Ashadhi Ekadashi is one of the most important religious festivals that is celebrated in Maharashtra. This ceremony is generally held at Pandharpur where a huge number of devotees gather to celebrate the festival. It is a religious procession festival which is held every year during the Aashaadh Shukla paksha. Generally Ekadashi is considered to be coming on each month of the year but the eleventh day of Ashadh is said to be the great Ekadashi which is also called by the name Shayani Ekadashi. During this day the devotees keep fast the whole day and they go walking in huge processions to Pandharpur. People sing chanting hymns of Saint Dyaneshwar and Saint Tukaram to pay their tribute to their God Vitthal. This procession starts in Allandi and ends on Guru Poornima at Pandharpur. This day is considered very pious and people join the yatra not only from Maharashtra but also from other cities as well. Men are dressed in ethnic wears like dhoti and kurta and sing devotional songs during this long journey. It is simply spectacular to see this tradition of Maharashtra which is very colourful and energetic.
As per the legends on this day of Great Ekadashi, Lord Vishnu fell asleep and the again woke up after four months on the day of Prabodhini Ekadashi which falls during the Kartik month. This time of the month is known as the Chaturmas which coincides with our rainy season. Owing to these stories of our purans, this day is celebrated in Maharashtra with a lot of grandeur and devotees join from all parts of the country to pay homage to the Lord.
The Ashadhi Ekadashi is generally held during the months of June and July which are the monsoon months of our country.