Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed God is worshiped with great love and devotion across India. This year the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi would be celebrated on the 2nd of September with much enthusiasm and vigour. When it comes to celebrating, Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chaturthi, there is no better place to watch the festivities in full swing than Maharashtra, especially Mumbai.
The Sidhinvinayak temple in Mumbai along with Goud Saraswat Brahmin Samiti Mandal and Lalbaugcha Raja is renowned for celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi with dance, devotional songs andimpressive drum beats. So, if you too are planning to be a part of the celebrations, then take a sneak-peak at the best places to enjoy Ganesh Chaturthi in India aside to Mumbai.
Best Places to Witness Ganapati Celebrations
Ganapatipule: The first destination on our list is Ganapatipule where one can indulge in festivities at the temple of Swayambhu Ganapati. Here, Lord Ganesha is worshipped over a period of five days and pilgrims as well as villagers come together to participate in a procession that is carried out in honour of the deity. It is believed that at Swayambhu, the idol of Lord Ganesha manifested from the white sand on its own. Apart from worshipping the idol of Ganesha, you can also undertake the pradakshina around a hill located right behind the Swamyambhu temple.
Pune: Pune is another place where you can head to if you are looking to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with much excitement and deep devotion. Yes, the city and its people immerse themselves in the festivities for as long as 10 days. Right from establishing the idols of Ganesha on the very first day to immersing the same on the 10th day, the entire celebration is worth experiencing. When in Pune, don’t forget to pay a visit to places such as Guruji Talim, Tambdi Jogeshwari, Kasba Ganpati, Kesariwada Ganpati and Tulsi Baugto have a closer look at the remarkable idols of Ganpati.
Bangalore: Contrary to what you may think, Bangalore is famous for celebrating the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi with unlimited zeal and passion. The best places to witness Ganpati celebrations in the city include ShriJambu Ganapati Temple, Panchamukha Heramba Ganapati Temple as well as Ananth Nagar Ganapati Temple. Other places where you can watch Ganpati being welcomed and worshipped with dedication and warmth are Ulsoor Lake and Sankey Tank.
Hyderabad: Hyderabad too has many admirers and followers of Lord Ganesha. In Hyderabad, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated as Ganapathi Navaratri and the festivities commence on Vinayaka Chavithi and conclude on the Ananta Chaturdashi day when the idol is fully immersed in the water. Some of the places that are famous for celebrating the festival include Balapur, Khairatabad, Kamalanagar Chaitanyapuri, New Nagole and Durgam Cheruvu. The idol of Lord Ganesha is immersed at the Hussain Sagar Lake and the procession is attended by hundreds and thousands of devotees who throng from every nook and corner.
Goa: While many people assume that Goa is the best place for a vacation (which indeed it is), the city is also best known for Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. In Goa, the festival is celebrated as Chavath and artisans from the city come together to create beautiful and remarkable idols of Ganesh. In fact you’ll be amazed at their artistry even as they go about creating idols of Lord Ganesha with bamboo, coconut, cane and other materials.
Apart from the above mentioned places, you could also consider visiting Trivandrum and Chennai where Lord Ganesha is worshipped with love and faithfulness. While, statues of Lord Ganesha are set up across Chennai, particularly at the Marina Beach, in Trivandrum, one can view eco-friendly idols of the deity. Made from milk and clay, Ganpati idols are carried all the way to the Shanghumukham Beach in a procession where devotees, dancers, local artists and everyone else bond together.