Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights, is one of India’s most celebrated and cherished festivals. In the vibrant state of Gujarat, this festival takes on a special significance, as it marks the homecoming of Lord Rama after his victory over the demon king Ravana. The entire state is adorned with lights, colors, and a palpable sense of joy during this time. If you’re planning to visit Gujarat during Diwali 2023, here are the top 10 places to explore the rich culture, heritage, and festivities of this beautiful state.
- Ahmedabad:The city of Ahmedabad is renowned for its grand celebration of Diwali. The entire city lights up with decorative lamps, and locals indulge in the tradition of setting off firecrackers. The International Kite Festival also takes place around this time, adding an extra layer of festivity.
- Kutch:The Rann of Kutch comes alive during Diwali. The region hosts the Rann Utsav, a three-month-long cultural extravaganza that coincides with Diwali. You can enjoy traditional music, dance, handicrafts, and the enchanting sight of the moonlit white desert.
- Vadodara:Vadodara’s grandeur during Diwali is unmatched. The city’s famous Lakshmi Vilas Palace is illuminated with thousands of lights, and the vibrant processions and cultural events make it a Diwali destination worth experiencing.
- Surat:Surat, known as the “Diamond City,” offers a unique Diwali celebration. The entire city is adorned with lights, and the markets are buzzing with people shopping for jewelry, textiles, and diamonds.
- Gir National Park:For a different Diwali experience, head to Gir National Park. Explore the wildlife, including the majestic Asiatic lions, against the backdrop of a beautifully lit natural setting.
- Dwarka:Dwarka, a sacred city for Hindus, is a must-visit during Diwali. The Dwarkadhish Temple is beautifully decorated, and the entire town reverberates with devotional music and rituals.
- Somnath:Somnath, another holy destination, is famous for its stunning Somnath Temple. The temple is adorned with lights, and devotees throng to offer their prayers during Diwali.
- Junagadh:Visit the Uparkot Fort in Junagadh, which is illuminated during Diwali, and explore the historic city’s rich cultural heritage. The local markets are great places to shop for souvenirs and traditional items.
- Bhuj:Bhuj, the gateway to Kutch, offers a unique blend of traditional and modern celebrations during Diwali. You can explore local handicrafts and textiles and witness the colorful processions.
- Patan:Patan is famous for its Rani Ki Vav, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Visit this stepwell during Diwali, when it’s beautifully lit up, and enjoy the festive atmosphere in the town.
Diwali in Gujarat is a magical time when the state truly comes to life with vibrant colors, lights, and cultural celebrations. Whether you’re interested in the grandeur of cities like Ahmedabad and Vadodara or the serene beauty of natural landscapes like the Rann of Kutch, Gujarat has something to offer every traveler. So, mark your calendar for Diwali 2023 and immerse yourself in the festivities, traditions, and diverse experiences that this state has to offer. Happy Diwali!