folk dances enthrall the spectators. Sporting events such as the boat race on the Nakki lake add variety to the festival. Udaipur (185 Kms.) is the nearest airport and Abu Road (29 Kms.) is the nearest Railway station and, there is a good network of bus services connecting Mount Abu to Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur & Ahmedabad.

Where to Stay : Mount Abu

Teej Fair

(Jaipur , July-August) The festival celebrating the reunion of Shiva & Parvati, is celebrated at the onset of the onsoon. Teej is the festival of swings. Young girls & women dressed in green clothes sing songs & swing in celebrating the advent of the mansoon. An elaborate procession is taken out in Jaipur for two consecutive days with ornately dressed elephants, horses & camels, bands, performing artists & coluorfully dressed people Goddess Parvati is invoked to bless her worshippers with conjugal harmony & bliss.

Where to Stay : Jaipur

Gogaji Fair

(Gogamedi, Aug.-Sept.): Gogaji Fair is held is the memory of a popular hero of the area who is known as Goga Veer among the Hindus & Jahar Peer(saint) among the muslims. Gogaji is popular as a snake god and almost every village in Rajasthan has a Than (sacred place) dedicated to him. The idol of Gogaji is seated on a blue horse with a snake coiled around the neck. An inscription in Persian can be seen at the main entrance which describes Mahmud Ghaznavi's regard for Gogaji. Many people can be seen singing & dancing carrying multicoloured flags called nishan in their hands.

Kajli Teej

(Bundi, Aug.) The festival starts with the procession of goddess Teej in a decorated palanquin from the beautiful Naval Sagar, passing through the main bazaars terminating at Azad park. The procession has decorated elephants, camels, bands, performing artists & the days of yore, of battles & valiant heroes who still live on in their songs. The impressive U maid Bhawan Palace Meherangarh fort which are symbols of the ingenuity, might and valour of the Rajputs of the Marwar region provide the ideal venue for the cultural extravaganza colourfully attired people. The cultural programme organised during the evenings performances region.

Where to Stay : Bundi

Ramdevra Fair

(Ramdevra-Pokaran, Aug-Sept.) Regarded as an in carnation of Lord Krishna by Hindus & venerated by Muslims also as Ram Shah Pir, Baba Ramdev was a T anwar Rajput and a saint who had miraculous powers. He believed in the equality of all human beings and helped the down trodden by granting them their wishes. The Ramdevra fair is attended by hundreds of thousands of devotees irrespective of their caste, creed & religion. These groups organise night long singing of bhajans & kirtans to pay homage to Baba. Ramdevra village lies about 12 Kms. From Pokaran in Jaisalmer district & can be reached from Jodhpur and Pokaran by bus & rail.

Where to Stay : Pokaran

Dussehra Mela

(Kota, Oct.) Tall effigies of the demons Ravana, Kumbhakarna & Meghnad are burnt on Dussehra day to symbolise the victory of good over evil. Dussehra in Kota is the begining of a festive period when people gather here from their villages to offer prayers to Lord Ram and celebrate his victory over Ravana, the ten headed demon king. Men, women & children in colourful dresses participate in the festival to the strains of traditional music. Rural markets and shopping arcades emerge from nowhere, resulting in b r i s k trading. The whole festival lasting about a fortnight takes on the form of a big carnival. Artists from allover the country are invited to participate in cultural programmes.

Where to Stay : Kota

Pushkar Fair

(Pushkar-Ajmer, November) Excitement, gaiety and a keen sense of competition fill the air as the long journey to Pushkar begins. The only temple dedicated to Lord Brahma (the creator) is located at Pushkar. The Pushkar lake is surrounded by 52 flights of steps called ghats. Legend has it that Lord Vishnu appeared at the Varah ghat in the form of a boar. Brahma took a bath here and performed yagna at the Brahma Ghat accompanied by Vishnu & Mahadev. The ashes of Mahatma Gandhi (Father of the Nation) were immersed at the Gandhi ghat. Pushkar is among the five principal places of Hindu pilgrimage. People consider the water of the Pushkar lake to be very sacred and the ritual of taking dips in the holy water IS believed to bestow salvation. It I s customary to float lighted eastern lamps ed on pattals (plates made of leaves) on the waters of lake. This creales a spectacular view when the sacred lake takes on a mystical tint sprankled with twinkling spots of light. In conjunction with he religious fair, a cattle fair is also organised. The ancient town of Pushkar is transformed into a spectacular fair ground. The fair grounds reverberate with festivity and woman folk shop for bangles, clothes, utensils, sundry household items & leather goods. The highlight of the Pushkar fair is the trading in camels. The camel, horse & donkey races are events that draw huge attendance. Body tatooing is yet another favourite activity. Come dusk, and the rich strains of haunting music are carried across the desert sands as the merrymaking continues deep into the night.

Where to Stay : Pushkar

Chandrabhaga Fair

(Ghalrapatan Jhalawar, November) Chandrabhaga is considered the holiest river in this part of Rajasthan. On Kartik Purmma (full moon) night, thousands of Hindus undertake a pilgrimage here for a dip in the holy waters of the river. A big cattle fair, next only to the Pushkar Fair, is held here on this commerce. The fair provides an opportunity to acquaint with the people of Hadoti and their cultural rituals & traditions. Jhalarapatan is 6 kms from Jhalawar and Jhalawar is well connected by road to Kota, Bundi & Jaipur. Ramganj Mandi (25 kms) is the nearest Railway Station.


(Jaipur, Oct.-Nov.) Diwali is the most popular of all Indian festivals celebrated throughout the country. It is a celebration of light, roughly marks the advent of winter. The origin of this festival
can be traced back to the ancient Hindu epic Ramayana, when Lord Rama returned to his kingdom Ayodhya after 14 years of exile. Houses allover India glow with the twinkle of innumerable diya, candles & electric lights. The night is illuminated with the flaming lights of fire works. For Hindus Diwali " marks the begining of the new yea r . Prayers are set to invoke the blessing of Lakshmf, the goddess of wealth & new books of accounts are opened. Friends, relatives & business associates of every faith exchange gaily wrapped boxes of sweets & gifts. During Diwali Celeration in Jaipur decoration & lighting is done throughout the city with every market competing with the others to pick-up the best decorated market award.

Where to Stay : Jaipur


(March) Holi is celebrated throughout the northern belt of India to welcome the spring season when crowds of merry makers spray coloured powder (Gulal) on one another. Allover the place blithe faces smeared in rainbow hues and drenched in coloured water can be seen. On this day barriers of social status are let down as prince & pauper alike enjoy a bout of revelry.


(Ajmer) The urs, acommomerative celebration is held in the solemn memory of Khwaja Muin-nddin Chisti, a prighly respected sufi saint fondly revered as the benefactor of the poor, popularly known as Gareeb Nawaz. The Dargah Sharif in Ajmer, is the place where the Saints mortal remains lie burried and is the site of the largest Muslim Fair in India. Chadar; Ghilaph & Neema which are votive offerings for the tomb are offered by several hundred thousand devotees. Mehfils & Qawwalis are held and mass prayer calls for the eternal peace of the mankind. An interesting ritual is the looting of Kheer (Milk Pudding) which is cooked in two large cauldrons called Degs and distributed to the devotees as tabarruk (blessed food).

Where to Stay : Ajmer

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