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Fairs and Festivals of Uttarakhand

Kumbh Mela, Baishaki, Devidhura Mela, Uttaraini Mela, Gauchar Mela, Nanda Devi Mela, Nanda Devi Raj Jat Yatra, Peerane Kaliyar, Maga Mela, Vishu Mela

Ardh Kumbh Mela, Nandadevi Fair, Jauljibi & Thal Fair, Uttarayani Fair, Hatkalika Fair, Khataltua Fair, Somnath Fair and Devidhura Fair.

It is a sacred Hindu pilgrimage, which takes place at four locations of India. One of them is Haridwar in the state of Uttarakhand, where the river Ganga enters the plains from Himalayas at the confluence of three rivers Ganga (Ganges), Yamuna, and Saraswati.

Kumbh Mela of Uttarakhand takes place four times every twelve years at the above location. Every twelve-year cycle includes the Maha (great) Kumbh Mela at Haridwar and Prayag, which is the largest pilgrimage gathering in the world. It is attended by millions of people.



Baishaki is among the important festivals of Uttarakhand. Baishaki in Uttarakhand is celebrated during the month of April, which symbolizes the beginning of yet another year. After harvesting season, people in Uttarakhand mostly relax and spend their time in leisure. Therefore, to commemorate this free time they started the celebration of Baishaki.

At the period of transition, when the Sun moves from one constellation (Sankranti) to the other, fairs and festivals are observed by the people of Uttarakhand. In Uttarakhand, each sankranti is marked with a festival, namely Fooldeyi, Bikhauti, Harela, Ghee Sankranti, Khatarua, Holi Uttaraini, etc.


Devidhura Mela

Devidhura Mela is held in the compound of the Varahi Devi temple of Devidhura. Devidhura Mela is held every year on the auspicious day of Raksha Bandhan. The place Devidhura is situated at a junction of Almora, Pithoragarh, and Nainital districts. Devidhura Mela is famous for its enchanting dance and folk songs and also for its Bagwal.


Uttaraini Mela

Uttaraini Mela of Uttarakhand is held around many locations including Sult Mahadev, Bageshwar, Rameshwar, Chitrashila (Ranibagh), Hanseshwar, etc. It is held on Uttarayani day (Makar Sankranti). The dola of Chaumu comes down to the temple at Pancheshwar. Merchants from distant places like Tibet and Nepal come to Uttaraini Mela for brisk trading. Among the things available for sale are iron and copper pots, blankets, baskets, casks, durries, mats, mattresses, cane and bamboo articles, carpets, blankets, herbs, and spices.

Uttaraini Mela at Bageshwar attracts a lot of local people as well as tourists. It is an important place from the cultural, commercial, and political points of view.


Gauchar Mela

Gauchar Mela of Uttarakhand is a great attraction for the local people and the traders and mercahnts from every corner of the state. Held every year for a week starting from 14th November, Uttrakhand's Gaucher mela is fundamentally an industrial fair. It is attended widely by tourists and inhabitants of the state alike. The cultural programs like the local dances and songs always remains a major attraction of Gauchar mela at Uttarakhand.


Nanda Devi Mela

The Nanda Devi Mela is held at Almora, Kot (Dangoli), Nainital, Kichha Ranikhet, Bhowali, and in the rural villages of Lohar (like Milam and Martoli) and Pindar valleys (like Khati and Wachham). The Nanda Devi Mela of Uttarakhand at Almora and Roopkund are the most famous. In Nainital and Almora, many people take part in the procession carrying the dola (litter) of Nanda Devi. The fair at Saneti takes place every second year. Nanda Devi Mela in Uttarakhand is rich in folk expressions and many village products are available for sale.


Nanda Devi Raj Jat Yatra

Nanda Devi Raj Jat Yatra is a festival that stetches for whole three weeks. It is one such Uttaranchal festival that is globally famous. Innumerable people participate in Nanda Devi Raj Jat Yatra from the Garhwal-Kumaon region, the rest of the country, and abroad.

Goddess Nanda Devi is a popular deity at many places of Kumaon. Nanda Devi Raj Jat is organised once in every 12 years in Chamoli after royal priests' descendents and the Kunwar royal family make elaborate preprations in the village of Nauti and in Kansuwar respectively. It is primarily a religious pilgrimage spanning for 280 kilometer. The trek takes about 20 days to be completed.


Peerane Kaliyar

Peerane Kaliyar Festival is organised at Piran Kaliyar Sharif. This is located in Roorkee tehsil of Haridwar district. Lakhs of Jaireens from across the country and abroad participate in Peerane Kaliyar Festival. The festival spans for a period of about one month. It is organised on the basis of the Muslim calendar near Id-E-Milad.


