Considered among the most colourful state of the country, Uttar Pradesh celebrates religious, traditional and state festivals all throughout the year. Right from the enchanting illuminated ancient ghats of Varanasi to the colour-filled atmosphere of the duo cities Mathura-Vrindavan, festivals across the state reflects the diversity. Being a venue of over 2,250 fairs are held every year in Uttar Pradesh, Mathura holds the largest number of fairs. With all the list of fairs & festivals celebrated with pomp and grandeur, Uttar Pradesh reflects a true spirit of secularity.
Starting from one of the popular cultural fairs of the state, the Kumbh and the Ardh Kumbh Mela is visited by thousands of pilgrims from across the globe. Organised in every three years, the Kumbh Mela is held at Prayagraj. The Ardh Kumbh Mela is held in every Held in the 6th year after Kumbh Mela. The Magh Mela which is also called the Annual Mini Kumbh is held every year on the banks of River Sangam. A visit to any of these fairs will let the tourists witness the sight of millions of pilgrims taking dips in the holy rivers which are considered as Amrit (nectar) which is a belief that it will wash away all the sins. The fair is a perfect blend of social and religious depicting the Hindu culture.
Marking the end of winter season and beginning of spring season, Holi which is yet another major festival of Uttar Pradesh is celebrated with great enthusiasm. The difference marks the way it is celebrated in a small town of Barsana as the men of Nandgaon come to Barsana with the intention to take over Shri Radhika Ji Temple. The women of Barsana being reluctant to try stopping them with bamboo sticks which is a must-see event. For this reason, the popular Holi of Barsana is even known as Lathmar Holi. Similarly, in the Braj area of the state, Holi celebrations last for more than a week with songs and dances being performed known as Rasiya.
Also, the unique Holi which is played in Vrindavan for seven days is a sight not to be missed. The big celebration of Holi takes plays by throwing colourful flowers at each other. Moving to Taj Mahotsav which is a popular tourism festival held in Shilpgram. Organised by the UP Tourism Ministry, the Mahotsav is a 10-day long festival which is celebrated to encourage the growth of art and craft of India. River Ganges being an integral part of the Hindu culture and tradition, is considered to be very pious by the pilgrims.
The Ganga Mahotsav is a 5-day long festival which held on the Dashashwamedh Ghat, a popular tourist attraction in Varanasi. On visiting the city during the festival, tourists can witness how the entire ghat and river Ganga is seen illuminated with oil-lit lamps. Heading to the city of Nawabs, the Lucknow Mahotsav is celebrated every year in the month of November or December to showcase the rich cultural heritage of the city. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Kailash Fair is celebrated in Kailash town in the months of August and September. The other popular fairs, festivals and events of Uttar Pradesh includes Ayurved Jhansi Mahotsav in Jhansi, Buddha Mahotsav in Kapilavastu, Sarnath, Shravasti, Kaushambi & Sankisa, Water Sports Festival in Allahabad, Janmashtami in Mathura, Sardhana Christian Fair in Meerut, Yoga Festival at Varanasi & Allahabad, Deva Mela in Barabanki and more.
With equal ceremonial elegance, one or the other festival is celebrated in this diverse land all the time of the year and tourists making a visit to Uttar Pradesh can feel the true festivity spirit in the air always.