fbpx

North East India

metal-of-the-ox.jpg

ShiviFebruary 15, 20219min13180
Year of the Metal Ox – All you need to know

 

lunar year 2021

 

So in 2021 it’s the “Year of the Metal Ox,” which hasn’t happened for 60 years. The Ox represents the first year of the 12-year zodiacal cycle, with 2020 being the “Year of the Metal Rat.

 

chinese new year 2021

 

How it is significant to the world? Ohh yeah it is, Friday, 12 February, 2021 celebrated “Chinese New Year,” it is one of the globe’s biggest annual celebrations as a fifth of humanity celebrate with rice cakes and dumplings despite it being a mostly virtual event this year. We all know why…

 

Solnal in Korea 2021

 

However, as well as also being called “Spring Festival” it’s also referred to as “Lunar New Year.”

Why? What has this occasion go to do with the Moon? How is Chinese New Year calculated and why is Chinese New Year always on a different date? What Chinese New Year animal are you? And what is a “lunar year” anyway?  Here’s all you need to know about it all.

 

Chinese new year

 

Chinese New Year 2021 starts on the day after the first New Moon that falls between January 21 and February 20 each year—which this year occurred on Thursday, February 11, 2021—and ends on the first full Moon of the lunar calendar two weeks later. This new year begins on February 12, 2021 and ends on January 31, 2022.

 

year of the ox

 

The Chinese New Year 2021 animal is the Ox. Each year has an animal sign in the Chinese Zodiac (literally “circle of animals”), which is based on the Moon and has a 12 year cycle. Interestingly, so does the planet Jupiter, which takes about 12 years to orbit the Sun. However, there is also a cycle of five elements—wood, fire, earth, metal and water—which together creates a 60 year cycle. So in 2021 it’s the “Year of the Metal Ox,” which hasn’t happened for 60 years.

 

metal of the ox

 

Which Chinese New Year animal am I?

Don’t make any assumptions if you’re born in January or February and want to find what Chinese New Year animal you are. It’s no use knowing that, for example, 1976 was the “Year of the Dragon.” It was, but only for those both on or after January 31, 1976. What you need to know is that exact date of Chinese New Year in the year of your birth. For example, anyone born on January 30, 1976 was born in the “Year of the Rabbit,” and anyone after that in the “Year of the Dragon.” calculate what Chinese New Year animal you are.

 

Chinese Calender

It’s the final full Moon of the astronomical season of winter in the northern hemisphere. In China the celebrations close with a Lantern Festival. 

 

lantern festival

 

“Chinese New Year” or “Lunar New Year?” While the former refers to the event in China, the latter—and another term, “Spring festival”—is used to recognise the fact that the event is celebrated all over Asia, not just in China. Lunar New Year is celebrated in Vietnam as Tết, as Losar in Tibet and as Solnal in Korea. 

 

Vietnam as Tết

When is the next Chinese New Year? 

In 2022 Chinese New Year will be celebrated on Tuesday, February 1, 2022 when it will mark the beginning of the “Year of the Water Tiger.” 

Wishing you clear skies and wide eyes. 

Facts and Dates with Data taken from – Jamie Carter (Forbes)

……………………………………

Read more blogs here

Hop on to travel blogs and tips to travel on a budget here

My Books:
Words Unsaid… – Amazon

 

Love vs= weed  – https://amzn.to/323VQvN  
……………………………………………………..
Connect On Social Media
Facebook @spiritedblogger 
Instagram @authorontravel
Instagram @mystic_author

Goodreads @shivigoyal


Kullu-Dussehra-Himachal-Valley.png

ShiviOctober 29, 202013min20830

Navratri Celebration in Gujarat

One of the most awaited festivals in the colourful state of Gujarat is Navratri. Celebrated on the first nine days of Ashwin month, devotees keep fast for 9 days and worship Maa Shakti. In the evening, an earthen pot with holes and diyas inside, also known as “Garbi”, is lighted and women perform arti with it. 

 

Gujarat Navratri

 

During Navratri, Garba dance and Dandiya Raas are popular forms of dances performed by both men and women, wearing their traditional dresses.

 

 

Gujarat Navratri

Navratri Celebration in West Bengal, Odisha, Assam &Bihar

 

durga puja assam

 

In the eastern part of India, in the states of West Bengal, Odisha, Assam, Bihar, Navratri is celebrated as Durga Puja and it is observed in the last four days of Navratri. These days are referred to as Saptami, Ashthami, Navami and Dashami. Durga Puja is the main festival of the people of West Bengal.

