Month February is well known as a Month of Love. Yeah, true February month is for valentine. February is also a month when the festivals and fairs are raining cats and dogs in different parts of India.
Places to Hangout in February
Just when you thought a trip was Alleppey was enough to judge Kerala, the district of Palakkad will catch your eye. February seems to be a month of celebration for the state; after you are done celebrating the Chettikulangara Bharani Temple Festival in Alleppey, it will be time to be part of another celebration in Kerala. In the Palakkad district Pariyanampetta Pooram Festival is held in mid-February. The temple fest features a procession of 21 decorated elephants, shadow puppetry (Tholpavakoothu) and religious and folk arts like Kathakali and Chakiyarkoothu. The major attraction of the festival is the ritual (Kalamezhuthu Pattu) of drawing the image of the presiding deity Bhagavathy with the help of nature colours on the floor. Folk arts like Kaalavela (bull effigy spectacle) and Kuthiravela (horse effigy spectacle) and others like Poothanum Thirayum can be witnessed in the procession on the final day of the festival.
Date for Pariyanampetta Pooram Festival: Feb 19
Where: Pariyanampetta Bhagavathy Temple, Kattukulam
Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh
Winter is the best time to visit the tourist destinations of Madhya Pradesh. The balmy afternoons are ideal to loiter and linger at the heritage places, wildlife sanctuaries and naturally scenic destinations. If we talk about the specific month of February, then this Month of Love is ideal to take a tour of the famed destination of Madhya Pradesh, Khajuraho. Not only the bearable heat will allow you to spend more time exploring the incredibly sculptured temples but February is the time when the much acclaimed Khajuraho Dance Festival also takes place. Held against the alluring backdrop of Khajuraho Temples, this festival showcases classical dance style from all over India. The dances are performed in the Western group of temples, mainly infront of the the Chitragupta Temple (dedicated to Surya the Sun God) and the Vishwanatha Temple (dedicated to Lord Shiva). A lively event, it is the highlight of the month of February in India.
Date for Khajuraho Dance Festival: Feb 20-26
Where: Western Group of TemplesJodhpur, Rajasthan
We know how the charms of Blue city, Jodhpur can mesmerize the travellers. Now, February adds more to this experience and gives tourists a chance to transcend into a spiritual world by organzing World Sufi Spirit Festival. It’s one of those unprecedented events that you might not be able to find anywhere else; and that is why you should a plan trip to Jodhpur in February. The World Sufi Spirit Festival aims to take one on an amazing spiritual and musical journey through the Sufi traditions prevailing in the East, Asia, Africa, and India. Hundreds of performers attend this festival and make it an experience that can be cherished forever.
Date for World Sufi Spirit Festival: Feb 17-18
Where: Mehrangarh FortTrivandrum, Kerala
Another invitation in the month February from down South comes from Trivandrum, Kerala. Are you interested in witnessing a Guinness Book of World Records type of an event? Well, if the answer is yes, then Trivandrum is the place to be in February because here one can witness the largest women gathering in the world. Deployed to cook a special offering for Goddess Attukalama, this massive gathering of women gets a lot tourist attention. In 1997, the Guinness World Record was created when 1.5 million women attended this festival. You would be happy to be informed that ever since that number is gradually increasing.
Date for Attukal Pongala: February – March
Where: Attukal Bhagavathi Temple
Ok, this one is the special from North Kerala and you must choose to witness this festival in Kerala. Every year in Kasargod district of North Kerala, Kuttikkol Thampuratty Theyyam Festival is celebrated. During this festival the Theyyam form of Kerala, which is a sacred dance ritual is showcased. The artists dress up and, in a trance, channel gods and goddesses through their bodies. It is one of a kind festival in South India and therefore is a must see in during your February trip to Kerala.
Dates for Kuttikkol Thampuratty Theyyam: Feb 23-26, 2017
Where: Kuttikkol Thampuratty Bhagavathy Temple at Kuttikkol
Puri and Konark, Odisha
February is the time to witness the tranquil beaches of Odisha come alive. The reason of such a drastic change is Indian Surf Festival. Organized by Surfing Yogis (a group of like-minded people who combine surfing, yoga, and nature), this is an eco-friendly celebration that provides a common platform for freedom of expression, indulging into adventure, and enjoying music, dance, art, and photography. The main events at the festival are the Surf Expressions Championship and India SUP Cup. It is to be noted that the SUP Cup is India’s biggest Stand Up Paddle (SUP) competition, where racers from different countries test their skills along a challenging river course.
