(Last Updated on : 28/11/2013)
Fairs and festivals of Almora district
are the representatives of the social and cultural ethos of the district. They have also played an important role in preserving the folk culture of the place and in augmenting its economic activities. Many of the celebrations are organized in remote areas and hilly terrains, where communication is quite difficult, to enhance the communication and cultural gathering at these places. These gatherings act as an excellent means of exchange of commodities, religious ideas and customs. Often these assemblages are held around some specific shrines. These occasions cheerfully combine business, beliefs and gaiety among the people of the district.
Uttraini festival is a significant festival of the district, held in the month of January and continues for a week in the town of Bageshwar
. The fair accompanying the festival attracts huge number of Almora traders, Bhotias
from the snows and other folks from the surrounding regions. Bageshwar is the place where the two rivers namely Saryu and Gomti
meet. At the point of confluence, a large temple stands projecting its conical tower. It is the shrine of Bageshwar, also known as Vyagreswar, which is the epithet of Lord Shiva
, 'Tiger Lord'. Kumaon king known as Laxmi Chand built this temple in 1450 A.D. However the temple also hosts a Sanskrit inscription
belonging to an earlier era. The festival forms an important centre for trading of diverse articles.
Jageshwar Monsoon Festival
Jageshwar monsoon festival is held from 15th July to 15th August in Jageshwar
and holds religious as well as historical significance. It is organized in the temple of Lord Jagnath which is enlisted among the twelve 'Jyotirlinga
' of Lord Shiva in the country and was constructed around 8th or 9th century. Apart from this, the place also houses 125 other temples of ancient times. The festival is religiously very significant for Kumaoni society.
Nanda Devi Festival
festival is one the grandest festivals of the district. It is accompanied by a big fair which is organized in the month of September at the town of Almora
. The inception of this fair can be traced back to the time of Chand kings who ruled over the place once. The rulers of this dynasty worshipped Nanda Devi as their family goddess. The term 'Nanda' literally refers to prosperity. Dyot Chanda, a king of Chand dynasty built the Nanda Devi temple in Almora during 17th century. The festival is celebrated for five days where the temple forms the centre. The festival also attracts a vast sea of tourists.
festival is celebrated in Almora town with great pomp and glory in the month of October to commemorate the victory of Lord Rama
. Unique celebrations are held in the town where effigies of devils are made by the local artists all round the town and symbolic victory of good over evil is shown in an artistic way. Social gatherings are organized in which the devil effigies are finally burnt.
Other Fairs and Festivals of Almora District
In addition to these, other fairs and festivals of Almora district include Srikrishna Janmashtami
festival, Syaldey - Bikhauti Mela, Somnath Mela, Mahashivratri
, Punyagiri Navratri Mela, Raksha Bandhan
Mela, Mustamanu fair, Doonagiri Mela, Kapileshwar fair, Kanardevi fair, Honkara Devi fair, Dhanlekh fair, Laccher fair and many more.