 

Durga-Puja1

 

Durga Puja is celebrated with great pomp and glitter in various parts of the states in big pandals, where large sized idols of Goddess Durga on her lion, demon Mahishasur, Lord Ganesha, Kartikeya and Goddess Laxmi and Saraswati are erected. Men and women come wearing their best colourful dresses. It is a very common sight to see Bengali women wearing their traditional red saree, decked up completely. 

 

Navratri in assam

 

 

The sounds of Dhol, Dhak, Dhunuchi nachh, the fragrance of agarbattis fill the air with freshness and purity. The celebrations of Durga Puja in West Bengal should be “must-watch” for everyone once in his lifetime.

 

 

West Bengal 1

Navratri Celebration in Tamil Nadu

Navratri is also celebrated in Tamil Nadu as a religious celebration to seek the blessings of Goddess Durga, Goddess Lakshmi and Goddess Saraswati in the nine special nights. These three goddesses are worshipped for three days each. Friends, relatives and neighbours are invited and clothes, jewelleries, sweets and other gifts are exchanged among them.

 

Kolu Tamil Nadu

 

One interesting feature as a part of the celebration is the decoration of the “Kolu” which is actually a staircase having 9 stairs, representing the 9 nights and each stair is decorated with beautiful dolls, and idols of gods and goddesses. It is said that the dolls that are used are handed over from generation to generation.

 

 

Tamil Nadu navratri

 

Navratri Celebration Andhra Pradesh

The “Kolu” celebration of Navratri in Tamil Nadu is celebrated as “Batukamma Panduga” in Andhra Pradesh, which means “Come Alive Mother Goddess”. The nine nights are dedicated to Goddess Shakti. Women make a beautiful flower stack known as “Batukamma”, which is arranged with seasonal flowers. 

 

Andra pradesh navratri

 

Women wear new saree and jewellery, perform puja in front of the Batukamma for 9 days and then on the last day they set afloat their Batukammas in a lake or any other water body.

Navratri Celebration in Kerala

In Kerala, Navratri is celebrated in the last three days and Keralites give importance to learning during these three days. They place books and musical instruments in front of Ma Saraswati’s idol on Ashtami, and worship the books and Ma Saraswati till Dashami. On Dashami, the books are taken out for reading.

 

 

Kerela Navratri 2

Navratri Celebration in Karnataka

It is a strange fact that even today people in Karnataka celebrate the 9 nights of Navratri in the same manner as was celebrated way back in 1610 by the great Vijayanagara dynasty. Navratri is known as “Naada Habba” in Karnataka. 

 

Karnataka navratri

 

The rituals include elephants’ procession on the streets, including fairs and exhibitions of handicrafts and artifacts.

 

Karnataka navratri 2

Navratri Celebration in Maharashtra

The celebrations are similar to Gujarat. Navratri in Maharashtra implies new beginnings. Hence, purchasing of a home or a car or new business deals or engagement is very common during this time. Married women invite their female friends, put haldi and kumkum on their foreheads and gift them with a coconut, beetle leaves and beetle nuts. 

 

Maharashtra Navratri 4

This gesture is referred to as “Saumangalyam” which means remaining the wife of her husband till her death. Each and every locality in Maharashtra has its own garba and dandiya nights celebrations.

 

haldi and kumkum 1

Navratri Celebration in Himachal Pradesh

For the Hindus in Himachal Pradesh, Navratri is a great celebration. Here, the celebration starts on the tenth day of Navratri when the festival ends in other states. 

 

Baijnath-Temple

 

People celebrate the tenth day, also known as “Kullu Dussehra” as the day of return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya. On this day, the idols from the temples are taken out in processions. 

 

Kullu-Dussehra-Himachal-Valley

 

During the Navratri festival, the devotees visit various temples in Kangra, Una and Bilaspur districts of himachal Pradesh to pay worship to Goddess Durga.

 

vijaydashmi kullu

Navratri Celebration in Punjab

In Punjab, the people keep fast on the first 7 days of Navratri and end their fast on Ashthami or Navami by worshipping 9 little girls and a boy, which is known as “Kanjika”. The Punjabis organize jagratas where they keep awake the whole night and worship Goddess Shakti.

