With the month of February drawing upon us and when the weather is still cold and pleasant, India hosts many enchanting festivals to lure both the domestic as well as international travellers. Here’s a brief peek into India’s most exciting and memorable festivals that can imbibe you with the mystical Indian culture and fervour –
1. Khajuraho Dance Festival
Dates: 20th – 26th February 2017
The Khajuraho Dance Festival is a cultural extravaganza epitomising the rich heritage of Indian classical dance against the magnificent temples of Khajuraho in Chhatarpur, Madhya Pradesh as the centre stage. Don’t miss out this opportunity to witness live the best of the Kuchipudi, Kathak, Odis, Manipuri and classical dance performances by world acclaimed dancers based on Indian mythology and culture of the ancient bygone eras.
2. Goa Carnival
Date: 25th – 28th Feb 2017
Whoa! Goa, it is during the last three days of February with Goa Carnival celebrations happening all over the major cities of Goa. Dancing, merrymaking, vibrantly decorated floats embellished with colourful flowers and feathers with the King Momo along with his court of jesters, fire eaters and other live performers, mark the charisma of this festival. Don’t miss out the grand finale at the Clube National in Panaji with the Red and Black Ball and make sure “Kha, piye aani majja kar” as Goans always do.
3. Taj Mahotsav
Dates: 18th – 27th February 2017
Synonymous with Incredible India, the Taj Mahotsav is a ten-day long festival held in Agra, the historic city of India, the home of the Taj Mahal. Visit this open air festival to encourage the local Indian craftsmen by shopping for choicest of woodwork, antiques, local textiles, exquisite hand embroidered textiles – zardozi, chikan karri, Kashmiri, Banarasi silk, Kantha & much more. Stay entertained with live cultural performances and partake regional fare dished out by the people of the region themselves.
4. Jaisalmer Desert Festival
Dates: 8th to 10th February 2017
Set in the sand dunes of Sam, near Jaisalmer, this short two-day festival showcases the vibrant Rajasthani culture and flavour. Participate in the Jaisalmer Desert Festival and enjoy hordes of activities – camel racing, turban tying, live jugglery, ballad shows and puppet shows, polo matches, dance and music shows on warm moonlit evenings.
5. Kala Ghoda Arts Festival
Dates: 4th – 12th February 2017
Participate in the annual nine-day Kala Ghoda Arts Festival held in the Kala Ghoda precinct of Mumbai. This vibrant festival encompasses workshops, heritage walks, celebrity appearances, live dance and music shows and much more. Visitors can also shop for arts, crafts and other eco- friendly items. This festival is held on first Saturday and ends on the second Sunday of February and is visited not only by Mumbaikars but by foreign tourists in large numbers.
6. Sufi Sutra International – Sur Jahan Kolkata 2017
Dates: 3rd– 5th February 2017
One of its kind, the Sur Jahan Kolkata 2017 is scheduled to take place at Mohar Kunj, Kolkata. This festival is committed to world peace and music for all. With acclaimed musicians performing in the non-commercial and non-ticketed event, you can enjoy listening to Bauls of Bengal, Virelai from Denmark, Qawwali from Punjab, BraAgas from the Czech Republic and Ale Moller Quartet from Sweden. The festival has workshops scheduled during daytime while concerts are conducted during evenings.
Dates: 3rd – 5th February 2017
Once again, it’s time to head for the Tenth Edition of Sula Fest held at Sula Vineyards, Nasik. Set in the vineyards, this unique music festival offers a great range of wines accompanied by the choicest of music played live all throughout the three days. Along with our Indian artists Ska Vengers, Priyanjana, Ayesha Pramanik and Shaun Moses you can listen to Afro Celt Sound System, Dubioza Kolektiv, from Bosnia, Italian electro-swing band, Swingrowers, and more performing their eclectic music live exclusively for you.
8. Surajkund Crafts Mela
Dates: 1st to 15th February 2017
The 31st Edition of the Surajkund Crafts Mela will be based on the state of Jharkhand. Considered to be India’s largest crafts fair, this mela includes participants from nearly 20 countries along with regional artisans from every Indian state. A must-visit event for those who love India for its handlooms, handicrafts and multi-ethnicity. Apart from this, you can enjoy live dance, and music shows at Chaupals, open-air theatres, live demonstration stalls along with multi-regional cuisine along with ample amusement options too.