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Home :: Fairs & Festivals of India :: Elephant Festival

Elephant Festival

Elephant FestivalQuick Facts
Celebrated in : Rajasthan
City : Jaipur
Festival Time : March
Highlights : Races and Beauty pageants of Elephants

Elephant Festival - Festival time for Elephants
The Elephant Festival annually held in Jaipur, is a unique event, which is usually held in the month of March in Rajasthan. The elephants are groomed to perfection and they glitter in gold as they walk in rows before an excited audience. The elephants move gracefully in procession, run races, play the regal game of polo, and finally participate in the spring festival of Holi.
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During Holi, the Chaugan is brought alive with elephants, dancers, musicians, and onlookers from the entire globe. The festival starts with an impressive procession of the majestic animals lovingly painted and tastefully attired with glittering ornaments and embroidered velvets.

Royal Elephant CartThe echoing sound of the trumpet fills the atmosphere. A ceremonial procession is recreated with caparisoned elephants, lancers on horses, chariots, camels, cannons, and palanquins. The large beast is the center of attraction in the many races and beauty pageants.

The elephant-keepers take great care to decorate the elephants by painting their trunks, foreheads, and feet with floral motifs and adorning them from tusk to tail with interesting trinkets. The game of polo forms the highlight of the festival. Dressed in saffron and red turbans, the teams try to score goals with long sticks and a plastic football.

Finally, the tourists are invited to mount the elephants and play Holi. Participants dance with great vigor-the excitement rising to a crescendo.
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Jaipur was a favourite spot with the important personalities of the British Raj and the Maharajas always arranged for their guests of honour elephant rides up to the Amber palace. Even today, the mahouts take tourists up to the Amber Palace on elephant back like shuttle taxis.

There were deadly and furious elephant-fights in the Chaugan of polo-field, the venue of the Elephant Festival. Rajasthan Tourism recreated the tradition by including the Elephant Festival in the cultural calendar. During Holi, the festival of Colors, to acclaim the coming of Spring, the Jaipur Chaugan is brought alive with elephants, dancers, musicians and onlookers from all the globe.

So if you want to get a true feel of this festival participate in the true strength and join your hands with the ten people in the tug-of-war with the largest elephant. Then there is the unique ‘Gaj Shringar’ exhibition displaying everything linked to the elephant-ornaments, textiles (Jhoo) parapernalic howdahs and carriages, paintings medicines and food.

In the evening people dance and sing on the rhythmic beats. A bedazzling display of fireworks brings the festival to a colourful and unforgettable end.

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