"Uttar Pradesh is a cradle of cultural and traditional festivals. All the major festivals of all communities are celebrated with gusto and colour at different places. For visitors to Uttar Pradesh, these festivals are the best time to see the folk culture, decorations, fireworks, dances, music, and experience the joy and adventure of life at its best."
While major festivals like Diwali, Id-ul-fitr, Baisakhi and Christmas are observed all over the state, some specific holidays and destinations associated with them are:
This is a festival of colours, fun and frolic celebrated with gusto all over the Uttar Pradesh. It is a harvest festival, falling on the day next to the full moon in the month of Phalgun in the Hindu calendar. It corresponds to the month of March according to the English calendar.It marks the onset of spring. It also marks the triumph of good over evil. It has a special significance in the Braj region and there the celebrations continue for more than a week.
On this day, the air is full of coloured gulal and abeer. People apply it on each other as well as to the feet of the elders of the family. Sprinklers of various designs and sizes are used by children and elders alike to throw coloured water on one another. It is also a day of eating sweets, salted snacks and a wide variety of special dishes. The special dishes prepared on this day are Gujiya and mathri.
Dussehra marks the culmination of a special ten-day period known as Nav Ratri. The tenth day is known as Vijaya Dashami or Dussehra. It is celebrated in the Hindu month of Ashwin (usually in September or October). The essence of the Nav Ratri celebration is to respect all women, who are guardians of the family, culture, and integrity. Durga is worshipped as the main deity of Nav Ratri and the festival is also marked by Durga Puja by many communities. On the day of Dussehra, statues of the Goddess Durga are submerged in the river waters.
Ramnavami Mela in Ayodhya marks the birth anniversary of Lord Rama. Vijayadashami is marked in many places by the destruction of an effigy of the demon king by Lord Ram, as a reminder of the victory of good over evil.