One of the bizarre and famous festivals in India is the Kumbh Mela. This is the largest gathering not just in India but across the world. The upcoming Kumbh Mela in Haridwar has not been announced yet, however, the bathing date is going to last for four complete months starting from January 14th lasting till April 27th in the year 2021. Haridwar Kumbh Mela's date is determined according to the Vikram Samvat Calendar. This spiritual gathering is held every 12 years in rotation in four of India’s holy places namely Ujjain, Nashik, Allahabad (Prayag), and Haridwar.
Haridwar Kumbh Mela is always celebrated in the Har Ki Pauri Ghat. It is an important Ghat in the city. While the affluent event is not being held, the Ghat turns into a bathing area where pilgrims come to dip in the waters of Ganga River and wash their sins. One of the best things to do in Har Ki Pauri in Haridwar is attending the evening aarti. It is performed with such grandeur and spiritually with thousands of spectators eagerly waiting to see the large fire (Diya) being rotated clockwise by the priests facing the river.
Haridwar Kumbh is a colorful celebration one must experience if you are in India. It might get overwhelming in the beginning seeing sadhus wearing nothing but beads around their neck. As per the legends, the reason why this auspicious festival began was when a few drops of the elixir of endless life had fallen on the four places where the festival is performed during the war between the Gods and Demons. Thus, the drops give spiritual significance to these four places that are considered holy.
The Ardh Kumbh in Haridwar is celebrated every 6 years while the Purna (complete) Kumbh Mela is held every 12 years at four places Prayag (Allahabad), Haridwar, Ujjain, and Nashik. During this time of the year, pilgrims also visit nearby temples to seek blessings and offer fruits and flowers to God. Since Kumbh Mela is the largest open-air festival in the world, people make hotel reservations and book train and bus tickets months in advance.
Kumbh Mela, Haridwar Timings: In every 12 year, 14th January to 27th April 2021 (Tentative)
Kumbh Mela, Haridwar Entry Fees: Nil