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Travel in India

Celebrating Traditions With Kerala Pongal Festival

When we talk about a celebration in Kerala which symbolizes peace and happiness for all, Pongal strikes to our minds. Celebrated by offering prayers to the Sun God, Pongal marks the beginning of a New Year. This four day festival is meant to praise and thank God with full devotion and faith and sincerity of heart. The festival is celebrated on January 14, every year, and it coincides with Makar Sankranti of the North, Lohri of Punjab, Bhogali Bihu of Assam and Bhogi of Andhra Pradesh. It falls after the winter solstice and a bountiful harvest, and marks the season of celebration and joyous activities.

A special dish called 'Sarkkarai Pongal' is offered to seek the blessings of the Sun God. The celebration includes almost all the living creatures. Even the insects are offered rice flour to feed on in the form of 'Kollam' on the entranceway of the houses. The celebration on January 13 is known as 'Bhogi'. Main festival 'Pongal' is celebrated on January 14. The rest celebrations of January 15 and 16 are called 'Mattu Pongal' and 'Thiruvalluvar Day' respectively.

A special sweet rice preparation, known as 'Pongal', is cooked in a new earthenware pot and is presented at the place where the puja is to be performed. The festival is associated with cleanliness the myths of victory over the evil powers. The best part of the festival lies in delicious preparations, house decorations, painting of doorways with vermilion and other decorations with sandalwood paste, colourful garlands of leaves and flowers. You can also enjoy several traditional dance/music/art forms of Kerala during Pongal.

Plan a Kerala trip and indulge in the lively and colourful celebrations of Pongal Festival http://www.keralaindiavacation.com/kerala-attractions/pongal-festival-kerala.html. Kerala festival tour takes you to the glimpses of age old traditional customs, values and practices of Kerala.

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