The festival falls on the asterism Thiruvathira in the Malayalam month of Dhanu (December-January). On thiruvathira morning, devotees throng Shiva temples for an early worship which is reckoned as highly auspicious. Tradition says Thiruvathira is celebrating the death of Kamadeva, the mythological God of Love. According to another version, Thiruvathira is the birthday of Lord Shiva. The festival has similarities to adra darshan celebrated in Tamil Nadu.
Makaravillakku at Sabarimala
This festival in Sabarimala marks the end of Mandalam. For centuries, Sabarimala in Pathanamthitta has been a major pilgrim centre attracting lakhs of devotees from all over India, more so from southern States. The presiding deity is Lord Ayyappa known as Dharma Sastha, considered a symbol of unity between Vaishnavites and Saivites.
Bakr Id, also known as Id-ul-Zuha in Arabic, is one of the grandest of Muslim festivals
Christmas, the most popular festival of the Christians, is celebrated to
The Malayalam New Year is celebrated by bursting crackers and going to temple, falls on 15 April
This is the oldest Christian festival, as old as Christianity itself. The central tenet of Christianity is not the birth of Jesus, but his resurrection. Easter is derived from this paschal mystery and from the events of Good Friday.
A most spectacular spectacle in the state, this festival was introduced by Sakthan Thampuran, the Maharaja of erstwhile Kochi state. Celebrated in Medom the festival parades the fulgent faces of Kerala culture. With every passing year Tthrissur Pooram, the temple festival, attracts large masses of devotees and spectators. ( Month of April)
The unique feature of Ochira, one of the famous pilgrim centres of Kerala, is that there is no deity or idol at the famous Parabrahma temple dedicated to the Universal Consciousness. Ochira Kali held in mid June and the twelve day Panthrandu Vilakku (twelve lamp festival) in November/December are the two main annual festivals. Ochira Kali, is a mock fight enacted between groups of men dressed as warriors on the padanilam (battle field). They perform a martial dance standing in knee-deep water, brandishing swords and shields, and splashing water in every direction.
The 10-day festival is Kerala's most important festival, honouring King Mahabali, a mythological king of ancient Kerala, whose period was reckoned as the golden age in the history of the state. He was the embodiment of virtues, goodness, so was his regime which was marked by equality and harmony among people. (August or September)
Sree Narayana Guru Jayanti
It marks the birth of the Sree Narayana Guru, the Kingpin of a social revolution, which transformed the caste-ridden society of Kerala.
Janmashthami or Sree Krishna Jayanti
This festival is celebrated to mark the birth of Lord Krishna.
This festival is celebrated in the month of avani on chaturthi (4th) day which comes after the new moon. For anything to go well, people pray on this day to Lord Vinayaka or Ganesha. Lord Vinayaka has got an elephant face and human body. He is worshipped by many names like Vinayaka, Ganesha, Pillayar, Vigneshwara, Gajanana, Ganapathy, Mooshika Vahanaa, Modhaga priya etc.
The 10 day festival associated with vanquishing demons, in particular Rama's victory over Ravana in the Ramayana, and Durga's victory over the buffalo-headed Mahishasura.
Deepavali is known as the festival of lights. There are many legends connected with the festival. Some say that it is a celebration of Sree Krishna's victory over the demon narakasura and others hold that it is the day Sree Rama returned from exile. (October / November)
Also known as 'Ramadan', is one of the two festivals of Islam. Ramadan is the ninth month of the lunar year. During this month the Muslims observe fast, giving up all kinds of food and drink during day time, and spend the major part of the night in devotion and prayer.