Nepal Festivals information
Festivals in Nepal are proved to be indispensable for Nepalese people. Often the festivals are celebrated all over Nepal as per the religion following Lunar Calendar, festival dates vary annually. Festivals unite people with tremendous local participation. It offers visitors to experience valuable opportunity with every aspect that enhances faith of Nepalese culture. All the visitors who arrive in Nepal, be pretty sure that you travel at the right time for more special events. The major and interesting festivals are presented below.
New Year or Nawa Barsa(April)
Nepali New Year usually falls on the first day of Baisakh second week of (April 13 or 14). On this day it is observed as a national holiday. People celebrate this festival with tremendous local participation. Culminating on this occasion, Bisket Jatra is celebrated with the most colorful event.
It is regarded as an auspicious occasion of Buddha’s birth. This day falls on the full moon of the Baisakh. Buddha Jayanti is celebrated to commemorate the birth, enlightenment and death of Lord Buddha, founder of Buddhism, more than 2500 years ago.
The annual changing of a sacred thread which is known as Janai in Nepali word. It is worn by high caste Hindu men usually it takes place at holy bathing sites all over the country on the full-moon day of Saaun. Numerous mass of people moves to Gosaikunda, a holy lake high in the mountains north of Kathmandu. Priests tie strings and bestow tikas, different from hill shamans perform sacred dances. Normally this festival is held on SAAUN(JULY-AUG).
Gaai Jaatra – Cow festival(July-Aug)
It is the gates of judgment day where the god of deaths Yamraj allows departed Soul to enter abode. This day falls on full-moon day. It is an occasion for families to honor loved ones who have passed away in the past year. On this day young boys/girls are dress up in fanciful cow or sadhus costumes. Dancing, comedy shows are held on this day which is capable to be measure highlights.
It is annual Hindu festival which marks the birthday of Lord Krishna. On this day vigils are also held the night before, worshippers decorate statues of Lord Krishna. They carry ornate along with thousands of devotees flock and bands of musicians on the cities of Patan.
Indra Jatra is an occasion to give thanks to the god for bringing the monsoon rains. It is a colorful festival which lasts for eight days. Chariot processions and masked dance is performed on the main streets of Kathmandu to honor Lord Indra, King of heaven.
Dashain or Durga Puja(Sep-Oct)
Dashain festival is the longest and greatest enthusiastically celebrated by members of almost all religious and ethnic groups. On this day devotees congregate at local goddess temples. This day is remark as an auspicious day to commemorate Durga’s slaying of the demon Mahisasur. So Vijaya Dashami, the Victorious Tenth Day is celebrated as main day by putting tika from elders and get blessings from them. Each and every individual house set up shrines to celebrate this festival.
Tihar (Deepawali, Oct-Nov)
It is known as the “Festival of Lights” which last for five days. On this, each and every individual house are illuminated at night by worshipping the goddess Laxmi which is remarked as a good fortune. This festival is celebrated with joyfulness and prosperity throughout the year. On the fifth day of Tihar, Bhai Tika is offered by sister to their brothers by blessing their younger brothers and giving them flower garlands, tika, and sweetmeats.
The festival observed by the Sherpa community. On this occasion, community organizes folks songs and dances. It can be seen in Khumbu, Helambu and northern regions of Nepal.
Maha Shivaratri (Feb-Mar)
Maha Shivaratri is celebrated annually to honor the god Shiva. It is a major festival of Hinduism which marks “The Great Night of Shiva”. A great religious fair takes place in the Pashupatinath Temple remembering Shiva and chanting prayers and meditating on ethics. It is ancient Hindus festival whose origin date is unknown.
The festival of horses. It is marked as one of the most exciting festivals of Kathmandu. Several kinds of a Horse race and other sports are held on this day at Tundikhel.
Teej (August- September)
It is a Hindu festival which is celebrated by women. On this day various dancing, folk songs are performed by women’s by wearing red sarees. It is the occasion which is highly dedicated to goddess Parvati, who won the hand of Lord Shiva after severe meditation and fasting.
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