Posts for Festivals/Events Category

Choose Your Destination to Welcome the New Year

Blog, Festivals/Events - GoroadTrip - October 26, 2017

Some people greet the new year with serenity, some through celebrations, others through visits and many through travels. Choose what you want to do and where you want to be this new year. Here is a guide:


Of course, this party goal is high on the New Year’s Lover’s list. The Sunburn Festival, which is celebrated at this time of the year, is a big catch-crowd. Add hundreds of party venues, numerous beaches, food stalls and the flow of alcohol with carnivals to the mix and a roaring start to the year.

Andaman and Nicobar Islands:

New Year on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands is a big deal. An incremental transformation well known for the New Year. Noisy and colorful parties are held everywhere; in resorts, on beaches and on yachts. The white sand and unspoilt nature make beach lovers look forward to the New Year’s welcome.


New Year, Puducherry New Year. The restaurants offer fantastic menus and spend a relaxing time on the beach.

Hill Destinations:


What better place to welcome the new year in nature, where is she the most beautiful? Feel the pines and orchards, admire the white snow and head for the spectacular Manali-Leh road. Welcome to the new year with emerging minds.


This “Hill Station Princess” is the perfect place for a family vacation in the new year. The cool climate, invigorating fresh air and the company are celebrating for the New Year.

Metropolitan regions:


The city of dreams is preparing for the New Year unlike any other. Every place has a festive look, from humble Chowkis Mumbai to chic neighborhoods. Get a dazzling start to the New Year by being in Mumbai.

New Delhi:

Spot-on New Year is our capital. Travel, food, art scenes, shopping, club every year in your country.


The Silicon Valley of India is a living thread in the New Year. Convince yourself with a walk in the street. With large gardens and large open spaces in Bangalore, one can assume a large scale.

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Celebrating Pongal in South India

Blog, Festivals/Events - GoroadTrip - October 15, 2017


Pongal or Sankranti is celebrated a harvest festival, when the month Margazhi or Dhanura comes to an end. The month that starts with the festival is Thai or Markara. It also marks the beginning of Uttarayana, a six-month period during which the sun moves north. On festival day the sun starts traveling TICs to the north and Uttarayana, a propitious period where all the essential functions are held starting.

The festival is celebrated with the same name; to mark the end of winter and celebrate the beginning of spring. In most parts of northern India, it is celebrated as Lohri and Assam as Bhogali Bihu.

In South India, he is known as Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Sankranthi Or Yellu Bella in Karnataka, Sankranti in Andhra Pradesh, Makara Sankranti in Maharashtra and Makaravillaku in Kerala.

Pongal, Tamil Nadu:

Pongal is a well-known festival for the people of Tamil Nadu and is celebrated for four days! The first day is Bhogi, which is celebrated to symbolize the end of the old and the beginning of a new period. Old things are limited to flames and made for the new crop and the new bright beginning.

The second day is Pongal. On this day, the sun god is worshiped. Profitable harvest and cooking in a lush harvest. The court is offered to God of the Sun. Festival festivities are best seen in villages where he is persecuted in a very traditional way. The courtyard of Pongal is cooked outside the houses in the courtyards. Traditional wood boilers and earthen pots are used. Prayers and elaborate rituals follow the puja offered to the sun god.

The third day is the day Maatu Qui Pongal is to worship the cow. An important animal for people in agriculture The cows of the house are washed, decorated, venerated and then driven. In cities, dairy farmers bring their cows to their customers so they can offer puja. The popular game of Jallikattu, which refers to money-binding packets on the horns of bullfights trying to snatch men from their sisters, hugging and clinging to an em, will take place that day.

The last day of Pongal is Kaanum Pongal. It is served with sugar cane, bananas and betel nut on the day of the day. Families spend the day outdoors, visiting or in public places.

Kolam with rice paste is a common sight everyday of the festival. The designs are eye-catching with their intricate pattern and thoughtful size.

In the land of Kannadigas Sankranti with Yellu Synonym (sesame) and bella (jaggery). Celebrations include cleaning the house on the eve of the festival. On the day of the party, mango leaves are used to decorate the main door. Rangolien with different colors decorate the sleepers. People prepare rice and Moong Dhal Kichdi or huggi. A sweet dish of rice and moong dhal is also prepared. Freshly harvested vegetables are used in the preparation of the party. At events, people exchange Yellu and Jaggery. The mixture also contains coconut and dry peanuts. It is believed that this exchange ensures a good and lasting relationship between individuals. In rural areas of Karnataka, Sankranthi celebrations are more traditional and sophisticated.

Sankranthi, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana:

As in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Sankranthi celebrate a four-day period. On Bhogi, the first day, a campfire is the bed to burn old and unwanted things before the traditional bath. The next day is Sankranthi, when pongali, a rice pudding and sweet dishes like ariselu, which are rice cakes, are prepared. The third day is Kanuma, where animals are decorated and events like them, bullfights and forbidden cockfights are also sometimes included. The fourth day is Mukkanuma. The festivals offer prayers to the Sun of God, Mahabali and Godadevi. Another highlight is the gift and the gift of the pumpkin.

