7 Lovely Sankranti festival experiences one can have in Visakhapatnam and Andhra Pradesh

Image Source - Madhushala

Visakhapatnam has Sankranti festival fervor picking up and here are 7 lovely experiences one should not miss during Sankranti in Andhra Pradesh.

Preparation, planning, shopping and more has kick-started months before Sankranti of 2018 in Visakhapatnam. Households are abuzz with hope, anticipation and sweet aromas of goodies that are to come. A massive event in any home in Andhra Pradesh, Sankranti brings an excitement packed time in Visakhapatnam. Here are the 7 best of experiences one can witness here.

#1 Bhogi Mantalu

Image result for bhogi mantaluOn Bhogi, people discard old and ruined things and concentrate on new things causing change or transformation. At dawn, people light a bonfire with logs of wood, other solid-fuels and wooden furniture at home that are no longer useful. The ‘cleansing’ includes a cleansing one of old habits, vices, and attachment to materials things, which are symbolically sacrificed in the sacrificial fire. It is also meant to ward off the evil eye.

#2 Traditional feast, Pongal

Image result for pongal feastThe main festive day, this is when the full family congregates and this is the day that loads of sweets and savouries are made and served. Mealtime is invariably a traditional feast! It is celebrated by boiling rice with fresh milk and jaggery in new pots early in the morning and allowing it to boil over the vessel. This tradition gives Pongal its name.

#3 Kanuma and Mukkanuma feast

The next day, on Kanuma, cows and cattle are revered and worshiped. Mukkanuma is popular as a day of general revelry. Many families especially in Coastal Andhra do not eat any meat or fish during the initial days of the festival, and do so only on the day of Mukkanuma.

#4 Haridasulu

Haridasulu singing devotional songs is an age old Sankranti tradition and just as they used to and still go around villages, in Visakhapatnam the crooning of one is a common thing now. They invoke auspicious beginnings and seek diksha or offerings.

#5 Gangireddulu

Image result for gangiredduAn art form of the state and a colorful appearance during Sankranti days, the Gangireddulu are in Visakhapatnam adding the fun twist to Sankranti. Both rural and urban households wait for their appearance with excitement among children especially. Special prayers are offered as well as edible and floral offerings. Some even perform playful antics much to the delight of the onlookers.

#6 Gobbemmalu and Muggulu

Image result for gobbemma mugguluOn Sankranti, colorful rangolis are decorated in front of the homes and lumps of cow dung known as gobbemma along with freshly harvested rice grains mark the festivities. This tradition is followed by devotional song and prayers for the blessings bestowed on the household with lasting prosperity. A typical ritual of Andhra Pradesh that takes a look back at harvest and its significance.

#7 Kite flying

Image result for kanuma festivalA time for happiness and prosperity, flying kites has over the ages become an associated tradition that accompanies Sankranti not just in Andhra Pradesh but elsewhere in India too. Children look forward to this and markets here are selling all manners, sizes, and shapes of kites. A look at the skies around this time is mesmerizing.

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