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In Rajasthan, the fairs and festivals hold a special charm and are a reflection of the lifestyle and vigor of this place and its people. Each and every religious occasion has a fair indicating harvest or season alteration. Some of the festivals are celebrated traditionally while some are the recent introduction from department of tourism for showcasing region’s heritage. These festivals also serve as an opportunity for the visitors through which they can get wonderful insight in Rajasthan and its people. Below are some of the famous fairs and festivals of this state: –
January, Bikaner, Camel festival:
In the delightful city of Bikaner, camel festival is celebrated in January month in which camel dances and camel races are organized. The charm of this festival is increased by Rajasthani dance and music. In night, one can also get opportunity to experience the fire dance.
January, Jaisalmer, Desert festival:
This is amongst the most important and popular festivals of Rajasthan celebrated in January month at the place that is 25 kms away from Jaisalmer on Sam sand dunes. A wonderful show is presented here by the camels gathered here from all over Rajasthan. This is a 3 days celebration that gives life to Jaisalmer’s barren land serving as cultural platform for state’s rich music and dance tradition. Turbans tying competition, fire dances, tug of war, camel races, ballads, puppet shows, etc. are some of the major attractions of this festival.
February, Nagaur (Nagaur fair):
This is India’s second largest fair. Annually, trade of almost 70,000 cattle takes place in this animal trading fair. The place turns to a bustling town during this fair when owners accompanied by the animals gather here. In this fair, trade of cows, long-lashed camels, Nagauri bulls and handsome and stately horses takes place.
February, Banswara, Baneshwar Fair:
In February month, this fair is held in Banswara’s Baneshwar on Som and Mahi river’s banks. In this fair, prayers are offered to Lord Shiva by the tribal people gathered from Rajasthan and neighboring state of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh and in colorful groups, camps are set.
March, Chaksu, Chaksu Fair:
Another popular name of this fair is Basoda or Shitla Mata fair in which rural people’s large groups are gathered in Chaksu. In the fair calendar of Rajasthan, this event is amongst the most colorful ones. Goddess of war is propitiated in this fair whose wrath can lead to smallpox’s terrible bane till appeased by the followers. The food made on previous day is consumed on this day.
March, Bharatpur, Brij Festival:
In March month, this festival is celebrated in Brij area some days before holi. Spring season’s arrival is celebrated by this festival with dance and music.
On occasion of Holi, this festival is celebrated in March month in Jaipur. Elephant race, elephant polo, tug of war between women, men and elephants are the attractions of this festival. Elephants are decorated with heavy jewelry, jhools and bright colors by their owners or mahawats and the elephant decorated most beautifully is awarded at the end with prize.
March/April, Jaipur, Gangaur festival:
In Rajasthan, Gangaur festival is celebrated in April or March mainly in Udaipur, Jaipur and Mandawa by the women. This is dedicated to Lord Shiva’s wife, Goddess Parvati. Manifestations of Parvati and Shiva, Gangaur and Issar are offered with prayers during this festival and traditional dresses are attired by women and young girl. Married ones pray for husband’s wellbeing while girls pray to marry groom of their choice.
April, Ajmer, Ajmer Urs:
In Ajmer, this occasion is celebrated Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti’s memory who was a Sufi saint. It is celebrated as per moon and has no fixed date. Saint’s symbolic union with God is commemorated in Urs. The festive spirit could be enjoyed in Ajmer that is adorned with buntings.
June, Mount Abu, summer festival:
Mount Abu is Rajasthan‘s only hill station and summer festival is celebrated in June at this place. Tourists can enjoy and relax themselves while experiencing this festival celebrated in summer in mount.
August, Jaipur, Teej:
In August month, this significant festival is celebrated on monsoon season’s onset and it is dedicated to Goddess Parvati’s worship. In colorful pageant, Goddess Parvati’s idol is taken out in Jaipur accompanied by dance and song.
October, Jodhpur, Marwar festival:
To the dance and music of Marwar region is dedicated the Marwar festival celebrated in October month in Jodhpur in which region’s culture and art is showcased.
November, Pushkar, Pushkar fair:
Celebrated in November month, this is the festival for which Pushkar is popular athwart the world. The place gets converted to spectacular ground fair where bath in Pushkar’s holy water is taken done by thousands of pilgrims.
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