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10 Famous Festivals Of Kerala That Should Be On The Bucket List

With the best Ayurvedic treatments in Kerala to pamper yourself to an unforgettable culinary experience to satiate your taste buds; the fun factor multiplies if you add colorful festivals of Kerala to your to-do-list. One of the best tourist places in India, Kerala is famous for its aromatic spices, tea plantations, and stunning topography which comprises serene backwaters, verdant tea gardens, sprawling spice plantations, virgin beaches, and whatnot! Savor the surreal beauty of Kerala.

Festivals Of Kerala: A List That You Would Love

Witnessing the vibrancy of God’s own country through an array of colorful and electrifying festivals is one of the enriching experiences that a traveler can discover. Scroll through the festivals of Kerala to mark your travel calendar! 

1. Onam: Harvest festival of Kerala

2. Attukal Pongala: Harvest Festival

3. Vishu

4. Thrissur Pooram

5. Theyyam Festival

6. Boat Race Festival

7. Makaravilakku

8. Adoor Gajamela

9. Painkuni Festival

10. Ambalapuzha Arattu Festival

Onam

Onam is a grand national harvest festival of Kerala which attracts a large number of tourists from different parts of India. According to legend, the Onam festival is celebrated to mark the return of demon King Mahabali to the land of Kerala. Every year, the Onam festival is celebrated for 10 days during which various rituals are followed with great devotion to welcome the kind-hearted and generous King. These ten days of Onam are named Atham, Chithira, Chodi, Vishakam, Anizham, Thriketta, Moolam, Pooradam, Uthradom, and Thiruvonam. During these ten days of Onam, Kerala looks utterly vibrant as people wear new clothes, cook delicacies, decorate their houses, and organize various cultural events. 

When is Onam celebrated?

Usually falls in the month of August and September every year

Where is Onam celebrated?

All over Kerala

What is the Highlight of Onam?

Onasadya (nine-course meal), Onakalikal (games played during Onam), Elephant Procession, Pulikali & Thumbi Thullai (folk dances), Vallamkali Boat Race

Attukal Pongala

Attukal Pongala is a religious festival of Kerala that is dedicated to Goddess Bhagavathi. Celebrated for 10 days at the Attukal Bhagavathy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, Attukal Pongala marks the world’s largest congregation of women. The most fascinating part of this festival is that entry of men is strictly prohibited inside the temple complex since it's a women-centric festival of the state.

When is Attukal Pongala celebrated?

Usually falls in the month of February

Where is Attukal Pongala celebrated?

Attukal Bhagavathy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram

What is the highlight of Attukal Pongala?

Act of making payasam and World’s largest congregation of women

Vishu

Vishu is a spring festival of Kerala which is celebrated on the first day of the Malayalam calendar. Also known as the new year in Kerala, the celebration of Vishu involves decorating houses and bursting crackers. Vishu Kani, comprising rice, fruits, coins, and Konna flowers is arranged by the eldest female member of the family and offered to Lord Krishna on the day prior to the festival. People wear new clothes and prepare delicious sadya to celebrate the festival that brings prosperity.

When is the Vishu Festival celebrated?

The month of Medam which usually falls in April/May

Place where Vishu Festival is celebrated?

All over Kerala

What is the highlight of the Vishu Festival?

Decorations, preparation of Sadya, and bursting of crackers

Thrissur Pooram

Thrissur Pooram is an annual temple festival of Kerala which is worth witnessing. It is a grand assembly of Gods and Goddesses who visit Vadakkumnathan Temple premises on elephants adorned with ornaments. Caparisoned elephants, vibrant umbrellas, and the rhythmic beating of drums add to the vibe of the festival. Another highpoint of this cultural festival is a phenomenal instrumental performance that gives a kaleidoscopic view of Kerala’s vibrant festivals.

When is Thrissur Pooram celebrated?

Month Of Medom which falls in April-May

Place where Thrissur Pooram is celebrated?

Thekkinkadu Maidanam, Thrissur

What is the highlight of Thrissur Pooram?

Kudamattam ceremony and Ilanjithara melam

Theyyam Festival