Published on Sept 26, 2022Updated on Nov 9, 2023
We are finally getting close to the month when celebrations are around the corner. Dussehra is a festival celebrated in some cities with great pomp and show. Dussehra or Durga Puja or Vijaya Dashami is a 10-day festival celebrated in October across different parts of the country.
Dussehra marks the victory of Goddess Durga over Mahishasura, the old Hindu mythical demon. In other Hindu stories, this day is also associated with Lord Ram’s victory over the demon Ravana. During the time and span of the festivities, the country is blended with food, good clothes, and excellent music.
Many people celebrate the festival by visiting various destinations during the festival. So, what are the places to visit in Dussehra 2023? Although we crave to roam around in places, one major factor sets us on the back foot - The travel expenses.
Thankfully, we have numerous options today that will quickly help one out to be a part of the festival across various cities.
Dussehra, also known as Vijayadashami, is a festival in India that symbolises the triumph of good over evil. It celebrates Lord Rama's victory over the demon king Ravana, reinforcing faith in the ultimate triumph of righteousness.
This festival concludes the nine-day Navratri festival, which is dedicated to the worship of Goddess Durga and celebrates her divine feminine energy. Dussehra is celebrated across India with a variety of traditions, including the burning of Ravana's effigies, reenactments of the Ramayana, and vibrant processions that reflect the country's rich cultural diversity.
It also serves as a harvest festival in some areas, expressing gratitude for a bountiful agricultural season. Dussehra brings communities together to reflect on the eternal battle between good and evil, emphasising virtue, truth, and victory of light over darkness.
This festival is based on several mythological stories. In some parts of India, this day commemorates the day Goddess Durga killed the demon Mahishasur. That is why on Navratri, all nine avatars of Goddess Durga are worshiped. It is also said that Goddess Durga is immersed in water with the devotees, which represents Goddess Durga's departure from the material world after upholding Dharma.
The Dussehra festival is celebrated in North India as the day Lord Rama killed the demon king Ravana in Lanka. Ravana is said to have kidnapped Lord Rama's wife Sita in Hindu mythology. Ravana was also granted indestructibility by Lord Brahma. Lord Rama is considered the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and during the battle, Lord Rama managed to shoot an arrow into Ravana's belly, killing him. As a result, the Dussehra festival is celebrated as a triumph of good over evil.
In India, Dussehra is celebrated for its profound religious and cultural significance. It commemorates the triumph of good over evil, specifically Lord Rama's victory over the demon king Ravana, as told in the epic Ramayana. This festival represents the timeless message that righteousness and virtue will triumph over evil and vice.
Furthermore, Dussehra marks the end of the nine-day Navratri festival, during which Hindus worship the Goddess Durga, a manifestation of divine feminine energy and power. It is time to acknowledge the goddess's strength and grace and ask for her blessings for a peaceful life.
Huge and colourful effigies of Ravana, his son Meghanada, and his brother Kumbhakaran are set on fire in various parts of northern India. People attend the event and have a good time. Dussehra is also celebrated by staging a theatrical enactment of Rama's life stories, known as Ram Lila. People in West Bengal, Bihar, and Odisha celebrate this festival at the end of Durga Puja. Bengalis sing folk songs and immerse Goddess Durga idols in bodies of water. The State Government of Himachal Pradesh has designated the Vijayadashami festival in Kullu as an International festival.
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Nothing can beat Kolkata during Durga Puja. The celebration during Dussehra is grand. People from all over the world visit the pandal during the 10-day festivities.
Kolkata is one of the best places to visit in Dussehra because of many reasons. It is an affordable city to visit during Durga Puja. One can enjoy the festival throughout the tenure of 10 days and consume the vibes thoroughly. The last day of the festival is the most interesting and famous where women apply vermillion across each other’s foreheads. You can even hire a boat to watch traditional immersions and dance events.
Mysore is another popular place to visit in October in India. Dussehra is popularly known as “Dasara” here and goes on for nine days. Mysore celebrates Dasara pompously and believes in decorating its famous palace.
Traveling to Mysore or planning to be there during Dussehra could be easily covered through a personal loan for travel. By night, the place is lit and looks like a fairyland. Moreover, Mysore also has several events and exhibitions planned for the duration.
Kullu, situated 40 km away from Manali, witnessed an outstanding Dussehra in October. The festival pays its respect to Lord Raghunath. Dussehra begins on the first day and goes on for seven days.
Some deities arrive in palanquins and camp in Dhalpur Maidan and some others can be seen visiting from remote areas. The Rath Yatra of Lord Raghunath followed by many other events is what makes the whole 10-day festivities exciting for a tourist family!
Kota is proudly called the Dussehra Mela. During the initial days of Dussehra, religious functions occur in the royal palace throughout the morning. This is followed by the royal members' commencement in their procession. Kumbhakaran and Meghnad are ready to be fired with firecrackers. Also, if Kota is on your list of places to visit in Dussehra 2023, you can’t miss out on the colossal fair in the heart of the city.
Jagdalpur is another destination to which you can plan your visit in October during Dussehra. However, the celebrations in Jagdalpur have nothing to do with Ram’s win over Ravana. The festival happens for 75 days and usually honors Goddess Danteshwari. Jagdalpur celebrates many more rituals in the process.
Experience the spiritual enthusiasm as Varanasi, India's holiest city, comes alive with elaborate Dussehra celebrations and a spectacular Ganga Aarti by the ghats.
The city dazzles with a procession featuring caparisoned elephants, traditional music, and a beautifully lit Mysore Palace during its grand Mysore Dasara festival.
Explore historical sites such as the Red Fort and see Ramlila performances, which reenact the epic Ramayana, particularly at the iconic Ram Lila Maidan.
Attend the Kodungallur Bharani Festival, a one-of-a-kind Dussehra celebration complete with vibrant processions, rituals, and a spectacular fireworks display.
Known for its unusual turmeric festival during Dussehra, devotees throw turmeric powder during the festivities, creating a surreal, yellow-hued spectacle.
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Dussehra falls on Tuesday, October 24, 2023.
Dussehra spans ten days to symbolize the epic battle between Lord Rama and Ravana, culminating in Ravana's defeat on the tenth day.
Navratri is a nine-night Hindu festival dedicated to the Goddess Durga and her various forms, celebrated with fasting, prayer, and dance.
Dussehra celebrations differ across India; for instance, Mysore has grand processions, while Kolkata hosts elaborate Durga Puja.
Ganga Dussehra celebrates the descent of the river Ganges from heaven to earth, while Dussehra commemorates the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana.
Dussehra signifies the victory of good over evil, primarily Lord Rama's triumph over the demon king Ravana.
Dussehra follows Navratri as it marks the day when Goddess Durga, created by the Hindu trinity, defeated Mahishasura on the tenth day of her battle.
Dussehra in India involves diverse customs such as burning effigies of Ravana, reenactments of the Ramayana, cultural events, processions, and special prayers.
Mysore, Karnataka, and Kolkata, West Bengal are renowned for their grand Dussehra festival, featuring majestic processions, vibrant celebrations, and massive pandals.
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