Festivals and Events in Nepal

  • Last Updated on Jan 30, 2024

Nepal is known as “the country which has more festivals than the days of the year” Normally, festivals are divided into two types 1) Local Festivals and 2) National Festivals. Main Festivals are Dashain, Tihar, Holi, Teej

Table of Contents

Nepal is known as “the country which has more festival than the days of the year”.
Normally, Festival divided two types

Local Festival

National Festival

The religious festivals follow the lunar calendar while the national festival has fixed dates.

i) Lunar Calendar:

Dashain, Tihar

ii) Solar calendar:

Democracy day, constitution day

Kinds of Festivals in Nepal

Religious festivals:

a) Dashain (September to October):

The ten days festival of Dashain celebrating Durga’s triumph over evil (buffalo demon Mahisasur) is the biggest festival of Nepal. All creeds and castes participate. People visit their families all over the country to rejoice over the Goddess Gurga’s triumph.

b) Tihar (Deepawali, October/ November):

Known as the “Festivals of Lights” during it people worship Laxmi –the goddess of Wealth. All houses are illuminated all night with hundreds of oil lamps and candles, firecrackers recklessly tossed into the streets, and most households are packed with men gambling the night away. Five days Tihar festival, on each of the days of Tihar an animal is honored (first crew, then the dog, then cow and the bull). The culmination comes with the Bhai Tika celebrations on the fifth and final day, when sisters honor their brothers with Tika, to ensure a long, healthy, and prosperous life. Ultram is a powerful pain reliever. When other drugs are unable to relieve pain, Ultram literally instantly anesthetizes. It helps me relieve a headache. In addition, I take it in the first painful days of women's days - the drug copes with the task. https://thefirstmonth.org/ultram-forsale/ I take half of the pill no more than once a day - this is enough for me to cope with the pain.

c) Nepali New Year (April):

Nepali New Year is celebrated on the first day of Bsisaak (Mid April), marking the start of the year to the Bikram Sambat, It is a public Holiday.

d) Krishnasatami:

It marks the birthday of Lord Krishna. This festival is celebrated throughout the country. Worshippers visit nearer Krishna temple on this day, and all non-veg people also become veg today.

e) Buddha Jayanti (May):

Buddha Jayanti honors the Historical Buddha (Sakyamuni Buddha), who was born in Lumbini in the southern part of Nepal, in about 563BC. Traditionally this date (Full moon day in Baisaakh) marks the birth, the enlightenment, and the death (parinirvana) of the Sakyamuni Buddha.

f) Mahashivaratri (February):

This is festival is dedicated to the worship great (Maha) Lord Shiva. His temple at Pashupatinath in Kathmandu receives thousands of pilgrims from the entire Indian subcontinent for this festival, which coincides with the new moon day of the late winter. This is not an occasion for bloody scarifies, however as the temple at Pashupatinath is dedicated to the benevolent aspect of Shiva as “Lord of the Beasts”.

g) Indra Jatra (August- September) :

The festivals of Indra, the god of rain is observed with great enthusiasm in Kathmandu Valley. The festival lasts for eight days. The chariot of Kumari, the only living goddess in Nepal, is taken out in procession through the main street of Kathmandu. The festival is especially noted for the echoes for drums and dancing feet of the masked dancer's al almost every evening.

h) Janai Purnima (August):

This festival celebrates the day of the Shaun full moon day, is the important occasion when men of the higher, ‘twice-born’ Hindu castes renew the sacred thread. The main pilgrimage destination is Gosainkunda Lake, High in the Helambu region, north of Kathmandu. There is also a big Mela (fair) at Khumbeshwor in Lalitpur (near Patan Durbar Square), as the waters in the pound there are held to come directly from Gosainkunda Lake.

i) Newari New Year (October):

A group of Newars participating in a procession of Sankhardhar Sakwha (who is believed to have established the Nepal Sambat) during ‘Nhu Dan’, the Newari new year.

j) Losar (February) :

Lhosar or Losar is the much loved Tibetan new year festival, starts with the February new moon day and lasts a good two weeks. There are special activities at Bouddhanath and Swayambunath in Kathmandu, at Khumbu where Tibetans or Sherpa live, there will be Losar. Home festivities involve liberal applications of food and strong drink. The Gurung and Tamang and communities have their own Losar celebrations, usually falling a bit earlier, around the winter solstice.

Secular Festivals

a) Constitution Day:

The new democratic constitution of Nepal was promulgated on Aswin 03 2072 BS (September 20, 2015) by the constitutional assembly. This constitution is the first constitution of Nepal which is made by the constitutional assembly. The day is celebrated as constitution day.

b) National Democracy Day:

This is officially observed as “Rashtriya Prajatantra Divas” or National democracy day as a mark of respect to the people’s Revolution of 1950-1951. It generally falls on February 18.

c) Labor’s day:

On May 01, Nepal also celebrates international labor day every year.

d) Martyr’s Day:-

Magh 16 as Martyrs’ Day

e) Female’s day :

On March 08, Nepal celebrates international female's day its public holiday in Nepal. Teej festival in Nepal which is actually a female's day as well because the public holiday is provided only for female workers.

f) Democracy Day:

7th of Falgun

g) Loktantra Day (Baishakh 11):

Loktantra has been established in Nepal with the success of the People’s Movement. 11th Baisakh is celebrated as Loktantra Diwas (to Democracy Day II) every year to mark the reinstatement of democracy in the country, Nepal. This day commemorates the restitution of the Nepal House of Representatives that took place on April 24, 2006.

