For five days in October, India lights up for Diwali; one of the most famous festivals on the Hindu calendar.
One of the most important and well-known Hindu festivals, Diwali literally means ‘rows of lighted lamps’. An event in which people come together to celebrate good conquering evil, or perhaps more aptly, light conquering darkness; over the five days, family feasts, fireworks, candles and bright lights take over, along with prayers to the Goddess of Wealth, Lakshmi.
Image credit: harpreet singh | Flickr Creative Commons
When is Diwali?
Taking place in the autumn months somewhere between October and November, the date each year is determined by the Hindu lunar calendar, coinciding with the darkest new moon night. This year, Diwali falls on 19 October.
Diwali in Goa
There are several legends which surround Diwali, and in Goa, the locals celebrate the God Krishna, who defeated the demon Narkasur. During Diwali, it’s a common theme to see large figures of this demon parading the streets, some of which are then filled with fireworks to signify light triumphing over darkness. Some of these large effigies are made using straw and paper and are burnt at dawn in the villages. Gifts of sweets and food are given, and locals decorate their houses with bright lights, and create colourful patterns (Rangoli) on the floor using coloured powder and rice, which are thought to bring good luck.
Rangoli. Image credit: Dinesh Korgaokar | Wikimedia Creative Commons
Making the most of the Diwali celebrations
Being in Goa during Diwali is an incredible experience, and we highly recommend a stay at the Taj Exotica during this time. The hotel often holds celebrations, including magnificent firework displays to mark this important festival.
You can also find plenty of other holidays in October on our website, should you fancy something a bit different.
If you'd like to know more about some of the festivals and events that take place in Goa, visit our guide page.
Header image credit: Dhinal Chheda | Flick Creative Commons.
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