Festivals & Events in Mumbai
While many religious festivals are celebrated by people in Mumbai, a few of these are essentially public and social occasions, where the traveller can participate.
Organized festivals & events
- Banganga Festival. (Jan) The musical festival is organized by Maharashtra Tourism (MTDC) annually at Banganga Tank on Malabar Hill.
- Elephanta Festival. (March) Organized by Maharashtra Tourism, the festival of music and dance at Elephanta Caves has in the past festivals have seen performances by renowned artists like Alarmel Valli, Sanjeev Abhyankar, and Ananda Shankar and traditional Koli dances as well as traditional food. 7PM-10PM (Ferries start at 4PM), ₹300 per day (includes to and from journey by ferry from Gateway of India to Elephanta Island)
- Kala Ghoda Festival. The arts and crafts festival is held in the last week of Jan or first week of Feb annually in the historic precinct of Kala ghoda in Mumbai.
- Mumbai Festival (Jan) Sample the vibrant culture of the city. The festival covers theater, sports, fashion, food, and shopping.
- Mumbai Wine Fest (Feb) Wine connoisseurs across the city gather to sample wines, enjoy the culinary delights while soaking in the cultural extravaganza put up at Kala Ghoda.
- Christmas (Dec) This is characterised by midnight (nowadays held around 8-9PM on Christmas Eve due to restrictions on loud speakers) masses in churches and is usually followed by a number of private parties all across the city.
- Diwali (Oct/Nov) Festival of Lights. Start of New Year and opening of new accounts. Worshiping of Goddess Laxmi. Participate in the fireworks and view the bright lights.
- Ganesh Chaturthi (Aug/Sep) is one of Mumbai's most important and colorful festivals. During the 10 day celebration, Lord Ganesh is worshiped in millions of homes. See the colourful processions and participate in them, the biggest of which is on the last day of the celebrations where the largest idol is brought to Chowpatty for immersion in the wee-small hours of the morning and can vary depending on the crowd and pace of travel from Lal Bagh to the beach. The Lalbaug, Parel, Matunga and Dadar areas represent some of the best large scale decorations. On the last day of the festival, processions are carried out to bid bye to the loved deity in the sea. These presentations are colourful and carry a celebration fever. The best places to watch them are Girgaon and Dadar chowpati (beach) or the main roads such as Ambedkar road from where the processions are carried out.
- Janmashtami (Jul/Aug) Birth Anniversary of Lord Krishna. Earthen pots full of curd are strung high up across the streets. Young men stand on top of one another to form a human pyramid and attempt to break the pots.
- Mt. Mary's Feast (Sep) The feast in honor of Our Lady of the Mount is celebrated with great solemnity at St. Mary's Church, Bandra. A week long Bandra fair is held during this time attracting huge crowds.
- Navratri (Sep/Oct) is a 10 day festival, where nine of the nights are spent in worship and entire Mumbai swings to the rhythm of Garba and Raas dances of Gujarati community.
- Ramadan-Eid Muslim festival marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan. Marked by feasting at many places. Non-Muslims can also join in.
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