Holi

Holi

When is Holi 2024?

Holi Celebrations

Holi is regarded as the Hindu festival of colours, the festival of springs, or festival of love. Ideally, Holi celebrates the arrival of a good spring season, the end of winter and the blossoming of love.

When is Holi?

The date of the Holi celebration changes every year as it is based on the lunar calendar. The holiday falls between February and March during the Phalguna month of the Hindu calendar. The day before Holi is called Holi Dahan, and it is a holiday in some states.

Is Holi a public holiday?

Holi is a public holiday in India. Most Indians enjoy walking on the streets and applying colours on their friends and even strangers.

What is closed or open on Holi Day?

Being a public holiday, Holi is a day off to the general population. Government offices, schools, organisations, and most businesses remain closed for the day. A few retail stores may, however, open for some hours before joining their families and friends for Holi. The public transport may operate normally, but you should expect heavy traffic because of the street processions of people going for Holi.

What is Holi?

Originally, Holi was an agricultural festival to welcome the Spring season. Today, the holiday rejoices the liveliness of Spring with pomp and colour. Holi is associated with many legends that try to explain its origin. The first story is based on Lord Krishna and the girl Radha who she liked. Apparently, Krishna complained to his mother that he was so dark such that Radha, who was fair, might not like him. His mom advised him to apply colour on Radha's face and see how her complexion would change. Since then, Holi is celebrated as a festival of colours and a means to disregard social norms in a multicultural society.

Other people believe that an evil king had plans of killing his son, Prahalada, who was a devoted follower of god Vishnu. Prahalada had refused to follow into his father's evil deeds, and for this reason, the King planned on killing him. The King asked his sister Holika, who he believed was immune to fire, to sit with Prahalada in the fire. When the fire was started, Holika burned alive, but Prahalada survived due to his devotion to Vishnu. Since Holika asked for Prahalada's forgiveness before her death, he promised to remember this every year at Holi. As a result of this story, the Holi festival is seen as a celebration of the triumph of good over evil.

Things to do on Holi?

Holi is an enthusiastic holiday, especially for kids and the young generation. Holi is a great time to come together and have fun with your friends and family. The most iconic activity involves throwing of colour on the Indian streets. People also paint their bodies and clothing with coloured water and powder. People dress in white clothes, colour each other with coloured powders and throw water balloons at one another. The throwing of colours is seen as a means of devotion and respect not only to deities but also to loved ones.

It is common for the young generation to indulge in treats of thandai (spiced milk) and bhang (a milk beverage with cannabis paste). The treat is believed to make people relax during the festival.

You could also build large bonfires on the eve of Holi as these fires help scare evil spirits. Burning of bonfires is a joyous occasion and an opportunity for you to indulge in Holi songs, dance, and a chance to socialise with friends. You can also attend a public bonfire held in most towns between 10 pm and midnight to commemorate Holika's burning.

Worshipping the idol of Radha is also a common practice on Holi Day. Radha is the Hindu goddess and the lover of Lord Krishna. Traditional stories suggest that Radha was the first woman to be showered with colour as a show of love. To honour this and show respect for Radha, many people sing Holi songs and perform Holi wishes near the goddess idol.

Holi Observances

Year Date Day Holiday
2023 28 Aug Mon Summer Bank Holiday
2023 29 May Mon Spring Bank Holiday
2023 1 May Mon Early May Bank Holiday
2023 8 Mar Wed Holi
2023 7 Mar Tue Holika Dahan
2022 29 Aug Mon Summer Bank Holiday
2022 2 Jun Thu Spring Bank Holiday
2022 2 May Mon Early May Bank Holiday
2022 19 Mar Sat Holi
2022 18 Mar Fri Holi
2022 17 Mar Thu Holika Dahan
2021 30 Aug Mon Summer Bank Holiday
2021 31 May Mon Spring Bank Holiday
2021 3 May Mon Early May Bank Holiday
2021 29 Mar Mon Holi
2021 28 Mar Sun Holika Dahan
2020 31 Aug Mon Summer Bank Holiday
2020 25 May Mon Spring Bank Holiday
2020 8 May Fri Early May Bank Holiday
2020 10 Mar Tue Holi
2020 9 Mar Mon Holika Dahan
2020 6 Mar Fri Holi
2019 26 Aug Mon Summer Bank Holiday
2019 27 May Mon Spring Bank Holiday
2019 6 May Mon Early May Bank Holiday
2019 21 Mar Thu Holi
2019 20 Mar Wed Holika Dahan

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Holi Facts

24

CANADA

March 24, 2024

Quick Schedules

This Year Tuesday, 7 Mar, 2023
Next Year Sunday, 24 Mar, 2024
Last Year Thursday, 17 Mar, 2022
Type Observences