West Bengal, West Bengal Festivals, West Bengal Tour

West Bengal Festivals

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Festivals of West Bengal

West Bengal is a land of colourful fairs and festivals. Durga Puja is the most important and famous festival which is celebrated in West Bengal. Besides this, Ganga Sagar Mela, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Jayanti, Basanta Panchami, Birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa, Bengali New Year, Buddha Jayanti, Id, Rabindra Jayanti, Mahesh Yatra, Jhapan, Christmas, Paush Mela, Vishnupur Festival and Teesta & Tourism Festival.

Ganga Sagar Mela

Ganga Sagar Mela, also known as Ganga Dussehra Mela is held in the month of January, on the occasion of Makar Sankranti at Sagardwip, about 105 km. south of Kolkata. Sagardwip is the island situated at the mouth of Ganga where the Hugli river joins the sea. This is the largest fair of the West Bengal and celebrated for three days. On this day, a large number of Hindu pilgrims collect here and take bath in the holy waters and visit the Kapil Muni Temple. Gangasagar pilgrimage and fair is the second largest congregation of mankind after the holy Kumbha Mela.

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Jayanti

The birthday of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose is celebrated on 23 January in West Bengal. This festival is a national festival of West Bengal. Processions with large numbers of young men and girls in military formation parade in every town and village. The main procession is held in Kolkata that attains a length of more than three kilometers and groups of boys and girls play martial band music. 

Basanta Panchami

Basanta Panchami is another famous festival which is celebrated all over West Bengal. This festival is celebrated in the month of March and coincides with the festival of Holi. This festival is celebrated with great fervour in the university town of Shantiniketan. In this festival, the students of Shantiniketan wear the yellow clothes and welcome the spring season through dance, songs and make merry by throwing the coloured powder and spraying the liquid colour at each other. On this day, the people also worship the goddess Saraswati, the goddess of learning. Some students also start their learning from this day.

Birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa

The birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa is another famous religious festival which is held every year on a day in early March at the Belur Math, headquarters of the Ramakrishna mission. This festival draws not only Hindus but people of other religions and Non-Indians, and lakhs of people converge there to pay homage to the great saint. 

Bengali New Year or Naba Barsha

The Bengali New Year or Naba Barsha is celebrated in April throughout West Bengal. The Bengali year starts from the first Baisakh (mid-April). The Bengalis celebrate the New Year by wearing new clothes, visiting the temples and the usual exchange of greetings and sweets.

Buddha Jayanti

Buddha Jayanti, the birth anniversary of Lord Buddha is also celebrated in West Bengal. This festival is celebrated in the month of May. This festival is colourfully celebrated at various Buddhist monasteries in Kalimpong and Darjeeling.

Id

Id is the largest festival of the Muslims in West Bengal. The date of this festival is not fixed and celebrated in the month of May. Id-ul-Fitr comes after the lapse of the Ramzan month and marks a happy communion after a month of prayer and fasting. Seventy days after Id-ul-Fitr, comes another festive occasion, known as Id-ul-Juha. It is celebrated throughout the state, but with great grandeur in Kolkata. A very large congregation of Muslims and non-Muslims is held at the Kolkata Maidan.

Rabindra Jayanti

Rabindra Jayanti is celebration as the birthday of Rabindranath Tagore on 7 May. This festival is the most widely observed cultural festival in West Bengal. All cultural associations and groups celebrate this day with song, dance and drama composed by Tagore which run for days together. Various meeting and seminars are held for discussion on the different aspects of the life of Tagore.

Mahesh Yatra

Mahesh Yatra is a car festival, which is celebrated at Serampore, about 25 kms. from Kolkata. This car festival is celebrated in the month of July. On this day, the people gather here in large scale to pull the chariots of Lord Jagannath, Balaram and Subhadra on the journey from the temple and back.

