Holi 2018: The Best Place to Feel the Vibe of This Festival is in Uttar Pradesh, Here's Why!
Holi celebrations in Vrindavan (Photo credits: PTI)

The festival of Holi is approaching and the minute you hear Holi, you think of colour splashing! It is indeed the festival of colours and creates a chaos, which is awaited for. After Holika Dahan, the Rang Panchami fervour is all gung-ho. But if one has to really experience the zest of the festival then you should head to the state of Uttar Pradesh. The cities of Vrindavan, Mathura and Varanasi typically immerse in the festivities. We won’t be exaggerating when they are entirely painted in colours of festivities! Varanasi, Mathura and Vrindavan in Uttar Pradesh get visitors during Holi to be a part of this mess, it is that glorified. There is the vibe of indulging in colours and feeling all happy about it in here.

While we know of Holi as a two-day festival. In Vrindavan, the celebration begins 6 days prior to the Holi day! Mathura happens to be Lord Krishna’s birthplace and the Lord spent his entire childhood in Vrindavan. According to a famous legend, Lord Krishna used to get upset about his dusky complexion and thus he used to splash colours on Radha. Krishna would go to Radha’s village in Barsana and play with colours there. Radha and her friends used to beat these guys with sticks. Thus, started the tradition of Lathmar Holi which goes on till today!

Lathmar Holi:

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It is celebrated especially in Nandgaon and Barsana near Mathura. On the day, men from Nandgoan go to Barsana and the festival is celebrated at the Radha Rani temple. It is a unique celebration where women chase men with sticks. Men too sing songs to attract the attention of the ladies. Women use long sticks and men defend themselves in a shield from these sticks. It is all fun, dance and games during the Holi festival. It is said that mothers-in-laws train their daughters-in-law from a month in advance so that they do not fall weak on the day of Holi! Isn’t it interesting? It is an experience to witness this festival which is fun while it relieves the olden traditions and devotion towards Lord Krishna.

Phoolon wali Holi:

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There is another tradition which is celebrated in Banke Bihari temple at Vrindavan. It ditches the colours and has flowers and petals instead. When the temple gates are opened, priests throw flowers at the devotees.

The splash of petals!

On the day of Holi, the Ghats of Mathura too are covered in a colourful splash. The celebrations are wild and crazy. While in modern cities you may not see much of colour, in Mathura, you won’t recognize you, since you are covered in colour from head to toe! From a small kid to an old fellow, you will see everyone in the equal zest of the festival. The celebrations here are crazy and see yourself multi-colored within minutes of coming out on the roads!

Holi in Varanasi:

One of the holiest cities in the country, Holi celebrations here too are an experience to take. The Ghats in the city, the steps around the river Ganga all have a coloured look! On the day of Holika Dahan, people lit the bonfire, very similar to that in other parts of the country. But people in Varanasi also apply the paste of ubtan and the remains of the paste are then burnt in the bonfire. They also put dung cakes in the fire. The playing with the colours sees more enthusiasm the next day! Every person, young or old participates in throwing colours at everyone. People here also drink Bhang-infused-Thandai which is one of the elements of the festivities. Some people here even go ahead and play with mud and colours both. After playing until noon, they all gather at the Ghats in the evening and exchange sweets.

The overall zeal of the festival is such that you have to be present to believe it. You can read up, see the pictures and hear the stories but that will still not give you the actual vibe of Holi that goes on in this state. You should plan a trip here for the festival of Holi and immerse your body in the colours and feel the happiness in your soul! Happy Holi.