Famous Festivals In Shimla That You Must Witness

Breath-taking beauty, stunning locales and a rich legacy of tradition and cultural heritage- this is what you get to behold in the fairs and festivals of Shimla. Himachal’s capital has a cool and pleasant climate, snow clad mountains and its natural beauty lures tourists. It is one such place that is flocked with people throughout the year.

The must-see festivals in Shimla are celebrated throughout the year in different months. You should once in life experience the famous festivals in Shimla and dwell among these amazingly colourful and lively celebrations. The festivals are not only the ones that have originated in the hilly regions of Himachal, but Shimla prides itself by celebrating festivals that are common throughout the country.


Famous Festivals In Shimla That You Must Witness Once In Your Lifetime


Ice-Skating Carnival in Shimla

The Ice-Skating carnival is a gala time in Shimla and feels a lot like winter Olympics. Being a part of Himalaya’s Shivalik range, the town fits as a perfect ice skating destination. The carnival commences with the first snowfall of the winters and goes on till the end of February.

The natural ice skating rink in Shimla offers a great scope for such outdoor activities. Apart from skating, the sport of skiing can also be opted for during the carnival time. During the carnival, a number of dance shows are organised along with fancy dress competitions.

To enjoy winter sports in Shimla, the Ice Skating Carnival is absolutely the perfect time with a touch of colourful celebrations.


Rhyali Festival in Shimla

This festival is solely held in order to keep the rain Gods happy. The locales celebrate the rainy season and thank the Gods for the rains that help them to harvest. The traditional ceremony kicks off with the sowing of five to seven different crop seeds such as barley, wheat, etc. a couple of days prior to the official date of the celebration.

A mock wedding takes place on a day before the actual celebration. The wedding symbolizes the holy bond between Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Statues of the Gods are made out of clay and are placed near the saplings. Fruits and flower offerings are made to the idols. The priest prays for greenery of the fields and its long lasting fertility.

Here is where you can explore more about Shimla festival tour.

Baisakhi in Shimla

If you plan to take a trip to North India, you must visit Shimla during festive occasions. Also known as Bisha or Bissu in Shimla, this festival of harvest is celebrated in different ways in different regions of Himachal. It is held on the first day of Baisakh (month of April as per English calendar), just before the onset of the harvest season. It marks the Sikh New Year.

The rituals commence by people bathing in sacred rivers. It is believed that the river Goddess Ganges descend to earth on this auspicious day.

The burning of a pile of dry twigs with a pointed pole bamboo, known as jhalra, is an important ritual performed during this festival. It is placed in the centre and is set on fire as people dance and sing in circles around it. The harvest festival is characterized by Bhangra, the folk dance which traditionally is a harvest dance.

Festivals also call for amazing food carnivals. Here you can also know more about hotels and food in Shimla.


Pathar ka Khel

A peculiar stone fight takes place in village Halog of tehsil Shimla. This fair is held in the month of Kartik (month of November as per English calendar) on the second day of Diwali.

The fair of Pathar-ka-khel marks as one of the major attractions of Shimla. This is one of the traditional and ancient fairs of this region.

The history of this festival dates back to the widow of a former ruler of the state who performed ‘Satti’, the act of throwing herself on the burning body of her husband. Before doing so, she had ordered for human sacrifice henceforth. Post which, humans were sacrificed in front of Goddesses Kali at the same place.

A stone throwing fight between two parties is held at the fair and the blood that oozes out the wounds is collected and offered to the Kali. When you are on your Shimla holiday tour, you should experience this fair.


Shimla Summer Festival

While the rest of the nation welcomes Monsoons, Shimla celebrates the Summer Festival in June. It is indeed one of the best reason to visit Shimla during summers. It is an annual event and is celebrated with great zeal by the localities. This famous festival is a riot of festivity and colours and is celebrated on a grand scale.

The Summer Festival in Shimla is an alluring amalgamation of talented people from all over India. The festival holds a lot in store for its visitors and tourists such as display of local artefacts, exotic Himachali food, sales and exhibitions, flower show, fashion shows, music concerts, etc. Make sure to have this on your bucket list for it will be an event that you will remember for a long time to come.


These festivals provide an opportunity to every visitor to witness its rich tradition and culture and be a part of the grand celebrations. And Holiday Travels offers exactly what you will need to experience that, best travel packages at best possible rates. Plan and book your Shimla trip now!