Jhapan

Jhapan is the most famous local festival of Vishnupur in West Bengal. This festival is held in the month of August in the honour of the serpent-deity Manasa, the daughter of Lord Shiva. The snake charmers display tricks and amazing feats with the live, venomos snakes on decorated bullock carts. Cobras, pythons, vipers, rat snakes, kraits and flying snakes are brought in baskets made of cane or grass. The origin of this festival is believed to belongs to the 17th century when the King Bir Hambir Malla was greeted with great rejoicing on his victorious return after the battle.

Durga Puja
Durga Puja, West Bengal

Durga Puja is the most important Hindu festival of the Bengalis. This festival is celebrated in the month of October, throughout the West Bengal. During this festival, the people from all over India and world visit West Bengal to enjoy the festival. All the government offices, educational institutions and law courts are closed during the festival. Durgapuja is the most important festival in the city of Kolkata. The festival celebrates the victory of good over evil. This festival is celebrated for five days and marked by prayers to goddess Durga, feasts, rejoicing, music, dance and drama. On this day, the people wear new clothes and visit all the community Pujas and worship the ten-armed 

Goddess Durga, Saraswati, Lakshmi, Ganesh and Kartikeya in beutifully illuminated and decorated pandals. The priests perform the prayers at appointed times while the devotees visit these pandals throughout the day. In towns and villages, in the evening, drama, song, music, dance programmes, sports, physical and cultural competitions etc are held in which everyone participates. Community feasts are also held. On the last day of the festival, the clay images of goddess Durga are taken in a colourful procession throughout the city to be immersed in the river. After the immersion, the people greets each other and visitors to every home are offered sweetmeats. The fairs are held eveywhere whic sells various articles of utility and handicratfs. The festival that follows after this is Deepavali, the festival of lights. The worship of goddess Kali is marked by display of fireworks and crackers. 

Christmas

The Christmas festival is also celebrated on a large scale like the Durga Puja. On this day, the various churches hold special prayers, including the Midnight mass. All the markets start preparing for this festival as the Bara Din (Big Day) or the Christmas arrives. Various stalls are pt up in the market that sells the Christmas trees, pre-packed traditional stockings, baubles, streamers and glitter. 

Paush Mela

Paush Mela is the most important fair of Shantiniketan. This fair is held in the month of December and coincides with the Shantiniketan's foundation day. This is the most important festival of Shantiniketan, among various other festivals celebrated here. The dance, music and drama programmes are organized in this fair. Santals, the tribals of the region and Bauls, the Bengal's wandering minstrels perform the local dances.

Vishnupur Festival

The Vishnupur Festival is celebrated in Vishnupur in West Bengal. Vishnupur is mainly known for its beautiful terracotta temples and elegant silk sarees. This festival is organised every year between 27 and 31 December. This festival celebrates the rich heritage of the town of Vishnupur. Exhibitions and sale of local handicrafts and musical and dance performances are the part of the festival.

Teesta Tea & Tourism Festival

The Teesta Tea & Tourism Festival is held at Darjeeling, the Dooars and Sikkim. The festival is held every year in November December. This festival is celebrated with a view to promote tourism in this region as a composite tourist destination, with its bounties in tea, timber and tourism.

States in East India
Bihar || Jharkhand || Orissa || Sikkim || West Bengal

Information about West Bengal
Introduction || History || Geography || Climate || Economy || People || Crafts || Cuisine || Festivals || Tourist Attractions

Cities in West Bengal
Darjeeling || Gaur || Kalimpong || Kolkata || Shantiniketan || Vishnupur

Distances from Cities in West Bengal
Barddhaman || Durgapur || Haldia || Hubli || Kolkata || Siliguri

Festivals of West Bengal
Ganga Sagar Mela || Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Jayanti || Basant Panchami || Birthday of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa || Bengali New Year || Buddha Jayanti || Id || Rabindra Jayanti || Mahesh Yatra || Jhapan || Durga Puja || Christmas || Paush Mela || Vishnupur Festival || Teesta Tea & Tourism Festival

Wildlife Sanctuaries in West Bengal
Sunderbans National Park || Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary || Sajnekhali Bird Sanctuary || Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park || Kolkata Zoo


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