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    The royal elephant carrying Chamunda Devi during the famous Mysore Dussehra

    Smiling faces and devoted souls – come September-October and the colors of diverse cultures and customs of India are ready to dazzle. The season of festivals commences with the famous Dussehra, also known as Durga Puja and Vijayadashami in different parts of the country. From Gujarat to Arunachal and Himachal to Karnataka, the entire nation exudes its ethnic elegance during this ten-day festival.

    Dussehra In India 2019

    Celebrations of Dussehra in Delhi

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    Dussehra in India is celebrated with great vigor and festivities by the Hindus. The festival marks the victory of good over evil. The 10-day long celebration includes melas and Ramlila– an enactment of the scenes from Ramayana. On the 10th day, the scene of Ravana Dahan is enactment. This is followed by the burning of the effigies of Ravana, Meghnath, and Kumbhakarna.

    The melas are held at various Ramlila grounds across the country and include food stalls, game stalls, ferris-wheels, & other fun activities. The celebration areas are lighted up brightly and even popular celebrities make appearances at the most popular Ramlila spots.

    Amidst all the commonalities, the less known fact is that reasons for Dussehra celebrations differ from one place to another, and so do the elements. As the stages are being set for the most pompous festivities, we now bring to you the better among the best Dussehra celebrations in India – Kullu Dussehra and Mysore Dussara.

    Must Read: 15 Famous Festivals Of India

    Fascinating Kullu Dussehra 2019

    The procession carrying the idol of Raghunath temple in Kullu

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    Surprising as it may seem, Kullu Dussehra has earned a big name among the people looking for exceptional celebrations around the globe. Even for India, the celebrations in Kullu are a little different as they start when the revelers in other states are heading home after the 10 day-long festivities. Celebrations in Kullu start on the 10th day of Dussehra and it goes on for a week. For witnessing the best Dussehra celebration in India, make a visit to Kullu. It is just one of the ways Dussehra celebration in north India takes places.

    Best days to visit during Dussehra: Since the actual celebration starts from the 10th day, it is ideal to arrive here by the 9th day. For Dussehra 2019, do reach Kullu before October 19th.

    Reaching Kullu: Chandigarh is the nearest airport. If you come across some read that says Bhuntar airport is the nearest one, it has to be outdated as the airport is not operational now.  You can also hire a cab from Chandigarh. If budget is a concern, the state run buses of HPTD and DTC (Delhi Tourism) as well as private swanky Volvo bus services are available at regular interval.

    Key Attractions

    Crowd during the procession in Kullu

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    Events during Kullu Dussehra celebrations make it one of the most happening Dussehra in India. Historical phool yatra, international folk festival, Nainadevi fair, and Kullu Fair in October are some of the well known events to look out for. Procession and rath yatra on the 1st day and Ramlila throughout the entire week till the burning of effigies are other major attractions.

    Can’t miss: The Folk performances of Gaddi Shepherds; and of course, the famous procession makes it one of the most famous Dussehra in India.

    Best places to stay: For a lavish and luxurious stay, Corporates’ Orchard Park and Himalayan Hamlet are some of the best options. For those who are looking for a budget stay, Hotel Century Gangri is a good option.

    Grand Dasara In Mysuru 2019

    The royal elephant carrying Chamunda Devi during the famous Mysore Dussehra

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    “Nadahabba” or the state festival of Karnataka, Mysore Dussehra is famous Dussehra in India and has been there for 400 years. The region hosts this festival as a celebration of the victory of goddess Chamundeshwari over demon Mahishasura. The 10-day-long festival starts from the first day of Navratri and culminates on the tenth day when the royal procession follows a decorated elephant carrying the idol of the worshipped goddess. The lighting of the Mysore palace and involvement of the royal family are popular attractions during Dussehra in Mysore. It is one of the biggest Dussehra Mela in India you have ever seen.

    Best days to visit during Dussehra: Last four days of the 10 days long festival. For Dussehra 2019, it’s ideal to land in Mysore on 15th October and witness the grand affair.

    Reaching Mysore: The city is well connected by train and by air from all major cities of India. The problem, however, lies in the bookings as the tickets either go super expensive or worse – you don’t get one. If this happens to be the case, Bangalore is the nearest airport to land. Book a cab or taxi if you want to go private and exclusive. Buses, also ply from Bangalore and take around 3 hours to reach Mysore.

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    Key Attractions

    The historic Mysore Palace remains illuminated for all the ten nights of Dussara celebration

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    The illuminated Mysore palace is a delight to the eye while the cultural programs inside the palace are equally cherishing at Mysore Dussehra. The grand procession, march pasts, tableaus, dances and martial arts performances are once a lifetime experience.

    Can’t miss: Jumbo Savaari or the elephant procession where the decorated royal elephants lead the procession,
    Dasara exhibition at the exhibition grounds, joy rides, authentic south Indian cuisine, and shopping.

    Best places to stay: You got yourself the best if you are staying at a native’s place; if not, then the hotels that we suggest are –The Windflower Resort and Spa , and Country Inn & Suites By Carlson for a lavish and luxurious stay; Green Hotel and Ruchi the Prince for a budget stay.

    Okay! So, here you have all the essentials you need to witness the grandest of  Dussehra in India. What do you choose – Dasara in Mysore or the Kullu way? Go, have fun. Just don’t stay here. Plan a domestic vacation to either Kullu or Mysore and have a different experience this year.

    Further Read: 9 Awesome Ways To Turn This Navratri and Dussehra In Delhi Into Epic Celebrations

    Frequently Asked Questions about celebrations of Dussehra in India 2019

    An illustration showing Lord Rama killing King Ravana
    Q. What is the date of Dussehra 2019?

    A. Dussehra is celebrated on the 10th day of the Ashwin month of the Hindu calendar. This coincides with October or late September. Dussehra 2019 date in India is 8th October 2019.

    Q. How is Ganga Dussehra different from Dussehra?

    A. Ganga Dussehra or Gangavataran celebrates the avatarana (descent) of the river Ganges. Hindus believe that the holy river descended from heaven to Earth on this very day. It is celebrated on the 10th day of the waxing moon of the Hindu calendar of Jyeshtha month; a month that coincides with May-June. The festival has no relation to the more popular Dussehra festival.

    Q. What is Navratri?

    A. Navratri or 9 nights is a multi-day festival celebrated in India for different reasons in different parts of the Indian subcontinent. And there are 4 seasonal Navratris. However, the post-monsoon autumn celebration (Sharad Navratri) that takes places in the Hindu calendar month of Ashwin is the most popular one. The dates for Navratri 2019 are from 29th September to 7th October.

    Q. How are the celebrations of Dussehra different in other parts of India?

    1. Dussehra in Gujarat: The chief highlight of Dussehra in Gujarat is that Garba & dandiya performances and events are held at myriad places in the state. People gather at these places after the arti and dance to the tune of folk songs.
    2. Dussehra in Maharashtra: Maharashtra celebrates this festival by dedicating the Navratri to goddess Durga and the 10th day to goddess Saraswati.
    3. Dussehra in West Bengal, Orissa, and Assam: These state celebrate this festival in the form of Durga Pooja. It is 5-day-celebration in West Bengal and a 4-day-celebration in Assam and Orissa. For more information on the same, check out the blog on Durga Puja in Kolkata.

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