Places to visit during Diwali
Diwali, that magnificent festival of lights when fireworks light up the skies, is coming close! Where are you planning to spend the most important festival of the year? You’re not limited to your hometown, you know. You can go anywhere to celebrate Diwali and still have all the fun you’d have in your home town. Did you know that Diwali is celebrated with great pomp in several countries other than India? Here are the

best places for you to spend your Diwali this year

. Enjoy!

1. Thailand


Diwali in Thailand is called Loi Krathong, which literally means ‘to float a basket.’ Sensational fireworks displays take place all over the country, especially on beaches and the outlying islands. Lit lamps are placed within hot air balloons made of rice paper and then released into the sky. People light lamps made of banana leaves and set them floating on lakes and ponds. People organize colorful boat parades and cultural performances all over the country. Sit by one of the many rivers and watch the fireworks over the water, sent up by hundreds of illuminated boats.

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2. Varanasi


Varanasi, one of India’s holiest cities, is abuzz with excitement during Diwali. The Varanasi ghats are lit with thousands of earthen lamps, creating a mesmerizing view that you can see from afar. In fact, Varanasi is called the ‘City of Lights’ during Diwali. Fireworks reign over the skies the whole night. Rent rooms in a riverside hotel, and you can see the magnificent fireworks and lights reflected on the Ganges. Don’t miss the special evening Ganga Aarati on the illuminated ghats.

3. Sri Lanka


All five days of Diwali are observed in Sri Lanka with great pomp and splendor. People light oil lamps and place them all around their homes and outside to signify the victory of light over darkness. The Hindu Tamilians scattered across Sri Lanka celebrate the festival with the usual rituals of the oil bath, prayers, exchange of gifts and sweets, and fireworks during the night. Magnificent fireworks parties take place on Sri Lanka’s beaches, lighting up the night skies with a million lights and colors.

4. Indonesia

Indonesia Diwali

Even though Indonesians are predominantly Muslims, Diwali festivities come with great fanfare. Bali has a huge diaspora of Indians, and this is where the celebrations are the most colorful. All-night firework parties on Indonesia’s fabulous beaches, shopping for festive clothes and sweets, and releasing floating lanterns on rivers and lakes are part of the Diwali fun here. Indonesia is one of the best holiday destinations in November, as the weather is mild, and the country is at festive best.

5. Azerbaijan

The land of fire is another destination to escape for your Diwali break. Baku’s mix of old and new sights, sprinkled with Gabala’s natural beauty and other phenomenal sights (including Gobustan’s mud volcanoes, the mysterious Absheron, and iconic Yanar Dag), highlight most Azerbaijan holidays.

6. Nepal

Nepal in diwali

Diwali celebrations see a slight difference in Nepal. The first five days of Diwali are all about decorating and worshipping cows. On the second day, dogs are honored with special baths, water, and choice food. Don’t ask why. On the third day, homes, streets, and markets are lit up with colorful lanterns and earthen lamps to celebrate the victory of Lord Rama over the demon Ravana. The fourth day is dedicated to Yama, the lord of death, and Bhai Dooj celebrates the bond between brothers and sisters on the fifth day. Fireworks and colorful sights abound on all days in this enchanting mountain country.

7. Dubai


Dubai’s restaurants and shopping malls put up special offers during Diwali. For example, Chor Bazaar Restaurant offers a mouthwatering Diwali buffet menu, and the iconic red roof of Ferrari World in nearby Abu Dhabi is all lit up while drummers set the mood for Diwali. There’s live Diwali entertainment, laser beam shows, Bollywood music and henna, and rangoli artwork. Many Dubai restaurants will be decorated with traditional earthen lamps during Diwali. Fireworks are organized at various locations. Shopping malls and public spaces are lit with multi-color LEDs, and the Dubai Fountain sways to scintillating Indian music for Diwali. So, if you’re wondering where to go on holiday in November, think of Dubai.

8. Jaipur, India


The Pink City is completely decked out for Diwali with colorful earthen lamps, especially in the markets. At night, every house glitters with colorful lights, and musicians and dancers take to the streets, turning the whole of Jaipur into a vibrant live performance stage. You can buy thousands of colorful, multi-shaped earthen lamps in the markets, along with traditional Diwali clothes and handicrafts. The market is fully illuminated at night, and fireworks go off around the city. Every sweet shop sells amazing Diwali sweets, and the city’s famous palace hotels offer fabulous traditional Diwali feasts, be sure to add Jaipur to your list of places to visit on Diwali vacation.

9. Mauritius

Mauritius diwali

Diwali is observed as a public holiday in Mauritius, as 50% of the island’s population is Hindu. People celebrate by lighting earthen lamps, setting off fireworks, and drawing colorful rangolis outside homes and public buildings. Beach parties are organized where people gamble, drink, and light fireworks throughout the night. Diwali is a great party time on the fun island of Mauritius.

10. Singapore


All Singaporeans celebrate Diwali; offices are closed and kids are off school as Diwali is a public holiday. Little India is lit up to the skies; the market stalls are garlanded with colorful flowers, and earthen lamps are lit everywhere. There are colorful rangolis in front of every store, and the fragrance of incense floods the streets. Fireworks go up on all five days of Diwali, especially at Clarke Quay, Gardens by the Bay, and Sentosa Island.

11. Australia


Australia has a large Indian population, especially in Sydney and Melbourne. Diwali is celebrated with great fervor in several pockets. In Melbourne, Federation Square sees a grand display of fireworks, dances, Indian music, art, cultural shows, and colorful rangolis everywhere. There’s also a rangolis competition, where Indian women show off their creativity and skills. Everybody joins in the celebration as the spirit of Diwali brings various communities together.

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12. Maldives

Want to venture to a place away from chaos but surrounded by sheer beauty, verdant greenery, and tranquility? A long-haul holiday during Diwali can’t get better than getting away to the Maldives. Enjoy the once-in-a-lifetime chance to stay in an over-water bungalow, participate in fantastic water activities, embark on a traditional Dhoni cruise, and witness the stunning Bioluminescent Beach Phenomenon, among others.


Take your family to the destination of your choice and see how people in other places spend this spectacular festival. You’ll be delighted to know just how much joy the spirit of Diwali brings to the world. You’ll also be thrilled to know that even in countries where fireworks are banned, Diwali is still celebrated according to age-old traditions.

Aanchal is a writer by profession and an avid foodie. She loves travelling, exploring and adding cherished experiences to the book of life.

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