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Kanda Sashti Penance

Blog, Festivals/Events - GoroadTrip - October 19, 2016

Sashti Viratham is a discipline observed throughout Tamil Nadu, Kerala and some places of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and in other countries such as Malaysia, Singapore and Sri Lanka. Sashti means six; vratham is a vow or rigorous discipline that includes fasting and observation of certain traditional practices. This festival is in honour of Lord Muruga or Subrahmanya, the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi and younger brother of Lord Ganesha.

Sashti Viratham is observed on the sixth day of the bright fortnight after the new moon. This vratham is considered most auspicious in the month of Aippasi (October-November). It begins from the first day (prathamai) after the new moon that is associated with Deepavali and concludes on the sixth day after the New Moon.

The Tirunchendur Temple of Lord Muruga, the patron God of Tamizh, is in Tamil Nadu and attracts the largest number of Kanda/Muruga/Subrahmanya devotees during this festival. The festival marks the six day war that was waged between Muruga and Soorapadman. Muruga is empowered by all the Gods to kill the demon Soorapadman, the evil demon. He is given a special weapon, the Vel or spear, by his mother Goddess Parvathi.

Kandan’s Thiruvilaiyaadal (divine sport) against Sooran is enacted on the sixth day of the festival as Soora Samharam, the annihilation of the demon. After the demon is destroyed, he is given the dual honour of becoming the Lord’s vehicle as mayilvahanam, the peacock and the Sevalkodi (the rooster) on Muruga’s flag.

On the final day Kanda’s victory is celebrated with his wedding to Devayani, the daughter of Indra, the King of the gods.

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6 abodes of Muruga, the Tamizh Deity

Blog, Destinations, Festivals/Events, Heritage & Culture, Pilgrimage - GoroadTrip - August 13, 2016

Lord Muruga (Subrahmanya/Karthikeya), son of Shiva and Parvathi and brother of Lord Ganesha (elephant-headed god) is worshiped in Tamil Nadu as the patron deity of Tamizh language. He has six special temples dedicated to him called Aaru Padai Veedu.Thse temples are six camps associated with Muruga’s role as Commander-in-chief of the army of the gods.

The Aaru PadaiVeedus, the Six Holy Abodes (literally: ‘battle camps’) are very important for Muruga or Karthikeya’s devotees. The six temples of Karthikeya are in Tirupparamkundram, Tiruchendur, Tiruvavinankudi (Palani), Tiruverakam (Swamimalai), Tiruttani and Pazhamudircholai.

References to these temples are found in many ancient Tamizh literatures like Silapathikaram. Thirumurugatupadai – sung by the Tamizh saint poet Nakkeerar in 1st century CE – gives prominence to each temple. It also reveal that all these temples were well established even during the Sangam age from 1st to 3rd century CE. It has also been praised by Saint Arunagirinathar in his Thiruppugazh and in Kandar Alankaram.


The first among the six temples of Lord Muruga, Subramaniam Temple at Tirupparunkunram situated 9.5 kms south of Madurai is an ancient shrine dating back to the 2nd century BCE. Legend says that Lord Muruga wed Deyvayanai, daughter of Indra in this temple. This was after Karthikeya’s victory over the demon Soorapadman and the asuras.

The temple is built on the northern side of the hill at an elevation of about 300 feet from the foot of the hill. It has a 150 foot tall gopuram of seven tiers over the entrance. The main sanctum carved into the rock enshrines a well chiseled form of the Lord. Hollowed within the rock, you can find many mandapams with carved pillars, platforms, and other shrines with decorative relief and carvings on all surfaces. All abishekams are performed to the Vel in the main sanctum.

In this temple, unlike the other five, the deity is shown sitting in the kalyanakolam (auspicious/wedding form) with his consort Deivanai.


ArulmiguSubrahmanya Swami Tirukkoil or Thiruchendur Murugan Kovil (temple) is a popular pilgrimage destination situated in the Gulf of Mannar.Second abode in importance among the six homes and unlikethe other five temples situated on hilltops, this abode is on the seashore towards the tip of South India. Thiruchendur, is the Tamil name given to this place due to the abundance of sandalwood paste used in this temple.

It is said that Lord Muruga had set up his army camp in this place during his war against the demon Surapadman.‘Tiruchentil’ means the House of Victory and this is the ‘ooru’ or town in which Muruga’s victory is celebrated! Thiruchendur, the place of ‘chen’—sandalwood paste,is also known as Thirucheeralaivai, Jayanthipuram, ThirubhuvanaMadevi and SathurvediMangalam. The deity is called by different names like Senthilandavan, Senthilkumar in this temple.

The northern and eastern temple walls are washed by the dashing waves of the Gulf of Mannar. The origin of TiruchendurMurugan Temple is not known though the nucleus of the structure is said to have been here for more than 2,000 years as reported by the Tamil Classics. This temple is famous for the ‘Panneer-ilaiVibhuti’, the ash from a herbal leaf. Sri Adi Shankaracharyapraised it and said that just the sight of this sacred ash can cure many diseases.


