List of famous festivals of India:-
There is a history attached with each and every festivals that people celebrate in India. Diwali is celebrated when Lord Ram came back from the long time spent in jungle and people of Ayodhaya ignited diyas in the happiness of his return from the jungle after 14 years.India is a Multi-Religious country with various cultures and their special rituals adds glow to Indian heritage. With overall population of more than 1.18 billion, festival starts from welcoming the New Year, the rains and the full moon day. Behind each festival, there is different history present.
List of Indian Festivals: A Complete List and descriptions of major Hindu festivals
Major Hindu Festivals Hindu Lunar Day of Observance Civil date (1991) Descriptions
Makar Sankranti or Pongal Makar Sankranti or Pongal marks the transition of the Sun into Makar rasi. It marks the gradual increase of the duration of the day.Pongal is the first day of Uttarayana and coincides with the beginning of the Tamil month of Thai. 14-Jan Pongal is one of the most popular harvest festivals of southern India, mainly Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
Vasant Panchami Fifth day of the waxing moon of Magh (Hindu Calendar) 20-Jan Vasant Panchami (also called Saraswati Puja by Bengalis, Oriyas and Biharis) is celebrated for the blessing of Saraswati, goddess of wisdom and the arts.
Thaipusam or Kavadi The full moon day of the Tamil month of Thai Jan / Feb Thaipusam is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community. The word Thaipusam is derived from the Tamil month name Thai and Pusam, which refers to a star near the location of the moon during the festival. The festival commemorates the occasion when Parvati gave Murugan a spear so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadman.
Maha Shivaratri Thirteenth night of the waning moon of Magh (Hindu Calendar) 12-Mar Maha Shivaratri is the great night of Shiva, during which followers of Shiva observe religious fasting and the offering of Bael (Bilva) leaves to Shiva.
Holi Full moon of the Phalgun month (Hindu Calendar) 1-Mar Holi or Phagwah is a popular spring festival. Holi commemorates the slaying of the demoness Holika by Lord Vishnu's devotee Prahlad. Thus, the festival's name is derived from the Sanskrit words "Holika Dahanam", which literally mean "Holika's slaying"
Shigmo Feb -Mar Shigmo is celebrated in Goa as one of the prominent festivals of the Konkani Hindu community.
Vasant Navratri moves Navratri is the Hindu festival of worship and dance. In Sanskrit the term literally means "nine nights". During this festival the forms of Shakti are worshipped, and effigies are burned.
Rama Navami 24-Mar Rama Navami is the celebration of the birth of Rama.
Gudi Padwa First Day of waxing moon of Chaitra (Hindu Calendar) 23-Mar Gudi Padwa is celebrated on the first day of the Chaitra month, and is celebrated as New Year's Day by Marathis and the Konkanis. According to the Brahma Purana, this is the day on which Brahma created the world.The date keeps changing every year in the month of march.
Ugadi 24-Mar Ugadi (meaning "the start of an era" in Telugu and Kannada) is New Year's Day for the Kannadigas and Telugus. It takes place on the same day as Gudi Padwa.
Vishu 14-Apr Vishu is a Hindu festival celebrated in Kerala. It falls around April 14 of the Gregorian year.
Tamil New Year 14-Apr The Tamil New Year follows the Nirayan vernal equinox. it falls around April 14 of the Gregorian year.
Hanuman Jayanti 30-Mar Hanuman Jayanti is the celebration of the birth of Hanuman, Rama's loyal devotee.
Bihu Vaisakha The first month of Hindu Calendar Apr 14-15 Rongali Bihu (mid-April, also called Bohag Bihu), the most popular Bihu celebrates the onset of the Assamese New Year (around April 15) and the coming of Spring.
Sitalsasthi Sixth day of the bright fortnight of the month of Jyestha (Hindu Calender) Jun The marriage of Shiva and Parvati is celebrated as Sitalsasthi. It is celebrated as a carnival, in which people and artists from different walks of life participate, making it more beautiful and bringing out the true colour of life.
Vat Pournima Full moon of Jyeshta (Hindu Calendar) moves Vat Pournima is observed in Maharashtra. Pournima means "full moon." Women pray for the prosperity of their husbands by tying threads around a banyan tree.
Bonalu Aug Bonalu is a celebration for a Mother Goddess ( such as the goddesses Pochamma, Yellamma, etc.) in the Telangana Region.
Bathukamma Sep / Oct Bathukamma is a festival celebrated during the months of September and October in some regions of Andhra Pradesh, originally in Ranga Reddy, Medak and western Warangal Districts.
Rath Yatra 13-Jul Rath Yatra is the festival associated with Jagannath.
Raja Parba The second day(Raja Shankranti) signifies beginning of the solar month of Mithuna Jul Raja Parba is a four day long festival. It inaugurates and welcomes the agricultural year all over Orissa.
Guru Purnima Full moon of Ashadh (Hindu Calendar) 25-Jul Guru Purnima is the day devotees offer puja (worship) to their Guru. This was also the day when Vyasa, author of the Mahabharata was born.
