12 Best Places to Celebrate Holi in India in 2022: Updated List

Best Places to Celebrate Holi in India

1. Mathura
2. Vrindavan
3. Barsana
4. Shantiniketan
5. Agra
6. Udaipur
7. Pushkar
8. Purulia
9. Jaipur
10. Hampi
11. Mumbai
12. Delhi

Holi, the festival of colours, is one huge celebratory event in the country, when people indulge in a lot of fun and frolic. It is a festival which fills colours and happiness not just on the outside, but also in everyone’s hearts. Some of the best places to celebrate Holi in India range from the east to west, and north to south. From celebrating Holi with the traditional colours of pink, yellow, orange and more, to playing with flowers, and water balloons, among other things, different regions of India have different ways and customs of celebrating this festival.

Marking the onset of the spring and harvest seasons, Holi also celebrates the victory of good over evil. It is also the time when the country sees a huge influx of tourists from all over the world, who come here to witness the pomp and festivities. From playing with gulaal, to seeing the Holika Dahan, indulging in delicious gujiyas and thandai, or having house parties with your loved ones, Holi is surely a festival that brings everyone together.

Here is the list of best places to celebrate Holi in India:

01

Mathura

Located in Braj in Uttar Pradesh, the city of Mathura is one of the best places to celebrate Holi in India. It is said to be the birthplace of Lord Krishna, in addition to being one of the only places in the country where you can see the evidence of his miracles. And during Holi, Mathura becomes a haven for people, since it is here where you can see the most opulent celebrations of this festival in the whole country.
From morning chants, bhajans, and playing with purple gulaal at the Dwarkadheesh Temple, to colourful processions from the Vishram Ghat to Holi Gate and several music and dance festivals, you can experience it all in Mathura during Holi. You can also see Ras-Leelas and Matki Phod events in Mathura during Holi.
02

Vrindavan

Home of the Phoolon ki Holi, Vrindavan is another top place to celebrate this festival. Every year, thousands of pilgrims come to Vrindavan to celebrate Holi with flowers, which is said to revitalize brotherhood amongst everyone. The main Holi celebrations in Vrindavan take place in the Banke Bihari Temple, where the very first rituals of the festival begin.

Following the Phoolon ki Holi, you can also see the Widows Holi, which is followed by the typical Holi with colours, with everyone covered from head to toe in different hues of purple, red, yellow and pink powders. You can also visit the Gopinath Temple in Vrindavan to see the white-clad widows celebrating the festival by throwing gulaal and petals of thousands of marigold flowers over each other whilst singing Krishna bhajans. It is surely a sight to behold.

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03

Barsana

Located near Mathura is the small town of Barsana, another one of the best places to celebrate Holi in India. It is here, in Barsana, where you can witness the iconic Lathmar Holi, where men get playfully beaten by women with sticks. The Lathmar Holi of Barsana typically takes place a week prior to the main festival and is one of the most fun-filled events that you will experience.

Besides the Lathmar Holi, you can also take part in the sweet Ladoo Holi at the Shriji Temple in Barsana, where laddoos are distributed among the devotees in and around the temple, signifying the arrival of Lord Krishna from Nandgaon to Barsana, in order to meet Radha. People also sing a lot of folk songs in Braj Bhasha, along with bhajans praising Lord Krishna and Radha to celebrate Holi in Barsana.
04

Shantiniketan

Known as Basanta Utsav, Holi in Shantiniketan is nothing short of a grand celebration. Located in Bolpur, near Kolkata in West Bengal, Shantiniketan celebrates the festival in a more cultural manner, taking inspiration from the vibrant colours of Holi. The Basanta Utsav festival was first introduced by the famous Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore at his Rabindra Bharati University in Shantiniketan.

During Holi, people, along with the students of the university, dress up in saffron-coloured clothes and sing and dance to the songs of Tagore, which is followed by playing with colours. They also apply gulaal to each other and indulge in delicious sweet treats. The Holi at Shantiniketan attracts thousands of tourists, not just from India, but also from other parts of the world to this small town.
05

Agra

Located on the banks of the river Yamuna in Uttar Pradesh, Agra ranks as one of the best places to celebrate Holi in India. Besides the iconic Taj Mahal, Agra is also the home of grand celebrations for the festival of Holi every year. People here celebrate Holi with a lot of pomp and vigour, by playing with bright colours, tucking in to mouth-watering snacks and sweets, gulping down glasses of thandai and dancing to exciting tunes.

During Holi, you can also witness a lot of colourful processions and parades in Agra, which are complete with traditional folk songs and bhajans, making these a highlight of this festival in the city of love in India. You can also witness the Holika Dahan rituals in every nook and corner, where people light up traditional fires to symbolize the warding off evil.
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06

Udaipur

To celebrate Holi like the royalty, Udaipur, located in Rajasthan, is the place to be. The celebrations for Holi in Udaipur commence with the Holika Dahan ritual being done by the royal Mewar family. This is known as the Mewar Holika Dahan, which is followed by a colourful procession from the royal family residence to the Manek Chowk royal residence. You can also see the folk dance of Gair performed by locals around the traditional fire during this time.

