Must-see Places during the Holi weekend


The festival of colours and revelry, Holi is one of the most popular celebrations in India. Every year millions come together with their loved ones revel in the festivities of rangpanchmi, with bright colours, water balloons, music, dancing, and of course, a dazzling variety of sweet and savoury delicacies. As travel is becoming more important for Indians, they are seeking new ways to celebrate this beloved holiday, by exploring different destinations – which is the biggest influencer for Indians when it comes to choosing holiday plans.

According to the India Holiday Report 2019 published by SOTC Travel, Indians show great interest in partaking in exquisite local experiences as claimed by 47% of Gen Z, 56% of millennial, 40% of Gen X and 38% of senior citizen travellers. An affinity for celebrating in new ways has also led to the emergence of a new segment of holidays – Theme based holidays, where 18% of Gen Z, 14% of millennial, 8% of Gen X and 6% of senior citizen travellers have shown preference for them.

To help travellers plan their holiday, SOTC Travel reveals the list of offbeat destinations to celebrate a fun and unique Holi – day!


If you want to celebrate the royal way, look no further than Udaipur! On the first day of Holi, step onto the lush grounds of the City Palace, where the ruling Mewar king and his family, grace the occasion, by lighting the holi pyre, while the locals perform ‘Gair’- a folk dance, around the bonfire. This is followed by a procession, where the royal family sets out on ornate camels, elephants and horses from Shambhu Niwas Palace to the Manek Chowk royal residence. On the second day, you can join the locals and tourists in colourful festivities, while sampling some of the famous delectable Holi treats. You can also head to the outskirts of the city, where local artisans set up stalls selling handicrafts and traditional trinkets.


For the last 300 years, Manipur has celebrated a unique form of Holi, known as Yaosang – the festival of spring. The celebrations here incorporate the traditions of the Meitei people – the dominant ethnic group of Manipur. You can go dancing in the moonlight while participating in ‘Thabal Chongba’, where people dance in circles to the sound of folk music. Every region in Manipur also hosts sports events and competitions during this time, and head to the sacred Kangal Fort in Imphal to light the torch, inaugurating the celebrations. 


For those who want to celebrate Holi with pomp and grandeur can head to Jaipur this holiday, for an amazing day of watching elephant parades, go for rides while playing with colour, eating food and having the traditional drink of bhaang. Make sure to sample the delicacies of the festival which include gunjjias, dahi wadas and bhaang ladoos. Rajasthan Tourism Board, along with many of the resorts and hotels around the city set up Holi parties, where you can celebrate the festivities in style.


Kolkata is known for their beautiful culture and traditions, and the celebration of Basant Utsav (spring festival) at Shantiniketan is a wonderful display of them. Located in the Birbhum district of Bengal, every year students from the famed Vishva Bharti University thrill the onlookers with numerous cultural programs, such as songs, solo dance performances, group choreography, and drama. This is followed by exchange of colour smearing and an amazing array of delicious food!

Madhya Pradesh

The central part of India is famous for its unique celebration of Holi. The festival is not native to this state, as Maratha warriors introduced locals to this festival when they conquered it. In honour of them, Holi is celebrated for five days in many cities across Madhya Pradesh, including Indore. Festival-goers will love the amazing spread of sweet and savoury snacks, and the eco-conscious ways the locals employ while celebrating. For those seeking spiritualism, the holy city is Ujjain is the place to be, where beautiful and heart-warming pujas are carried out at all major temples like the famed Mahakaleshwar Temple.