Holi Festival In Varanasi: History And Significance

 In Festivals, Holi, Holidays, Varanasi

Varanasi is one of the holiest cities in the country, and the Holi festival in Varanasi is celebrated with great enthusiasm and wild energy that can be seen in almost everyone out there celebrating. 

Holi is the festival of colours and love, and to meet and greet your loved ones. It is celebrated on different days every year, marking the end of winter and welcoming spring with it. It is celebrated on the day of Phalguna.

One day before the Holi celebration, Holika Dehen takes place where massive bonfires can be seen, which are burnt in the hope of getting rid of all the evil spirits. The most fascinating part about Holi celebrations is that every region has their own unique way of celebrating the festival, and that is where the beauty of Holi in India lies.

Holi In Varanasi

Rangbhari Ekadashi Holi

Bhasm Holi or Masan Holi is celebrated wildly in the country, commemorating the love of Radha and Krishna, when Krishna painted Radha’s face with colours to match her skin tone with his. 

Holi celebration in Varanasi which includes the standard Holi, Masan ki Holi or the Bhasm Holi, and Rangbhari Ekadashi. The standard Holi celebration in Varanasi aligns with the nationwide celebration of Holi, whereas the Basm Holi and the Ekadashi Holi are different from the standard celebrations. 

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Rangbhari Ekadashi Holi Festival In Varanasi

The Rangbhari Ekadashi Holi festival in Varanasi is celebrated five days prior to the Holi festival in Varanasi, which commemorates the holy reunion of Goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva. During this celebration, all the devotees of Lord Shiva come together in a procession, and one day after the Rangbhari Ekadashi, it is said, that Lord Shiva visits the cremation ground, which is known as Masan, with his devotees to take part in the Holi festival in Varanasi, and this unique event during the Holi celebration in Varanasi is called Masan Ki Holi.

Story of Bhasma Holi Festival In Varanasi


Bhasma or Ash is considered highly sacred to Lord Shiva, and as per the mythological legends, on the second day of the Rangbhari Ekadashi Holi in Varanasi, Lord Shiva is accompanied by his Nandi Bael and other entourage to visit the Manikarnika Ghat, where Lord Shiva give blessings to his devotees and plays holi with ash obtained from the pyres, which is said to be a symbol of purification. 

As per some beliefs, it is said that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati celebrated the Rangbhari Ekadashi Holi festival in Varanasi after their marriage. Since Lord Shiva’s most preferred supernatural beings which include vampires, ghosts, and spirits, do not engage in the celebration, Lord Shiva himself visits the Masan Ghat to play Holi with them. This tradition is proof that Lord Shiva loved all beings whether they were visible or invisible.

When Is Holi Festival In Varanasi 2024?

Holi is scheduled to be held on 25th March 2024 on Monday, so it’s good news for everyone because it’s a long weekend, and you don’t take any leaves, you just need to plan accordingly and you are good to go.

Holi Events In Varanasi

Holi Events In Varanasi

We know that now you are excited to have your very own Holi party in Varanasi with your friends and loved ones and be a part of the Holi events in Varanasi, so let’s check out what all is in store for people who are all set to have their Holi party in Varanasi. 

Besides the Holi celebrations taking place in every nook and corner of the town, one of the major Holi events in Varanasi is the Rang Rasiya chapter 4, which is scheduled to be held on 24th March 2024 at the Ganesh Mandapam. 

So if you want to make the most of your Holi festival in Varanasi, then you should definitely not miss out on this amazing event that is going to take place. 

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Preparing For Holi Festival In Varanasi


As we mentioned, the Holi festival in Varanasi is wild, and there are certain things you need to be prepared for if you are going to be a part of the Holi Celebration in Varanasi. For starters, do not wear clothes that are too precious for you. 

Wear old clothes while playing Holi in Varanasi so even if they get torn, you don’t have to worry much about it. Here are some handy tips that will be very useful for you if you wish to be a part of the Holi Celebration party in Varanasi:

  • If you want to make the most of your Holi festival in Varanasi, head to the celebrations a little early between 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. when people will be sober, and not very wild after getting all high and drunk. 
  • Assi Ghat is where the Holi celebration party in Varanasi takes place. Ensure that you stay away from big groups because that is where you will find most of the drunk people. Watch them from far away, maintain your distance, and enjoy from a distance. 
  • Try taking more people with you while heading out so you can ensure the utmost safety for yourself. 
  • Team up with fellow tourists, and you can even find foreigners celebrating the Holi festival in Varanasi.
  • Don’t be scared to tell people to leave you alone if you are uncomfortable, especially if you are a woman. 
  • Don’t entertain anyone who is bothering you. 
  • Oil your hair and skin to protect yourself from the harsh colours because sometimes these colours are very difficult to take off, and some may even leave you with rashes, we are sure you don’t want that, right?

When is the Holi Festival celebrated in Varanasi?

Holi festival is celebrated on the day of Phalguna, and this year it will be celebrated on 25th March 2024.

What are the key highlights of celebrating Holi in Varanasi?

The key highlight of the Holi is the Bhasm Holi, in which it is believed that Lord Shiva plays Holi with his entourage with ashes from the prey at the cremation ground.

What is the significance of celebrating Holi Festival in Varanasi?

Holi Festival in Varanasi has its own religious significance for it celebrates Lord Shiva and his devotees.

Are there any special rituals or customs associated with Holi celebrations in Varanasi?

One day before the Holi, there is Holika Dehen, where large bonfires are lit up and people gather around and sing songs, and on the next day, they play Holi with their family and friends.

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