Kanwad Yatra: A Shiva Pilgrimage

An annual pilgrimage, made by devotees of Lord Shiva, Kanwad Yatra is one of the most unique festivals of India. Devotees undertake a “yatra” or pilgrimage to Hindu pilgrimage places like Sultanganj in Bihar, Gangotri and Gaumukh in Uttarakhand and Haridwar to fetch water from the Holy Ganges and then offer the ‘Ganga Jal’ to Shiva temples in their hometowns.

When: July 17 Onwards

What’s Special: While city dwellers seldom participate in the festival, one cannot miss the throngs of devotees passing through the streets. Every monsoon, saffron-clad Shiva devotees or Kanwars show up across cities, walking barefoot from the river back to their towns, a distance of up to 100 kms! They carry the holy water in pitchers mounted on small bamboo poles called “kanwar” from which the festival derives its name.

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