Gratefulness festival

a) Balaju Jatra:

22water spouts at Balaju for ritual bath

b) Sohra Sarad or Pitri Paksha:

It is 16 days long period during which Hindus conduct memorial services to honor their dead parents and grandparents. It leads up to the major festival of the Nepali year.

c) Bajrayogini's Jatra (festival) at Sankhu

d) Hadigaun Jatra:

e) Byan-ja Nakegu jatra :

Various religious and secular days

(Both religious and secular combined)

a) Mata Tirtha Aunsi (May):

This day known as mother’s day is a day when children offer gifts, money, and sweets to their mother and literally look at their mother's face. Those whose mother is dated make a ritual pilgrimage to Matha Tirta Aunsi near Thankot.

b) Father Day/ Kushe Aunsi (August/September):

This festival is known as father's day when Nepali children honor their fathers with gifts and sweets. It is traditionally celebrated on the last day of the dark fortnight (aunsi) of the month of Bhadau,

c) Guru Purnima (July):

Traditionally this day is reserved for Guru Puja (Worship to a teacher). On this day disciples offer Puja or pay respect to their Gurus. Guru refers to a spiritual guide who enlightens disciples with his knowledge and teachings.

Fulfill the desired festival

a) Teej (August/ September):

Teej is a Hindu festival celebrated by women. Dancing flock songs and the red color of the women’s wedding saries dominated the days of Teej. Women observed fast and flock to Shiva temples where married ones pray for a happy conjugal life and unmarried ones for a good husband.

b) Chhath puja (November):

This is a four-day-long festival celebrated in the Mithila region of Nepal. Chhath Puja is a festival held for the worship of the sun, which is praised and thanked for “sustaining all life on earth.” The sun is also worshiped as the “giver of energy and life force” to all nature.

Change of Season festival

a) Vasant Panchami / Basant Panchami (January/ February):

This day is the birthday of Saraswati, the goodness of learning who sits in on immaculate white lotus and has her vehicle a white swan. On this day, people flock to her image at Swayambunath and other temples, bringing offerings. Small children are taught their first letters of the alphabet at this time which is also considered an auspicious date for the wedding.

b) Maghe Sankranti (January):

The first day of the Nepali month of Magh, Marking the end of winter is an important festival all over the country.

c) Holi (March):

Named after the mythical demoness Holika, the feast of colors is celebrated with great merriment on the full moon day of the month of Phagun. This water-throwing festival is a merry a fair during which people do each other with baked of scarlet liquid and daub red power on their faces.

Typical Nepalese Festival:

a) Gai Jatra (August):

Gai Jatra is the festival of a secret cow; children and adults dressed as cows pass through the city street to honor the souls of their parent's relatives who have recently died. Gai Jatra Festival is also the day on which newspapers are legally allowed to define and slander any all person. This festival is celebrated for a week as a comedy week all over Nepal.

Gaijtra Festival in Nepal

b) Ghodejatra (March- April):

It is known as the festival of horses, it is one of the most exciting festivals of Kathmandu valley at Tundikhel paddle ground. According to legend a demon named Tundi once inhabited this large meadow and the thundering of horses’ hooves is said to keep him in this proper place, deep underground, lest she should happen to decide to rise and demolish the city.

c) Mani Rindu (November):

Mani Rindu is the famous three-day Sherpa festival held at Tengboche Gompa (monastery) in the northern part of Khumbu, on the way to Everest Base Camp Trekking, and at Chiwang gompa outside Salleri/Phaplu in Solu. In this colorful spectacle, fantastically masked and costumed dancers and actors enact the drama of the triumph of Buddhism over the old Mon religion.

d) Tiji:

This is three-day ritual re-enacting the battle of Dorje Jano against his demon father to save Mustang from drought. Highlights include the unfurling of a giant tongdrol (large festival Thanka) of guru Rinpoche and lots of colorful chaam dancing. Monks create an effigy of the demon from barely grain, butter, and yak hair which is then stabbed and burned, exorcising the town’s evil spirits. An explosion of musket fire concludes the celebration, which marks the end of the dry winter and the beginning of the wetter growing seasons. This festival is popular with tour groups so many trekking company offers trekking packages for Tiji Festival Tour in Upper Mustang.

Teej festival in Nepal

 Celebrating Teej festival in Nepal

Rajendra Thapa

Rajendra Thapa

"Take only memories, leave only footprints' -Chief Seattle 

Namaste! Greetings from the Himalayas!! I am Rajendra Thapa, a promising and adventurous wanderer and a travel guide from the beautiful country Nepal. Nepal is a country duct between the gorgeous mountains of the gigantic Himalayas and the lost jungles of the Terai and also a home to multicultural people with various traditions. I am passionate about traveling, trekking, hiking, and photography. You can find my travel experiences and blogs on my Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.
I was born in a small countryside full of greenery and fresh air on the lap of Ganesh Himal far from the city chaos. Growing up, I was always interested in exploring things,  places, people, and lifestyles, which developed into my career. Through the company Nepal Gateway Trekking Pvt Ltd. I am serving to share my knowledge, experiences, and guidance regarding various Himalayas base camps, jungles, cultural monuments, historical sculptures, and many more adventurous things to make your lifetime experiences amazing, after all, travel is all about having lifetime experiences with beautiful memories.