Nestled in the heart of northern India, Ramnagar Ramlila stands as a cherished testament to the timeless allure of the classic Indian mythological epic, the Ramayana. With its roots dating back nearly two centuries, this vibrant play, known affectionately as Ramleela, captures the essence of the ancient tale and brings it to life with mesmerizing grandeur. Each year during the auspicious Shardiya Navratri, culminating in the exuberant Dussehra celebration, local artists and enthusiastic children take to the stage for an awe-inspiring 31-day performance. Months of meticulous preparation, including elaborate costumes, intricately designed stage sets, and dedicated rehearsals, contribute to the magnificent spectacle. The atmosphere surrounding Ramnagar Ramlila is nothing short of a monumental, star-studded concert, captivating not only the locals but also drawing devotees and tourists from all corners of the globe, who join in the collective cheer and marvel at this cultural extravaganza.
Date & Venue of Ramnagar Ramlila 2023
This year, the Ramnagar Ramlila will take place from 15th October till 25th October. The venue for this extravagant cultural affair is the Ramnagar Fort, which was built in the 1750s by Kashi Naresh Raja Balwant Singh. Ramlila is performed under the stars on a wide stage that is supported by an elaborate stage set up of light, sound, and backdrops. Besides the fort, various other locations such as Lanka, Ayodhya, and Ashoka Vatika in Ramnagar, are used for the enactment of the popular scenes.
History of Ramnagar Ramlila
Ramnagar Ramlila is organized at the Ramnagar Fort every year. According to the locals, the legends, and the archival documents, the first Ramlila was performed here in 1830, and since then, the royal family started organizing the play annually, which involves a grand budget and lavish preparations. The Dussehra celebration on the 10th day of Shardiya Navratri, also known as Vijayadashami is the day when Ramlila ends. On this day, Lord Rama defeated Ravana, which marks the victory of good over evil.
Major Highlights of Ramnagar Ramlila 2023
Ramlila that is organized at Ramnagar is also honored by UNESCO with the title of intangible world cultural heritage. Every year Ramlila begins on Anant Chaturdashi and goes on for about 31 days. Besides the lavish setup, priests also take part in Ramlila and recite verses from the holy book, which enhances divinity in the ambiance and enthusiasm among the crowd.
Major Attractions In & Around Ramnagar
1. Ram Janmabhoomi
Believed to have been the birthplace of the Hindu deity, Lord Ram, the Ram Janmabhoomi translates to Ram’s Birthplace. A highly revered site for Hindu devotees, Ayodhya is believed to be the place where Ram, Lord Vishnu’s seventh manifestation, took birth and grew up according to the Indian epic Ramayana.
2. Hanuman Garhi
Dedicated to the Hindu God, Hanuman, Hanuman Garhi is a 10th-century temple. It is customary to visit Hanuman Garhi before visiting the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, which makes it one of the most important temples in Ayodhya. It is said that Lord Hanuman used to live at the temple site to guard Ayodhya.
3. Kanak Bhawan
Constructed in 1891, the Kanak Bhawan was built in the northeastern corner of the Ram Janmabhoomi in Tulsi Nagar. This temple is widely popular by the name of Sone-ka-Ghar. Dedicated to the Hindu deity Lord Rama and Goddess Sita, Kanak Bhawan is one of the holiest sites in Ayodhya.
4. Nageshwarnath Temple
Located adjacent to the Theri Bazaar in Ayodhya, the Nageshwarnath Temple was established in the name of the local deity, Lord Nageshwarnath. It is said that the temple was built by Lord Rama’s son, Kush.
5. Gulab Bari
Situated in Vaidehi Nagar, the Gulab Bari is also known as the Garden of Roses. Gulab Bari is the tomb of Nawab Shuja-ud-Daula, the third Nawab of Faizabad, and his parents. Currently preserved as a part of national heritage, Gulab Bari is listed under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act.
6. Treta Ke Thakur
Home to numerous idols including that of Lord Ram, Sita, Lakshman, Hanuman, Bharat, and Sugreev, the Treta Ke Thakur Temple is situated along the Naya Ghat of Ayodhya. These idols are believed to be carved out of a single black sandstone.
How To Reach Ramnagar Ramlila
Ramnagar Ramlila in Varanasi has made a mark on the world map by preserving our mythological heritage and promoting it by putting up a spectacular show every year. You can arrive at Ramnagar via roadways, airways, and railways. Some of the best travel options have been listed below for your reference.
Nearest metropolitan city. Kolkata
Nearest airbase.Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport
Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport in Babatpur is the nearest to Ramnagar. It takes around 1 hour 30 minutes to cover this distance under normal traffic. We have listed the names of airlines that run non-stop flights from the major cities of the country along with the airfare estimate.
Distance from Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport.32 Kms
Varanasi Junction railway station is the nearest to reach Ramnagar. After deboarding the train, you may get on a taxi or local bus to reach Ramnagar. This will take you 30 to 40 minutes depending on the traffic via Mirzapur - Varanasi Road and NH 44. Trains from across the country arrive here, hence you can opt for a train journey without worrying about the availability of trains.
Distance from Varanasi Junction.10 Kms
Another comfortable and economical option is to travel by road, wherein you may either opt to travel via interstate or intrastate tourist buses or may drive to Ramnagar in your/rented vehicle. Listed below is the estimate of distance and the best route to take if you are arriving from adjoining states or nearby cities.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Ramnagar Ramlila
Q. What is Ramnagar Ramlila? A - The Ramnagar Ramlila is a cycle of plays that depicts the life of Lord Rama and the epic of Ramayana. This cultural activity is believed to be more than 200 years old.
Q. When does Ramnagar Ramlila take place? A. Ramnagar Ramlila takes place during the Shardiya Navratri festival, which culminates in the Dussehra celebration.
Q. How long is the duration of Ramnagar Ramlila? A. Ramnagar Ramlila is a 31-day long play.
Q. Who performs in Ramnagar Ramlila? A. Local artists and children actively participate in the performances of Ramnagar Ramlila.
Q. What preparations are made for Ramnagar Ramlila? A. Months before Dussehra, preparations are made for costumes, stage set-up, and extensive rehearsals.
Q. Why is Ramnagar Ramlila popular? A. Ramnagar Ramlila is renowned for being nearly 200 years old, attracting not only local people but also devotees and tourists from around the world to witness its grandeur.