most important Festivals of Odisha, Odisha, located on the eastern coast of India, is known for its rich cultural heritage and vibrant festivals. Here are some of the most important Festivals of Odisha:
Rath Yatra: Also known as the “Chariot Festival,” Rath Yatra is one of the largest and most famous festivals in Odisha. It is held in the temple city of Puri. It involve the pulling of giant chariots carrying the deities Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, and Devi Subhadra through the streets of the town
Dussehra: Celebrated with great fervor in the city of Bhubaneswar, Dussehra is a festival that marks the victory of good over evil. The festival is celebrated with traditional dances, music, and feasts.
Konark Dance Festival: Konark Dance Festival is a week-long celebration of classical dances held in the temple city of Konark. The festival showcases the rich cultural heritage of Odisha and attracts performers and tourists from all over the world.
Makar Sankranti: Makar Sankranti is a harvest festival celebrated in January to mark the end of the winter season and the beginning of spring. It is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Odisha, with traditional sweets and delicacies being prepared and distributed among friends and family.
Raja: A fertility festival, Raja is celebrated by the women of Odisha in the month of June. It involves the worship of Mother Earth and is a celebration of nature’s bounty.
Samba Dasami: Samba Dasami is a festival that marks the end of the nine-day Navaratri celebrations in Odisha. It is celebrated with traditional dances, music, and feasts, and is an important festival for the Hindu community in the state.
Akshaya Tritiya: Akshaya Tritiya is a Hindu festival that is celebrated in India, especially in the states of Odisha, West Bengal, and Maharashtra. It is observed on the third day (Tritiya) of the Hindu month of Vaisakha and is considered one of the most auspicious days of the Hindu calendar. The word “Akshaya” means “eternal” or “indestructible” and is believed to bring good luck and prosperity to those who observe the festival.
Ashokastami: Ashokastami is a Hindu festival celebrated in the state of Odisha, India. It is observed on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Hindu month of Chaitra and is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
On this day, devotees observe a fast and perform puja and offerings to Lord Shiva. It is also a day of charity and people offer food, clothes, and money to the poor and needy. The festival is celebrated with great devotion and zeal, with people visiting Shiva temples, singing devotional songs, and performing cultural programs.
Vasant Panchami: Vasant Panchami is a Hindu festival that is celebrated in India, especially in the states of Odisha, West Bengal, and Bihar. It is observed on the fifth day (Panchami) of the Hindu month of Magh and marks the arrival of spring. The word “Vasant” means “spring” and “Panchami” means “fifth.”
On this day, people worship the goddess of learning, Saraswati, and offer prayers for knowledge, wisdom, and good education. Children start their education on this day, and students visit schools and colleges with flowers and sweets to offer to their teachers. It is also a day for cultural programs and celebrations, with music, dance, and poetry being performed in honor of the goddess.
Chaiti Ghoda Festival: Chaiti Ghoda Festival is a Hindu festival celebrated in the state of Odisha, India. It is observed in the Hindu month of Chaitra, and its exact date varies each year according to the Hindu lunar calendar. The festival is also known as Chaiti Parva, Baseli Puja or Chaiti Mela. It is an exclusive festival for the fishermen,s Community of Odisha popularly known as Keuta.
Chhau Festival: Chhau Festival is a traditional dance festival celebrated in the state of Odisha, India. It is performed during the Hindu festival of Holi and is also known as Chhau Dance. The Chhau Dance is a form of martial dance that originated in the Purulia district of West Bengal and has been performed in Odisha for several centuries. The Chhau Festival starts on the 11th of April every year and continues For Three Days. It ends on Mahabishuba sankranti.
The Chhau Dance is performed by men dressed in masks and colorful costumes, depicting characters from Hindu mythology, such as gods, demons, and animals. The dance is accompanied by musical instruments such as drums, pipes, and cymbals, and showcases the strength, skill, and agility of the dancers.
Chandan Yatra is a Hindu festival celebrated in the state of Odisha, India. It is observed at the Jagannath Temple in Puri and is one of the largest and most important festivals in the state. The festival is also known as Snana Yatra or Snana Jatra.
Chandan Yatra is celebrated in the Hindu month of Jyestha, and its exact date varies each year according to the Hindu lunar calendar. The festival is a major pilgrimage event, attracting thousands of devotees from all over India.
During the festival, Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, and Devi Subhadra are taken out of the temple in a procession and placed on a large wooden platform for the ceremonial bath. The idols are then bathed with holy water, milk, curd, sandalwood paste, and other auspicious substances.
After the bath, the deities are then dressed in new clothes and placed on the Ratna Simhasan, a throne made of gems, and worshipped by the devotees. The festival is a celebration of Lord Jagannath’s divinity and is an important event in the lives of the people of Odisha.
These are just some of the many festivals celebrated in Odisha, each with its own unique customs and traditions that showcase the rich cultural heritage of the state.
Other Important Festivals of Odisha
|Bali Jatra||October-November||Cuttack, Bhubaneswar, Paradip||Worship of Lord Kartikeswar.|
|Bhouma Ekadashi||January||Odisha||Worship of Lord Ganesha.|
|Chaiti Ghoda||March-April||Coastal areas of Odisha||Worship of Vasuli Devi (Caste deity of Kaibartas).|
|Chitau Amavasya||July||Puri||Worship of Lord Jagannath.|
|Dashami||December-January||Eastern part of Odisha||–|
|Dhanu Yatra/Jatra||January||Bargarh||Worship of Krishna|
|Dhauli-Kalinga Mahotsava||January-February||Bhubaneswar||Tribute to the martyrs of the Mauryan dynasty. It represents the Konark dance and music festival.|
|Durga Puja||September-October||Cuttack||Worship of Goddess Durga.|
|Ekamra||January||Bhubaneswar||Worship of Lord Shiva|
|Gupta Gundicha||September||Puri||Worship of Lord Jagannath. it is a car festival of Lord Jagannath.|
|international Sand Art Festival||December||Chandrabhaga Beach in Puri district||it is a sand art festival in which sand sculptures are produced by skilful sand artists.|
|Maha Bisuba Sankranti||April||All over Odisha||First day of Odia New Year.|
|Mukteswar Dance Festival||January||Bhubaneswar||It is organised by Odisha Tourism Department. Worship of Surya (Sun God).|
|Nuakhai||August-September||Kalahandi, Sambalpur, Jharsuguda, Sonepur, Balangir, Sundargarh, Boudh, Nuapada||Worship of village God or Goddess.|
|Patua Jatra and Chandak Puja||April-May||Prevalent among low- caste Hindu of the state||Worship of Lord Shiva or Shakti.|
|Prathamashtami||December||All over the state||Worship of Sati Devi.|
|Raja Sankranti||June-July||All over the state||Worship of Bhudevi, wife of Lord Jagannath.|
|Toki Parba||January||Kalahandi, Koraput||Worship of the Earth.|
|Uda Parba||April||Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar||Worship of Goddess Hangula/Mangla and Lord Shiva. Chhau dance is especially performed in this festival.|