Celebrated in the Madurai temple located about 500 kilometers from Chennai, Chithirai Festival, Madurai is a popular festival in southern India. Madurai is popularly known as the City of Festivals. The festivals of Madurai are well known for their color and vivaciousness. Devotees gather in large numbers and worship the gods and goddesses.
Chithirai Festival, Madurai includes a procession of Lord Vishnu, locally known as Lord Kallazhagar. The brother of Goddess Meenakshi, Lord Vishnu travels from his abode in Azhagarmalai to get his sister married to Lord Sundareshwarar. This journey from his abode to his sister’s wedding, on a golden chariot, is the legend behind celebrating the Chithirai Festival, Madurai.
The celebrations begin with the hoisting of the flag in the temple. The celestial wedding of Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Sundareshwarar is celebrated every year in Madurai during the Chithirai Festival. Devotees on this auspicious day celebrate by riding a golden chariot with the idols of the god and the goddess.
The journey around the city is accompanied with drum beats, flowers incense sticks and camphor. The spiritual ambience is heightened with the offerings made by the devotees like sweets and coconut.
A fair is organized on this day. Devotees traveling from different parts of the country visit the fair after the festival. The ten day festivity is a time of the year when devotees from different social and regional background gather together to celebrate and worship.
Time to celebrate
Chithirai Festival, Madurai is celebrated between April and May during the Tamil month of Chithirai. This is one of the popular festivals of Madurai. Chithirai Festival dates in 2017 may fall between 29th April till 10th May.