 

 

kanya-pujan

 

Read the next blog on Navratri India’s Nine-Day Festival | Nine Forms of Durga

For more videos please subscribe my YouTube channel @spiritedblogger

Check more of my work:

Will be happy if you leave your comment and views. For collaboration and work inquires Contact.  

In case you have any objections with the images please do not report spam ask me to remove by emailing at shivimuskan@gmail.com


spiti-winters.jpg

ShiviJanuary 13, 202015min12582

13 Snowfall Destinations In India Not To Be Missed In Winters

– Snowflakes, snowfall, mushy and powdery snow – wow, who doesn’t love to be in the snow. Who would not love to play in the snow? Age is no bar trust me for this fun in life. This blog is about your winter destinations in India. Read it to know it. The most preferred destinations for snowfall this winters in India where you would love to pack your woollens and scarfs to start your travel journey. Please note these are my personal favourites but there are many more to visit, if you wish to know about them please leave a comment at the end of the blog. Read about 13 Snowfall Destinations In India Not To Be Missed In Winters. 

Manali

The wonder of the wonders, the Rohtang Pass is amazing and is covered with snow all over in winters. You will find fresh snow and beautiful mountain scenery. The high mountains with the peaks covered in clouds, with snow-covered tops will amaze you. Thundering white waterfalls from high mountain and meandering roads leading high up to the destination makes you forget everything and it makes it worthwhile the visit. You can enjoy other activities as well like skiing, snow motorbike, and can just going crazy flickering and dancing around in the snow.

 

manali snow

 

Shimla

The capital city of Himachal Pradesh is white in winters. It is a beautiful hill station which experiences substantial snowfall in winters in India. Various tourists visit Shimla for snowfall and enjoy snow activities. Places like Kufri, Narkanda, Mashobra get heavy snowfall. 

 

shimla snowfall

 

Gangtok  

Gangtok is the capital of the mountainous northern Indian state of Sikkim. Founded as a Buddhist pilgrimage site in the 1840s, the city became capital of a self-governing monarchy after British rule ended, but joined India in 1975. Today, it persists as a Tibetan Buddhist centre and a base for hikers organizing permits and transport for treks through Sikkim’s Himalayan mountain ranges. But what is more striking about Gangtok, is the snow all over in winters, which makes it a wonderful destination to visit in winters. Although you get occasional snowfall in Gangtok places like Tsomgo Lake, Kupup Lake, Lachung, Lachen, Yumthang and Zero Point witness heavy snowfall during winters. Consequently, winter is the best time to go to Sikkim if someone desires to see snow.

 

sikkim gangtok

 

Gulmarg

Average snowfall was observed in Gulmarg, where nearly six inches of snow has swelled, while snowfall was heavier in the higher mountain ranges at many places in the Valley. From December-end to mid-February, there is abundant snowfall for you to create your own snowman! Make sure you pack heavy woollens as the temperature can drop down till -4 degrees Celsius.

 

gulmarg snowfall

 

Ladakh (Leh)

The high mountain passes in Ladakh including both Khardung La and Chang La, are under mounds of snow and passing through them is quite an experience in itself. Succeeding accessories like shades/glares/goggles are highly advised at this time of the year. Travelling by both the road routes, the Manali-Leh Highway and Srinagar-Leh Highway, is not plausible since they are not open in the snowy winters of Ladakh.

 

ladakh leh snowfall

 

A warning—if you are someone who is not attached to the cold weather or cannot bear cold climates, please give up the idea of visiting Ladakh in winter. The biggest battle will be with the intense chill, and it is more a brain game than anything else. It is more beneficial to be adapted for extremely cold conditions before landing at 3300m above sea level.

 

zanskar valley

 

Mussoorie

The most favourite hill stations are Mussoorie and Chopta which also saw fresh snow, alluring travellers from around the country. Mussoorie’s Mall Road and Landour saw an expanded footfall of tourists, keen to revel in the winter fun. People could be seen nestled around bonfires all through the day as mercury dipped further.

 

mussoorie snowfall

 

McLoedganj

The normal McLeodganj snowfall time is between December and February when the temperature ranges from -1 to 7 degrees Celsius. With numerous tourist attractions and local cafes, McLeodganj can be a marvellous place to visit to watch the annual snowfall. Mcleodganj with its frigid temperatures is a Disneyland of snow, snowfalls and everything white.

