Morya Re Bappa Morya Re!!

Our favourite festival, ‘Ganesh Chaturthi’ is almost here! Preparations are already in full swing in everyone’s hearts as well as homes.

Did you know, Lord Ganesh’s coming is a grand celebration not only in India but all over world? Here’s why!

Ganesh Chaturthi is a 10-day festival that celebrates the birth of Lord Ganesha. Lord Ganesha was the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati and there are several myths related to his birth story. The first day i.e. the day of Lord Ganesha’s birth is celebrated as ‘Ganesh Chaturthi’ and the last visarjan day is the ‘Anant Chaturdashi’. On the last day, the Ganpati idols are taken for visarjan with drums and singing, the idol is then finally submerged in the sea. Lord Ganesha is usually worshipped before starting something new as a remover of obstacles, fortune-giver, etc.

Thousands of devotees gathered around Lord Ganesha. 
Image Credit: Snehal Jeevan Pailkar
Thousands of devotees gathered around Lord Ganesha.
Image Credit: Snehal Jeevan Pailkar

Celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi as a mass festival began in 1893 as a unifying movement by Lokmanya Tilak. Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in the Bhadrapad month (August/September) of the Hindu calendar. Clay idols of Ganesha, decorated pandals, aartis, sweets like modaks and karanjis, visarjan, etc. are some common rituals for celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi.

Steamed Modak, made from rice flour and coconut jaggery filling. Modak is a traditional Indian sweet made during Ganesh Utsav and also offered to lord Ganesha.
Image Credit: SMDSS / Shutterstock
Steamed Modak, made from rice flour and coconut jaggery filling. Modak is a traditional Indian sweet made during Ganesh Utsav and also offered to lord Ganesha.
Image Credit: SMDSS / Shutterstock

Devotees can be seen celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in almost all the states across India, but states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, Kerala, etc. have the biggest celebrations. If you plan on visiting India during Ganesh Chaturthi, these are the top Indian states that you should not miss out to include in your India tour packages.

Image Credit: Shreyash Adhau

It is not shocking how well spread Indians are across the globe. As these Indian nationals move to other nations, they take their culture with them. Celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi is a big part of Indian culture and hence you can see the celebrations now being international.

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The Hindu population of several nations around the globe have been celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi for generations now. The style of celebrations might be different but the rituals and devotion stand the same across the globe. Celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi has now been a large-scale tradition in several countries including Canada, Mauritius, Singapore, Nepal, the USA, the UK, Burma, France, etc. Some of these countries have even declared a public holiday for celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi. In some parts of many other countries, Ganesh Chaturthi might be a small home affair.

Let us have a look at how some of the countries have been celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi:

Mauritius

Ganesh Chaturthi at Port-Louis, Mauritius
Image Credit: Defimedia.info / PAR SAVITA TIWARI
Ganesh Chaturthi at Port-Louis, Mauritius
Image Credit: Defimedia.info / PAR SAVITA TIWARI

A major part of Mauritius’ population is made up of the Hindu community. The first day, i.e. Ganesh Chaturthi is a public holiday in Mauritius. The initial tradition of celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi here was started by a certain Bhiwajee family in Henrietta. The festival is celebrated across many regional temples of Mauritius and even at homes. Just like the traditional rituals, idols are established, devotees visit temples, sing aartis and perform traditional dances. Many people come together for the Ganesh visarjan in their respective towns and cities. The best part about wanting to witness these Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in person, you won’t need a visa to visit Mauritius but you will need some assistance with the Mauritius tour packages, so check them right away.

Canada

Ottawa Ka Raja
Image Credit: Ganesh Utsav - Ottawa Ka Raja / Official Facebook Page
Ottawa Ka Raja
Image Credit: Ganesh Utsav – Ottawa Ka Raja / Official Facebook Page

Even Canada has a massive Hindu population, especially the city of Toronto. Many Hindu nationals in Canada get Ganesh idols for their homes. They come together to worship Lord Ganesha, sing aartis and share prasad. There are many cultural and religious events held for the festival. You can enjoy the Ganapati festivities in an Indian-Canadian style by starting to apply for your Canada visa at least 3 months in advance.

