Holi, also known as Phagwah, is one of the few Hindu festivals that are actively celebrated both inside and outside of India. It sometimes seems that foreigners are more in love with this festival than the locals. No matter where you are traveling now, if there’s a Holy celebrating waiting for you, keep reading this a brief introduction to it.
This Hindu Festival of Colors is celebrated the day after the full moon in March every year. The next celebration will take place on March 6, 2015. Some parts of India will celebrate it on March 5th.
The festival, like many other Hindu celebrations, is dedicated to the victory of “good” over “evil”. Therefore, everyone is expected to unearth the most positive features within and love everything and everyone around them. You will see people smiling all the time, hugging each other, and wishing “Happy Holi” to strangers in the streets.
The party starts with a huge bonfire and burning of the evil spirits on the eve. The celebration day is sprinkling water, smearing paint on each other, dancing, and singing.
Forget about all negative feelings and sensations for Holi. It’s a very important day in India, where all social rules and restrictions are cancelled for one day. Considering the importance of those rules, this festival is quite unique. This is the only day, where the locals can put aside the ideas of castes, creed, color, status, and so on.
– Don’t forget your camera. Holi is one of the best events to photograph. And it doesn’t even matter if your camera is a really bad one. The photos will come out amazing. In the meantime, make sure to have appropriate hardware for your camera, as it will get really dirty.
– Don’t carry anything precious (especially your passport), as there might be many pickpockets lurking around you. If you have an appearance of a typical tourist, you’ll instantly become a target for treasure-hunters.
– Use only natural dyes, preferably home-made or purchased from a qualified vendor. Colors with high chemical compositions can be harmful for your skin.
– Pink and red colors are the easiest to take off. Well, they’re also very beautiful, so make sure to have more of them.
– Keep your mouth closed, be careful for your eyes (wear sunglasses), apply a very thick coat of nail polish on your nails. Moreover, make sure to apply cream on your skin and face before the festival and after washing the paint off. It’s also advisable to oil your hair, so that the paint doesn’t stick to it.
– Sometimes people will consume too much alcohol or drugs, so make sure to stay in a group of friends and participate in the celebrations in the morning.
– Finally, wear light clothing, nothing synthetic or too heavy (like denim). I hope it’s not your most favorite dress or shirt, because you’ll most probably trash it at the end.
Holi is one of the most unique festivals. As long as you choose the right venue or city to enjoy Holy and keep the basic safety rules, you’ll be able to enjoy this colorful event. While it is a religious festival, people of all nationalities and faiths come together and simply be as positive as ever!