If you are planning a trip to Nepal, it is definitely worth visiting one of the country’s many fascinating festivals. To help you take this into account in your Nepal travel itinerary, here is a top 10 of some of the best festivals in the county:
Magh sankranti, Devghat (January)
If you are planning a trip to Nepal in January, why not check out Magh sankranti in Devghat. Dated by the northern movement of the winter sun, this Nepalese festival is one of the few that is not timed by the lunar calendar. This particular festival in Nepal celebrates the ritual bath which marks the end of the coldest winter months during the Nepalese month of Magh.
Another great Nepal festival is the one that celebrates the Tibetan New Year which begins with the first new moon in February. So, if you’ve planned a Nepal vacation during this time of year, it would be worth a visit. Losar is widely celebrated in all Tibetan areas, especially in the great Bodhnarth stupa near Patan.
Maha Shivaratri, Pashupatinath (February / March)
Shiva’s birthday falls on the new moon day of the Nepalese month of Falgun. Festivities take place in all Shiva temples, but the biggest celebrations take place in Pashupatinath, where hundreds of sadhus flock there from all over Nepal and India. The king of Nepal also makes his appearance at the end of the day. During a visit to this extraordinary festival, you can watch the crowds bathe in the sacred waters of Bagmati and create beautifully colorful views – this is sure to be a real highlight of your trip to Nepal.
Balkumari Jatra, Thimi (mid-April)
The small town of Thimi welcomes the new year with a festival established by King Jagat Jyoti Malla in the early 1600s. With devotees gathering around the Balkumari temple in Thimi as dusk falls and hundreds of oil lamps are lit, this is sure to be a memorable moment of your Nepal vacation. Some devotees lie motionless around the temple all night with lit oil lamps balanced on their arms, legs, chest and forehead. The next morning, when Ganesh arrives from the village of Nagadesh, he watches the festival hit fever as he arrives, while the red powder is thrown wildly covering all the spectators.
Bisket Jatra chariot festival, Bhaktapur (mid-April)
If you travel to Nepal at this time of year, Bisket Jatra is one of the most exciting annual events held in the valley and a must-see part of your Nepal travel experience. During this fascinating festival, huge triple-roofed floats are built and a great tug-of-war game begins between the east and west of the city. After the chariot battle, a huge 25 meter high lingam (phallic symbol) is erected in the stone base of the yoni (female genital symbol).บอลสเต็ปราคาดี
Rato Machhendranath festival, Patan (April / May)
Focused on the honor of God, Machhendranath who is considered to have great powers over rain, this festival is an essential call for good rain as the monsoon season approaches. By including a visit to this spiritual event in your Nepal travels, you can witness the day-to-day float procession through the streets of Kathmandu’s old city.
Indra Jatra chariot festival, Kathmandu (August / September)
Indra, the ancient Aryan god of rain, was once captured in the Kathmandu Valley. When he was released, he promised to spread dew on the crops for the next few months and to take those who had died in the past year with him to heaven. A truly fascinating experience, immerse yourself in the traditions of this unique festive atmosphere with a visit to Indra Jatra during your trip to Nepal and take part in the honor of the recently deceased as festival goers pay tribute to Indra.