Center of Activity: Fort Kochi
Time of Celebration: Last week of December
Main Attraction: A massive procession of caparisoned elephants,
games and partying
If there is one festival the whole of Kochi impatiently awaits every
year, then it's the Cochin Carnival held in the last week of December.
Fort Kochi is decked up like a bride and tourists, not only from within
the country, but also outside, flock to this lovely port city to
participate in the revelry. The inception of the Kochi carnival can be
traced back to the Portuguese New Year revelry, held here during the
colonial days. Gradually, it evolved to take the form of what is today
popularly called the Cochin Carnival of Kerala.
Preparations generally begin months in advance for hosting the unique
games, fairs and partying during the Carnival of Cochin. Dressed up in
fancy dresses, everyone, children in particular, is seen bursting with
enthusiasm. The highlight of the carnival is the massive procession on
the New Year's Day. Led by an embellished elephant accompanied by drums
and music, the carnival is a moment to behold. There is also staging of
different South and North Indian folk dances during the festivity.
Color white simply dominates the concluding 10 days of December, during
the Kochi Carnival. All establishments in the city don white paper
buntings. The available space on the streets host impromptu competitions
and multi-faceted celebrations. Kalam Vara (floor drawing), tug-of-war,
bicycle race, swimming in the sea, beach volleyball are some of the
programs that take place during the Cochin Carnival at Fort Kochi. The
festivities and revelries continue till midnight of December 31st with
fireworks marking the grand finale.
Know all about the annual Cochin Carnival held at Fort Kochi in Kerala, during the last week of December.