The festival begins with large bonfires, at which Holika effigies are burned alongside religious rituals and prayers.
The next day people head out on to the streets for the most famous part of Holi. Here, participants throw coloured powder and water via water guns, water-filled balloons and sprinklers, leaving everyone covered in a vibrant array of hues – wear something you don’t mind getting ruined.
After the entertainment, families and friends gather for delicacies such as thandai and gujiya.
The party, which starts early in the morning, can continue until mid afternoon and in some cities, right through the night.
It is advisable to take old clothing that you don’t mind throwing out afterwards if it is ruined by the coloured paint. White items are also a good choice as the colour from powders thrown will stand out best.
You may also want to rub hair oil or coconut oil into your hair and skin to avoid the colour absorbing. And it is advisable to cover your hair – perhaps with a bandana or hat (especially if it is dyed or blonde) as it may be difficult to remove the colour.
There are several events going on in the weeks surrounding the festival right across the country. In the Purulia district in West Bengal, for example, you will find the three day Basanta Utsav folk festival which runs across the days leading up to the main event.
If you would like to head to this bright and colourful festival this year, decide which area you would like to celebrate it in and then book a flight with flydubai. Then it’s time to pack your old clothes and get ready to get covered in coloured powder.