Cultural Festivals in India are all about partying to the fullest while reminiscing about the rich traditional history. Be it the tribal festivals in Nagaland or electrifying party music from Goa, every event has something or the other to entertain. We just have two more months of the year 2023 to travel our hearts out. If you are planning to explore some cultural festivals in India before you can say ‘buh-bye’ to 2023, here’s an article for you!
These cultural festivals happening in different states of India are sure to take you down the lane of fun and enjoyment. Visitors can indulge in having meaningful conversations with like-minded crowds, dance to the melodious tunes of native music, and have lip-smacking food that will release a burst of flavour in your mouth!
Also, you can pick up several handicrafts as souvenirs before returning back home.
Read on to find out about the cultural festivals in India that are famous for their sheer magnificence and elegance.
The Upcoming Cultural Festivals in India in 2023
1 – Magnetic Fields Festival – Rajasthan
The music lovers and dancing divas are sure to enjoy the Magnetic Fields Festival in the royal backdrop of Rajasthan. It won’t be wrong to say that this is one of the most anticipated cultural festivals in India. Magnetic Fields Festival brings to you a lot of unique musical performances by not just established artists but budding talents. One thing we love about this festival is the art of native Rajasthani performers! The music is like nectar to our ears! The first Magnetic Fields Festival was held in the year of 2013 and the appreciation that people showed propelled the authorities to conduct more such events!
Each year, the festival has a theme and it is related to social welfare or personal wellness. This year, the theme is ‘Preservation’. Magnetic Fields Festival will be held in Alsisar Mahal, Jhunjhu in Rajasthan. The magnificence of the 17th-century structure adds to the glamour of this cultural festival in India. Please note that the Magnetic Fields Festival is a limited-person event and only 5,000-10,000 people will be allowed to attend. The faster you book your slots, the better.
Location: Jhunjhunu, Village, Alsisar, Rajasthan 331025
Festival Dates: 15,16,17 December 2023
Total Estimated Cost: Starts from INR 16,000 (includes the expense of stay)
2 – Sunburn 2023 – Goa
Did you know that Sunburn is the 3rd largest dance festival in the world? Are you aware that it is one of the most appreciated cultural festivals in India? If you didn’t, you know now! The event has multiple stages, several artists come to perform and people from across the country attend to have a gala time. It was held in Vagator, Goa from 2017 to 2015, but shifted to Pune, Maharashtra later. However, in 2019, the festival came back to Goa and its glory did not decrease at all! In 2023, you can enjoy dancing to the tunes of rock artists and famous celebrities.
You are sure to get the complete VVIP experience while enjoying the tropical climate and party vibes in Goa. Like the Magnetic Fields Festival, Sunburn also has a yearly theme! People even go a step ahead and dress up to match the theme. In 2023, it is a ‘forest’ themed party atmosphere. You can expect electrifying performances from Charlotte de Witte, Alesso, and Timmu Trumpet! The festival coincides with Christmas and New Year so you can have triple the FUN!
Location: Vagator Beach, Goa
Festival Dates: 8th December to 31st December 2023
Total Estimated Cost: Starting from INR 3000
3 – The Shoonya Festival – Goa
Goa is not just about parties, drinks, loud music, and disco dances! If you are someone who enjoys peace and believes in inner reflection, then the Shoonya Festival is apt for you. This is one of the best cultural festivals in India where people gather to understand the importance of ‘self-discovery’. This is where you understand that ‘nothingness is the only constant in life’. While this might seem like a meaningless quote now, you will change your opinion once you visit this festival in Goa! The event aims to bring a positive harmony between mind, body, and soul. This is a good place to unwind, shrug off stress and interact with like-minded people. There are a lot of healing activities, group games, meditation sessions, gipsies and even shamans who come over to show everyone a glimpse of spirituality. You can get a lot of hugs, gather a ton of smiles and go home with a feeling of contentment.
While you are in Goa, book your affordable stay at Treebo Hotels in Goa for a refreshing festival experience!
Location: Palolem, Goa
Festival Dates: 1,2,3 December, 2023
Total Estimated Cost: INR 15000
4 – Rann Utsav – Gujarat
Kutch is a land where you can see wide-spread salt marsh with the backdrop of pristine blue sky. This magical place is one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in Gujarat! What if you can enjoy a festival under the shining stars in this spectacular location? Rann Utsav aims to bring you the bliss of enjoying cultural activities in and around Rann of Kutch. This is where you will witness the locals setting up their stalls, artisans selling their artefacts, artists dancing, singing and performing local stints! If you are a foodie, this is where you can taste authentic Gujarati cuisines made by expert cooks – native village women! The whole event has a mela-like atmosphere and the locals are more than happy to share their traditions with anyone who comes to Rann.
Under the full-moon night of the winter, you can see the glimmering decorative lights, hear the melodious Gujarati tunes, eat the best hot food and rest in the comfort of your tents. This is one of those cultural festivals in India where you hop around, and have the most exciting time in the morning and relax in a soothing atmosphere late at night. But we can assure you that the fun lasts 24/7! The festival lasts till early 2024 so plan your trip accordingly.
