Syalde Bikhauti Mela Uttarakhand

Famed for its Oda Bhetna ritual, Syalde Bhikauti Mela is held has two venues for the visitors to mark their presence. Offering a melange of folk culture and religious sentiments, this fair is a perfect reflection of Uttarakhand.

About Syalde Bikhauti Mela

Celebrated in a small town of Dwarahat in the Almora District of Kumaon region, Syalde Bikhauti is an annual fair which is held every year in the month of Vaisakh (April/May). Held in two different phases, Syalde Bikhauti is first held in Vimandeshwar Temple, which is a popular Lord Shiva Temple that is situated 8 km from Dwarahat. The second phase is held in the Dwarahat market. In the first phase, people and folk dancers from the neighboring areas gather at Vimandeshwar Temple for dancing and singing, carrying their traditional flags. One of the most important rituals that are related to this fair is ‘Oda Bhetna’ which means striking the stone. This ritual has history related to it. According to the legend, during the ancient time, people used to visit and worship in the Sheetla Devi Temple but due to some unknown reason, there was a bloodshed between two groups in which the leader of the group that lost the fight was beheaded. The Oda is a stone which was fixed near his head and from then it has become a tradition to strike the stone before heading for this fair.

Bikhauti is also known as Vishuvat Sankranti is a holy day where people take the holy bath and the preparations start after the Phool Dei is celebrated. It is believed to be an auspicious occasion and an opportunity for those who could not go for a bath/dip during the Uttarayani Fair or Kumbh Mela. The various traditions attached to this fair are still unchanged and the cultural convergence of all folk art-forms makes it a memorable experience for both the locals and the visitors who land at the right time. Apart from this, Jalebi is also one of the most important parts of the fair and during it, the Dwaharat market is seen replete with this traditional sweet which people buy and exchange as well. Despite the gradual diminishing of traditional values, the Mela has successfully been able to hold on to its cultural richness and this is one of the factors which are prominent in making it an attraction for people.

Highlights:

  • People celebrate with folk music, songs, and dance.
  • People visit the Vimandeshwar Temple, 8 km away from Dwarahat.
  • Jalebi is both eaten and exchanged during this fair.
  • Oda Bhetna (stone striking) is an ancient ritual which is still followed and people especially come from many parts of the country to just see this.

Location Map

Dwarahat Almora

When

Month of Vaishakh (April/May)

Uttarakhand Travel Information at a Glance