|Holi, the most lively of all Hindu festivals is observed all over North India, which falls on the full moon day in the month of Phalgun (March) according to the Hindu Lunar calendar. It heralds the end of the winter and the beginning of the spring and marks the rekindling of the spirit of life. It is a festival of joy when all is forgiven and it is a time to break free.
The night before full moon, crowds of people gather together and light huge bonfires to burn the residual dried leaves and twigs of the winter. People throw coloured powders at each other and make merry. People, young and old are drenched with colours being poured from atop the houses, bursting balloons, or long pistons. Singing and dancing add to the gaiety of the occasion.
In Anandpur Sahib, Sikhs celebrate a special festivalHola Mohalla on the day after Holi. The display of ancient martial arts and mock battles, are part of this unique Sikh festival.
The Holi celebrations in Mathura and the small towns of Braj Bhoomi - the land of Sri Krishna, are spectacular. The Rang Gulal Festival is celebrated for over a week with exuberant processions, songs and music.
Especially famous is the Lathmaar Holi of Barsana and Nandgaon.