Dates for Indian Surf Festival: February
Where: Ramachandi Beach, near Puri and Konark,Bhubaneshwar, Odisha
If you are not a beach person and have more inclination towards culture, Odisha sends you second invite of the month of February to be a witness of its Dhauli-Kalinga Mahotsav. Organized by Odisha Dance Academy (ODA), the event combines martial dance, which is reckoned to celebrate the victory of peace over war, with classical and folk dances of the state. The Mahotsav is held in the hills alongside Daya River, which is believed to be the site where Emperor Ashok fought the last battle of the Kalinga war before surrendering embracing Buddhism.
Dates for Dhauli-Kalinga Mahotsav: Yet to be Announced
Where: Shanti Stupa/Peace Pagoda, Dhauli Hill, on the suburbs of Bhubaneswar
Like Goa and Kerala, there is no season unfit for visiting the city of Bengaluru. Blessed with a lovely weather, the city is the hub of many interesting and upbeat activities. Since, you don’t need to be persuaded much to visit Bengaluru in February or in any season, I am going to straightaway come to the point. Adding another dimension to the city is the event Neralu, which is held in the month of February. Neralu is a festival that aims at bringing people together to appreciate the city’s natural heritage. Activities included in the event are nature walks, interactive storytelling, nature workshops, photography, and art walks. Sounds interesting? Then go book a trip. Just Go!
Date for Neralu: Yet to be Announced
Where: Cubbon Park
Plan a trip to Ratnagiri in the month of February for an out of box experience for it is a place where you can witness the newly hatched, endangered Olive Ridley turtles take their first march into the sea. The locals are responsible for organizing this unique Konkan Velas Turtle Festival, where it will also be an opportunity for you to sample the Indian village life by stopping over at local homestays in the area. This festival is probably one of the finest events that can be witnessed in February.
Dates for Konkan Velas Turtle Festival: February to April, 2017
Where: Velas Village
Yes, they say that the ideal time to spot animals in a wildlife reserve would be summer, when the animals have to frequently trudge to the waterholes to keep themselves well-hydrated. But, winter is also not a bad time after all to visit the reserves as the weather let you have the advantage of sighting animals including tigers basking in the sun. The balmy afternoons of February are perfect to game in wildlife reserves like Ranthambore National Park. Boasting a rich wildlife, this wildlife reserve is a home to some famous tigers like Machli and Ustaad and recently resighted Sultan. Apart from the tigers, Ranthambore is the home of number of mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds. Therefore, watching them all enjoy the warm sun and strolls in the woods is one of the best ideas for the month of February.
Kaziranga National Park, Assam
There are not only the tigers that enjoy the warm day time in the wilderness. In Kaziranga National Park, the One-Horned Rhinoceros allow their almost impenetrable skins to get some warmth from the sun as well. Amidst the dry yet still upright grasslands, many animals can be spotted enjoying varied activities in this National Park. The local birds enjoy their flights with the migratory ones, the little ones of various inhabiting animals play around their folks who keep keen eye on them while taking in some share of Vitamin D themselves. At Kaziranga in February a lovely and lively picture is expected and that is why this can be the destination of your choice. Click here to read more about Kaziranga Park.
Gulmarg, Jammu & Kashmir
February is ideal for visiting Gulmarg in Kashmir Valley. Infact it is that time of the year when the adrenaline junkies get maximum share of thrill in Gulmarg. It frequently snows in Gulmarg during February and that is why you will see a decent number of adventurers up on the skiing gradients. There are separate arenas for beginners and veterans; the novices have the opportunity to learn skiing from the experts and try their hand (in this case foot) at skiing on relatively easier slopes. Let me tell you, it is once in a lifetime experience to ski in Gulmarg and it is further enhanced by the journey taken up the mountain by Asia’s longest cable car project called Gulmarg Gondola.
Diu, Daman & Diu
If visiting snow-clad places sends chill down your spine and you suddenly feel that you belong to the other side of the world, where Sun, Sand and Beach are your companions then you have to pack your bags to go meet them at Diu in February. But we recommend that you visit before 15th February in order not to miss longest beach festival in India, Festa De Diu. Spanning for about three month, from December to February, the festival is your place to enjoy concerts, carnivals and jam session. The fest includes performances by 20+ musicians, 10+ comedians and 15+ Bands from all over India. Also featured are more than 30 workshops and a few heritage walks. All in all, a great experience that is unlikely to attain anywhere in the country.
I hope you find this list extremely helpful in planning your visit in February. Since Err is Human, there could be events and places I may have missed to include in the list. Please feel free to share your holiday ideas in February with us in the comment box below.