Here’s more on the International Kite Festival that is held in Gujarat every year, during Uttarayan, popularly known as Makar Sakranti in other parts of India.
- When: 6th Jan to 13th Jan every year (Gujarat)
- Festival: Uttarayan, also known as ‘Makar Sankranti’
- Significance: Marks the end of winter and beginning of a more suitable weather (transition of sun into the northern hemisphere) for farmers
- Attraction: Of all the festivals in Gujarat, this one is the grandest. People of all ages flying kites from dawn to dusk. Crowded rooftops, fun-loving rivalry in kite flying skills, and delicious traditional Gujarati feast are the hallmarks of the day.
Enjoyed flying kite in Naranpura, Ahmedabad. It is something I look forward to every Uttarayan.
May this festive season bring peace, joy and good fortune for all. pic.twitter.com/OgkBUK4bp9
— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) January 14, 2019
International Kite Festival
Because of its popularity its an International Kite Festival now. In India, its primarily celebrated in cities of Gujarat like Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot. However, the International Kite Event takes place in Ahmedabad (Kite capital of Gujarat) which sees visitors as well as participants from several international destinations such as Japan, Australia, Malaysia, USA, Brazil, Canada and European Countries.
Great Fun for Kids & Adults
Kids will love to see thousands of brightly colored kites in the sky, through the day. You can see kites of all shapes, sizes and designs throughout the day.
Watch thousands of kite enthusiasts competing against each other on rooftops, watch the sky change colors…like a rainbow in a glittering sun after the rains.
In addition to kite flying, there’s also aerial acrobats, kite painting competitions, and kite making workshops.
Wishing everyone a very happy Makar Sankranti!!! Flying kites is one of my childhood passions! Love. a. pic.twitter.com/VaWNc0Gudw
— Aamir Khan (@aamir_khan) January 14, 2016
Best Place to Enjoy It
Although the Kite Festival is celebrated all over Gujarat, the capital city of Ahmedabad is also the Kite Capital.
The best place to enjoy this festival is the Sardar Patel Stadium (the cricket stadium with capacity of over 54,000 people) or the Ahmedabad Police Stadium, where people lay down to see the sky filled with thousands of kites.
Obsession With Kites
During the Uttarayan week, the Patang Bazaar (kite market), situated in the heart of Ahmedabad city, is open 24 hours a day. Even in the middle of the night, there’s a huge crowd on the streets, buying kites for themselves, family and friends.
Months before the festival of Uttarayan, most homes in various cities in Gujarat turn into kite producing factories. It also attracts several big names of the corporate world, as it offers a cost-effective method of branding.
Excitement Continues At Night
At night, you can see illuminated box kites strung in a line, ready to be launched into the sky. Known as ‘tukkals’, these kites add a touch of splendor to the dark sky.
What’s more, the day (as well as the night) is marked with the traditional food/delicacy festival of Gujarat like the undhiyu (a delicacy of vegetables), jalebi (sweets), til ladoo (sweets made of sesame seeds) and chikki for visitors from different parts of world.