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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular festivals and events hosted in Tiruchirappalli?

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Maintaining its mystique with major highway systems routed through it, Tiruchirappalli’s extraordinary legends come to life during its festival times. Watch the city unfurl its colours, immerse itself and take on a unique persona- an image that will stay with you forever. Some of the festivals to look forward to on your trip to Trichy are:


  • Vaikunta Ekadasi Festival

      • A deeply religious and elaborate festival, the Vaikunta Ekadashi is a 20 day festival divided into Pagal Paththu (10 day day time festival) and Raapaththu (10 days day-night) spread out over 10 days celebrated in late December and early January. Vaishnavism culture (worship of Lord Vishnu) believes that the gate to Lord’s inner Sanctum is opened on this day. The first day of the Pagal paththu is Vaikunta Ekadashi and is considered the holiest of all ekadashi’s as per the Vaishnavite tradition. On this day the Namperumal, the processional idol, is brought, in an elaborate procession attended by a sea of devotees, to the Hall of 1000 pillars.Lakhs of pilgrims, from all across South India, rush to enter it after the gate, Paramapada Vasal, is opened and the deity passes through it. It is believed that if you who enter through the gate, you will reach vaikuntam (heaven) after death. The gate is open only during the ten days of Pagal Pathu (10 days day-time festival). Through song and dance during the festival, this place is affirmed as Bhoologa Vaikunta, that is, ‘heaven on earth’. Nammazhwar, one of the 12 azhwars (Tamil poet saints), is believed to have ascended to vaikuntam(the heavenly abode of Vishnu) on this day. You can see the priests of the temples enacting the ascension of Nammazhwar as well as the recitation and enactment of Nalayara Divya Prabanda, the 4000 verses of azhwars. Regardless of whether you are part of the festival for the first time or nth time, it is deeply moving experience.

  • Thai Pongal

    A harvest festival, Pongal, is yet another deeply religious festival of Tamilians, dating as far back as the medieval Chola empire days, 9th C.E. Traditionally dedicated to Sun God Surya, it marks the beginning of the northward journey of the Sun from its southernmost-limit, a movement traditionally referred to as uttarayana and coincides with the festival of Makara Sankranthi celebrated throughout India as the winter harvest. Usually held from January 13–15, city natives thank the Sun god for the good harvest and consecrate the first grain to Him. You will the find homes, especially the door overheads, decorated with banana and mango leaves, making beautiful decorative patterns using rice flour on the floors and patio of their homes. Pongal, a dish made of rice boiled with milk and jaggery, is cooked specially in earthenware pots over a wood fire during the festival.


  • Jallikattu

    To witness bullfighting don’t have head over to Spain and can watch it much closer to home in Tiruchirappalli. Held around the time of Thai Pongal, bullfighting or Jallikattu, as it is locally referred to, is held in certain defined regions of Tiruchirappalli. Bulls are brought from all over South India, undergone medical check up before being cleared and then let into the arena where registered bull fighters face off in nail biting, often gory moments, before either the bull breaks through the arena barricades or the fighter is thrown off. If you go over to witness the festival or rather the fight you might want to maintain distance as more frequently than not the audience gets as much a share of the injuries as the fighter. Lately, due to animal rights petition the festival is finding it harder to survive and is gradually getting more and more regulated, with only a few areas being allowed to hold it.

  • Allur Jallathiru Vizha

    A traditional festival of the women folk, they have the clay figures of cows and calves made by local potters during the Purattasi Masam Amavasya, new moon day (15 Sept to 15 Oct). For a period of 9 days, they offer prayers and spiritual songs to the clay cows and calves. On the 10th day, in a procession, all the women head out to the banks of river Kaveri, where after a prayer ceremony, the figures are submerged.


  • Urs

    A festival of the Hazrath Nathervali dargah, it is celebrated annually in August to commemorate the death anniversary of Sufi Saint Hazrat Nathervali. Celebrated over a fortnight, special fathiha (prayers) was offered to seek his blessings. You can witness the recitations of discourses and soul striking qawwali songs by the famous qawwals who attend from all over the country. The tomb of the sufi saint is cleaned with the water of river Kaveri, brought in a procession by devotees.


Lose yourself in the frenetic festivities and emerge drenched in color, culture and heritage-an experience that is sure to leave rich imprints on your psyche.

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You need an entire year to see all the festivals that take place in Srirangam temple, as every festival is unique and happens once a year... Festivals happen almost everyday year round in Srirangam

Kona Vayyali Festivial: http://travel.bhushavali.com/2013/03/srirangam-vayyali-festival-trichy-tamil.html

Temple Car Festival: http://travel.bhushavali.com/2013/03/srirangam-thaer-festival-trichy-tamil.html

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