The temple town of Palani features Karthikeya as a little lad. When the prize mango was given away to Ganesha, Murugabecame annoyed with his parents and came here to sit on top of this hill called TiruAvinankudi at the foot of the Sivagiri Hill. Siva pacified Subrahmanya saying that he was the fruit—pazham—of all wisdom and knowledge; and nee means you. Hence the place was called ‘Pazham Nee’ or Palani.

You had to originally climb many steps to reach the temple and old and infirm people had to be carried by ‘doli’s’ by two sets of porters changing midway at 225 feet height. Today winches carry pilgrims up and down simultaneously.


On the way to Tirupathi from Chennai, to the left of the road you can see Tiruttani (Thiruttani) perched on a rock with its atypical vibrant red and white stripes on the walls.

The word Tiruttani comes from Tirutanikai meaning place of propitiation. (Tamil: Thiru-lord; thanigai-propitiate/cooling down). Muruga’s righteous indignation for the cruelty of the asuras (demons) to all creatures set him against the evil forces in various battles. It is said that his anger cooled down at this place and so it is also known as Shantipuri (abode of peace).

This 2000 year oldtemple is perched on top of a single rock, 700 feet above sea level. Lord Muruga came to rest here after destroying the demon Surapadman. Here Lord Muruga married his second consort, the gypsy girl Valli. The temple can be accessed by a hill road or through a flight of 365 steps, representing the days of the year, that lead up to the shrine.


Swamimalai Temple

The son became his father’steacher in this temple near Kumbakonam. Swamimalai meaning ‘God’s hill’, is an artificially made hill temple called ‘Kattu(built) Malai’.Another very important feature is that there are sixty well-laid steps leading to the temple top. These sixty steps represent the sixty years that constitutes a century in the Hindu calendar.

The temple is on the banks of River Cauvery on the road connecting Kumbakonam to Thiruvaiyaru. In this shrine, Lord Muruga is also known as Swaminathan and ‘Thagappan Swami’ meaning Lord of Shiva, his father.

Swamimalai is world famous for its school that teaches the ancient craft of making bronze icons.



The last temple of the six, this Muruga temple is perched on top of a hill amidst dense forests about 16 kms north of Madurai.It is the only one where Muruga can be seen with both his consorts, Valli and Devayani. Lord Muruga at Pazhamudircholai has been praised in old Tamil literature like the Silappathikaram, Ettuthokai and Pattupattu.

Local tribes continue to lead their traditional lives on this fertile hill with its natural springs and herbs. Even today, the place is very fertile with many trees and different flora and fauna reflecting the vivid description of the place’s natural beauty found in Tirumurugattruppadai of Nakkeerar, the Tamil saint.


The great Tamil saint poetess, Avvaiyar, was given fruit by the little lad Muruga and taught an important lesson in the semantics of Tamizh language

There are 33 Murugan temples in Tamil Nadu. The Tirupporur temple, 45 Km from Chennai, is an ancient temple built during the reign of the Pallava rulers.

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Last Minute Gifting ideas for Diwali

Blog, Festivals/Events - GoroadTrip - July 28, 2016

With Deepavali round the corner, shopping frenzies will be at their craziest peak. If only you had your list covered a month ahead. If only you could have ordered every gift online weeks ago. As you fret over the last minute planning and shopping, we come to your rescue with some best gifting ideas.

Home accents:

Homes can always use accents. What’s more they can be enjoyed by every member of the family. The items can be decorative like wrought-iron mirrors, candle holders or wall paintings. Or they can be practical yet colourful like cushions, clocks, shades or lamps. Home accents have an appeal all the time.

Kitchen utilities:

When you chose a gift that will find space in the kitchen, you can never be wrong. Any kitchen item you pick will have utility in this food production unit of the house. Now you can add glamour to the utility with the latest in non-stick cookware, trendy crockeries and multi-utility products like choppers and graters. Kitchen utilities can be repeated as gifts any time.


An all-time favourite, gadgets feature on everybody’s shopping list. Since these technology gimmicks are now second nature to almost everyone, rest assured that gifting one of its breed will reward you with an instant smile. Headphones, pen drives, selfie stick, wireless mouse, laptop and mobile accessories, this list is quite endless.

Car accessories:

For friends and relatives who spend the best part of their day driving, your gift ideas do not have to go far. With an extensive selection to choose from, car accessories are fast becoming a favourite gift choice. The list is unbelievable as everything from foldable bottle holders, solar powered fans, and car vacuum cleaners to the more exotic car refrigerators and car stereos are up for choice.

Gifts of the edible kind: If you are still short on time, you always have the back-up of sweets, chocolates and dry fruits. Rush to a nearby sweet shop and choose from a mind boggling variety. They are all displayed in hampers or decorative boxes which makes it easier to buy them on the go.

Deciding on what to buy is almost always the factor that eats into your time. Once you have that covered that you can kick-start, get set and go.

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