Himachal Pradesh is a state with a rich and varied history. The state is multi-religious, multicultural, and multilingual. The culture is so distinct that the festivals related to it are still celebrated today. Based on the culture and geographical division the state is divided into three areas. ‘Adivasi belt’, ‘middle belts’, and western belt are named by districts Shimla, Kangra, and Mandi. Adivasi belt belongs to the Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti districts with the largest Buddhist population. The middle belt has wild hills and farmland valleys with beautiful slopes, villages, and farms.
The major occupation in Himachal Pradesh is farming. The culture is visible in the clothes and festivals.
Do you know about the festivals of Himachal Pradesh?
No, Come check with us the 10 famous festivals of Himachal Pradesh and the reasons for their celebration.
How are festivals celebrated in Himachal Pradesh?
As indicated above, the people here are known by their culture. They praise God with dance and music. There are plenty of fairs and festivals which are celebrated by the people here including the temple fairs in almost every region. These festivals also hold great significance for their celebration.
10 Famous Festivals Of Himachal Pradesh
1. Kullu Dussehra
In the northern state of India -Himachal Pradesh, Kullu Dussehra is a famous international Mega Dussehra festival which is celebrated in October. Over 4 to 5 lakh people across the globe visit the fair. The festival is celebrated in the Dhalpur Maidan located in the Kullu Valley. In Kullu, Dussehra is celebrated on the tenth day of the moon rising, also known as Vijay Dashmi, and is celebrated for seven days.
The reason for its celebration is linked to the history of the 17th century when the local King Jagat Singh installed an idol of Raghunath. He has done it as a mark of penance. After that God was declared as the ruler of the valley. The state government has installed the status of an International festival to grab the attention of tourists.
When: Month of October
Where: Dhaulpur Maidan
Why is it celebrated: Colorful procession of Lord Raghunath and Kala Kendra festival
2. Minjar Fair
Minjar Fair is a popular festival of Himachal Pradesh celebrated in the Chamba Valley. In 935 A.D, Chamba Raja defeated Trigarta and this festival is organized to celebrate this victory. Since then the festival has been celebrated as a symbol of happiness and prosperity. The Fair is organized every year to express gratitude toward God and to seek blessings for good fortune. During the celebration, the Chamba district looks so beautiful that it grabs the attention of people from across the world. Minar fair is celebrated in the month of July/August every year and continues for a week. Folk singing and dancing are the main highlights of the festival.
When: Second Sunday of the Shravan month (August)
Why is it celebrated: The victory of the King of Chamba over the ruler of Trigarta
3. Lohri Festival
It is one of the famous festivals of Himachal Pradesh celebrated during winter. The festival is celebrated to mark the joy of the fertility of crops and to bring people together from various communities and villages. If you plan your trip to Himachal Pradesh during this time, you will come across the local people with wide smiles dressed in their traditional costumes.
Lohri festival is celebrated by lighting a bonfire. Men, women, and children danced to the tunes of their traditional songs to celebrate it, and is the major attraction of this agricultural festival. Besides folk music and dance performances, you will also come to know about the people’s bond with their crops and lands and an amazing glimpse of their culture and tradition.
When: Month of Magh ( January or February)
Where: Entire Himachal Pradesh
Why is it celebrated: Harvest festival of Himachal Pradesh
4. Halda Festival
The Lamaistic Pantheon’s Shiskar Apa, the Goddess of Wealth, is honored during the Halda Festival. A magnificent bonfire held at a site chosen by the Lamas is the major attraction of the Halda festival. People gather together and choose a spot to light cedar twigs and light a massive bonfire. The bonfire, which plays a significant role in the event in the valleys of the Chandra and Bhaga Rivers and Keylong, symbolizes the group’s unity. Amazing dancer performances and merry-making add to the charm of the festival. Besides this, a special event is arranged and local deities are worshipped for the well-being and affluence of the town people.
When: Magha Purnima ( January or February)
Where: Lahaul Valley
Why is it celebrated: Goddess of wealth and prosperity- Shiskar Apa.