 

fresh snow mcleodganj

 

Auli

The vacation months in this beautiful hill station stretches from April to June are great to endure pleasant weather. These months are also perfect for skiing, nevertheless, Auli is covered in snow throughout the year but the best time is from Nov mid till Feb end. Skiing can be relished at any time during this season. You can also enjoy skiing festival in the month of February. December to February is the best month to visit Auli to show love for the snow. The temperature during this season ranges between -1 degrees Celsius to 5 degrees Celsius. Though, many places to visit in Auli get a new life and start embracing tourists from far and wide.

 

auli winters

 

Dhanualti

One of the most astonishing places in Uttarakhand to play with snow or witness snowfall near Delhi in winters is the region around Chopta, Tunganath or Deoria Tal. A small town in Tehri Garhwal region of Uttarakhand experiences good snow in months of December till February.

 

snow dhanualti

 

Kangra

Kangra is a gorgeous little town situated in Kangra valley at the foothills of majestic Dhauladhar range of Himalayas. And snowfall in Kangra makes this village a charming white-wonderland. In some parts of the Kangra valley, you can witness snowfall in January and February. November is the onset of full-fledged traveller season in Kangra. Sports and adventure aficionados can indulge in skiing down the snow-laden mountains during this time. January is the month that you can lay off quickly because of the unbearable cold temperatures dipping to sub-zero levels.

 

kangra valley snow

 

Chamba

The temperatures dip zero and minus Celsius in winters. Be ready for a fun-filled winter vacation to Chamba.  Chamba is a charming little delightful town in Chamba district of Himachal Pradesh. Established near the banks of majestic Ravi river the town gets paradisiacal during winters. This heavenly hill station is situated at a height of 926 meters. Presume how wonderful it would be during snowfall in Chamba. It is a remarkably old town with a lot of cultural heritage- with its history linking back to 2nd century BC. The village is renowned for its rich artistic heritage, its majestic temples, and magnificent palaces. It is also home to some wondrous art and craftsmanship including the famous Pahari paintings. If you love winters and freezing snow – this is the destination that will give you goosebumps during your holiday here in winters.

 

chamba valley snow

 

Tawang

Tourists travelling to Tawang and Bum-La Pass in Arunachal Pradesh observed the first snowfall of the season. Snowfall in India can be seen by tourists in the Himalayan belt. The tourists along the Sino-India border at Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang district experienced the blessings of nature, and quickly enough, the whole place was engulfed with white snow. Bum-La Pass in Arunachal Pradesh is located at a height of 15,200 ft and has great ancient importance, as this is the road into which China penetrated India during the War of 1962. Today it endures as a popular tourist destination, and Tawang is only about 37 km away from this pass. Tawang is essentially visited during the winter season, which is from October to December.

 sela pass snow tawang

 

Spiti Valley

Spiti in winter is the uniquely transformed version of Spiti that you saw in summer. The huge mountains, mysterious terrains, the extent of barren landforms, and spots of green are entirely shrouded in a seamless sheet of snow. It’s a sea of white as far as your eyes can view. Such is the mesmerizing exhibition that you would run out of battery and space in your camera’s memory card but you won’t run out of the will to click pictures. It’s fun when you don’t have enough to do during the winter in Spiti and you can blend with the locals, experience delightful Spitian cuisine, and learn to lead life the more intricate way.

 

 

spiti snow

 


hajo-assam.jpg

ShiviMay 31, 201912min25667

When I planned my trip to Assam I had no idea what it would be, as it is the first time I was travelling to Northeast India. These seven states have always lured me to my heart for exploration to the core and when I got a chance to take a bike ride trip for 10 days I was super excited and on my toes. I’m sure this small travel blog will give you a hands full information and my experience about the pilgrim and religious life of Assam.

Northeast India Travel Blog - Religious & Heritage Assam Tour

Let’s get started with an overview

North east india map with seven sisters

The seven states of India’s northeast (NE) are dotingly called Seven Sisters, and Assam is the eldest of these. Why they are called with this name is very simple to understand but for this one has to go back in time to know. A quick one for you – The Four of today’s independent States―Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Mizoram were a part of the undivided Assam till 1972. Apparently, the present day Assam continues to be the doorway to the North East.

