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Sikkim Festivals

Sikkim FestivalState : Sikkim, in the north eastern state of India.
Time : Through out the year.
Venue : Sikkim, India

Know the Festivals of Sikkim
Ther are numerous festivals celebrated in Sikkim through out the year. As people of Sikkim mostly follow Buddhism, the festivals celebrated here are associated to the Buddhist festivals. Mostly the festivals are celebrated in the Gompas or Monasteries of Sikkim, where people gather in large number to commemorate the occasion.

The Festivals
Saga Dawa
On this day in different years of his life, Lord Buddha took birth, achieved enlightenment and attained nirvana. These three important events are celebrated in Saga Dawa Festival of Sikkim. A procession carries the holy books of the teachings of Buddha from the Tsuklakhang monastery. Saga Dawa is held on the full moon of the 4th month of the Buddhist calendar in the end of May or early June.
Experience The Sikkim Festivals
Lhabab Dhuechein
Lhabab Duchen commemorates the Lord Buddha's descent from the deva (heavenly or angelic) realm after teaching his deceased mother, Mahamaya. Lhabab Duchen occurs on the 22nd day of the ninth lunar month each year.

Phang Lhabsol
Popularised by the third Chogyal of Sikkim, Chakdor Namgyal, the snow covered range of Kanchendzonga is worshipped for its unifying powers. This festival marks the signing of the treaty of brotherhood between the Lepchas and Bhutias by "Kye Bhumsa" and "Thekong Tek". On this day, masked Lama dancers portray the guardian deity as a fiery red-faced deity with a crown of the five skulls, riding a snow-lion. It is held on the 15th day of August.

Drupka Teshi
Falls on the fourth day of the sixth Tibetan month, around August, celebrates Buddha's first preaching of the four "Noble Truths" to his first five disciples in deer park at Sarnath. At Gangtok, it is marked by prayers at the Deer Park and at a secluded place called "Muguthang" in extreme north Sikkim, followed by Yak race.

Bumchu, an age old festival of Sikkim is celebrated at Tashiding Monastery in the month of January / February. During this festival, the lamas of the monastery open the pot containing the holy water. The level of water in the pot foretells the future for the future. If the water is to the brim, it prophesises bloodshed and disturbances; if the pot is almost dry it symbolises famine and if it is half full, it foretells a year in which peace and prosperity will prevail.
Experience The Sikkim Festivals
A part of the holy water is distributed amongst the participants and then the pot is replenished with river water and sealed at the end of the festival to be opened only in the next Bumchu.

Losoong is a Bhutia festival, which marks the end of the harvest season and also the end of the Tibetan year. Chaam dancings at the monasteries at Palace (Tsuklakhang), Phodong and Rumtek, archery competitions and other festivities mark the occasion.
Lossar (also spelt as Losar) is the Tibetan 'New Year' festival that falls in the month of February and is marked with lot of gaiety and festivities.

Tendong Lho Rum Faat
Specific to the Lepchas, this festival marks the celebration of the Tendong hill. According to legend, the hill had risen like a horn during a great flood to save the Lepchas.

Corresponding to the Indian festival of Diwali, Tihaar is also celebrated as the festival of lights in Sikkim with the lighting of lamps accompanied with traditional caroling called "Deusi" and "Bhailo".

More or less occurring a few weeks before Losoong, Dasain is the main festival of the Hindu Nepalese in Sikkim. This too signifies the victory of good over evil. The elders of the family apply 'Tika' on the young and bless them.
Experience The Sikkim Festivals

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