The United States of America

Ganesh Chaturthi Celebration in the US
Image Credit: Indiapulse.Sulekha (Chicago Ridge, IL by  City Tracker)
Ganesh Chaturthi Celebration in the US
Image Credit: Indiapulse.Sulekha (Chicago Ridge, IL by City Tracker)

Indians are scattered in a lot of major cities in the USA. They usually import Ganpati idols from India and celebrate for all the days leading up to the visarjan. The Philadelphia Ganesh Chaturthi held at the Bharatiya Temple, Pennsylvania is one of the biggest International Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. Another grand Ganesh Chaturthi celebration in the USA is by the Sai Samsthan in Illinois. Other prominent organisations celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in the USA are the North American Sankethi Association of New York, The Hindu Temple Society in Miami, etc. the idols are then immersed in nearby rivers or sea. One can see the Ganpati visarjan in places like Baker Beach in the San Francisco Bay Area. To feel the grandeur and devotion internationally, get in line to get your US Visa on time.

France

Festival of Ganesh Chaturthi near Sri Manika Vinayakar Alayam in Paris, France
Image Credit: Parisinfo - Official website of the Convention and Visitors Bureau
Festival of Ganesh Chaturthi near Sri Manika Vinayakar Alayam in Paris, France
Image Credit: Parisinfo – Official website of the Convention and Visitors Bureau

The biggest Ganesh Chaturthi festivities in France can be seen in Paris. The Ganpati idol is centred at the Sri Manika Vinayakar temple of Paris and there are also several small celebrations in different parts of France. The biggest attraction of France’s Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations is the chariot procession organised here. The idol of Lord Ganesha is mounted on a chariot which is pulled through the streets of Paris by the devotees. Men and women clad in traditional attires, dance and sing bhajans along the way. Two water trucks move ahead of the procession washing the road with water to purify it was Ganesh’s chariot. Check our France tour packages that is inclusive of the Schengen Visa / France Visa for the best way to experience the beautiful capital city dipped in the devotion of Lord Ganesha.

Thailand

Devotees join in ceremonies to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi in Pattaya, Thailand.
Image Credit: Pattaya Mail / Jetsada Homklin
Devotees join in ceremonies to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi in Pattaya, Thailand.
Image Credit: Pattaya Mail / Jetsada Homklin

Thailand has a lot of Ganesha devotees and many of them are non-Hindus. Major Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations can be seen in 2 main parts of the country. One is at the Utthayan Ganesh Temple, Bangkok organised by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) wing of Thailand. The second one is at the Nakhon Nayok Temple, situated more than a 100kms. from Bangkok where one can find a 38 ft. tall Ganpati idol. The idol is said to be completely eco-friendly and only homemade prasad is served here. Get your Thailand visa processed within 24 hours so as to not miss the festivities.

The United Kingdom

Image Credit: Amol Nandiwadekar
Image Credit: Amol Nandiwadekar

The United Kingdom has a huge Hindu population and celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi is a big affair there. The Hounslow town of London has a large-scale Ganesh Chaturthi affair. More than 5000 devotees join the celebrations. The entire programme is organised by London’s Hindu Culture and Heritage Society of the UK. The celebrations are held in the Laxmi Narayan Temple and are also accompanied by grand aarti, traditional food, dances and several cultural competitions. For the visarjan procession, it goes through Ham as the idol is immersed in the iconic Thames River. There is one more huge Ganpati celebration organised near the Southend-On-Sea. Want to visit your friends or families’ Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in the United Kingdom, get your UK Visa as early as 3 months in advance.

These are some of the international locations where celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi has been a common practice for a long time. Many devotees come together to worship Ganpati, the Vighnaharta. Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most famous religious festivals in India. It is celebrated by people coming together and worshipping Lord Ganesha. The mass celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi are equally inviting around the globe. That’s how, the Hindu diaspora worldwide has been celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi with much enthusiasm and pomp.

Vakratunda Mahakaya Surya Koti Samaprabha! Nirvighnam Kuru Me Deva Sarva-Kaaryeshu Sarvadaa!
Happy Ganesh Chaturthi <3

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