Elephant Festival

A Ready Reckoner For Festivals || Spring Festivals || Summer Festivals || Festivals Of The Rainy Season
Festivals Of Autumn || Winter Festivals || Muslim Festivals || Other Festivals || Lesser Known Festivals



It is well known that no other country holds so many festivals of antiquity as does India. Each festival brings an episode of some remote past back to the memory. Owing to its religious and regional variations, India has a number of festivals.

There are said to be more number of festivals in India, than there are days in a year. The religious and national ones are celebrated with great gaiety. The cultural ones attract many great artists from all over India. Hardly a day passes without a festival taking place somewhere in India. They range from small one-day village or temple functions to weeklong art functions.

In India, during the pre-historic Indus valley civilization (3000BC to 1500BC) people had been celebrating various occasions of joy. This is evident from the archaeological excavations at Mohenjadaro and Harappa. Those practices continued during the Epic and Vedic times (800-300BC). During the Mauryan times functions like birthday, marriages, return from a victory were indeed a grand show of wealth and pomp. Festive assemblies like Utsavs were held by the Kings to entertain people where delicious food and drinks were supplied. Such social festivals continued to be popular during the imperial Gupta age too. Festivals accompanied the worship of Gods and Goddesses.

Only a few of the festivals take place on a particular date. Most of them follow the lunar calendar and hence the exact date of the festivals varies from year to year. Muslim holidays and Muslim festivals follow the Islamic calendar. Most of the cultural festivals take place during the winter season. Most of the days of the festivals are not determined by the pre-set dates of a linear calendar, but according to the waxing and the waning of the moon. Fairs and festivals are moments of remembrance and commemoration of the birthdays and the deeds of great gods, goddesses, heroes, heroines, gurus, prophets and saints. Seasonal or secular festivals underline the unity that draws together seemingly diverse groups.

For the men, festivals mean display of valour and virility through various races like the boat races of Kerala, or wrestling matches and animal fights. For the women it means cleaning the house and decorating it according to their artistic inclinations and proving their culinary skills to satisfy their wards and their hubbies. For the children, it is a time to be away from the tedious schools, with savories to munch all the time, new costumes and plenty of free time to roam around with their friends. Festivals also reinforce the presence of God in the life of the individual, the family and the community as a whole.


New Year's Day 1st, January Id-Ul-Fitr * 23rd,May
Lohri 13th, January Independence Day 15th, August
Makara Sankranti 15th, January Raksha Bandan 3rd, August
Republic Day 26th, January Gokula Astami 11th, August
Vasanth Panchami 29th, January Id - Ul - Zuha * 30th, July
Maha Shivratri 21st, February Muharram 21st, August
Holi 9th, March Gandhi Jayanthi 2nd, October
Good Friday 10th, April Dussera 25th, October
Easter 12th, April Diwali 14th, November
Ram Navami 2rd, April Govardan Puja 15th,November
Baisakhi 13th, April Guru Nanak Jayanthi 30th, November
Tamil New Year 14th, April Id- Ul - Milad * 25th, December
Mahavir Jayanthi 2rd, April Christmas 25th, December


Hindu Festivals

Makara Sankranthi/Pongal January, 15th
Maha Shivratri February, 21st
Holi March, 9th
Telugu New Year March, 25th
Tamil New Year April, 14th
Ram Navami April, 2rd
Mahavir Jayanthi April, 2rd
Onam festival August, 22rd
Gokula Ashtami August ,11th
Ganesh Chathurthi August,22nd
Dussehra October,25th
Diwali November,14th

Christian Festivals

Palm Sunday April,5th
Good Friday April, 10th
Easter Day April, 12th
Christmas Day December, 25th

Buddhist Festivals

Paranirvana Day May, 7th
Wesak(Buddha Day) May, 7th
Dharma Day July, 4th

Jewish Festivals

Purim March 9th - March 10th
Passover 1st Day April 8th - April 16th
Jewish New Year September 18th - September 20th
Day of Atonement September 27th - September 28th
Tabernacles October 2rd - October 9th

Sikh Festivals

Birthday of Guru Gobind January, 2rd
Baisakhi April, 13th
Martyrdom of ArjanDev June, 16th
Gurunanak Jayanthi November,30th
TeghBahadur Martyr Day November, 24th

Islamic Festivals

Id-Ul-Zuha * July, 30th - 31st
Al- Hijira( Muslim Newyear) August, 21st - September 13th
Muharram August, 21st
Milad-Un-Nabi* October, 28th - 29th
Id-e-Milad October, 28th - 29th
Lailat-Al-IsrawaAl-Miraj March, 21st
Ramadan 1st April, 6th
Id-ul-fitr May, 23rd - 24th
Ramzan Id May, 23rd- 24th
* Subject to appearance of Moon


Valentines' Day February, 14th
Doctor's Day March, 30th
May Day May, 1st
Mother's Day May, 12th
Father's Day June, 16th
Friendship Day August, 4th
Teacher's Day September, 5th
Grand Parent's Day September, 8th
Children's Day November, 14th

           2016 Festivals in India