Come August and September everyone awaits the arrival of their favorite deity Lord Ganesha. Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated across the country irrespective of cultural diversity. There is nothing more enticing than the elephant God when it comes to singing, dancing and being a part of the ten-day celebrations.
This festival was celebrated as a public event in Pune during Shivaji’s reign from 1630-1680, and later 1749 to 1818 during Peshwa rule. Once they fell the celebrations became private. But, in 1893, Bal Gangadhar Tilak re-introduced the Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Pune to bring people together.
Ganesh Chaturthi 2019 dates:
Ganesh Chaturthi this year begins on 2nd September and ends on 13th September.
Maharashtra, Goa, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala are known for their Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. With Indians living in various parts of the world, this festival has become global today. Other countries like the UK, US, Canada, Mauritius, Thailand, Singapore, Cambodia, Burma, and Fiji also celebrate this festival with fervor, enthusiasm, and lots of modak. A few countries have now declared the first day of the festival a public holiday.
We at Kesari created a small list for you to enjoy the festival even if you are abroad.
Top Destinations for Ganesh Chaturthi
- United Kingdom
- United States of America
United Kingdom: With more Hindus migrating to the U.K, Hindu festivals have slowly become a part of celebrations in parts of Europe. Several places in the UK celebrate this festival with enthusiasm just like Mumbai in India. The Vishwa Hindu Temple introduced this festival in 2005. Several temples, gurdwaras and other organizations in the U.K supported this event too. The procession (Shobha Yatra) began at the Vishwa Hindu Mandir premises, moving on to Ram Mandir at King Street, Southall, and later immersed in the river Thames at Putney Pier in the presence of luminaries.
Today, residents in Hounslow celebrate this festival with an eco-friendly Ganesh murti. The first day begins with a traditional puja followed by other activities while there are DJ parties in the evening. At Dollis Hill in London around 10000 people gather to be a part of the celebrations, while in Slough the festival is an 11-day event. Leicester, Birmingham, Cardiff, and Manchester are places you can visit to enjoy this festival in the UK.
Mauritius: Over 52 percent of the populace in Mauritius forms the Hindu community in Mauritius. Ganesh Chaturthi is a festival celebrated with lots of fervor. Usually, held on the fourth day of Bhadrapada. The Bhiwajee family first held the celebrations in 1896 at Cascade Valley in Henrietta. They have kept the tradition alive even today. Over the years, this festival has become grander and it is so popular that the Government made it a public holiday. People celebrate at home or in temples that have traditional pujas before they idols immersion in the sea. Others join the Shoba Yatra before moving on to the beaches in this island country.
France: Celebrations in Paris are unlike any other in France. Held at the largest Hindu temple Sri Manikka Vinayakar temple in France, the Elephant God is venerated with lots of pomp and enthusiasm. Moreover, you get a chance to see a chariot procession held in God’s honor. This ten-day festival culminates in a chariot procession of the Utsav Murti i.e. the idol created especially for this festival. The chariot is pulled by thousands of devotees dressed in traditional clothes. Two water trucks precede the procession and wash the roads to purify the road for Lord Ganesha. Not only Indians but Sri Lankans, the French and Europeans also take part in the procession. This procession travels through the roads in Paris for four miles and then returns to the temple.
The USA: Several cities in the USA celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi especially where the concentration of Indians is strong. The Hindu Swamsevak Sangh organizes the festival celebrations at temples in the cities it has branches in. The Philadelphia Ganesh Festival the Marathi community organizes is one of the largest in the USA. The festival includes cultural programs, singing devotional songs with a colorful procession held for immersion i.e. visarjan.
The Fremont Hindu Temple in Bay Area sees thousands visiting during the ten days of the festival before immersion in the Pacific Ocean near the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.
The Sai Samstan in Illinois holds the biggest celebrations with thousands flocking its shore to be a part of the festival. Florida, California, New York, and others also celebrate but on a smaller scale.
Other countries also celebrated this favored festival with as much enthusiasm as people in India do. If you’d lie to see how they celebrate, then don’t wait. Book a holiday with Kesari Tours today.