Location: Kutch, Gujarat
Festival Dates: 10th November 2023 to 25th February 2024
Total Cost: Tour Packages Start From INR 5000
5 – Hills Festival – Shillong
Meghalaya- the abode of clouds, is a beautiful place to visit! This is where you can enjoy the views of rolling valleys, exotic wild vegetation, and an atmosphere that will definitely bring a grin to your face. Imagine celebrating a festival that celebrates talent amidst the heavenly beauty of Meghalaya. This is what the Hills Festival of Shillong offers to its visitors. Here, you can hear experimental musical genres, sway to melodious tunes, eat lip-smacking local cuisines and meet like-minded folks. Winter is one of the most gorgeous seasons in Shillong. This two-day festival happens during the peak winter months when the towering hills and trees are covered by layers of snow. You will find celebrity chefs attending the festival and spreading the aromas of the finest cooking all around the place. Pork lovers can have a feast! Foodies must definitely attend the Hills Festival in Shillong.
Location: Umiam, Umbir, Mawlyndep, Road, Shillong, Meghalaya 793122
Festival Dates: 1,2 December 2023
Total Estimated Cost: INR 1700 for Two Days
6 – Hornbill Festival – Nagaland
The Hornbill Festival is one of the most anticipated cultural festivals in India! It also holds great significance to the people of Nagaland. This is an event where the Naga tribe show the world their way of life, gives you a glimpse of their living standards and also sells handicrafts and jewellery that are too good to be true! The tourists who visit the place can dance, sing and enjoy with the local crowd while tasting the finest Naga cuisines. There are several competitions including local sports. You can choose a team, cheer for them and celebrate when they win. The hornbill festival is a way in which the Naga tribe along with other sub-tribes tries to preserve their morals, rituals and culture. It is their way of reminding each other about the spectacular traditions that their ancestors have taught them.
You will see men dressing up in the local ethnic attire that includes armoury, headgear and spears in hand. The feathers of the hornbill bird will be present on the headgear, which is considered to be a sign of valiance and bravery. It is also believed that the bird brings good luck! If you are planning to visit northeast India, don’t hesitate and book your tickets to Nagaland.
Location: Naga Heritage Village, Khisama, Nagaland
Festival Dates: 1st to 10th December 2023
Total Estimated Cost: INR 550 including permits and entry tickets. You must purchase tickets for each day separately.
Know more about the Hornbill Festival.
Then You May Also Like to Read: HORNBILL FESTIVAL: A GLIMPSE INTO NAGALAND’S RICH CULTURAL HISTORY AND DIVERSITY
7 – Pushkar Fair – Rajasthan
Pushkar Fair is one of the most royal cultural festivals in India. With the backdrop of the sizzling desert, the event brings you closer to the native village culture of the Rajasthani people. The Pushkar Mela is the world’s largest cattle fair! Forget the participation of humans. Almost 50,000+ cattle usually attend the fair! That too, decked up in style like ramp models! The people gather to offer their thanks to the cattle for aiding in their livelihood and cattle trading is one of the main activities that happens during the fair. You will also see traditional performances, folk dances, and invigorating musical concerts by the locals. You can also go on desert safaris, camping under the stars, and hot air balloon rides that will show you the festivities from a height. You will be surprised to see cattle races, cattle fancy dress competitions, Mandana competitions, and horse dance events!
Location: Pushkar. Ajmer district, Rajasthan
Festival Dates: 20th to 28th November 2023
Total Estimated Cost: Free
Also Read: PLACES TO VISIT IN PUSHKAR AT NIGHT
8 – Folk Tea Festival – Assam
We are tea lovers who cannot start our day without taking a sip of tea! Do you like tea too? Then you must pack your bags to attend the Folk Tea Festival in Assam. We are already aware that Assam is one of the largest producers of tea and also exports its goods to different countries. Unlike the tea husk that we consume every day, in Assam, you can get your hands on fresh tea leaves that smell absolutely heavenly! During the festival, local Artists and established celebrities gather to chat over ‘Chai-Bisket’ and also use traditional musical instruments to play melodies that will pull at your heartstrings. When you attend the festival, you get to hand-pick your tea leaves from the plantations, make your own tea blend and enjoy sipping on the drink while walking around the captivating valleys. The cherry on the top is the several traditional dishes that you will get to taste while you are here! Lastly, you can see the exciting car rally where automobiles will be driven through the lush green hoops of the rolling hills.
Location: Hatipati Tea Estate, Biswanath Chariali, Assam
Festival Dates: 24,25,26 November 2023
Total Estimated Cost: Free
When you attend these cultural festivals in India, it is important to keep certain things in your mind. Understand that these festivals hold great significance to the locals and doing anything out of place can hurt their sentiments, Keep your surroundings clean and be very respectful when you interact with the residents. This is your chance to embrace the elegant culture of different parts of India and make the most cherished memories.