The international airport and the main railway station in Guwahati is the key point for all the nearby destinations and flights to take nationally and internationally. These seven states are amazing in their own way and one can really find one’s soul in peace when in Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, and others. The entire region has unmatched natural beauty and mystical aura. There is too much to write on these states thus, I’m starting with religious travel blog first.

seven sisters of india travel blog

Quick Facts of Assam

Nearest Airport: Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport

Currency: Indian Rupee

Languages: Assamese and Bodo

Best Time to Visit Assam: November to May

Festivals: Rongali Bihu, Kangali Bihu, Bhogali Bihu

Assam’s mystic aura will take your religious quotient to another level as there are numerous Hindu temples in Assam. It hosts some of the oldest in our history that includes one Shakti Peeth – Kamakhya Temple, Kedar in Hajo, Umananda and many more.

assam mystic grassland travel blog

Kamakhya Temple

It is the holiest temple of the Hindus and is one of the oldest Shakti Peeth out of 51 of Goddess Durga. This temple is not only known for a pilgrim but it has a mythological and mystery attached to it. You can read more about it in my dedicated blog on this temple soon. It is on the top of the Nilachal Hills, where a huge number of devotees come during the Manasha puja and Ambubachi. There are other temples surrounding the main temple which are dedicated to many other goddesses and deities, which are called as Dasa Mahavidya. Kamakhya Devi is respected as the ‘Bleeding Goddess’ and because of it alleged that the goddess ‘menstruates’ during this period. If you are a traveller then try to visit on working days as weekends are decked up with locals.

kamakhya temple shakti peeth

Nabagraha Temple

Another distinguished temple in the city is the Nabagraha which signifies the temple of nine planets. The temple of nine celestial bodies is located on a hill named Chitrachal in the southeastern part of the city of Guwahati. The most important celestial boy is the sun and there are 9 phallic emblems of Lord Shiva. Each of these represents different colour and arrayed in a different coloured cloth – they are Surya, Chandra, Mangala, Budha, Brihaspati, Shukra, Shani, Rahu and Ketu.

Due to this the temple is also a research centre of both astrology and astronomy. The tower of the temple is now a bigger one as it was destroyed in the earthquake, but, later it was resurrected. Noticing the inner part of the temple – the Garbhagriha survived the earthquake, while the upper portion was rebuilt.

navagraha-temple-guwahati travel blog

Umananda Temple

The Umananda Temple located at the centre of the Brahmaputra River, you have to take a ferry to visit this temple. It is a peaceful and tranquil place to be. The view from the ferry and the river is mesmerising.

peacock island guwahati temple

Hindus come in large numbers to visit this temple of Lord Shiva. On the occasion of Maha Shivratri, there is a grand celebration. A huge number of people observe fast and offer their prayers on this holy day.

Umananda-Temple_travel blog guwahati

Mahamaya Dham Temple

The Mahamaya Temple is another prime religious temple of Hindus. It is located in western Assam. There are a group of temples as well dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is believed that if one ties a tiny bell on a banyan tree here then the wishes come true. It is one of the greatest Shakti Peethas for Hindu pilgrims ‘Parvatjowar’ the local Devotees like – Kacharies, Koches and Naths worship Goddess Mahamaya. She is a beautiful goddess deity, do visit this place.

Hajo, Assam

This place is full of magic, trust me, it has one huge mosque called as Powa-Mecca, it has a church, a Gurudwara Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Sahib and Hindu temples or Lord Shiva and Ganesh in the area surrounding. This place is like an Enshrined religious harmony with the amalgamation of Hindu, Muslims and Buddhists worshipping places. It is a small town on the banks of Brahmaputra river, just 24 km from Guwahati. The Hayagriva Madhava Mandir, Powa-Mecca, Ganesh temple, Kedar temple. All these sites are under the Archeological survey of India and fall under world heritage sites.

hajo, assam travel blog

There are many other historic and heritage pilgrim temples in Assam like few in Tezpur, Shivsagar, Majuli island and others. But these are the most prominent ones. If you need more details about these temples and their history contact me will try to share some more info. Also, if you wish to read more about travel blogs click here. For now, if you are planning to visit Assam, then put these in your itinerary. You will be awe-struck with the beauty and peace for self-exploration.

 



About us

There is a piece in me that like to tenderly imagine my maverick and seditious soul. But, precisely, I love to have a picky and cosy relationship with my soul that can rub up against a little bit, putting me alive.


CONTACT US

Get In Touch



Newsletter

Contact Us

Quick Links