Festivals in Madurai


  Pongal ( Harvest Festival )
  Jallikattu ( Taming the Bull )
  Chithirai Festival
  Festival of Cradle
  Avanimoolam Festival
  Navarathri ( Nine nights ) Festival
  Dance Festival

Pongal ( Harvest festival)

January

Pongal or the Harvest Festival is celebrated by way of paying tribute to the Sun, Nature and cattle for helping them with a rich harvest. The 3 day festival is celebrated with great pomp and splendour. Bogi is celebrated the first day. Homes are given a fresh lick of paint and old articles are removed.
The second day is Pongal, the main festival. Sugarcanes, Pongal (a sweet variety of rice) and festoons of mango leaves mark this auspicious day. Mattu Pongal is celebrated the third day. On this day people pay tribute to the cattle for bringing in prosperity.

Jallikattu(Taming the Bull)

January

The most popular sport in Tamil Nadu is part of the pongal celebrations. This gave of valour is held in the villages with great pomp and splendor though only as a popular sport. People from the neighbouring villages throng the open grounds to watch man and beast pitting their strength against each other.

Chithirai Festival

April/May

It is celebrated every year on the Full moon day of the Tamil Month Chithirai. (April/May). Legend says that Lord Vishnu, as Alagar, rode on a golden horse to Madurai to attend the celestial wedding of Goddes Meenakshi with Lord Sundareswarar (Lord Siva). This festival is marked by solemnity and serenity.

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Festival of the Cradle

During the festival the deities - Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Sundareswarar (Lord Siva) are taken in procession to a mirror chamber. For nine days they are on a swing, which rocks gently.




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Avanimoolam Festival


September

This festival during September celebrates the coronation of Lord Sundareswarar (Lord Siva). A “Lila” or play is performed where the temple priest recite the stories of Lord Siva in 64 miracles, which protected the city of Madurai from adversity.





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Navarathri ( Nine nights) festival

This festival is held in honour of Goddess Meenakshi in all her forms, which embody fury, compassion and wisdom. During this nine day festival, Goddess Meenakshi is offered nine varieties of rice meals and nine varieties of flowers.

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Dance Festival


January/ March/ November/ December



A dance festival is being organized by the Tourism Department for Fifteen days. Exponents of various dances forms from all over the country perform in this festival.


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