Kerala is a land of colourful festivals, which have a long history and tradition behind them. Festivals in Kerala are an integral part of the social and cultural structure .
Famous Festivals in Kerala
Onam is the most popular festival of Kerala.It is celebrated as the harvest festival in Kerala. It falls in the Malayalam month of Chingam (Aug-Sept). The image of Thrikkakara Appan (Vishnu in the form of Vamana) is installed in every Hindu home during the Onam season.Children go around collecting flowers and decorate them in the front portion of the house. Onam is also the harvest festival of Kerala. This festival provides an occasion for family get-together among the Keralites.
Vallamkali or Boat Races
Vallamkali or Boat Races is held in August . On the great backwaters of Kerala, fierce Vallom Kallies (boat races) and water carnivals erupt every year in a dramatic spectacle and hold tens of thousands of people spell-bound, cheering the action, laying bets, goading the boatmen to row faster.
The first month of Malayalam Calendar is Medam (April-May) and the first day of Medam is celebrated as Vishu, the New Year day. It is considered propitious to view good things on this day for year round good fortune.
Attukal Pongala Festival
This is the one and the only temple festival in the world where lakhs of women assembled together to make offerings by cooking a pudding for the goddess in the Attukal temple.
Thrissur Pooram Festival
The most spectacular festival of Kerala is Thrissur Pooram. Celebrated in Medom (April-May) the festival parades the fulgent faces of Kerala culture.
Christmas Festival: With a large number of Christian population in Kerala, Christmas is a festival that is celebrated with much vigour and enthusiasm in the state.. The numerous churches that are spread across the state brighten up around this time.
Hindus celebrate Mahasivarathri, all over the world in Kumbam (Feb-March). It commemorates the day on which Lord Shiva consumed the deadly poison (Kalakuda visham) to save the world from destruction The annual Sivarathri festival held on the banks of River Periyar at Alwaye, is one of the most spectacular local festivals of Kerala, which attracts thousands of pilgrims from all over the state.
The Bakrid commemorates Ibrahim's (Abhraham) offering of his only son as a sacrifice in obedience to God's command. The Muslims enjoy hearty feasts on Bakrid day. The rich may sacrifice a he goat or a bullock and distribute it among Frieds, relatives and the poor.
The other more important Muslim festival is Idul-Fitr, which comes after a month of strict fasting.