The evening that falls before Holi, marks Holika Dahan. A bonfire is lit on this evening. This part of the festival has a legend associated with it. According to this legend, demon King Hiranyakashyap demanded everybody in his kingdom to worship him but his pious son, Prahlad who was a devotee of Lord Vishnu did not do so. Hiranyakashyap wanted his son to be killed. He asked his sister Holika to enter a blazing fire with Prahlad in her lap as Holika had a boon which made her immune to fire. Prahlad was saved by the Lord himself while evil minded Holika was burnt to ashes, for her boon worked only when she entered the fire alone. Since that time, the bonfire called Holika has been lit on the eve of Holi festival to celebrate the victory of good over evil and also mark devotion to God.
Holi is also considered to be the day of friendship, when in keeping with the spirit of the day, people forget petty enmities and renew their friendship.
The colorful festival of Holi is widely celebrated on Hindi month Phalgun’s Purnima (Lunar month) which usually falls in February end or early of March. Holi has an ancient origin which celebrates the triumph of 'virtue' over 'evil'. The colorful Holi festival bridges the social gap and renews relationships. On this day, people play with many vibrant colors mainly Abeer, Gulal and throw splashes of colored water on to each-other while singing carols for Holi. The sweet which is famous in Holi is called ‘Guzhia’; people usually prepare it their home and then share it with their friends & neighbors.
Let’s call Holi a transition when we make a huge celebration to bid farewell to the cold of winter and welcoming the warmth of summer. Holi is the time in India when climate becomes pleasing and fills life and unspoken enthusiasm in your spirit. The time when you see the true colors of spring all around, in this vary time India looks like a beautiful lass attired with colors and Earth seems to be taking new birth. The joy of Holi is felt very deeply through the multicolored flowers and fresh green leaves of trees and thunder showers with pinkish cold. The song of birds can be listening everywhere in orchards & woods; can say that it is the perfect time to visit India. And the time when your heart got stole by the liveliness of this festival of Colors, Holi.
Celebration of Holi festival takes place with lighting up of bonfire on the Holi eve. Many of folklore & legends are associated with Holi celebration make this festival more lushes and vivid. This year Holi Festival is falling on 8th March and We hope that we make best efforts to make it more vibrant and joyous than the past years.
Uttar Pradesh (North India) is among the best place in India to feel the true essence of the festival of colors Holi. Celebrations in Mathura and Varanasi are the most exciting amongst all of the celebrations in the state. The essence of Holi celebrations in Brajbhoomi is said to be kept the same even today, as it was celebrated thousands years back (during Krishna's era). Holi in Braj start a week earlier than the rest of India. The concept of the Holi at Braj is that men from Nandagaon (Village of Lord Krishna) raid Barsana (Radha's village) to raise a flag on Shri Radhikaji temple. The catch being that women from Barsana greet them with long wooden sticks and colored water where the men have to be well padded as they cannot retaliate. Their only self-defence is water guns which they use at the ladies in order to distract them. This is one of the most popular of the Holi festivals in India also popularly called as 'Lathmaar Holi'.
In Mathura Vrindavan the celebrations of the festival go on for about a week. One of the unique features of the festival here is that different temples of Lord Krishna celebrate Holi on different days. It is interesting as well as amazing, to watch devotees at the Banke-Bihari Temple of Vrindavan. The environment is filled with a unique thrill, with people passionately chanting the name of Lord Krishna and Radha. Interesting celebrations also takes place at Gulal-Kund in Braj where boys mock Krishna leela on the day of Holi.Holi is one beautiful and colorful festivals of India. This is one festival where all the religious, linguistic and cultural barriers are broken. To feel the real essence of Holi, it must be witnessed in the spirits of men, women and children of Uttar Pradesh.
If you are planning to visit this incredible country in March, you can witness this amazing festival. Some of the best places to celebrate holi festival are Pushkar, Vrindavan, Goa, Varanasi, Rishikesh etc, But Vrindavan-Mathura regions of the state of Uttar Pradesh are most famous for the Holi Celebration.
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