7 Festivals Of Tamil Nadu That’ll Take You Close To The Traditions Of The State In 2022!

When it comes to taking a glimpse of the culture and traditions of South India, Tamil Nadu is one of those states in India which has been able to preserve its tradition till this date. India is the country with several cultures living together. Various colorful festivals are celebrated in different parts of Tamil Nadu throughout the year. Whenever one seeks to know about a particular state, the very essence of the culture can be found in the festivals of that state that bind everyone together. Tamil Nadu celebrates some unique festivals like balloon festival in Chennai and Pongal, which holds a very important place in the history of the state. Let us make you aware of some of the most important festivals of Tamil Nadu.

7 Best Festivals Of Tamil Nadu

These are some of the festivals of Tamil Nadu which showcases the vibrant culture of the state and reflects the year-old traditions. Keep scrolling down and read along to know more!

  • Pongal
  • Thiruvaiyaru Festival
  • Thaipusam
  • Natyanjali Dance Festival
  • Mahamaham
  • Tamil New Year’s Day
  • Karthigai Deepam

1. Pongal

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Celebrated for four simultaneous days, this festival is one of the most important festivals of Tamil Nadu. Pongal is the harvest festival in Tamil Nadu which is celebrated for 4 days. All the four days have their sort of importance as well as celebrations and rituals. The four days celebration of Pongal in Tamil Nadu starts with the day named Bhogi. Prayers to Lord Indra are made on this day. New things are bought. Old things are burnt in the bonfire. The next day, on Thai Pongal, people wear new clothes and couples make offerings of sugarcane and coconut into the river. Cows are highly decorated on the third day. Cows are worshipped. The last day of this harvest festival of Tamil Nadu, Kaanum Pongal, families take a visit to their relatives. Gifts are exchanged, and the festival ends on a happy note.

The Dish that they eat on this day is also called as Pongal. The first rice after harvest is boiled and served first to the Sun God and then to the people. Kolam, the rangoli or the pattern made by women at the entrances of their houses with colored rice and powder, starts to be made a month in advance. The whole month is very auspicious. This month is known as Margali.

Date: 14th – 17th January 2022

2. Thiruvaiyaru Festival

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Thiruvaiyaru is a famous music festival that is celebrated in Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu. Saint Thyagaraja is a renowned music composer and this festival is dedicated to him. On Pushya Bahula Panchami day, Saint Thyagaraja attained Samadhi and so this festival is celebrated every year on this day. Every year in the month of January, a lot of composers come to Thanjavur for attending the festivities of this grand festival.

One of the most popular festivals of Tamil Nadu, Thanjavur promotes the Carnatic and classical music. This festival is also celebrated in Mauritius, USA, and Nigeria. All music lovers should attend this festival and witness the traditions and rituals performed near the Samadhi of Thyagaraja.

Date: 22nd January 2022

3. Thaipusam

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Thaipusam is celebrated on the full moon day of the Thai month in the Tamil Calendar in Tamil Nadu. The younger son of Lord Shiva was born on this day. His name is Lord Subramaniam. People take vows and keep them. They believe that if they would take vows in front of Lord Subramaniam, he would ensure that they keep their vows forever. The important ritual observed on this day is the sight of the Kavadi Bearer. They carry a Kavadi on their shoulder, which is a wooden stick with two pots attached at both ends of it. They wear dresses like that of a Pandaren. Pandaran is the people who live on alms alone. These devotees prefer to hold the pots empty at the beginning and fill them by asking and begging for alms.

This is the day of repentance and penance and the devotees feel more connected and close to God. They can be seen walking barefoot all over the streets towards the temple. They feel no pain and scars and try to get rid of the very idea of suffering that is just a relative thing. One interesting ritual that can be observed on this day is the Agni Kavadi. Devotees are barefooted with their pots on their shoulders and they are supposed to walk barefoot on the burning coal spread out on the ground.

Date: 18th January 2022

4. Natyanjali Dance Festival

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The festival of dances. Dance has been considered to be the greatest ways of connecting with their souls and thus in turn connecting with our Oversoul, the Lord. Dance has been a crucial part of Indian culture throughout the ages. Lord Siva has a form known as Nataraja. This festival is celebrated to offer tribute to Lord Nataraja who is believed to be the Lord of dances. He is the most powerful and the most loved God in the Hindu tradition. The Nataraja temple at Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu is the place where one can observe this dance festival in its greatest form.

The meaning of the word Natya is Dance and the meaning of the word Anjali is Offering. The offering to the Lord through our dance performance is the basic idea of this festival. Almost 500 dancers from all over the country come to this place to give their offerings. The dances performed are the classical ones. Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam, Kathak, Kuchipudi, and more traditional and classical dances are observed. February and March are the two months in which this festival can be observed. The greatest festival of north India, Maha Shivaratri, marks the beginning of this four-day-long dance festival of Tamil Nadu. All the diverse cultures come to Tamil Nadu from different parts of India to celebrate this festival in their ways. There are no restrictions on the dance forms or anything. The unity in diversity can be seen in its full-fledged form.

Date: February/March

5. Mahamaham

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Kumbakonam is the small town of Tamil Nadu where this festival is celebrated in every 12 years. It is organised in a massive way. This festival has the grandeur of both Indian as well as Greek festivals. People gather near a tank called Mahamaham Tank to take a bath. Taking a bath from that Tank is considered as sacred as taking a bath in the Kumbh organized in the northeast state of Prayag Raj in India.

The scientific or the astrological idea about this festival is that Jupiter enters the Leo sign in the constellation once in twelve years according to our calendar. The purification of all our sins takes place when we take a bath from that auspicious tank. There is a huge crowd gathered at this place in Tamil Nadu on this day. People from other countries also visit there and take a bath from the Mahamaham Tank.

Date: 17th February 2022

6. Tamil New Year’s Day

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The Tamil New Year’s Day festival is observed in April as the middle of April is the beginning of the first month of the Tamil calendar, Puthandu. The culture of making designs and patterns with flowers, colours, and rice is very popular in south India. On this day, women can be seen making beautiful Kolams or Rangolis in front of their houses. The entrance of the house is decorated.

People take a shrine bath and then they visit the temples. The temple Kanni is visited in particular. It is the most auspicious temple for starting some new things. One needs to visit there once. Golds, betel leaves, and many more things are to be seen in plenty almost everywhere on this day. Foods are an important part of festivals. People eat delicious food on this day. A sweet and sour dish is made. Mangoes and jaggeries are mixed with neem to make this tasty food. It is known as Maanga Pachadi.

Date: 14th April 2022

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