THE DIWALI FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS IN INDIA
This November, India will celebrate what it takes. First the Dussehra Festival takes place and later, at the start of November, Diwali is celebrated. Diwali (also called Diwali, Dipavali or Deepavali) is a festival of lights in India, which is about the victory of good over evil, i.e. light over darkness.
WHAT IS THE DIWALI FESTIVAL?
Diwali is a five-day Hindu festival that has a very special meaning in the Indian calendar. In fact, the Festival of Lights is an official holiday in India and in many other countries influenced by Hinduism such as Mauritius, Malaysia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago etc. Many people compare Diwali to our Christmas – only more food, sweets and of course fireworks.
The festival of lights always takes place 20 days after the new moon in the Hindu month of Kartik (late October / early November). Diwali takes place over five consecutive days, with each day having a special “motto”. During the festival candles and lights are placed in windows and house entrances – hence the name Festival of Lights. On the second night of Diwali, ritual prayers are also recited, and fireworks are lit.
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DIWALI IN MUMBAI
Accommodation: Look at our huge range of hostels in Mumbai. We can recommend the private rooms at the Chateau Windsor Hotel and the dormitories (or private rooms) at the Anjali Inn.
Activities: Mumbai is considered one of the best cities to celebrate the Hindu festival. You should take a trip to the Siddhivinayak Temple. Crowds of believers come here to give gifts to the gods. The wait in the (long!) Line is worth it. And entry is free. As soon as the sun goes down, you should make your way to Marine Drive. Thousands of people gather there to marvel at the Diwali fireworks.
Food: Stroll the streets of Mumbai where a myriad of goodies is offered by local restaurants. Be sure to stop by the legendary Golden Star Thali Restaurant for the best Surti Undhiyu – a sweet and sour dish with fresh vegetables.
DIWALI IN NORTH INDIA
In the northern areas of India, Diwali is usually viewed as a kind of continuation of the Dussehra Festival. There are numerous legends and customs associated with the festival; the most important tradition is the lighting of lights. In fact, almost every boundary stone, every house and every path are lit by hundreds of small clay lamps and candles. This custom goes back to a legend that says that lights shone the way back to the capital Ayodhy for the god Rama, his wife, and his brother after their exile. And of course, the fireworks and fireworks should not be missing from the celebration.
Insider tip: Go shopping in the shopping centre. The shops stay open here until the afternoon. Allegedly, a good deal should bring good luck to Diwali for the coming year.
Insider tip: Diwali in Delhi is an absolute experience. This is where the celebrations at Dusshera begin and hardly stop. So, what are you waiting for? Book your hostel in New Delhi and see the Indian Festival of Lights with your own eyes.
DIWALI IN SOUTH INDIA
In South India, Diwali is almost all about myths and legends surrounding Krishna. Here the festival is often called Deepavali and is celebrated with lights, firecrackers, and candy. In addition, everyone starts the day with a bath and puts on new clothes. If you love fireworks, you must make a detour to Tamil Nadu. One of the largest firecrackers production facilities in the country is located here.
Insider tip: Celebrate Diwali in the state of Andhra Pradesh. While Diwali is usually only celebrated in the evenings in the north, this is where it goes going early in the morning. Prepare for a long day, because here people get up early in the morning and go to bed late. Be sure to try some of the homemade sweets!