From seeing the royals seated on bedazzled animals (camels, horses and elephants), to enjoying the music by the royal band, and indulging in snacks and dinner served by the palace, as well as witnessing opulent fireworks, Holi in Udaipur is indeed a grand affair.
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07

Pushkar

There is nothing better than to head to the holy city of Pushkar, which is amongst the best places to celebrate Holi in India. Celebrated with utmost fervour and vigour, Holi in Pushkar is one of the most beautiful and panoramic sights that you will ever get to witness. From celebrating near the ghats and temples, to applying gulaal, gorging on gujiyas or even having bhang thandai competitions, Holi in Pushkar is nothing short of unique.

As with other places, the celebrations for Holi in Pushkar begin with the traditional fire lighting ceremony called Holika Dahan, wherein people enjoy throwing wooden logs, garlands and other things into the fire, as a means to ward off evil spirits. This is followed by exchange of sweets, applying colours and other festivities with each other.
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08

Purulia

One of West Bengal’s best kept secrets, Purulia is also a great place to celebrate the festival of Holi, in a rather unique way. Home to verdant green landscapes, rolling hills and dense forests, Purulia celebrates this festival three days before the actual Holi. Known traditionally as the Dol Festival here, Holi in Purulia is organised around the Bandhar Deul, which is an 8th century temple. You can also enjoy a myriad of folk performances here during Holi, ranging from the Chau and Natua dances to the Darbari Jhumur, as well as Baul music, which adds their own unique touch to the festival.

One of the major highlights of Holi in Purulia is the Ayodhya Pahar here, which gets doused in red colour during the spring season, in which this festival is celebrated. This is due to the fact the Palash flowers bloom here and are spread in the entire region during this season, making it a mesmerising sight.

09

Jaipur

Jaipur is one of the best places to celebrate Holi in India. It is during this festival that you can see the entire Pink City get transformed into a vibrant rainbow. Holi in Jaipur is a culmination of different activities and experiences, with amazing celebrations organised by the royal family at the palace. Many other functions around the city are also organised, which include a variety of Rajasthani folk music, dance as well as the traditional playing and exchange of gulaal.

You must also visit the Govind Dev Ji Temple at the City Palace in Jaipur during Holi, where you can witness the idols of Lord Krishna and Radha being offered marigold flowers, and the entire ambience being enchanted with soothing Krishna bhajans and hymns. In Jaipur, you can also enjoy the Gulaal Gotas or Water Cannon Bowls during Holi, along with a myriad of themed parties at the different resorts and hotels in the city.
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10

Hampi

While Holi may not particularly be a major festival down South, it is still celebrated in cities and towns here, more so as a symbol of happiness and merriment. One of the most remarkable exceptions, though, is the town of Hampi, where you can find many temples celebrating this festival with utmost vigour. Right from the Holika Dahan, to traditional and folk songs and dances, as well as exchange of colours, Holi in Hampi has it all.

In the Vijayanagar Empire of Hampi, you can also find hundreds and thousands of people visiting the Konkani Gosripuram Temple during Holi. As a custom, most people also take a dip in the Tungabhadra River here after playing with colours on Holi, which is said to not just cleanse the colours, but also wash away your sins.
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11

Mumbai

The City of Dreams, Mumbai, is yet another one of the top best places to celebrate Holi in India, albeit in a more modern and glitzy way. From Holi parties in houses, resorts and clubs all around the city, to grand celebrations and events for this festival, you can see it all in Mumbai during Holi. People from different parts of the world come to this city to see the different vivid and glamorized celebrations of Holi, complete with a wide array of activities, fun and frolic, and of course, good food and drinks.

In addition to a lot of fun with colours, grooving to good music and rain dances, you can also head over to different luxury resorts and hotels in the city for a customised stay at this time, and simply enjoy the fun and excitement that Holi is associated with.
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12

Delhi

Delhi is, quite possibly, one of the best places to celebrate Holi. It is in the lanes and roads of Delhi where you can see colour-filled water balloons, colourful pichkaris, gusts of vibrant gulaal and so much more during Holi. People from all walks of life come to the streets to celebrate this happy festival, while also indulging in lip-smacking snacks and food, thandai, bhang and a lot more on Holi. 
For a more exclusive experience, you can also attend the Holi Moo Festival in Delhi, which is all about good music, a lot of fun-filled madness and colours, complete with amazing performances by performers and artists from India and abroad. The Holi Moo Festival in Delhi also offers you a chance to enjoy live DJ music, dance performances, rain showers and other things.
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Trekking and water adventure...what else can be so tempting especially for adventurists like me. This things give me my Kick. Wonderful place and everything is just up-to-the-mark. I'm certainly exploring more of South India now and to get the best of South I prefer reading thrillophilia reviews .
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