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1.

Pongal

This is the most important Harvest festival celebrated by the people of Tamil Nadu. It lasts
for a period of 4 days and is normally celebrated on the 13th of January till the 16th.

This festival is actually mainly celebrated to thank or show appreciation to the Sun God for
giving energy towards agriculture. The people boil the first rice of the season as a tribute to
the Sun God. Pongal is also the name of a dish that is very famous in the South and is
cooked for most of the festivals there.

One month before the festival the females of the houses make patterns at the entrance of
the houses known as Kolam with rice and colored powder. This month is called Margali
and houses are whitewashed and kept ready for Pongal.

Mattu Pongal, the third day of the festival is mainly for the cows. Many beads, bells, flowers
are tied onto the cow and most importantly a garland. They are fed Pongal and other
dishes and are worshipped. They are also taken around the village so all the people can join
in on this auspicious day.

The last day is called Kannum Pongal day. On this day Women put a turmeric leaf and fill
it with various leftover and rice and pray for their households prosperity. It is also the
day where families visit each other and many gifts are exchanged as a perfect end to a perfect
festival.
2. Tamil New Years Day

Also known as Puthandu, the Tamil New year falls in mid April, the first month of the
Tamil Calendar. The morning of Puthandu is marked as Women make beautiful Kolams at
the entrance of their houses.

In this month, you can also see the mangoes hanging from the Mango trees and the flowers
on the Neem tree bloomed. The people celebrate this day with these two items to show
prosperity. People spend the day looking at things like Gold, Betel leaves, nuts, fruits etc. A
bath and then a visit to temple Kanni is very important.

3. Natyanjali Dance Festival

Natya means dance and Anjali means offering. This is the day where dancers offer
their Dance as tribute to the one and only Lord Nataraja. This festival is a day best
celebrated in the Nataraja temple, Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu.

It is a day when almost 300-400 dancers from all over India bring out their uniqueness
onto one floor like Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam, Kathak etc.

It is celebrated either in the month of February or March. It is five day long festival normally
beginning on the day of Maha Shivratri. The dancers are all dressed up in their traditional
outfits representing their rich and diverse culture.The festival spreads its main message of
Unity in Diversity by bringing together diverse dancers together for one cause.
4. Thaipusam
This festival is celebrated in Tamil Nadu on a full moon day in the month of Thai in the
Tamil calendar. It celebrates the Birthday of Lord Subramaniam, the younger son of
Lord Shiva. This is the day when people with utmost faith make and keep their vows.
They pray to the Lord for help and once granted they keep up to their vows.

The most difficult Kavadi offering known as the Agni- Kavadi is one where the devotee
while carrying the Kavadi over his shoulder walks on burning coals. Almost 10,000 Kavadi
bearers reach the temple at Tamil Nadu.

It is day that will leave you inspired as you see the faith of the people strong as ever almost
changing your view about the world.

6. Thiruvaiyaru Festival

This is celebrated in Thiruvaiyaru, a town in the district of Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. It is


a music festival in honour of the famous music composer and Saint Thyagaraja and is
held every year in the month of January. It is celebrated every year on the Pushya Bahula
Panchami day when the saint Thyagaraja attained samadhi.

The festival is held near his Samadhi, on the banks of River Cauvery. This is one of the
biggest music festivals of India and welcomes music-lovers from all the the country. Apart
from the music, rituals and Pujas are also conducted during the two days of this festival.

This festival promotes Carnatic and classical music and is so global that it is also celebrated
in USA, Mauritius and Nigeria.
7. Karthigai Deepam

It is known as the Festival of Lights and falls in the month of Karthigai (November to
mid-December) according to the Tamil Calendar. This happens on the day when the moon
is aligned with the constellation Karthigai.

The main idea of this festival is to keep away bad things from life and welcome the good
ones. Tamil Nadu celebrates this festivalfor 10 days. All the people wear new clothes and
enjoy themselves without any worry. They exchange gifts and try to meet all their relatives
during the festival.

People believe that on this day Lord Shiva appeared in Thiruvannamalai hills and they
mark this by lighting a huge fire on the top of the hill. Ghee and camphor are used to light
the huge fire and people shout saying Annamalaiyarku Arohara.

There is even a fair held on this day which is one of the main attractions. It is one of the best
celebrations of Tamil Nadu and trust me when I say this you need to be there !