Latest news from the Himalaya and Karakoram

Friday, 22 March 2013

Hindu festival of Holi celebrated in Nepal and India

Photo: enjoying Holi festival on Annapurna Circuit trek

Following my earlier post about Shivaratri festival in Kathmandu the next important one is Holi or commonly known as Festival of Colours. Holi is celebrated by Hindus in Nepal and India to mark the end of winter and to celebrate the start of of Spring. This festival is held on the last full moon of the lunar month of Phalguna and this year in the western calendar it is on March 26th.

Holi is celebrated with fun and joy where revellers normally hold a bonfire, throw coloured powder at each other and celebrate wildly. The reason for using coloured powder is to take away sorrow and sadness and literally bring colour into everyone’s lives. People sometimes throw water balloons from roof tops of buildings so be aware if you are walking in the streets below! It is certainly a good idea to wear old clothes ones you do not mind being covered in coloured powder and getting wet.

It is quite common for revellers to mix bhang (marijuana) in their food and drinks also like at Shivaratri festival held earlier in the year. Marijuana is linked with Lord Shiva as at one point he rested under the shade of a cannabis plant on a hot day and in gratitude he gave this plan to mankind.

In Nepal, Holi is also called "Fagu" and is a national holiday, it is celebrated by everyone irrespective of religion, caste or age. During this day everyone rich and poor will join in to celebrate this joyous festival which is as important as Dashain and Tihar in Autumn season.

If you are planning to visit Nepal in Spring then I recommend you consider making the dates of your trip coincide with the festival of Holi. At The Mountain Company we organise cultural tours throughout Nepal with our Classic, Highlights and Luxury tour itineraries or we can arrange a private bespoke tour designed especially for you. Please get in touch with us if you would like any further information about our Cultural Tours of Nepal.

Roland Hunter

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Hi, thanks to share good information about Holi Celebration .Holi is the favorite festival of Hindus religions .This information is really good for all religions how to Celebrate Holi in different ways.

The Mountain Company