Kerala, as many people say, is God’s own country. There is nothing that is disappointing with Kerala and even the attitude of the people after the ravaging of the massive flood needs to be appreciated. If this state can hold a mood off celebration even in times of tragedy, just imagine the mood of celebration in actual celebrations! A lot of celebrations of its own in addition to celebrating the festivals that are quite known throughout India. It is not just about these festivals but about the celebrations in every kind that happened around these festivals. Kerala is known for its signature dance form Kathakali. Kerala also has its own form of martial art which also Doubles up as an artistic show of flexibility called as kalaripayattu. Kerala has its own signature sport, The Snake boat race. In addition to this, even the drumming pattern of Kerala called the chendamelam is quite reflective of the vibrant culture of Kerala. Here are a few festivals in Kerala that you should never miss out on.
Here are a few signatures that Kerala holds in terms of its festivals that you should experience to get a complete cultural and traditional food and flavour of what Kerala is about.
Kerala boat races
With the abundance of backwaters in Kerala, boat races are inevitable not only in terms of availability but also in terms of culture. Almost all festivals of Kerala are incomplete without Boat race festivals. There are a lot of boat races that happen all around the state and the most important of them is the Nehru boat race that happens in the Alappuzha district of Kerala. Other than that, the vembanad lake, the Aranmula boat race and the other minor races like the Indira Gandhi boat race are quite some celebrations in Goa. The Onam festival which is considered to be the native festival of Goa is never complete without the boat race. On an additional note, The Snake boat races of Kerala have the highest number of participants per team.
This festival is one of the most popular in Kerala and is also among the most expected. This festival carries with it, Legacy of more than 800 years. This is one of the festivals that exemplifies and exalts the arts of Kerala. The arts include the Chamundi, the Bhagavathi and more than 400 varieties of the performances that people can choose from. This festival is celebrated sometime between April and December and is bound to vary year after year. In addition to the core performance, even the painting up of the performer is a big thing on this festival.
Any article about the festivals of Kerala cannot be complete without the mention of Onam. Proudly said to be the national festival or rather the state festival of Kerala, it is celebrated to commemorate the vamana avatar of Lord Vishnu and also the return of Kerala’s most favourite King Mahabali. This festival is celebrated all through the state without any distinction of religion or anything whatsoever! There are a lot of happenings that are centred around Onam. The Onam food is a grand culinary affair and is called the sadya. In addition to this, there are a lot of dance and music performances that happened, and Kerala signature dance Kathakali is performed by the experts. If you would like to explore the cultural dimension of Kerala, there is no better time to visit this state then during the time of Onam. Onam generally Falls during August or September of every year.
Temple festivals of Kerala
In all the affinity towards Communism, Kerala is a deeply religious state. There are a lot of temples that are present all across Kerala and some of the most prominent of them are the temples at Thrissur, Padmanabhaswamy, Vaikom, Guruvayur and the famous Sabarimala. It is all these festivals that make Kerala as God’s Own Country!!
Kerala, unlike any other Indian state, has a steady population of Christians and Muslims. The best part in Kerala is that these Christians and Muslims have shed their religious identity that stems from the Middle East, and have adapted a cultural identity of Kerala. The cultural affinity, irrespective of the religions, can be seen in the way people take processions during the Good Friday, and in the way the temples are decorated in the festive-times.
One such festival that is celebrated in that flavor is the Pindi Perunnal. The name Pindi perunnal literally translate to plantain trunk festival. This festival commemorates the baptism of Jesus Christ In The River Jordan. This marks the public life of Jesus Christ which commenced the faith of Christianity. The festival of Pindi perunnal is a very important occasion for Syrian and the Saint Thomas Christians in the state of Kerala. What adds to the festival is the singing of the Syrian Hymn “El Payya” meaning “God is Light!”
The festival of Pooram is celebrated to mark the price of the Moon along with the Pooram star in the Malayalam month of Medam. Though there are a lot of forums that are celebrated around the state of Kerala, the Thrissur Pooram is considered to be the grandest and the most famous of all the poems that are celebrated all over the state!
What makes the Thrissur Pooram special is that it is a celebration of multiple temples converging at the Vadakkunnathan temple. Raja Rama Varma, also known as Shakthan Thampuran organised the temples into two groups namely the Western and Eastern groups, comprising of five temples each.
One of the greatest highlights of the Thrissur Pooram is the set of profession that pays tributes to the deity Shiva, and the procession culminates at the Vadakkunnathan temple.
With so much diversity and so much of cultural richness, Kerala…