Mahalakshmi Vrata moves Mahalakshmi Vrata is a puja performed by married Hindu women to seek the blessings of Mahalakshmi, goddess of wealth and prosperity.
Onam 23-Aug Onam is a harvest festival, celebrated mainly in the Indian state of Kerala. Like many other religious festivals in India, Onam is celebrated by people across all castes and faiths.
Raksha Bandhan Full moon of Shravana (Hindu Calendar) 24-Aug Raksha Bandhan is a festival celebrated mainly in northern Indian states. Rakhi is a special occasion to celebrate the chaste bond of love between a brother and a sister.
Krishna Janmaashtami Eighth day of waning moon of Shravana (Hindu Calendar) Sep 1-2 Krishna Janmaashtami is the Hindu festival celebrating the birth of Krishna. It is actually called as Krishna Jayanthi. The date falls not only on the eight day of the waning moon, but always on Rohini Nakshatra.
Gowri Habba Moves Gowri Habba is celebrated in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu. Gowri is worshipped for her ability to bestow courage to her devotees. Newly wed couples are invited to the house of the groom's parents and served with varieties of food.
Ganesh Chaturthi Fourth day of the waxing moon of Bhadrapada (Hindu Calendar) 11-Sep Ganesh Chaturthi is the celebration of the birth of Ganesh.
Nuakhai Fifth day of the waxing moon of Bhadrapada (Hindu Calendar) 12-Sep Nuakhai is celebrated to welcome the new rice of the season. This is an agricultural festival mainly observed by people of Western Orissa (Kosal).
Navarathri First nine nights of the waxing moon of Ashvin 8-Oct Navarathri is the Hindu festival of worship and dance. In Sanskrit the term literally means "nine nights". During this festival the forms of Shakti are worshiped.
Vijayadashami Tenth day of waxing moon of Ashvin (Hindu Calendar) 17-Oct Vijayadashami is the Hindu celebration of good over evil.
Deepavali New moon of Ashvin (Hindu Calendar) 5-Nov Deepavali which means "row of lights/lamps" in Tamil and Sanskrit is called "Divali" in North India, Deepa means lamp and in Hindi a lamp is mostly called a Diya or Di. The festival is celebrated on the occasion of Lord Krishna and his wife Satyabhama killing a demon Narakasura. Another story says the festival is celebrated for the return of Rama and Sita to the kingdom Ayodhya after fourteen years of exile.
Bhai dooj Second day of the waxing moon of Kartik (Hindu Calendar) 7-Nov Bhai dooj, also referred to as Bhaubeej, is the ceremony performed by Hindus, generally, on the second day of Deepavali. It is celebrated among brothers and sisters and is similar to Raksha Bandhan, except there is no tying of rakhi involved.
Kartik Poornima 15th of the Full moon day of Kartik (November-December) Moves A unique festival is celebrated in Varanasi this day which is called Dev Devali. The Kartik Purnima festival also coincides with the Jain light festival and Guru Nanak Jayanti
Chhath Nov 11-12 Chhath is mainly observed in Bihar and Terai, but is also celebrated elsewhere. It is a festival dedicated to the Sun God for bestowing the bounties of life and fulfilling wishes.
Prathamastami After 8 days of Kartik Purnima Prathamastami is a festival that originated in Oriya. It is held on the eighth day of the month of Agrahayana, when older female relatives pray for the prosperity of their eldest child. The festival is followed by rituals and recitations of the Glory of Mahalakshmi and Shashti devi.
Yatra Oct - Mar Yatra (also Zatra and jatra) refers to the pilgrimage festivals celebrated at Hindu temples. Idols and murtis are taken out on special procession in a palkhi (a palanquin) or a chariot called the rath. Every temple observes this festival once a year on the traditional day.
Karthikai Deepam Nov / Dec Karthikai Deepam is an ancient festival of lights celebrated by Tamil Hindus on the full moon day of Karthikai month (November/December). This occurs on the day when the moon is in conjunction with the constellation Karthigai (Pleiades) and purnima. It is the same as Kartik Poornima; however, since Tamils follow the Hindu Solar calendar with correction for precession of the equinoxes, the Tamil date matches the actual constellation.
Pancha Ganapati A Winter Solstice celebration that lasts five days. Dec 21-25 Pancha Ganapati is a modern Hindu festival celebrating Lord Ganesha, the Five-Faced Maha Ganapati Lord of Categories.
Kumbh Mela A pilgrimage made every four years to the Ganges river Jul27-Sep7 The Purna (complete) Kumbh takes place every twelve years, and is an ordinary large Kumbh Mela. The Ardh (half) Kumbh Mella, a smaller Kumbh Mela, is celebrated every six years. The normal Kumbh Mela is celebrated every 4 years. The Maha (great) Kumbh Mela, a special large Kumbh Mela, occurs every 12 'Purna Kumbh Melas', or 144 years.