Mysore Dasara Festival 2017

Mysore Dasara Special Destinations

Mysore  Dasara (Dussehra)

The heritage city of Mysore is synonymous with – Dasara celebrations. For ten days the different hues of the city reinforce images of its grandeur and resplendence. Visitors from India and abroad congregate to witness the cultural extravagance at its best. The festival has its origin both in Hindu mythology and historical background and is celebrated as the triumph of good over evil. In Mysore, the festival commemorates the slaying of the demon Mahishasura by the Goddess Durga and the destruction of Chanda and Munda by Goddess Chamunde-shwari- the presiding deity of Mysore. Historically the celebrations have been traced to the rulers of the glorious Vijayanagar Empire who regarded it as Nada Habba (People’s Festival). After the fall of this empire the Wodiyar rulers of Mysore revived the tradition of majestic style of celebrations in 1610. The continued ritualistic observance of this festival  by the Wodiyar dynasty has contributed to Dasara liabba as a state festival.

In the ten days, the city is drowned in a razzmatazz of colour and pageants reflecting the rich and diverse culture of its Own. The festivities include performances in music, dance and drama, wrestling bouts, horticulture show, air show and adventure sports etc. The cornerstone of all celebrations is the glittering Mysore Palace in all its splendour. The other buildings are also lit up for ten days and the entire city wears a festive look. The tenth day is the day of Ayudha Puja also known as Vijayadashmi (Day of Victory) when every manifestation of Shakti is worshipped.

The highlight of the festivities is the colourful royal procession, Jumbo Savari on the tenth day. It starts from the palace after a 21-gun salute and sound of bands, led by a colourfully bedecked elephant with a golden howdah carrying the idol of Goddess Chamundeshwari. Following the Savari are caparisoned elephants, decorated royal horses, brightly uniformed soldiers, twirling folk dancers and colourful floats. Almost a mile long procession wends its way through the city to Bannimantap, about 5 km away. In the evening there are cultural performances and a torch light parade by the mounted horsemen with a thrilling display of equestrian skills, the night ends with a great display of fireworks. An exhibition is also held in the Doddakere Maidan.

The Dasara in Coorg includ Ramlila – an enactment of the life esf Lord Rama, held during the nine days preceding Dasara. On the 10 day, larger than life effigies of Ravana, his son, Meghnath and brother, Kumbhakarna are set alight at sunset accompanied with the bursting of crackers. The highlight of festivities is a colourful procession of beautifully lit temple cars vying for the coveted prize of best-decorated car.