Fairs & Festival
Orissa is not only an ideal choice for momuments, beaches, waterfalls
and scenic beauties but also for here colourful fairs and festivals
The festivals are as numerous as the days in a year, each with
a difference having an individuality of its own culminating in the
grand Car Festival of Puri.
Through this chapter, we present some of the major Fairs &
Festivals of Orissa and you are welcomes to enjoy them.
Makar Mela (January)
Makar Sankranti is celebrated with gusto in mid-January when the
Sun enters the orbit of capricon. Sun God is worshipped with great
fervour and enthusiasm by one and all. The festival can be best
enjoyed at Kalijai (an island in Chilika), Atri, Ghatgaon, Keonjhar,
Jashipur and Jagatsinghpur.
Megha Mela ( January February)
The most popular and colourful festival of Konark, an occasion for
a grand congregating of Indian pilgrims and enthusiasts from abroad,
falls on the 7th day of the bright half of Magha. The
Indian pilgrims talk only dips in the Chandrabhaga Tirtha near the
sea and wecome the rising Sun with prayers.
Also a grand fair is held at Khandagiri near Bhubaneswar on the
same day which continues for about a week.
Maha Shivaratri (February-March)
The festival "Shivas Great Night" falls on the 14th
day of the dark half of Phalgun and is observed by devotees all
over the country. Devotees keep fast and perform puja throughout
the night and keep a vigil to witness the sacred lamp on the temple
The festival can be best enjoyed at mahendragiri, Gupteswar, Kapilas,
Puri, Bhubaneswar and Khiching.
Taratarini Mela (March-April)
The Taratarini Mela one of Orissas beggest fairs,
talks place on each Tuesdays of the month of Chaitra
i.e. from around mid-March to mid-April at Taratarini Pitha 30
km from Berhampur. A grand congregation takes place on the 3rd Tuesday.
The Car Festival of Lord Lingaraj at Bhubaneswar, Ashokastami is
held in the bright half of Chaitra. The protégé
of Lord Lingaraj is taken in a chariot from the main temple to Rameswar
Temple and return after a four-day stay.
Chaitra Parba (April)
The Chaitra Parba or Chhau Festival commences
from 10th/11th April every year and continues for three days concluding
on Mahavishuva Sankranti Day at Baripada. This is a
festival of festivals which is enjoyed by the people of the country
and the enthusiasts from abroad.
Sitalasasthi (May - June)
The celebration of marriage ceremony of Lord Shiva with Parvati
starts with the untying of the wedding knot of the divine couple.
Devotees act as their parents to perform the marriage. The bridegrooms
procession popularly known as Barat starts from the
5th night of the bright half of Jyestha and the marriage is performed
in the traditional manner.
is celebrated at Sambalpur and Bhubaneswar in gorgeous ways.
Ratha Yatra ( June-July)
Ratha Yatra, Known as Car Festival is the grandest of
all festivals in Orissa. It is the sacred journey of Lord Jagannath
with brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra from the main Jagannath
Temple to another shrine called Gundicha Mandir for
nine days. It begins from the 2nd day of the bright half of "Asadha"
which falls in June-July every year. Thousands and thousands of
devotees from all over India and abroad throng on that day at Puri
to Pull the sacred Chariots.
Durga Puja (September-October)
Durga Puja symbolises the commemoration of good over evil. Life
comes to a stand-still in the city of Cuttack as crowds pour over
the Puja Mandaps to enjoy the festivities. On the day succeeding
Vijaya Dasami, the last day of Dussera, the images are
taken in a spectacular procession for immersion in the river Kathajodi.
Lakshmi Puja (September-October)
Observed with much pomp and ceremony in Dhenkanal town, it commences
from the fullmoon
day of Aswin and continues for a period f one week.
Beach Festival (November 5-9)
Puri, the abode of Lord Jagannath, is a wounderful beach resort
for leisure tourists. It is known for its thirteen major festivals
of Lord Jagannath celebrated every year. But the new Tourist festival
known as Puri Beach Festival hald from 5th-9th November
each year has come to limelight in recent times.
Bali yatra (November-December)
To commemorate the glorious past of commercial voyages to the islands
of Bali, Java and Sumatra by Orissan Trader, a big fair called Bali
Yatra is held on Mahanadi river bank at Cuttack on the fullmoon
day of Kartik.
Konark Festival (December 1-5)
A festival of classical dance forms performed by the celebrated
danseurs of the country on the Open Air Auditorium set amidst the
casuarina grove against the back drop of Sun Temple, a World Heritage
Monument. During the festival evenings the atmosphere is surcharged
with rhythmic dancing beats and melodious tunes.
Dhanu Yatra ( December - January)
Dhanu Yatra relating to the episode of Lord Krishnas visit
to Mathura to witness the ceremony of "Bow" is colourfully
observed at Bargarh. The town of Bargarh becomes Mathura, the river
Jira becomes Yamuna and the village Amapalli on the other bank of
the river becomes Gopa. Different acts of the Puranic descriptions
are performed at their right places and the spectators move from
place to place with the actions to see the performance.
Info on Fairs and Festivals of Orissa - India