Almost the entire country comes together in an effusive welcome for the month of September and it is a great season for travelling across the country. Colourful festivals are accompanied by singing, dancing and delicious feasts so get the camera ready and move your feet to the sounds of India celebrating.
While this is a national celebration it is most elaborate in western and southern India
Undoubtedly one of the most vibrant festivals of India, this one celebrates the devotion for the elephant God, Ganesha. Preparations for the festival can be seen almost a month in advance with small pottery towns in south India toiling at different sizes of Ganesha statues. The first week of September sees processions and celebrations and with that, lots of photo opportunities and a local flavour.
At the end of the festival, the clay statues are immersed in a local water body. For this, Mumbai is the perfect place to join the fun! Hoards of crowds converge at the beaches to immerse these statues amidst a din of dance and music.
Base yourself in Leh for this lively northern festival
September is a perfect month to visit the mountains of Ladakh, perfect as you can also enjoy the Ladakh Festival. At the festival, which is held between 1st and 15th of the month, you can try various local cuisines, and see music and mask dances. The locals have a very strong sense of pride attached to this festival and it is a fantastic cultural event which has become a showcase for the region.
For full cultural immersion you can stay with a local family and join them in visiting Leh and other villages along the festival dates.
The largest festival in the southern state of Kerala
The harvest festival of Onam combined with a perfect setting of the backwaters makes September the perfect time to visit Kerala.
The Onam feast is known as ‘Sadhya’ and the flower carpet in front of every house is called ‘Pookalam’. Elaborate feasts on banana leaves, snake boats out for competitions, new clothes, dance and music bring a contagious energy and vibrance to the region.
September celebrations brings you a choice across the length of the country so take your pick! Is it going to be the serene landscapes of Ladakh or the mania at Ganesh Chathurthi?
If you would like to join in with some Indian festivals in August yourself contact our reservations team who will be happy to help you plan a trip.
Homestays offer the perfect opportunity to get a local insight into festivals and your host family will be happy to provide guidance on the best way to experience the celebrations. Check out our Indian homestay collection.
Find out about the homestay experience and don't forget to check out our ideas on things to do in India or browse our India homestays.