Maga Mela

Maga Mela of Uttarakhand is held once in a year on the occasion of Makar Sankranti ( January) in Uttarkashi. It is an important event of the district of Uttarkashi from cultural, religious, and commercial points of view. The fair is held on the banks of Bhagirathi River in Uttarkashi. Many local people and tourists from different parts of Kumaon, Garhwal, and other parts of Uttar Pradesh participate in Maga Mela at Uttarakhand.

The mela attracts devout people from all over the world. It is actually a bathing ritual. It begins on a full moon day and lasts for 15 days to a month. Maga Mela in Uttarakhand attracts thousands of pilgrims, who come here every year to take a holy dip in Bhagirathi and have a darshan of the image of their village deity. Every twelfth year, this mela is called Kumbh Mela and every sixth year it is known as Ardh Kumbh.


Vishu Mela

Vishu Mela is organized at the Jhanda ground in the cantonment area of Chakrata block of the Dehradun district. It is held at a distance of about 3 kilometer from Chakrata. The fair reflects the tradition and cultural heritage of the Jaunsari tribe. A large number of people participate in Vishu Mela from nearby Uttarkashi, Trhri, and Saharanpur districts. The fair is organized to celebrate the harvesting season in the area. Therefore, Vishu Mela reflects the happiness of the local people.

Uttarakhand FairsFairs and festivals have constantly been an essential part of the life of Indians and people of Uttarakhand are no different. The state of Uttaranchal has several fairs and temples, intrinsic to the culture of the hills. These fairs are considered very auspicious and form important trading centers for the people from different sectors of crafts to sell their works and animals, especially hill ponies. Many folk songs and dances are alive today because of these fairs doubling up as social gatherings.

There are many fairs in Uttarakhand like Ardh Kumbh Mela, Nandadevi Fair, Jauljibi & Thal Fair, Uttarayani Fair, Hatkalika Fair, Khataltua Fair, Somnath Fair and Devidhura Fair. The Somnath fair in Almora is one of the best fairs that happen in Uttaranchal which is held on the auspicious Vishuwat Sankranti day in November / December. Somnath is another name for Lord Shiva so it is a big day for his devotees. The venue for the fair is the Shiva Temple at Masi.

The Devidhura fair on the other hand is held on the day of Raksha Bandhan at the Varahi Devi temple at Devidhura. Almora, Pithoragarh and Nainital form a common point of Devidhura. A strange ritual of this fair is that two groups of people throw stones at each other and defending themselves with roofs as shields. There are many other things that one will be surprised to know about so read on to find more about the fairs of Uttarakhand.


Bikhauti Fair

Uttarakhand have vivacious people celebrating life on any given occasion. Any fair or festival is a part of these celebrations surrounding the lives of ordinary people. Bikhauti Fair is celebrated on the day of Vishuwat Sankranti day commemorating an ancient victory.


Haatkalika Fair

The Haatkalika fair is held in Gangolihat, a small town in the Pithoragarh District of Uttarakhand. The fair is organized in honor of Goddess Haatkalika, a divine embodiment of Maa Kali.


Jageshwar Fair

Imagine a single fair for a cluster of almost two hundered temples. Think of a crowd of thousands of people amidst these ancient places of worship with a legend older than the temple building.


Jauljibi & Thal

Uttarakhand FairFairs and festivals are an important part of lives of the people of Uttaranchal. The fairs are a place to socialize and meet people and do business. Jauljibi and Thal are such popular fairs celebrated in Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand.


Haridwar Kumbh

Ardh Kumbh Mela is held every six years at the banks of the holy Ganges River in Haridwar. Millions of people gather to be part of a religious fervor and inspite of the rush still manage to have a good time.


Nanda Devi Fair

Fairs in Uttarakhand serve as a meeting point for mingling with people from other parts of the state, trade items of local produce and of course celebrate something of religious importance.


Purnagiri Fair

Purnagiri is located on the top of a hill and is 20 kms from Tanakpur. Purnagiri It is located on the right bank of the river kali. Also known as Punyagiri (meaning the mountain of good deeds), the Purnagiri temple is visited by thousands of devotees throughout the year.


Uttarayani Fair

The people of the state of Uttarakhand celebrate a number of fairs and festivals. The Uttarayani Fair is a perfect example of the highly sacred sentiments of the local residents. Of all the places, the Bageshwar temple fair attracts the largest number of people.

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