5. Teej Festival
The Hindu festival of Teej, also known as Tja in Romanization, is primarily observed by women and heralds the start of India’s monsoon season. As a collective noun, “Teej” refers to the three different Teej festivals: Hartalika, Haryali, and Kajari. Parvati and her reunion with Lord Shiva are its main subjects. Girls and women celebrate Haryali Teej and Hartalika Teej, which usher in the monsoon season, with singing, dancing, fun, and religious rites. During Teej celebrations, women frequently fast.
When: Month of Shravana (August)
Why is it celebrated: Marking the beginning of the monsoon season
6. Ice Skating Carnival
Besides the other famous festivals of Himachal Pradesh, the state is also known for welcoming travelers and adventurers by offering them plenty of activities to enjoy. Himachal Pradesh is transformed in winter into a wonderland and offers plenty of adventure activities for visitors. One of the most well-known events held in the winter is the Ice Skating Carnival at HP.
The festival is held in the largest natural ice rink in Asia, and fans of the snow can participate at various levels. Apart from this, the state also organizes fancy dress competitions, dance shows, and much more to grab the attention of visitors. If you are planning a vacation in Himachal Pradesh, then winter is the best time to plan.
When: Winter season
Where: Himachal Pradesh
Why is it celebrated: To enjoy different kinds of ice skating activities
7. Kasol Music Festival
Kasol is a small village located near Parvary Valley in the Kullu district, Himachal Pradesh. The place is the right place to make your mood right with whole night celebrations. It is also famous for its natural beauty and Kasol Music Festival is celebrated for two continuous days. The festival is celebrated to mark the new beginning and welcome the new year. Pop culture events are held every year and people who love music and art should become part of this festival at least once.
Why is it celebrated: To welcome the new year
8. Sazo Festival
The ancient Sazo festival installs religious fervor and spiritual rapture over the entire Kinnaur valley. Sazo, one of the lovely festivals of Himachal Pradesh, is deeply founded in the conviction that at this time, the gods temporarily return to heaven. It is viewed as a major occasion that they have left. The festival is subject to rigorous rituals observed by the valley’s inhabitants.
Why is it celebrated: To worship the local deities
9. Himachal Winter Carnival
Himachal Winter Carnival, one of Himachal Pradesh’s most enticing events, is held annually from 2 January to 6 January, drawing a sizable crowd of visitors from all over the world. The festival, also known as the Manali Winter Carnival, got its start in 1977 as a skiing competition at Solang Nala.
After being established for approximately 50 years, additional aspects and cultural activities continued to be added over the years so that visitors may have a truly unforgettable encounter with Himachali culture. In addition to the famous skiing competitions, locals here also celebrate folk art, street performances, Haats, Himachali food, local music, adventure sports, and other things.
In addition to its abundance of natural beauty, Himachal Pradesh’s vibrant festivals further exemplify its attractiveness. Do you not concur? Himachal Pradesh is a beautiful state that draws tourists who appreciate different cultures and customs as well as those who love the outdoors and adventure.
Why is it celebrated: To celebrate the winter season
10. Shivratri Fair
The Mandi Shivratri fair is a well-known celebration held in the Himachal Pradesh town of Mandi. It begins on the thirteenth night of Krishna paksha in February or March and lasts for a minimum of six days.
During that week, more than 200 deities are decorated and embellished, and several shrines are brought from other parts of the district to the town to honor Lord Vishnu. The Township appears utterly spectacular. Without a certain, you shouldn’t miss the large parade.
When: 13th night of Krishna Paksha (March)
Why is it celebrated: Worshipping lord Vishnu
The people of Himachal Pradesh are simple, hardworking, and known for their rich cultural heritage and values. As of now, you have become aware of the festivals that are celebrated in Himachal Pradesh. If you are planning to visit Himachal Pradesh, you should consider timing in a way that you can become part of these above-mentioned festivals of Himachal Pradesh.