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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular festivals and events hosted in Lucknow?

Ravinder Malik DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

If the splendour and grandeur of Lucknow hasn’t bedazzled you yet, maybe the celebratory air that surrounds the city during festivals will. Soaked in an air of excitement, anticipation and unbound enthusiasm, the city is enveloped in a different hue during festivals. Be it Diwali, Dusshera or the grand Lucknow Mahotsav, the city of Lucknow will surprise you with its energy and vibrancy.
If you are in the city during any of these festivals, you are in for a treat. Take a look at some of the festivals celebrated in the city and mark your holiday calendars now!

  • Dusshera

    Lucknow is synonymous with the Dusshera festival celebrations which is the most extravagant festival of the city and is celebrated in the months of September or October. The festival has been celebrated with great pomp and show since time immemorial and is still celebrated with equal grandeur. This 10 day long festival commemorates with the burning of Ravana’s, Kumbhakarna and Meghanad’s effigies symbolising the victory of good over evil. The city’s grounds are vibrant with various renditions of some parts of the Ramayana, known as Ram Lila. There are numerous fairs complete with umpteen joy rides along with special treats for the children. From miniature bows and arrows to face masks of the main characters of the Ramayana, the shops are stocked with delights. During this festival the lovely city bursts into vivid colors of life and every street is bustling with excited chatter, chaos and much activity.

  • Diwali

    A festival to celebrate the good over evil...may be the way to define Diwali and its origin, but today and especially in Lucknow, it is much more than that. When Lord Rama killed the demon king Ravana, rescued Sita from his evil clutches and returned back to his kingdom in Ayodhya, people lit small lamps outside their homes to welcome the young prince and went all out with a brilliant display of fireworks. Carried on till date, this tradition has taken on more elements and become a part of any Indian’s, especially North Indian’s, psyche.
    One of the most awaited for festivals by Hindus, next to
    Holi, it is celebrated in all manners by people across the city of Lucknow irrespective of the faith and religion followed by them. It’s the occasion when people have their homes all whitewashed, shop for new clothes and gifts for family and friends. In the weeks leading to Diwali, occasional pops and blasts can be heard in every nook and corner. By the time Diwali is few days ahead, the frequency increases. On the day of Diwali, all pretence of restraint is abandoned and firecrackers are burnt to sky high. The day begins with visiting family, friends and community members with boxes of sweets and well wishes of Diwali Mubarak or Happy Diwali. From all the homes, heady aromas of delicacies being cooked fill the streets and coupled with the excitement and adventure in the air it is quite a cocktail of festivities that leaves no one unaffected in its wake. As the twilight approaches, homes are transformed into wonderlands with the lamps and colored lights covering every inch of the surface. And no home is left untouched, be it rich or poor. You can see all joining in the celebrations with both feet in. Soon the air is filled with the popping and blasts of crackers. The sky is perpetually lit throughout the night with zooming rockets, bombs, anaars. There is enough ammunition to light up the sky till morning and the entire following week. Thankfully, due to the level of air and noise pollution they create, firecrackers are not allowed  beyond 11 pm.

  • Holi

    Another major festival of Hindus, it is celebrated with merry abandonment and enthusiasm in Lucknow. Associated with various legends of Hindu gods, primarily the fall of Hiranyakashipu, the great king of demons, at the hands of Narasimha, an incarnation of Vishnu, the celebration starts on the eve of Holi with a bonfire or Holi ka Dahan, signifying the victory of good over evil. Celebrated, yes you guessed it, with indulging in sweets, especially gujiya, and lots of other delicious dishes, Holi involves the obligatory throwing of coloured powder and water. However, in Lucknow, it is really an excuse for people to drench and color you in all hues and shades until you are unrecognizable to even your family. The cry or shout of Holi Hai is your sign that a great vat of colored water is coming your way and there is absolutely nothing you can do to avoid it. The streets of Lucknow, especially in the morning and afternoon of Holi, turn into a veritable minefield. Some often get sneaky about it and will throw color your way and say Holi hai later, while you are left spluttering and gasping. If you head out on the streets and alleys do it at great risk and might be better to watch the entire drama unfold from the safe distance of your hotel room window. Later in the evening, head out to the markets, where the streets, now much safer, are lined with hawkers and sweet shops selling incredibly delicious mithais.

  • Lucknow Festival

    The beautiful and vibrant Lucknow Mahotsav held in the months of November - December is a grand 10 day festival. Marked by traditional dance and music performance, appetising food and a riot of colours, the festival sees the city in a different light.
    Organised by
    UP Tourism and Lucknow District Administration, the festival offers a platform to craftsmen to display their art works.
    Taking you back to the regal Nawabi era or the Awadh that was, the festival is a lovely reminder of Lucknow’s rich heritage and vibrant culture. The graceful dance of Kathak, the classical ghazals, enthralling mushaira and fascinating dramatic performances will leave you spellbound. Ten days in the midst of engaging art, exotic dances, intricate crafts and exciting events is something you wouldn’t want to miss.
    For some more excitement, there are various events held during the festival. The colourful kite
     flying event, cock fighting, ekka race and other traditional games are some of the things you can participate in. And if you haven’t already discovered the culinary heaven that Lucknow is, this is the perfect opportunity to indulge in some delicious delights. From the famous Awadhi cuisine to other local specialities, the food at this festival is a real winner.
    A dash of culture, a peek into the bygone era, some souvenirs to carry back home and a chance to see Lucknow like never before, the Lucknow Festival will definitely make you fall in love with the city.

Here is your chance to explore & enjoy Lucknow like never before. With colourful streets calling out to you, the cultural heritage of Lucknow captivating you and the cuisine leaving you dumbstruck, Lucknow is yours to love and cherish.

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